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Kathryn Wheeler

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Everything posted by Kathryn Wheeler

  1. Thankyou! I’d love to see dancing to it - wouldnt that be nice! I find the instrument does so very easily want to dance along. The 20b is a wonderful thing and there’s plenty more to do with it, I feel. It does help of course that I’m coming up with tunes that it wants to play and I’m playing solo!
  2. Yes I was reminded strongly of organ music when I started to play slow chordal stuff! I used to play a reed organ as a tiny kid
  3. Here's my first attempt to explain, on camera, some background to a tune "Sprig" refers to the fact that this tune grew out of another one of my pieces - Hazel - whilst I was noodling about on the instrument (as you do!)
  4. I know what you mean! It’s extremely useful and it really makes you think about what you like to do with an instrument. I suppose another issue is whether you play other instruments (in my case I could say “fine, I will keep concertina for my own tunes solo and for those tunes in bands that it suits and use my other instruments for jamming in a session” But then I think how portable one concertina could be for ad hoc jamming and sessions (I don’t think lugging several around would be any better than what I do now!) and how cool it would be to have one that I could do anything on regardless of genre and not feel restricted..hmm! So much food for thought isn’t it! Thankyou so much for bringing up the topic for discussion! Do please keep us updated!
  5. These are great answers and very useful!
  6. What got me started? Someone I know saw a Scholer Bb/Eb anglo in a charity shop and gave it me (because I play piano accordion I think!) The way the notes are laid out intrigued me - I began to fiddle around seeing what it wanted to play! And new tunes just fell out of that process of investigation. Frustrated by the feel of the instrument I got a lachenal 20 and am obsessed with it, still playing with the myriad possibilities it offers. https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCyfaF1wA2EZagdS7E8i3ixw
  7. If you are interested in seeing what I’ve been doing with a 20, solo, here’s my channel: https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCyfaF1wA2EZagdS7E8i3ixw (I’ve arranged the different types of music I get up to in playlists so if you’re only interested in anglo you can avoid all the medieval or band stuff )
  8. Hi Sunny, I very much focus on the 20button and have been coming up with tunes for it as well as seeing how to best arrange preexisting tunes for the instrument. I have been playing solo (aided by the last year meaning I couldn’t go to sessions or band practices or gigs - I literally took up the instrument last year, but (like you) am already someone very used to both sheet music, playing by ear and jamming. Now things are changing and I’ve got together with friends to jam - I have been able to improvise stuff that goes with their tunes if they play in keys that aren’t too distant, do rhythmic accompaniment, countermelodies etc. I’m used to playing of course in C and G but also a lot in E and A minor and modal D (Dorian) and other modes that only use “white notes plus F sharp” That said whilst this is possible, I’m still of course not as used to doing this as in my other instruments and to find that of course it restricts how I accompany _a lot_. Which is interesting sometimes but at other times it’s this massive relief to get my piano accordion out and jazz away on those chromatics. So of course it makes me think about something with more buttons. I borrowed one from a friend and it’s handy for familiarisation although I miss how beautifully responsive my 20 button is. Means I at least know what I want out of a 30 if and when! I will never get rid of my 20 - getting the max out of it is a real satisfaction to me and stands me in great stead when and if I get more buttons. But the 20 gets my head thinking in interesting ways and being inventive in accompaniment (when playing solo and otherwise!)
  9. I love studying all the different ways - which can also vary from person to person and genre! Always something to learn and try out And yes it’s great for keyboard knowledge and finding out more options
  10. If the instrument does the arranging then you know it’s going to lie well under the fingers and sound idiomatic
  11. Oh yes, I love exploring the options wherever they are - across or within rows - trying out alternatives for phrases - to find out what suits the mood of the piece, right then. Or then there is repetition, choosing an alternative to add interest eg a more legato fingering vs one that leans into bellows changes. Or choosing very different harmonies for a section, which become available when you choose an alternative I don’t really think if it as either playing along or across rows - rather more what options are available to play with, and you start to build up an arsenal of these options for commonly used arpeggios/runs etc. But are always learning new ones too It all reminds me of violin bowing choices and choice of which string and position to play a given note on - also whether to use plucking, double stopping etc.
  12. I love the style and humour of your videos and presentation
  13. The top row is particularly easy to play - the bottom somewhat stiffer just now. I’m glad someone has given it attention in the past. It is fine single line though I think with harmony it’d use a wee tune here and there.
  14. We’ve come across the same sort of thing as Adrian Brown regarding an artist (or their “people”) saying we couldn’t use their song. I am in a trio (Gloucester based Way Out West) that does very different versions of pop/rock/whatever tickles us on acoustic instruments with three part vocal harmony. Sometimes to completely new tunes we’ve come up with that suit the new vision we have for the song. We never knew the reason why one well known band refused permission. Adrian’s answer actually goes a long way to reassuring me that it wasn’t necessarily because they didn’t enjoy it 😛. That said with other artists we were fine! Pop music is big industry - maybe these days with more independent production and artists bring more hands on and accessible through social media it’s possible to do things a bit differently
  15. Hi there This Scholer (E German) 20b that interestingly plays in Eb and Bb came to me via a friend seeing it in a charity shop. And fiddling about with it made me sure I wanted to get a really nice Lachenal 20b last year! (And boy am I glad about that..love it to bits) So I thank it for that - it got me going just at the start of the initial lockdown with Covid! However that said one of its reeds is missing (button 5 on the left on the push) As I’ve seen before here, repairers have said it’s not worth repairing and they can’t get hold of brass reeds. But I think someone here recently has a project they’re working on that they want brass reeds for too and it shows that people are interested But more to the point I’m not personally interested in restoring things - so I wondered if anyone else fancied it (for the price of postage) for whatever project they’d like to use it on
  16. Thanks Jonny, that’s great to hear! I’ve been thinking that it might be a good idea to do something on how to flesh out a melody to provide variety and interest. And how to adapt a melody so it feels good to play on a 20b Anglo. If my own learning process can help anyone else that’s a great thing. I am not quite sure yet what format that might take - possibly video discussion and demonstration. In the meantime I’m putting down any stuff I do as sheet music and video and happy to chat. If anyone wants to play anything I come up with (especially if they want to video it/play it for gigs but also generally cos it’s lovely to know) drop me a line
  17. Worth seeing if you can try to contact them (because they might be chuffed to bits that you want to and that you tried to get in touch!)
  18. What’s especially nice is that my poet friend Giles today came back from visiting his parents, having showed them the video, with a Lachenal 20b that looked a twin of mine virtually! (And this is in SW Australia) Turns out his dad played (as well as harmonica) and used to spend many hours restoring things including harmoniums and old organs.
  19. Here’s my latest adventures on the 20button. It’s back from its visit to the doctors, hale and hearty and raring to go And this one is a bit different in that it is accompanied by a poetry reading, inspired by tree folklore and a tale from Welsh and Irish legend. But mostly because it just wanted to play this tune after coming back! Having fun exploring the Lydian mode i.e. C major scale with an added Fsharp (made for this instrument!) and playing with a drone accompaniment amongst other harmonic treatments - and coming up with an introductory bit, for a change It would be lovely to connect on YouTube - always like to follow what fellow Anglo enthusiasts are up to so please do drop by and say hello My channel is here: https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCyfaF1wA2EZagdS7E8i3ixw
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