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    Chatty concertinist
  1. inventor

    2-button tunes on Anglo?

    No of course not John. The idea of these tunes was to encourage Duet players to get their fingers on both sides of the instrument right from the beginning; rather than running away with the right hand, and then trying to add the left hand several months down the line. Inventor.
  2. Hayden duets may be bought from "Button Box" and "Concertina Connection". Both these companies have first class reputations. Both sell in-house hand made high quality Hayden Duets. They also deal in cheaper imported Hayden Duets. Hand made Hayden Duets are also made by Steve Dickinson (Wheatstone) and Colin Dipper to order, however because of the high reputation of both of these makers, they have rather long waiting lists. A new maker to look out for in the Hayden Duet line is "Holden Concertinas". Inventor.
  3. There is quite a lot of music played on the Hayden Duets of all makes and sizes on youtube. Specifically for the 65 button look for Chas Jacobs. Also see many different types of music played on smaller Hayden duets. Look out for JeffLeff on his 46 button instrument. I mentioned the 65 button instrument as being the closest to a medium sized piano-accordion. One other feature I didn't mention which the Hayden duet has in common with accordions is that octaves repeat. Inventor.
  4. The Hayden duet is the closest concertina to the Accordion. A 65 button instrument has virtually the same compass as a 34 key piano-accordion on the right hand side. On the left hand side you have notes going down about an octave and a half below this, and an overlap with the right hand side. All the notes are individual, so you have to make a chord by playing several buttons at the same time. However on a Hayden duet once you have learned the pattern for a major chord this repeats for many other major chords. Minor, dominant seventh and diminished chords each have repeating patterns too. Now here is the big bonus for an accordion player :- the chords are in the same order from left to right as the standard stradella accordion bass; but concertinered into a zig-zag nearly half the width ! On the 65 button instrument it is easy to play something very similar to an accordion um-pah bass. First play a deep note and the octave higher on adjacent fingers to give the "Um" ; (and note, this is easier on an instrument with the specified Hayden slope, which slightly offsets the octaves than the American slopeless style). Then play the chord(s) in a higher register to give the "Pah(s)". I would compare the 65 button Hayden concertina as the equivalent to a 34 key 72 bass piano-accordion, and the 46 button Hayden concertina equivalent to a 25 key 40 bass piano-accordion. Inventor.
  5. inventor

    Rollo Woods

    I was very sad to hear of the passing of Rollo, who I had known for many many years. Every time I met him, at Folk Festivals and Concertina weekends. He always brought new (to me) traditional tunes, and breathed new life into these and other better known ones. Some years ago I was suddenly asked to organize the teachers for the WCCP concertina sessions at the Sidmouth Folk Week. I naturally turned to Rollo for help. He gave the most wonderful series of workshops on William Kimber's concertina playing for the Headington Quarry Morrismen. Rollo emphasized Kimber's "in your face" (his words, not mine) use of harmony to drive the dancers along. He showed how this could be done equally as well on the English Concertina, as the Anglo. He will be sorely missed in the Concertina and wider Folk World. Brian Hayden.
  6. inventor

    Jeffries On Ebay

    I think it is fairly common knowledge that 1***1 identifies Chris Alger as the buyer on ebay. He usually comes in from nowhere in the last few seconds. When he resells you can be sure he will have gone through the instrument finely, and had it put in very good working order, and properly in tune. Inventor.
  7. In reply to papawemba's question of replacing the reeds in an Elise with ones of a better quality at the same pitch; I understood that Wim Wakker could supply a kit. This was discussed in an earlier thread on concertina.net about a year back, Inventor.
  8. inventor

    Holden Concertinas No. 1

    I was honored to be the first person (apart from Alex) to play this new instrument, and was amazed at the excellent quality of it. The instrument is beautifully finished, and if there were any cosmetic imperfections I certainly didn't notice them. The concertina has a beautiful tone; certainly much better than a Lachenal. I was amazed at such a good sound from a makers very first instrument. After playing a few tunes on it, I tried playing it very softly; and found that it responded evenly to a very low pressure. This shows that the reeds have been very accurately fitted into their frames and is a mark of a quality instrument. I hesitated to play the instrument too loudly, as all makers have advised me not to do this too soon on a brand new instrument, but allow time for the instrument to be played in first The concertina is very compact, (as I believe has been requested by Alex's customer); the whole of the left hand reed-pan, and most of the right hand reed-pans are entirely filled by the reedwork. This usually causes problems with the reeds in the center of the reed-pan having a different timbre from those round the edges. However Alex has cracked this problem in a totally innovative way, with a two part reed-pan on each side. I liked the idea of self adjustable hand rests, to alter the distance from the buttons and even the angle a little.. The height is also adjustable. Both these features are very useful as nobody's hands are quite the same as another's. As supplied I didn't need to alter these. I did however find that the place where the thumb rests rather high; it was also shorter than usual and my thumb rested on this rather awkwardly. Personally I would like to do away with thumb-rests altogether, and rest my thumbs flat on the concertina faces; but I have never met anyone else who complained about this. I saw in one of Alex's photos, a picture of a nicely shaped handle, with the place below the little finger at a lower level than the forefinger, nicely curved and sweeping up for support above the forefinger; but I guess that such a hand rest might be a little on the expensive side. Well I am very glad to say that I can thoroughly recommend Alex Holden as a Concertina Maker, Brian Hayden.
  9. P.S. The so called "piano duets", even ones that have two or three octaves on each side, are very awkward to play. You really need to be able to use the thumb to play a piano octave, which is unavailable on a concertina. Inventor
  10. One octave on each side is far too few notes to have on a duet concertina, and that price is much too high for such a limited compass of concertina. Inventor.
  11. Steve Dickenson uses a dedicated tool, which came amongst all the tools that he had when he bought up Wheatstones. This tool turns disks of a softish nickel based alloy into dome shaped caps and crimpes them onto the plastic cores. The original cores were wooden, as will be found in many vintage Wheatstones. I don't personally like dome shaped key tops and much prefer flat tops. Inventor.
  12. Regarding the compass of the Hayden. I make the lowest notes on each side Bb 3 RHS and Bb 2 LHS. As you say key of Bb easy-peasy. Inventor,
  13. On my 46 button Hayden duet concertina I sometimes use my thumb to play the lower G# and more frequently to play the D#. I do this when I am playing a chord which contains the enharmonic Ab or Eb, I don't do this on my larger Hayden concertina as I have these Abs and Ebs in the place where you would expect to find them, as well as the corresponding G#s and D#s. I remember Rich Morse telling me that he sometimes played the D# with his thumb when playing in the key of Bb on his 46 button Hayden Duet. I have developed a very flexible left little finger which is able to roam over many of the buttons on the lower rows so I really don't need to use my left thumb. Inventor.
  14. I usually play dominant sevenths leaving out the 5th and in a straight line e.g. for D7 :- ( ) (c') (d') ( ) (f#') ( ) A useful alternative to the basic "3 Chord Trick" for instance G major, C major, D major in the key of G; is G major, A minor, D dominant seventh. Starting with the usual G major triangle ( g, b, d' ), turn it upside down for A Minor ( a, c', e' ); then keeping the c' in the same place spread out into the the partial D7 line as above; and from this position keeping the d' in the same place you can drop back to the G major chord. Inventor.
  15. inventor

    Looking For Music For The 34 Hayden Duet?

    I wrote a beginners tutor for the Hayden concertina, which gives a very simple bass line for the left hand side. Included in it is "The High Barbary" one of the sea songs that Bob Roberts of Penmill used to sing along with many of his sea shanties. This gives a simple counter melody to the tune. However for sea shanties I would personally suggest a good rhythmic um-pah bass to get the anchor up and the sails hoisted might be more suitable. You will find the above mentioned tutor on the other concertina site (concertina.com). If you have any other questions about Hayden concertinas you should post on the teaching and learning section of this web site. Inventor.