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Everything posted by inventor

  1. Re use of word "Baritone Clef": When I first started teaching Hayden concertinas in particular and Duett concertinas in general I found that people were having difficulty on the left hand not so much playing the buttons but reading the Bass Clef. Many had previously been english-concertina players and were familiar with baritone EC music which uses a treble clef but sounds an octave lower on a baritone english-concertina. At one of the WCCP playing days a year or so before I started teaching Hayden concertinas, no one turned up with a baritone concertina and I was the only person who had a concertina with notes below the g (lowest on the treble EC) and a piece of baritone english-concertina was thrust in front of me as a challenge by the Musical director who hated Duets and Anglos. At that time I was reasonably confident at reading treble clef slowly, but was totally lost on the bass clef; however I had recently taught myself to play in octaves. To my surprise I found that I could play the "baritone music" by playing octaves but just touching the right hand buttons but pushing down the corresponding left hand buttons to sound the baritone part. I consider it is important for a beginner on a duet to immediately start playing both hands. This is why I wrote the music for the left hand part of a duet on the "beginners tunes" that I arranged; and called it "baritone". Crane and Maccann Duets have corresponding buttons on the left hand side which play an octave below the right, Jeffries Duetts have a very large section of buttons which also do this, and of course all the octaves on a Hayden are arranged in the same manner anyway. One bonus that I have also found with music with two parts which look the same an octave apart is that I can give it to a couple of beginner english-concertina players to play together, which is very usefull as a cheap baritone english-concertina (The Jack) is now available. In the present group of Duet concertina players I work with in WCCP one (Maccann) can only use octave notation, some insist on Piano type notation (treble clef with bass clef) and some are happy with either. Fortunately I now have a computer program (Sibelius) that can cope with this automatically provided I pretend that the octave notation is intended for soprano and tenor singers. Inventor.
  2. Regards fingering I favour "flexible fingering"; and will state catagoricly that there is no "correct fingering" for the Hayden system concertina! My little fingers I use very flexibly on the RHS for the leading notes, and for chromatic decorations, and usually find that I am using ti IV (up) do I, re II, fa III, which fits the RH very comfortably, but might also use do II, & re III, then mi IV, up to Fa I, So II, La III. On the LHS I use my little finger almost entirely for Bass notes around an octave below my other fingers which may be playing counter melody or chords. I have trained it to go right across even under Left I. Inventor.
  3. Any 81 Key Maccann could have extra buttons added as I described earlier; up to 4 perhaps 5 on the left hand side. Colin Dipper recently made 5 Counter-bass english-concertinas and he chose to use Accordion Reeds. My club (WCCP) has two of them and the sound is excellent, in fact they sound better than many Bass & Counterbass ECs that I have heared. However 10.75inch concertinas are very clumsy instruments; anything much over 8" becomes awkward, 9.5" as on a 71 Maccan is just about pushing the limit in my opinion. Had you considered adding buttons to your present instrument, possibly using Accordion reeds. Bass side should take another 3 perhaps 4 (?Bass accordion reeds) on boxes on the LHS. C, D, Eb, E would be very usefull. I see from my recearch documents that on the right hand side the air button of a 71 (criminally) wastes enough space for no less than 2 more notes round the edge of the reed-pan on the RHS. Whynot add g & g# there with the a on the inner space of the reedpan? Inventor.
  4. Regards the 84 Maccan. I Knew one of the former owners of that instrument if it is the same one, and have seen inside it. (1) It was a Wheatstone Aeola 10.75 inches across, and according to the Wheatstone Archives (see Horniman Museum) it started life as a Standard (largest size) 81 key Maccan. (2) It had been altered to add 3 extra very low notes to the left hand side. The reeds of these low notes definitely made by Wheatstones were on "boxes" in the centre of the reed-pan. All below the usual lowest Bass C they were BB, BbBb, and ?AbAb. (3) My guess is that the alteration had been done at an early stage by Wheatstones as the additional action exactly matched the existing ones. The BB & BbBb were in the places on a Maccan that you would expect to find them but the AbAb was inserted in the fretwork in an odd place. A surprising amount of the action had been rerouted to take these extra 3 notes. (4) The story went that the instrument was originally made for a singer who usually sang in Flat keys hence the detached low AbAb rather than a low AA. Inventor.
  5. Slope of 10.62 degrees as quoted by Rich Morse is exactly correct, and was worked out as the optimal slope between myself and Steve Dickenson many years ago. This gives on the Right hand side of a larger (than 46 button) an eb" left the same distance from the hand rest as the d#" right, which plays a note of the same pitch (equal-temperament). When I quote from the top of the head I find it easier to remember ten-and-a-half and can anyone measure exactly 0.12degrees? For that matter the measurement 12mm (again which I remember off the top of my head) between the buttons at fourths or fifths should be exactly root145 (get out your calculator) not root144: all that Pythagoras business about Squaws on Hippopotamuses. I regret we seem to have lost the original questioner, maybe too much pedantic discussions of minutae! Inventor.
  6. I was just about to repeat the specification when I saw that Dave Barnert had already put the link in - thank-you; I also have difficulty finding links to ancient previous replies. Returning to the original question asked, I should have added a fourth aproach to Duet Concertina, in fact it should be the first so I will label it (0). 0) Play a melody - this is what English (type) concertina players do all the time, very few seem able to do anything else even if it is written on the music; and what Irish (nationality and music) C/G anglo players also usually do. However on a duet (any type) you may also add:- (A) Playing the melody in octaves, ( Play a melody with fixed or moving drones. Another tip which is useful to any type of concertina: Always move a finger to the next button that you are going to use that finger for immediately after you have used it, rather than just before you play the note. This enables you to cleanly tap straight down on that button rather than to suddenly move that finger sideways from somewhere else. There is also a definite distance that you move the finger, and if other fingers of the same hand are used in between, an exact distance between the other finger and it's new position. Always search for a fingering that doesn't involve jumping a finger consecutively between two buttons. Two ways that this might be acheived are playing a note that is on both sides of the concertina, on the opposite side of the instrument; and (on instruments with the correct spacing and large buttons) playing fourths or fifths together with one finger. However if you have to jump buttons, it is better to cut a note minutely short rather than to come in late on the next note. Inventor.
  7. I thoughly agree with Jim above with regard to the button spacings on the Stagi. Stagi is the only company that I have never had any dealings or correspondence with. Several years earlier I had somewhat fallen out with Bastari as he expected many more orders than I was willing to give him at that time. After Stagi had taken over, a Gentleman (I can't remember who) phoned me from the States wanting more cheap Hayden system instruments, and as I didn't want to get involved again, suggested he order them direct saying that Bastari had all the details of the instruments. This proved not to be the case (Bastari must have destroyed the records of Haydens). What started to appear at Hobgoblin, London Accordions, and Button Box later appear to have been based on an enlarged distorted photograph of a Bastari 46 buttoninstrument. Inventor.
  8. In these yer parts of Zummerzet they say "Hay as in Silage, not Straw as in Bales". Inventor
  9. I would suggest 3 ways of aproaching the Hayden Concertina. 1 Melody and counter melody. There is a set of work-shops that built up into a book; starting on one note per side and gradually building up to 6 notes on each side, plus a few more difficult duets. This you will find published on the "Maccan" site mentioned above. 2 Tune and Um-Pah bass. Obtain a copy of "Easy Peasy Tunes" this has 100 traditional tunes, From England, Scotland, Ireland, and USA, using only the 14 notes d' e' f#' - g' a' b' c#" - c" d" e" f#" - g" a" b". Which surprise surprise form a compact hexagon of buttons on your concertina. Chords are very simple and can either be played Um-Pah or once you have learned the position and movements; squashed into simple runs, to give the basis for a counter melody. 3 For advanced players of classical music. Write out score onto Treble and Bass staves then work out how to play it. Inventor.
  10. P.S. Regards resting a concertina on both knees and moving them out and in as you play; thats the way I have been playing my larger duet for years to the amusement of many onlookers. This method is not reccomended to ladies or kilt wearing Scotsmen. Inventor.
  11. Yes there was an octagonal Bastari 67 button Hayden Duet. Single voiced (mostly); I still have it. Biggest problem with It was the bellows impolded if you put it under any pressure. Inventor.
  12. Spectacled warbler seems to have said almost all about makers. Wim Wakker is also making 65 button instruments in 2008 which do have a good number of extra notes below the usual compass on both sides, together with several repeated Abs & G#s, and Ebs & D#s, which makes them easier to play in Bb and Eb as well as the usual keys easily played on the smaller instruments (i.e. F, C, G, D, A, & E). The larger Bastaris also have repeated Dbs & C#s which made them easier to play in Ab as well; they were developed with singers in mind and also play more quietly. The Key Db is a more difficult, but then have you tried to play in Db on a Maccann!. I am in negotiation to sell the last of a large batch of these after 20 years but might be persuated to sell my personal Bastari instrument if there is any interest in this. Steve Dickenson (Wheatstones) still makes Hayden Duets all sizes so far as I know, and Colin Dipper also definitely makes them (regret both have very long waiting lists). Connor also makes 46 button Haydens, (very solidly made real reeded concertinas), one sea captain I know uses his on Training Sailing Ships. Congratulations to Rich Morse for making 500 concertinas, but regretfully not one Hayden, after many years of promises. "Concertinas, concertinas, everywhere, nor any one to play!" now that I might count as an "Ancient Concertinaplayer" (sorry Colleridge-Taylor) Inventor.
  13. I mentioned in a reply to another thread in concertina history that I had a square concertina 2, voice (octaves) accordion reeds by Bastari left over from a batch of 10 when I was actively involved in promoting Hayden Duets 20 years ago. When I dug this concertina out I discovered 3 plus the original (not quite right sample). I also dug out the original paper work and found that it had been a batch of 12 not 10. Two have now been sold which leaves one if M3838 or anyone is still interested. Read all the comments and imformation on the other thread (including Rich Morses fair comments) The last one has some faults in the surface due to being stored for 20 years, but sent to USA it will cost $1000 less than the top price you mention. Inventor.
  14. I understand that Harry Geuns already has orders for Hayden Duet "Bandoneons" but still needs a few more to make it up to 10; with a much wider compass of notes on both sides than that proposed for the Craneodeon. i.e. LHS Bass C to b' (nearly 3 octaves) RHS g (same as bottom note of treble-english) to f"' again nearly 3 octaves. and repeated Ab & G#s and Ebs & D#s, full details on JAX (Jack Woher)s site. With these repeated notes (I have them on my larger concertina) I have no difficulty in playing Chromatic Scales, runs, and decorations. For chromatic scales I did have to work hard when I first started them, but they now present no problem, you never run out of fingers and no finger jumping is needed. I have no difficulty playing chromatic decorations even on my smaller (46 button) concertina, and they seem to creep into trad Irish and Scottish tunes all the time. Minor chords in all inversions present no problem on a larger instrument, which has every fourth and every fifth on adjacent buttons so that any minor or any major chord may be played in any inversion with only 2 fingers. This can be done on no other type of concertina! Inventor.
  15. I always used 1, 2, 3, 4. for the fingers and 0 for the thumb. This is because I learned (unsucessfully) to play the violin as a child, and when I came across english-concertina players they used (as Alan Atlas points out) the same. The only time I have come across the (1)2345 was in classes by Andrew Purkiss one concertina weekend. (He plays Chromatic button accordion, Piano, and Hayden concertina.) This somewhat threw me and I was about to disagree with his fingering, when I realised he was using a different numbering. Nowadays when I am explaining fingering I will prefer to use I (index finger), M (middle finger), R (Ring finger) & L (little finger, or pinkie for American readers), and T for the thumb which is used on some concertinas. Regard to Stagi Hayden concertinas, the spacing of the buttons is wider than standard and some fingerings can be awkward in these instruments. Inventor.
  16. Re Ragtimers questions - The 65 button instrument has a lowish Bb (the one below tenor c) I have only ever come across one Duett concertina that had a very low BBb (the one below bass C) on a monster 84 button Maccann, or on specialist huge single action counterbass englishes. Note that on the 65 button Hayden every perfect fourth or perfect fith that is available can be played somewhere on the instrument with only one finger (the flat top buttons that Wim is using makes this easier than domed buttons). There ten majors and ten minor chords which can be played with the easy close fingering (either one or two fingers for a 3 note chord, any inversion) but f# major is not one of these, however it can be played with only 2 fingers (fore finger for f# & c# and little finger bflat) in the key of E you have 3 easy majors (A, E, & 3 easy minors (F#m C#m & G#m) easy B7. If you need F# major play as above, personally I am much more likely to use an F#7 in the key of E, and usually use the partial chord using the notes e, f# & c# with two adjacent fingers. Re the overall size. Concertinas become difficult to use when they go over 8" across the ends 7.75" sounds perfectly acceptable, especially ass the instrument has no compromise long scale reeds. One way of reducing the size of the larger Hayden system instruments is to link the enharmonic repeats accordion basswise i.e. in this case the Abs & G#s and the Ebs & G#s; however I have never been able to persuade any concertina maker apart from Nicoli of Moscow to do this. Inventor.
  17. P.S. So far as I am concerned I think that the Button sceme as on the Russian is the best for a medium sized concertina, this fits into a convenient 7" size using standard accordion reed plates or on a Crabb type up and down tonechamber instrument. I daresay I could design an instrument radially if required. inventor
  18. Regards the high eb"'/f"' button on the right hand thumb. This was included on the Russian concertina. If I had put an eb"' and f"' on the place that they would normally go this would have pushed all the RH buttons back so that either the lowest would be too close to the hand rest or the hand rest would have been pushed too far back to comfortably play the instrument. An air button was included for the left thumb. Inventor.
  19. Rich Moorse has given a very good independant accessment of what the instrument is like. 1) Ends Mahogany veneered laminate as described. 2) Yes they are quiet but at one Festival I attended Mr Microvox hooked up my personal instrument to his system and it sounded really great, I would definitely have invested in this if I had at that time been playing in a band. Several singers bought them as they didn't overpower their voice unlike Jeffries and Metal ended Wheatstones. 3) Buttons properly individually bushed in as on a normal concertina. 4) I only play my instrument occasionally and have never had any problems with the action. 5) I have looked at the instrument(s) for sale and see that some of the tuning also might need a little touching up and the action is a little tight. So it might be a good idea to play on it for a while then take it into Button Box for a going over. 6) Weight: ok it is not as light as a 6" concertina, but not much heavier than an 8 - 8.75" aeola. Because the handles are central I found it easier to play standing up than an 8.25" instrument I often play. and unlike that one it sits firmly on the Knees rather than rolling around. Inventor.
  20. It is 8" square (or precisely 8.25 x 7.75), 67 buttons - full button layout on JAX site and also on the Hayden section of maccan site. There are photographs somewhere on the Web but I cannot find them at the moment. Made by Bastari about 15 to 20 years ago but never used; left over from a batch of 10 when I stopped actively trading in concertinas. Please note that Harry Gecuuns (via Concertina Connection) is proposing to make a batch of 10 much better quality Square multivoiced Bandoneon type instruments in the Hayden or Wiki system but is waiting to get 10 orders before he starts. These will have a very good compass of notes on both sides, but I dare say they will cost a lot more than the £650 I shall be asking for the Bastari. Inventor.
  21. I have a 2 voice (octaves) 68 button Hayden System square concertina which is surplus to my present needs, and can bring it along to Sidmouth Festival at beginning of August if you are interested. Sidmouth Festival is well worth going to anyway, with lots of concertina action; I have been going there for the last 52 years. Inventor.
  22. Over the years I have looked inside a large number of traditionaly made concertinas and have come across many with screwed on reed-frames. Firstly none of them had gaskets of any kind. of the rest there are two classes of concertinas where the screwed on reeds had slightly different reasons. 1) Crabb and Jeffries concertinas. Both these makes use of (Crabb Usually and Jeffries always) parelel sided tone chambers eg. typical 6" Jeffries Anglo 8 up, 8 down which gives 16 tone chambers on each side sufficient for 30 Key but the larger ones also have 1 or 3 sideways and 1 to 4 screwed down in the middle of the plate to give up to 44 keys in the same size of concertina. Crabb made a number of 45 crane duets for the Salvation Army in the standard 6.25" size with 20 buttons on the left 8 up 8 down and 4 screwed down in the middle (Tenor c to g') and with narrower tone chambers on the right hand side 9 up 9 down and 7 screwed down in the middle of the plate (middle c' to c"'). These are described in detail elsewhere on concertina.net. All of the larger Jeffries Duetts and Crabb made Duets that I have seen had a number of reed frames screwed down as described earlier (tapered reed frame and half moons cut out at the ends). the timbre of the note is different from the dovetailed reedframes, but seems to settle down after a while of regular playing to be hardly noticible. 2) Large Wheatstone Duet concertinas. Here screwed down reeds were used the lowest notes in the lower octave; BassC to F# at least, and in some cases the whole octave from Bass C up to B. The reed frames are rectangular and extended to have screw holes at each end. I have only come across one Lachenel Duet which had a screwed on reed; this was a loe Eb replacing the Low F# on a 72 button Maccann, which was on a little box on the inside of the bellows. Inventor.
  23. A few months ago I bought SIBELIUS. This is a program that I have desired for a long time because I was so impressed by the results I had seen of music written by it. The usual selling price is around £440, but I spotted a copy for sale at a very good discount on the internet. Having determined that it was a legal copy (it came from a music shop that went bancrupt) I jumped at the chance, and it's legality was confirmed when I registered with Sibelius. I play 68 & 46 button duets, and also play in a club that has Duets of all sizes from 39 to 84 buttons, and has a large group of English concertinas (treble, baritone, and counterbass) with a good number of Anglos too. My musical likes are Baroque (mostly Handel and Vivaldi) and Trad music from the British Isles and America, together with some from Eastern Europe. Sibelius has been able to handle absolutely anything that I have thrown at it. For the Baroque I write in 4 parts 2 violins (treble staff) viola (tenor staff) and Cello (bass staff). Having done this I can amalgamate this to a pair of parts for the duet, or with a few clicks turn the viola part to english treble III (treble I & II same as violins) and specify Tenor-treble if the music goes below g; and turn the cello into an octave below staff for the Baritones. I think Sibelius is worth every penny of even the full price. Inventor.
  24. A square or rectangular plate would have been much easier to design than a hexagonal one; however my bitter experience of trying to sell square concertinas to the "concertina world" had taught me that they simply don't sell. I notice on this website somewhere the derision that one player (Chris Timpson I think) met when he went to an Irish Festival with a Herrison Square Anglo! The design was based on the sizes of Accordion reedplates from a Paolo Soprani chromatic button accordion. The action was on two levels to get all the tone-chambers into the compact space. If I had gone a little larger (7.5 ") nodoubt I could have laid the action out flat. However this would have made the reedplate larger, which I wished to avoid. Regards the timbre of the instrument, like the Russians I think that this is much better than individual Italian accordion plates, and indeed the very top notes had a power much superior to any accordion or concertina that I have come across. However overall I prefer the sound of a concertina made using traditional reeds. Inventor
  25. The picture shows the reeds for the left hand side which had 30 playing buttons plus air-valve this included two pairs of linked buttons and had 28 (not 29) pairs of reeds. It took me all my time for 3 solid weeks to get the action design right to get this number of notes into the small compact space, before Samantha returned to Russia; and as with all things to do with concertinas I never made a penny out of it. Inventor.
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