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Ken_Coles

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  1. To add to what @seanc says...after years as a Luddite (no smart phone) I got my first tablet (an iPad air) two weeks ago. Which apps to get first was obvious: Michael Eskin's; he offers several concertinas and a bunch of other instruments. Just a couple of bucks to download if you happen to have an iOS device. You could get some idea of how the fingering works if that is an option for you. Ken
  2. @vosWell, I got my first concertina, a red MOTS (Mother-of-Toilet-Seat, i.e. celluloid) 20-button Italian anglo in C/G from Bruce Cunningham, an instrument repairman in Battleground, Indiana in 1992 for 50 dollars. Played it for four years and really learned where the notes and partial chords are, played across the rows, and so on. Using it for so long really got it all into my head, though I'm still finding new possibilities (now on 30-button C/G) today. As you can see below my name I have reason to travel across Ohio between PA and IN a lot. I may pass close to you or far away; I'm perhaps 3 hours from Cleveland and at least 5 from Toledo. After three trips in the last few weeks, however, I'm taking a break from that to catch up on work. 😎 If I get anywhere near you I can share with you sometime; I have examples of three systems (Anglo, English, an Elise) hereabouts. Ken
  3. vos, For song accompaniment, I think the perceived key limitations of anglo are a bit of a red herring. Some years ago I learned a song off a record, working out open chords (2 notes) that worked and gave a nice arrangement (to my ear). When I was done, I asked myself, "What key is this song in?" Turns out it was in Bb minor (5 flats)! On a C/G anglo. Mind you, have I haven't done this many times, but it was telling for me. Every instrument has limitations, and part of using one musically is working within the limitations and finding the corresponding strengths of that instrument. I don't think it is much of a stretch to play melodies in Bb, F, C, G, D, and A on C/G anglo, which is chromatic from the A below middle C up more than two octaves (just how high depends on the layout of accidentals, Wheatstone vs. Jeffries, etc.). As Chris Timson says, every kind of music has been played on every kind of concertina. Another bit of experience in many other threads here is that your brain may work better with some systems than others. There is no substitute for holding and trying various types of concertinas (anglo, english, etc.) - it is very individual. What part of the world are you in? We may have members nearby who can give you a try for free. It is hard to intellectualize one's way through this choice. I wish _I_ could read neumes! (Gregorian notation) As for the thread title, our host and owner here, Paul Schwarz, many years ago called a related malady Concertina Obsessive Acquisition Disorder (COAD). I definitely had it for a while myself, but it took me 12 years (long before the internet) of looking to find my first concertina. Hope the hunt for your next musical step is shorter for you. Ken
  4. I got carpal inflammation from playing my first Lachenal in 1999. I had the straps a bit too loose and had to flex my hands back to control the bellows = pressure on the carpal nerve = lost most of a year of playing waiting for it to recover. Take this seriously, and get a medical professional to watch you play. They may spot it right away - my doctor did. More of my story is in old C.net static pages here and here. Ken
  5. I tried all 3 at NESI, and while I'm not much of an EC player, I can verify that they are indeed nice instruments. So many instruments, so little lifetime.... Ken
  6. 45 years ago a good friend from high school (in southern California) went to San Diego State U. and did a degree in piano accordion with some well-known (in that world) teacher. So it does happen. Ken
  7. I'm spread so thin musically I won't try to list them here. I find it follows the playing opportunities. When I have a session/group/band/orchestra to play in, that instrument gets the attention and time. I know that limits my level of accomplishment, but I have so much fun I can't help it. Of course the pandemic has kept it all pretty low key, so I've been working on several (including a new instrument, I guess some people never learn). Fun but I can't wait to join others in person again. NESI was my first dose in 18 months. Ken
  8. It's amazing what you folks can deduce/infer/figure out about this history we all wonder about. I enjoy following it. Ken
  9. Me too. I believe they were all made in D/A tuning. Then there are the twelve-sided Wheatstones (anglo and duet IIRC) in the article by Wayne, Birley, Gaskins here. I guess they discounted the idea that these were made from Lachenal parts so they don't count as Lachenals anyway.
  10. Here is how I've been doing it for over twenty years. I should add that soon after coming up with this, I inverted the foam so it is wider at the lower end, to aid my rather short fifth fingers. Experiment and see what works for you. Welcome aboard. Ken
  11. That's Worcester, Massachusetts, not Worcester, England, right? (For the sake of our international audience.) 😎 Good luck in the hunt. Ken
  12. I have seen the inventory at Button Box vary considerably over the last 24 years. This is not outside of that pattern. Sometimes a lot, sometimes a few. And the shop shifts attention from fixing up instruments for sale (e.g., in the weeks before NESI when it was local to them) to doing repairs for customers and/or building Morse instruments. The late Rich Morse once pointed out that he had to make payroll for several employees every month whether things sold or not, so there were decisions about where effort should go at any given time. For me getting the right instrument has taken patience. I heard about concertinas circa 1980 but had no idea where to find one (and little money as a student). In 1992 I finally stumbled across and bought a 20-button Stagi. Only in 1997 did I find a real box (my first Lachenal), and other players, and a teacher, after the internet had created a community you could research and connect to, for any obscure interest or hobby. So it can take a while, but not 5 (or 17) years for you I hope. Keep looking. Ken
  13. One of many reasons the EC and Duet players say it seems to them that one must be (or at least, it helps to be) a little daft to play anglo. There's some truth in it. 😃 Ken
  14. What Bramich showed in his first book was backwards (press and draw C#) from most of the Jeffries layouts I have seen. I did a review of the book for this site back in the static pages days and remember that I commented on it. As others have noted, the reality is anglo players are constantly juggling reeds...part of the obsession perhaps? Have fun, wherever your notes are. Ken
  15. Liv et al., It is worth adding that the impression that pictures need a URL comes from the reality that we can only afford to offer a meager space for image attachments to each of thousands of users. A handful of images typically hits this limit. Then a user writes to the Admin asking "why can't I attach files?" 😎 [aside: Wow we have an absurd number of emojis now.] To forestall one such question, I'll add that it is great if you eventually explore ways to use a third-party site for images you wish to share here, then you do use a URL to attach them here, and there is no limit. Have fun with the concertina. Ken
  16. Ed, If you fancy meeting up sometime, I'm in western Pennsylvania (well, most of the time) and am happy to share whatever aspect of playing. Ken
  17. There's also "Thank you, Republic Airlines [for breaking the neck on my guitar]" a song by Tom Paxton quite a few years ago... Ken
  18. A perennial question with Macs. I'm only running Catalina, but you can go to System Preferences (Security and Privacy pane, perhaps?) where you can give permission to run apps not from Apple-recognized developers. Someone here will recall the specifics... Ken
  19. Umm...if you want to support _this_ site, it is concertina.net (.com is another site). 😎 Cheers, Ken
  20. Another vote for this summary of past experience. Of course it is a challenge, if we can't help find some examples of instruments near someone asking the perennial "which system." Hope you find your match! Ken
  21. I'm not aware of any wholescale removal of material, though the original bbs system (pre 2003) with software written by Paul is no longer posted. Bear in mind that searches and search software are tricky to create (and use); as pointed out, spelling (which fools a computer but not a human) could be the issue. Ken
  22. Relevance is not our only critereon. Play ball! as they say here. Ken
  23. We don't worry about deleting topics like this. You've marked it as sold elsewhere; that should be sufficient. Ken
  24. You might want to write Wim directly through his web site - as you can see this is a very old thread and he doesn't check in (or at least post) here very often. Ken
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