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Everything posted by JackJ

  1. Looks like a wonderful instrument, but it appears to be an English rather than an Anglo model.
  2. I had the same concern when I first looked at that pic, but I think we were both mistaken, and that the blocking does hold both vertical edges, front and back, closed. You can see it on the near edge, and with a different camera angle I think the far edge would look the same. As someone who's had a concertina case come unlatched on me, I appreciate the belt and suspenders approach to keeping this case firmly closed. Nice work!
  3. Thanks folks! Though there's no clear answer, this is still helpful to me. For reasons more intuitive than rational, I'm leaning toward the C#/D, but if a quality B/C box turns up at the right price, I may try that route just to see what it's like. I appreciate the help!
  4. As someone only familiar with contemporary "anglo" internals, can someone describe or point me to a site that explains the earlier German mechanisms and how they differ from the English style of buttons. levers, etc?
  5. Thanks David. Contacting Bob through his web form was my first step—hoping to hear from him soon.
  6. I did a very stupid thing and set my Morse Ceilli down on my outdoor deck table last night, then got distracted by a family matter, forgot it was there, and went to bed. Then it rained. I'm guessing we got 1/4" - 1/2" of rain--not just a light sprinkle. I have the ends off and have pat the instrument dry with paper towels. Both action boards are partially soaked, as are some of the pads. As far as I can tell, no water got through to the reeds side. The bellows absorbed a lot of water and expanded to about half of full extension and want to stay there. Fortunately I'm not seeing any seams coming apart. Can you offer me any advice on what I should do next? I'm guessing I should dry it out slowly, rather than use a hair dryer or any sort of heat. What about a table fan? I'm guessing the pads may no longer seal well once they're dry. I'm also concerned about the bellows leather and cardstock being affected long term. Should I compress the bellows now while they're still moist? I'm a little worried about mold forming, but maybe that would take a day or two and can be prevented if I extend and air them out several times during the drying process, keeping them mostly compressed? On the other hand, I'm nervous about manipulating the bellows at all for fear the glue joints might give way. I don't mind a bit if you preface any replies with, "What an idiot!" before sharing any advice on corrective steps.
  7. I'm an ITM concertina player who is considering giving the button accordion a try. But unlike Concertina where C/G is clearly the default tuning for ITM, Irish button boxes come in two common flavors: B/C and C#/D. There's plenty that's been written about the stylistic difference and relative merits of each of these tunings, but after researching it, I'm no closer to deciding which one I want to try. "Both" is not the option I want to pursue! So I'm asking my fellow concertina enthusiasts their thoughts on the subject, hoping someone here has gone down this path before me. Here's what I know so far. The most succinct description of the practical difference between B/C and C#/D boxes I've heard is that the former requires more use of the buttons and the second more use of the bellows. Or, as it's put on McNeela's Buyer's Guide, "The quick and simplified answer is that on a traditional B/C button accordion you’ll move your fingers more, but the bellows less. On a C#/D accordion you’ll move your fingers less, but the bellows more." Of course this difference leads to a different feel, and even different phrasing, to the music. Common wisdom seems to lean toward B/C as favored, since it's been used by more players historically and almost all instructional material assumes this tuning. But the one box player semi-local to me that I know of prefers C#/D, and there seems to be a trend where C#/D is in ascendance. I'm not too worried about tutors and such. The other advice is to listen to players of each type to see if you prefer the sound of one tuning over the other. Maybe I'm just easy to please, but when played well, they both sound fantastic to me. As a C/G Anglo concertina player, I'm not intimidated by constant bellows direction changes. I'm also not one who thinks "along the rows" when it comes to playing concertina, so the shared "C" row of a B/C box and C/G concertina isn't a big factor for me. I'm in no rush, and I'm looking for a reasonably good deal on a high quality used instrument. Though C#/D instruments do seem harder to come by, I don't mind waiting for the right one to pop up. Hoping some of you have experience and insights on this question that you're willing to share with me. Thanks!! Jack
  8. Caitlin includes this beautiful tune in her Improvers class at irishconcertinalessons.com, and gets into some of the chording she uses on it.
  9. Early on he says he plays a Wheatstone layout, but like Paul above I haven't gotten very far. I play Jeffries (more specifically the Carroll variation that has three C#s on the RH outside row), but I can't imagine it will make a lot of difference, and he may well go over both fingering options on specific tunes. I'm only on lesson 6 or 7, and I'm enjoying it so far, even though it's basic stuff, and I'm an intermediate player. Like Caitlin's irishconcertinalessons.com, you get closeups of both hands to help see the fingering. Caitlin walks you through the notes with a lot more repetition, which is helpful. But Jack, so far, talks more (so far) about technique, best practices, and things to avoid. I was surprised to see that on only the second or third tune presented, Jack gets into harmony/chord options. That's good from my perspective, as my own playing is limited in that area.
  10. On my new Carroll I followed a suggestion from Wally and got that pull E on the middle button on left hand outside row, where there's typically a D# (assuming an Anglo C/G). I haven't made a lot of use of it yet, but I'm glad it's there, and when I remember it, it has come in handy for a tune or two. Last year I spoke with Doug Creighton of The Button Box about customizing the left hand thumb button on their Morse ESB model. I thought a pull E and and push F# would be a great help, but he cautioned that my thumb probably doesn't have enough dexterity to get those notes out fluidly in an ITM context, so I went with a D/D (drone) instead. But you're absolutely right that we anglo players do give our right hand thumbs quite a workout, although I'm sure mine isn't as quick and precise as other digits. But maybe with enough practice....
  11. And here I was expecting the Sex Pistols! But I suspect that's not part of the official Platinum Jubilee repertoire.
  12. Carroll Concertinas has a few YouTube videos on common repairs/adjustments, one of which addresses this particular issue:
  13. Sorry, no experience with G/Ds, Jeffries, or Dippers. Hopefully some day! But last June I ordered a Carroll C/G "Small" and took delivery last month. As expected, it is a phenomenal instrument in every way. I own a Morse Ceili and a Morse ESB (baritone), both in C/G, as well as an old 20b Jones. The Ceili is quick, but the Carroll is noticeably quicker. I haven't weighed them, but the Morse instruments are known to be light, and if the Carroll is heavier, I haven't noticed. Wally was fantastic to work with as I explored a few minor customizations. I would love to own a top quality Jeffries, since they have such a wonderful, distinctive sound, and since they are so iconic. But the uncertainties of buying a vintage instrument have put me off. I could not be happier than to have instead acquired the Carroll. Eventually I'll get around to posting some pics and sound clips here.
  14. Lovely! Both the instrument and the tune. I would love to own one of these.
  15. Thanks for this! It's a favorite tune of mine at the moment, though I'm struggling a bit with keep the 3rd part flowing. Looking forward to giving the ornaments you've notated a go.
  16. Following up my original post here to say that my strap order from Concertina Spares arrived yesterday. I'm very happy with the quality of the straps, and the price. The order took over 3 months to get here and there was no communication from the vendor despite 3 or 4 attempts on my part to make contact after the order was placed. But since I was not in a hurry, this was a satisfactory transaction, though very slow.
  17. Does anyone have any recent transaction experiences or inside information on concertina-spares.com? I placed a small order with them back in November, and haven't heard anything, including in response to a couple of follow-up emails I sent. It may well be due to spam folders, me missing a reply, or other typical snafus. I'm not writing this as a complaint about customer service, and my order wasn't anything I'm desperate for. Thanks for any insights, Jack
  18. Nice! I bought this same Nanuk case with the dividers. Like you, I found that the dividers took up too much room and sliced them open to remove some of the padding. But after starting on that route I decided I'd rather have the instrument blocked, so purchased some firm foam and soft fabric to customize the interior. The project went on the back burner a couple weeks ago when life got it the way, but I hope to finish it up this weekend. The key element is shaping some foam blocks to hold the bellows shut while only contacting the wooden ends and not the buttons. I do really like this case, but I wish it were just slightly larger so that I could slide a Zoom recorder and a metronome in spaces separate from the instrument. I considered the Pelican, but the Nanuk was cheaper. I went with silver color (more of an off white) but really like the blue you chose.
  19. Almost never needs tuning No strings to break or change Even more portable than a tenor ukulele Makes you more attractive to current or potential partners than any of the others Novelty factor: no one else you know plays one Noel Hill doesn't play dobro Mrs. Crotty never played ukulele
  20. Fascinating! There's mention of a foot treadle to inflate the bellows in one of the older posts in the thread, but I don't see any evidence of that for the model in the above videos. Are there maybe springs pushing the bellows up, and you counteract them by pushing down on the bar with your palms?
  21. This is indeed my intent. I've been using the Transcribe+ app for a while now to help me learn tunes by ear, and to slow down the parts that fly by too fast--usually the entire tune!. I do like having the dots to fall back on, but I'll mostly be using the CD's, plus the slow down software, to try to learn these tunes and these specific settings. The software also allows me to loop a section, or the entire tune, continuously, which is especially helpful when the recording is just one time through. For me, this book without the CD's wouldn't have much value.
  22. Following up on my own post, I've gone ahead and ordered the Morse ESB with d/d on the left thumb button. I often miss not having a press f# or draw e (in the same octave) on the left hand side, but Doug at the Button Box indicated that the thumb usually doesn't have the dexterity to get in on quick melody notes. Delivery is at least a couple months away, but looking forward to going low on the baritone.
  23. Following up on my own post for anyone else interested in this book: It is, as Gary says, just the tunes and nothing else. The 2 accompanying CDs do cover all the tunes, but just one time through on each. The dots are not completely accurate transcriptions--they include no double stops/chords, for example, and don't capture every ornament. But they're pretty close. Still, I'm glad to have this. The book has a lot of tunes I want to learn, including some I already play, but where it will be helpful to incorporate some of the phrasing/variations presented here. And unlike learning a tune from a fiddle or flute recording, here I get concertina-specific elements, played in a "pro" manner. I.e., not just a basic, unadorned version of the tune. Certainly not an essential purchase, and not one that would have done much for me when I was just beginning, but I think it will be helpful in my current intermediate phase. Once I've spent some time with it, I may want to see if I can pursue some lessons with the author.
  24. Thanks Richard! I have seen mention of Aogán offering online lessons, and may well pursue that. And in editing my post above to add a link to the book, I found a tune list on the Walton's site. (It's a popup image that I don't see a way to copy, otherwise I'd paste it here.) It includes a good number of tunes played at my local sessions that are not yet in my personal repertoire, so I'm going to pick it up, hoping for some concertina-specific insights. But would still love to hear any impressions from anyone who has used this particular book. Thanks!
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