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About Ken_Coles

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    I need to paste in my comments from the old part of Concertina.net! Short version: I've played anglo since 1992, English since 2001. Mostly Italian boxes, Lachenals, a Morse, and a Kensington. One of the people behind the curtain at Concertina.net.
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    western Pennsylvania and northern Indiana, U.S.A.

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  1. Here is a link to an article by the late Geo Salley on repairing a Stagi. Ken
  2. We had at least part of this for years...it was the respective Buyer's Guides for Anglo (later I did one for English), also a page on Learning, tutors, etc. Paul finally pulled the plug on the static pages as they required constant maintenance (prices and suppliers have changed a lot in the last quarter century) and he got complaints about out-of-date details. We do have a pinned thread on current makes of concertina (pinned at top of General Discussion, thanks to Daniel Hersh for endless editing on that). A similar list of current tutors (for one system or all?) might make sense if someone volunteers to do similar editing. But note the approach in Daniel's thread - he edits the first post to have all the information. Otherwise you end up with scores of posts to read through, which may not be easier than having to search the entire forum system. As for "anglo, english, or duet?" you might as well set up a guide to choosing diet/abode/spiritual beliefs/you name it. I can't improve on the terse and useful approach of the concertina faq, maintained by our friend Chris Timson, and which we trust still turns up in web searches, at www.concertina.info Ken
  3. So today we passed around a 20-key C/G Stagi (double reeded) anglo (I bought it in 1996), an older (maybe Bastari?) 30-key G/D anglo, a Morse Ceili C/G 30-key anglo, a Lachenal Paragon treble English, and a Conc. Connection Elise Hayden. My idea of a sampling. 😎 Also got to see a beautiful park I hadn't visited before. Ken
  4. I'm setting up a hands-on trial of a bunch of instruments for tomorrow; I'm sure you'll hear a report after that. Ken
  5. Well, my wife started in on lesson 1 today as a refresher course for her occasional anglo playing and it suits her! It strikes me as sensibly structured so far. Remember, as with any recorded instruction to stop and review frequently, and get one lesson down before going on to get the most out of it (I'll confess she did sneak a peek at lesson 2). (Apologies if you're a seasoned music student and don't need to hear such advice, but some others reading this might find that a helpful strategy). Ken
  6. Hi Emily, I'm an hour from Pittsburgh and have some instruments (not all of them anglos) you could try, if getting your hands on them would help you sort out what you're after. I do get down there (once again) on occasion. Ken
  7. I don't know about those; I'd venture a guess that the survival rate of cheap concertinas from Germany was rather low compared to the number produced there. For the English-made brands, you'd need an idea of how many are in use or still extant now. Interesting question. Maybe Dowright can comment. Ken
  8. This post is entirely appropriate! (and amazing) A number of us have a "basket case" we hope to fix someday and you add inspiration. Ken
  9. My apologies for misunderstanding. There are coded diagram of anglo layouts by octave...let me see if I can find one online...both copies that I knew of on C.net are no longer linked...back in a bit. Ken Edited to add: The color charts by Marc Lamb have vanished. The concertina faq chart gives notes but not octaves. OK, I'll upload a copy from an online archive. 20 key is the bottom 2 of the 3 rows. C2 is Middle C and A2 is A440.
  10. There are diagrams mapping the EC buttons to the notes of the scale. There is even a shortcut for EC (thanks, Mr. Wheatstone) where notes on lines of the staff are on one hand and notes in spaces are on the other. One of the EC players here will post the diagram for you, I'm sure. There are also the concertina apps for iPad by Michael Eskin, which would let you practice (and map out notes for yourself) if you have an iPad. Ken (AC player)
  11. Erik, You can start a new thread with this here in buy and sell - you'll get a lot of interest. Ken
  12. I've had moments on a number of other instruments (sitting in with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra on horn in a community event, not in a professional performance; Heinz Hall has the best acoustics I've ever performed in), but on concertina, one experience comes to mind. In 2001 I didn't have a regular job but was substitute teaching as often as I could (maybe 2 days a week). In April I went to an English Country weekend at Folklore Village in Dodgeville, Wisconsin. A superb whistle player there asked me where I lived and if I was interested in playing in a new musical project. It turned out she was starting a new Morris group west of Chicago and thought it would be great to have an anglo concertina. They rehearsed at Fermi Lab of all places (Batavia, Illinois), which in those days shared some of their buildings with community groups (a barn for dances, and we rehearsed in an auditorium in one of the big science buildings). There were just 5 besides me and Susan, I think her name was. So she played whistle and had me learn a dance or two and we switched on one other dance, as we had 6 parts to dance. I also learned to play the processional they used. She seemed unhappy that I couldn't do a full-on harmonic William Kimber treatment of the tunes, but at that point I had played primarily Irish single-note melody. She also wouldn't let me change the key of the tunes so they would sit on a C/G better (D to G, for example). So I danced as well, which was good experience. I don't remember which tunes/dances they were without digging out the sheet music; Fieldtown tradition probably. It was a three-hour drive for me each way from northern Indiana, but we only rehearsed every few weeks and I didn't have much else to do. [I remember going to Noel Hill school during that summer and wondering who taught harmonic style in contrast to melodic. Later I got some basics from both Tom Kruskal and Jody Kruskal, but I'm not very accomplished at it.] We performed at the Fox Valley Folk Festival. It was near Chicago on the first weekend in September. One of the two or three times in my life I got to wear a performer's pass. In the tent where we could leave cases I bumped into Tom Paley. I said something (I don't remember what) about the challenge of finding an empty place to put a case. Evidently he found it witty, as I got a laugh. Our performance went pretty well and we got a good, appreciative crowd. It was a fun day. I remember hearing Bob Zentz do a fine set singing with banjo and anglo concertina, and someone let me try their Stagi tenor English (I concluded that I wouldn't buy one!). A week and a half later the jets crashed into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. I was teaching First Grade (six-year-olds) that day, but that is another story. Fermi Lab closed their grounds to all community groups, and Susan said she didn't have time to find another venue or keep the group going, so it folded. In three decades of attempting to play traditional music on various instruments this was the closest I came to being in a group that rehearsed and performed together. Maybe someday again, as I would love to do it. Perhaps a decade ago I heard about a Morris side starting up in Pittsburgh, but my job was too busy then, so I didn't try to connect with them. I have more time now, but my knees could never take all the jumping - they swell up like melons when I try to polka. The time and place has to be right I suppose. I hadn't thought about this experience in a long time, interesting question, Al. Ken
  13. Eddystone, (great screen name) You can get the serial number here when Dowright has time. For the repair question, you could start a thread over in the Repair forum, and add some photos of the end you opened up. My guess is the knowledgeable here will have a solution for you. Ken
  14. I'm just speculating, but if it is tuned flat of modern, A=440 pitch, it might sound the keys you heard but was originally meant to be in D, C, Bb, G. Just a thought. Ken
  15. Geoff, was it an Albion (6.25 inch) or a Geordie? The latter is bigger (7 inches across flats) and I would think do better in this regard. Ken
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