Jump to content


  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Posts posted by geoffwright

  1. I'm hoping that we will visited tonight by John Gall who is in the area.He is an English concertina player and and an authority and collector of flutinas and recently retired as Deputy Director of the Beamish Museum in County Durham.He was responsible for gathering a good collection of concertina related items at Beamish including the musical scores of the Northumberland & Durham Concertina Band.


    Best pies in England.


    Directions from the Usual Suspects.

  2. I have never heard anything so daft - DPM professes to be a fiddler of a decent standard but doesn't seem to feel the need to own a Stradivarius. If he can get by on a not top-of-the-range fiddle, why cannot he manage with a not T-O-T-R concertina?


    DPM forgets how many top-notch concertinas are in Ireland, owned by top-notch players who you will not see at any of Noel Hill's workshops because they already get lessons from him?


    Just because you have a box by a top-of-the-range maker, it doesn't mean it is your sort of instrument - everyone wants different things from a box and the first Jeffries that comes your way isn't forced to be the one you will want to play for the next x decades. (I have had 2 in 35 years).


    Not wanting to really wind up DPM, but some people actually collect concertinas and have dozens!!!!!! Is he going to come round and confiscate them until an audition has been carried out?


  3. Reasons for not playing concertina - because I can.


    Someone who ought to have thought up a reason why not to play -

    An infamous and deranged aquaintance who played accordion in dance bands took an accordinist colleague to play at a dance. He stalled the car on the way (they were both mechanics so knew it had been stalled), he then proceeded to prod about under the bonnet and start the car.

    This was purely so he could play on stage with grease half way up his arms just for effect.


    I went to hear the aforementioned doing a comedy turn in a club. During the bingo, the self-same nutter ran around the club wearing a Bavarian old-man horror-mask which had the pensioners shrieking.

  4. Do not wear a T-shirt depicting an anglo concertina on front and back - that really plays havoc with your beathing!

    Do not post on concertina.net - that really plays havoc with your spelling.


    Seriously though, you have to treat a tune in phrases, some of which will be push and some pull phrases.

    If two adjacent phrases are in the same direction, you have to take a break to get a quick slurp of air, or do a bit of cross fingering to get some notes in the opposite direction and automatically get your breath back.


    Take a breath - swap rows!!

  5. I find the lower notes easier to get if I lift my pinkies off the finger-ledge. With practise you can do it.

    I also find that if my thumbs are angled out some 10 degrees, my thumbs can control the bellows without pinkies (when sat down). If my thumbs are parallel with the box, I have less control.


    An added problem will be playing the new concertina until you get the thumbstraps exactly right and the leather bends itself to your grip.

  6. I use both little fingers to press buttons - I agree with Jody, a bit of downward pressure from the thumb tightens up the strap and leaves the pinkies free for bass runs or whatever.

    I remember from Noel Hill's workshops that playing something like "The Gold Ring" in D is very good practise at moving around the low notes.

  7. Beware - there are two Evils in Witney, the Evil Vaults is on the High Street, next to the Post Office - you don't want to go there.

    You want to be in the Evil Tavern on Corn Street - it has decent guest beer on (I was on Hook Norton Copper Ale) and was full of serious drinkers who talk to each other, as opposed to some of the other pubs where the music is loud and the conversation is minimal. A good eye is kept on the door to keep kiddies out.


    The Court Inn is no more - it has gone up/down? market and is a wide-screen bar. The Evil turned out to be a better venue, dark, with small rooms so a little smaller.


    Numbers were down a little on previous years - don't let that happen again - if you didn't like the classes on offer - tell DT what you do want!!!!!!


    I gave up Irish cross-fingering for the weekend and had many an enjoyable tune with Peter. I doubly confused everyone by swapping onto English concertina on the Sunday. The final spot of the tutors concert was the best yet - a jazz standard (Bill Bailey?) led by Harry Scurfield.

  8. The next thing to have a go at is a scale in a single direction.

    This is of the most use for fast passages (especially triplets) or groups of 3 or 4 notes where a specific chord is required, thus getting around one of the disadvantages you mentioned.


    With a button map, the more adventurous could also have a go at semitone scales.

  9. Part and parcel of the "intelligence" (sic) is who travels regularly to where, and hopefully what they take with them. It shouldn't come as a surprise to those dealing with airport security, that regular air-travellers, who are also musicians, want to take (of all things) musical instruments as cabin luggage.

    Although an MU member since leaving school, of late, they seem to give the impression that, although always helpful when you need them, they don't really want to listen to members. The website forum has been defunct for some time after some members dared to criticise the union for devolving local branches, and just looking today, there is no reference whatsoever to any matters of airport security, the last press release being July.


    Last weeks Crottyfest ended with some of the Sheffield-ites being charged extra for instruments that had been taken out of the country only days before, with my wife's lipstick being confiscated without comment, and me being told I shouldn't have packed my box, carefully cocooned, in my luggage - I should have done the same as the others and book it into the hold separately so DireAir could charge me extra to lose/damage it.

    Not an ideal situation and hardly surprising that Phoney Bliar decided to wash his hands of it and stop abroard (no doubt borrowing Cliff's guitar when he wanted a strum).

  10. We resume our fortnightly sessions after a month long break.Geoff Wright will be giving us a demonstration of the ABC software on his laptop.I have grappled with trying to use this software for some years so I hope Geoff is going to solve all my problems.You can also hear at first hand details of our exploits at the Eigse Mrs Crotty in Kilrush.


    If any players of the English concertina want to resume their regular session I am prepared to try to remember how to play the English concertina again and I am sure Geoff will assist.If you are interested.Please contact me if you want them to start again.


    This email is also sent to The Royal,but ring them if you want pies! Tel 0114 2851213






  11. Box got to Kilrush and back safely despite a run-in with DireAir (see other travel thread).

    Some of the others took theirs in the cabin. Most of the others had to pay extra.

    A colleague arrived in the pub on the first night and pulled two scalpel blades out of his coat pocket. So much for Blackpools security donkeys.

  12. My concertina was 1 cm too big without its case so I had to chance putting it in the hold.


    Two of us arrived at East Midlands with one over-large (containing well-wrapped anglo) and one smaller case, one underweight, one overweight. I explained why it was overweight and the RyanAir checkin girl said fair enough. I booked 7 months ago so nothing to pay.


    Arrived at Shannon to fly back with exactly the same luggage. The European jobsworth-ette on the RyanAir checkin said I would have to pay for both cases so I quickly told her where to shove her French accent as I didn't have to pay. She then told me to take some luggage out of the heavier case but would'nt let me weigh the lighter case to work out what to swap. Her Sagess Normane (Norman Wisdom) was called into questioni again as I told her to N@ckers and weighed it anyway. She kept our passports and sent us off to repack.

    My 3 colleagues got off less lightly and were made to pay for their overweight boxes.


    Moral - RyanAir, please note these weight restrictions are your self-imposed, money-grabbing rules not the Dept of Transports'. If you do not use a bit of common-sense and initiative, you will lose money because I just won't bother flying with you when the restrictions are lifted (if ever).

    Be Warned about flying DireAir.

  • Create New...