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Kathryn Wheeler

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Everything posted by Kathryn Wheeler

  1. 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
  2. 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!)
  3. 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.
  4. 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
  5. Hi Mike, it wasn’t me who asked what an arrangement was, it was Rebecca. Nice reply though!
  6. Thanks so much, CrP, I’m glad you like it! The recorded sound was quite straightforward in that the accordion was fine straight out of the phone I videoed it all with. The Anglo however prefers a small handheld recording device. I panned the two slightly away from each other but there aren’t any effects
  7. You sure can get some interesting chords on an accordion! Mind you, quite impressed by the anglo in terms of interesting dissonances! But yes, it doesnt half punch through with a strong melody!
  8. Thanks Jim! Goodness, that looks so much fun! I miss a good dance. That is very toe-tapping indeed. Do you tend to mostly play the tune in that ensemble or the lovely acoompanied harmonic stuff we listen to here? How is it playing standing up for long periods? I have done that on a piano accordion but for some reason I just havent ever played standing up with an anglo yet - I should! I wonder if it can lend more of a weight/emphasis.
  9. Thanks for that! So useful. The Anglo is really taking the lead there with the accordion doing a light rhythmic accompaniment throughout - I like the added harmony notes in the Anglo (I would definitely like to play around with adding in more harmonic material!)
  10. Lovely! From a listen, am I right in thinking that could be doable (to a large extent?) on the 20b apart from not having the all those gorgeous low notes!
  11. Thanks JimmyG! From the discussions on the piano accordion thread recently I assume you play?
  12. To be specific (I generally play harmonically on 20b anglo) When I came up with one of my first tunes, it started as a single line melody (they dont always. I love the shapes of chords you can get on the anglo! So some things might come from wanting to explore a chord shape and what happens when you move that shape on different buttons). I wanted to have a quieter slower, more thoughtful version (with smoothness so fewer bellows changes but also quite a bit of freedom in the tempo, slowing down or getting a bit faster). I wanted that bit to reflect how one might sing it (as it was based on a poem). However I also wanted a dancey, upbeat version of the tune (with more bellows rhythm, articulation, bellows accents etc, a bit more like I imagined Morris dancing). I then was listening to a nice video someone had done and decided I would have a go at their style of countermelody. So I invented a left hand part that sounded nice with the melody being played on the right hand. What sounds nice? Well, press a few buttons and see! But generally it is nice to do things like contrary motion - where the melody goes up, try going down - and various other techniques composers use to write countermelodies. Trial and error is a good way though as you learn about what would suit an anglo. Then I thought "how about doing the tune an octave lower on the left hand..whilst doing the tune" and "maybe I dont need to play _all_ the notes in the left hand - just the occasional one. I liked how you can get two notes a fifth apart by playing the same vertical column on the c and g rows. And that is two notes of a chord (without the third) so used that, in a fun rhythm that worked with the tune, for one of my versions of the tune. Those are just some ideas.
  13. Hello! I call an "arrangement" when I think about how I am going to play a tune on the concertina (in my case 20b anglo). Any style/genre of playing can involve arranging tunes. What is the mood of the piece (or within the piece how does the mood change?), how fast am I going to do it, what sort of articulation (do I want a section smooth or articulated differently? Am I going to highlight a repeat section by treating it differently? Might that mean a choice of buttons to use and whether on the push/pull.) How will I use the bellows in different sections to bring out phrasing/dynamics/feel. Will I do it all the same tempo throughout? Am I going to do it exactly the way I have heard someone else do it, or the way it is traditionally done in a particular area, or do I have some different ideas according to how it makes me feel.? Will I do five times through the piece, each one different, or shape my version so that it has a climax in the middle or near the end etc. Beyond that, am I going to add in some harmonies, countermelodies, do it in octaves, add some chords, is it all going to be made out of chords (like some organ music), some rhythmic stuff (technical term that!) If you like harmonic treatments Gosh there is so much you can do with a piece, isn't there! What sort of music do you like playing or listening to/what would you like to play? Maybe we can be a bit more specific then in our answers
  14. I forgot to say! If anyone has any videos/examples of piano accordion and anglo combinations that you think work well, I'd love to see/hear them! Many thanks
  15. This is not a harmonic treatment of my 20b, but me playing around with what sounds nice on piano accordion with a single line on anglo - as a start to exploring a bit more what the two instruments can do together. I have more than one piano accordionist friend locally who I love meeting up with, so its nice to start working up some ideas. Can't wait to see what we can do with a harmonic anglo + PA (I suspect being quite sparing and subtle with the PA might be the way forward but who knows..!) Early days..
  16. Here's something different to the harmonic arrangements of tunes I usually do - I wanted to see how my 20b anglo would sound with a piano accordion and what combinations of textures might work. This is my first experiment - with a single line in the anglo. (I might swap roles and see what comes out..) So, here the accordion is providing all the "accompaniment/countermelody/textures". I love playing around with alternatives to the usual "oom pah" accompaniment associated with the PA. I was actually going to record this piece on two accordions* but just couldn't help picking up the anglo and having a quick little go - hence this! I fancy working up something for solo anglo at some point. Back to normal service very shortly * I came up with the tune originally for a series of canal inspired short tunes for a video by British Waterways - they were inspired by walking along stretches of the Worcester and Birmingham canal (especially Tardebigge lock flight and round Hanbury/Stoke Works) in Worcestershire. I wrote a duet for two accordions recently which this video is based on, musically, expanding the ideas, so that I could play it with a local accordionist friend who has really got into composing for the instrument.
  17. Had anyone else combined Anglo and piano accordion in an arrangement? I’m starting to realise what a great combination this can be! The Anglo really does have a different timbre that shines through. Obviously we can’t play both at the same time 😛 but it’s been fun to play with recording!
  18. The thing I miss most is jamming with/accompanying others and technology doesn’t really make that very possible. Latency issues and mostly because of that not really being there in the moment feeling. I haven’t done any zoom sessions because people play their party pieces “in series” and there is none of that involvement and participation musically that I so miss. That said I like to watch bits of the videos after and the chat can be good during! I’m not very good at sitting and listening to things for long periods passively but I have found it nice to be able to dip in to performances as and when I fancy it, rather than one long sitting. So watching videos made after a live stream is good! I also like festivals online because you can still get on with stuff during your day but also jump in and watch a bit with a cup of tea and then catch up with other bits during the following week. So the increase in this type of broadcasting has been great Festivals in a field can be too much and overwhelming and I have often wished I could press pause!
  19. Your point about handhelds picking up background noise is great! [edit: sorry my quote didn’t work!] I was wondering if that was the case, based on my own experiences
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