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inventor

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  1. I played a D/G melodeon in the 1950s and took up an Anglo in the 1960s.

    The Melodeon was the last of the 2nd batch mentioned above. I also remember Reg Hall getting his D/G Melodeon (I was in his Morris Side in Gravesend at the time - 1955). The Anglo was in C/g. At that time (1965-67) I was playing sometimes for the Hammersmith Morris Men. Phill Ham (C/g anglo) was their chief musician, and another member of the side was John Kirkpatrick, who played a British Chromatic Accordion, i.e. a large Melodeon in B/C/C#, with a stradella bass; almost the same as the one he now plays. He also used to borrow Phill's Anglo (or mine) on occasions. He had an Anglo specially made for him by Crabbs, who were the only makers of special concertinas at the time. (The semi-defunct Wheatstones was then owned by Boosey and Hawkes ! long before Steve Dickenson's time) This concertina may have been the first to have been made as a spin off of the riseing popularity of the D/G Melodeon. I don't think Wheatstones, Lachenal, or Jeffries ever made G/D as standard production but there may have been the occasional one off.

    Inventor

  2. I know of only 1 Jeffries Duet that was not made by (Charlie) Jeffries or his sons (Jeffries Bros). This instrument was at "Hobgoblin" and was described to me over the telephone by the late Nigel Chippendale over 20 years ago. It was a Wheatstone Aeola (probably around 1920s or 30s); with 4 rows of notes on the left hand side and unusually 5 rows on the right hand side. It was pitched in Bb; the extra row on the right hand side continued the scale upwards but only in the key of Bb rather than continue in an ad hoc manner towards the right on the 4 rows. I have this written down somewhere but not to hand after 20 years. By the time I had saved up enough to buy it Hobgoblin had sold it; I don't know if anyone knows where this instrument is now.

    I know of no Jeffries System Duets that have been made by any recent makers.

    One Maccann Duet has been made by Dipper, who has also made Crane Duets. A number of Hayden Duets have also been made in his workshop (I have seen 5) by Robin Scard; these are really excellent instruments! So far as I know Steve Dickenson has only made Hayden Duets, a good number of 46 button duets and several of various larger sizes. John Connor has made several Crane Duets I have seen and heared one, and at least 2 Hayden duets which I have also seen. I would suggest that he is the man to go to if you wanted a new Jeffries System Duet.

    Other Hayden duets have been made in recent years by Bastari, and Stagi in Italy; Marcus in Wales; Nicoli of Moscow; and Tedrow in USA.

  3. The Plymouth Salvation Army Concertinaband, came to play at a Competition session of the West Country Concertina Players around 1986ish. There were around 8 to 10 players. These were mostly Crane Duet Players, but with a couple of treble english concertinas. One lady who played the Bass part did not play in the usual manner but turned the concertina over; rested the treble end in her lap, and played with just her right hand on the bass end. It was an unusually (for a Crane) large instrument; probably the one that can be clearly seen in the photograph. They produced the most wonderfull rounded sound quite unlike anything that I have ever heared before or since from concertina (mostly english concertina) bands. I think there are photographs of them in an early West Country Concertina Players Scrapbook, but the copyright will obviously belong to the photographer. If Malcom Clapp likes to write to the original secretary of the WCCP she may know where the original photographs are (I think her husband took the photographs), for security reasons I am unwilling to give any further details. Malcom must have left the country only a short while before this event!

     

    Inventor.

  4. Latest news on the Anglo-concertina kits from "Concertina World" is that "the maker and developer of the Anglo Concertina Kit, - - - - - , is no longer in business at the Bradford premises." :( . Well I am not surprised; making concertinas -even parts for concertinas is a lot more involved and time consuming than people (and that includes concertina makers themselves) think ! Some years ago I had a 46 button concertina delivered to me from Wheatstones it cost £625 (say $1000) it had around 2000 different parts; in wood metal leather, and felt; some of which have to be made with an accuracy of a tenth of a thou(santh of an inch). At the same time a musician friend took delivery of a hand made Recorder this cost her £600. It consisted of just 4 bits of wood with a few holes in it !!!

    Inventor

  5. Several Patents using this type of keyboard were taken out by Dr Pitt-Taylor. these were G.B. Patents: 1916 No 102552, 1922 No. 208274, & 1923 No 220824.

    I don't have these patents to hand but I am fairly certain that one of these almost exactly corresponds to the one you have described.

    He also took out a number of other Patents during this period but more on Maccann style. A Mr Mitchel also took out a number of patents at around this period from 1912-1930 which were more on the Piano Style. A full listing of these can be found in the "background to the invention" section of the Hayden Patent - GB 2131592.

    Regarding Wheatstones listing it as a "Piano" concertina system; I note that the first Hayden System concertina made by H Crabb & Son's is listed in their ledgers as a Jeffries Duet type system; but is only similar in the way the buttons fall on the concertina, not even remotely similar in the notes that each button plays !

    Inventor.

  6. Colin Dipper has made concertinas on similar lines which are exactly the same fingering as a standard French Melodeon. i.e. in C & G with a third row of sharps flats and reversals not avalible on c/g. He liked it so much that he has one for his personal use; and often plays it at concertina weekends he attends.

     

    Inventor.

  7. Klesmer music seems to hover around the scale D, Eb, F#, G, A, Bb, C, D. With accompanying chords Gm Cm & D7. i.e. the D mode of G Harmonic minor. On a small concertina like this one, I would reccomend an instrument pitched one whole tone lower for this particular scale. Or a somewhat larger instrument with 59 or 65 buttons which has many of the sharps repeated as flats.

     

    Inventor. :rolleyes:

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