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Aogan

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Posts posted by Aogan

  1. On an Anglo, this technique involves switching between two buttons at each change of bellows direction.)

     

    Well the only true drone, as I understand it, on an anglo is the left hand thumb key which is (generally) a "C" on both press and draw. So you're not changing buttons, you just anchor your thumb there and play away as normal.

     

    To be used sparingly in my opinion, and regardless of the instrument. -Can't understand pipers for instance who insist keep their D-drone foghorning away over tunes in A and E minor etc. :blink:

     

    On my Suttner however it's a a C draw and an F push, which I find a hell of lot more useful. - If nobody minds me (literally) blowing my own trumpet, I'll try an attach a track of me playing a simple slow air melody (taken off Slide second album - Harmonic Motion) - the second time round I alternate between the thumb C on the draw and regular C on the push to get a C drone effect. And I use it again third time around to embellish a C chord with the push F and then an F chord with a draw C, which I think is my favourite chord on the anglo concertina. :)

    05_Carraig_Aonair.mp3

  2. Hi there

     

    I see a lot of "Concertina tutor wanted" threads here, so I figured it would be remiss of me not to let y'all know in advance of some upcoming workshops and concerts in which I will be participating.

     

    "Slide" (the band of which I'm a member) are hitting the U.S. of A. for the first time this summer and doing a couple of festivals, and will also be taking part in some instrument workshops - fiddle, bouzouki, flute, banjo, mandelin, piano, and I of course will be doing concertina.

     

    Around the 23rd, 24th 25th of July we're in Dayton Ohio I believe, at the Dayton Irish festival. And we're in Dublin Ohio on the 1st and 2nd of August.

     

    We're gigging elsewhere between those dates obviously and we're heading out again for five weeks from the end of August to the end of September.

     

    Anyway, if anyone's interested there's a growing list of gigs here: http://www.dulchuncinn.com/slide/slide_gigs.php

     

    If any of them are in your neighbourhood, come and say hello :)

  3. I presume you're refferring to the lowest and furthest away E yeah?

     

    The answer (for me) is actually both little finger and ring finger, but primarily ring finger. If you want to play an E minor or major chord you play the "regular" E with your 2nd finger (not including thumb), the low B with your little finger, and then the octave down E with your ring finger. (And then add a g sharp for E major if you like). If you keep the fingers in the same place and pull, you get a nice F chord.

     

    But if you want to use the low E to beef up an A minor or A major chord on the push, where you're playing "regular" E and A with your 2nd finger, and a low A with your third (ring) finger, as your ring finger is occupied then you've no option but to use your little finger on the low E.

  4. Interesting. I've always thought the opposite, well kind of. Every instrument is difficult to "master". But I've always thought the concertina (anglo at least) was a difficult beginner instrument. Keys are not laid out in as clear or apparent a manner as, say, an accordian, or piano. The fact that finger dexterity in both hands is required is difficult at first. And the use of the little finger on the left hand is something that takes a lot of getting used to for most "righties". Add to that the use of the thumb for air, arms and shoulders to work a fairly limited bellows and of course the fact that, due to the under-supply of decent instruments, most people are forced to start out on moderately to seriously sub-standard beginner concertinas!

     

    But having said that, once the system is explained and the rudiments learned then I would say that the concertina is as difficult or as easy as any other instrument is to practice and learn and improve on, up to one's own level of mastery.

  5. Hee Aegon,

     

    I just sold an 38 button Jeffries to a Breton friend of mine (Jean Pierre Le Meur, you probably know him from Tocane). And sent your above comments to him.

    Only am I mistaken that when you say that 1 or 2 extra note options are a bonus on a 38 key AC, you actually numbered 3?!

    Hermann

     

    Mea culpa - 3 notes, on two buttons - the F#/G# are push and pull on the same key. The other notes are so rarely used (by me) as to be essentially redundant.

     

    I haven't been to Tocane in a while - is Jean Pierre living in Paris and does his wife/girlfriend also play concertina?

  6. To get back to the original question, and considering that the original poster seemed to be referring to Suttner concertinas in particular - If you never encounter a 38 key instrument, you'll be more than happy with a 30 key, but there are one or two (and only one or two for my playing) note options that the 38 key layout offers that, once you get used to, make it difficult to return to the 30 key layout. Specifically those notes are an F# on the push on the left hand side, which is truly fantastic! An E on the pull on the left hand side -great for Eminor, E major, and A minor/major chords. And a G# on the pull which makes playing in A major more of a pleasure rather than a chore.

     

    Also - when ordering a Suttner (or any made to order instrument), I think it's worth the relatively small extra cost to go for the 38 key over the 30 (as well as the wooden ends I might add.). It's different if you're on the lookout for a quality old instrument where you're best advised to just buy the best one available, as they don't really come up that often. :)

  7. Well I hope you all enjoy yourselves. Be comforted by the fact that Ireland is the least fun place on earth to celebrate Paddy's day. There you all are wishing you were here, and here we all are wishing we were somewhere else :)

     

    Seriously though. One of my most unpleasant experiences is Dublin city centre on Paddy's weekend.- Rough.

  8. Don't beat yourself up about it man. There was a time in your life when you didn't play concertina, there was a time in your life when you didn't know what a concertina was! You go through life, you develop an interest in something, it gives you some months or years of pleasure and that interest may well wax and wane as your life progresses and changes. If you're not enjoying it, put it to one side, you may well settle back into it, who knows.

     

    Over the last couple of years I've found myself playing less and less, to the point at which now, unless I have a gig, I can go months without playing at all. And to be honest, I'm not sure that I miss it. It's strange to think back when I was younger and I'd go to a weekend festival in some town and play for hours and hours.When I do go to play, I do still enjoy it, although I'm far less tolerant about my surrounding conditions. That applies to everything though. I used to stand around outside drinking cans with mates. but now I insist on a quiet pub with a seat :).

    Perhaps when the kids are a little older and I have more time again I'll return to the social side of concertina playing and play "out" for fun. Perhaps not. Either way, what has gone before has not been a wasted exercise, and what's to come? Well who knows.

     

    As for playing in public -I've never liked it. Well, I've never liked playing on my own to an audience. I frickin hate it in fact. -Safety in numbers I always say :D

     

    Anyway, hope you come to terms with your situation. If it's any consolation, at least it's a sellers market :)

  9. Sorry to change the subject, but as an aside, what mics do you use and how do you attach them to your instruments?

     

    No bother - I use AKG gooseneck mic's I'm afraid I don't know what the exact serial number is, I bought them years ago. They're quite good. Not brilliant, but good. I'd change for something better if I came across something better, and I have yet to do so. With a good sound engineer who can get the best out of them they're pretty good, otherwise they can be very "live" and it's difficult to get adequate monitor level back so that I can hear myself properly. I guess I've just learned to live with it. :) - They're attached to the top of the stock, just above your thumbs, with velcro.

  10. Hi guys,

     

    I'm selling up a new Suttner. I got it a few months ago, it's pretty much identical to my existing instrument. When I received that four years ago or whatever, I ordered another. My intention was to sell the old one and keep the new, but the old one is so well played-in and playing so well, and is all set up for the microphones I use, and not giving me any problems etc, that I'm happy to keep it.

     

    It's an A4 model, 38 key, C/G Jeffries-type, (Anglo), standard except I got the flat solid ebony ends (which I've always done). List price currently for the instrument is €4610, excl p&p, and you'll be waiting 4 to 5 years for the instrument. Obviously I'm looking for more than that -I've kids to feed (plus I fancy a new motorbike :)) . Anyway, if you know them you'll know what they are and what they're worth, if you don't then - they're a top class instrument. They're my instrument of choice for the last 10 years and pretty much every top class anglo player in Ireland has one, plays one or wants one.

     

    I suppose, if you're interested PM me, or email aoganlynch(at)gmail dot com.

     

    And I would actually take a trade in of a low mileage XB12r or s, or an '04-on litre sports bike :)

  11. That's true actually about the tire damage. Though I generally though that was related to people acting the maggot in rental cars, popping clutches and burning tires out etc. Didn't think they'd sting you for punctures and the like.

     

    I rent cars fairly regularly in Ireland and Europe and haven't had a problem yet, thank God. The company is called nova car rental (google it), and they're like a broker and get the cheapest quote (or at least profess to). -I'd recommend em anyway.

  12. Woah.

     

    Sorry lads, I didn't mean to tread on any virtual forum toes. I'm not annoyed or pi$$ed off or anything like that, it's just a fact of the digital / ipod / mp3 age, in the grand scheme of things where trad albums rarely sell more that a couple of thousand copies anyway, it's of negligible importance. If anything, what's most amazing is that someone on the other side of the world, in Maine (of which I've only heard tell in "ayuh" Stephen King books), came across, and purchased, an album of mine and, even better, managed to sell it on :D .

     

    So, no admonishment was intended. I live in the real world and I know that people share and copy cd's and that's just the way it is. - "The only thing worse than being talked about....." eh? :D

  13. Seriously - In Dublin city, The Cobblestone pub in Smithfield is definitely worth a look. High quality music there almost ever night.

    Indeed... last time I was there I had the good fortune to witness yourself and Michelle O'Brien play tunes and sounding great. One of the highlights of that trip for me.

     

    I think that may have been the last time I had a session :(

     

    Life gets in the way eh?

  14. Gan Ainm has a point in fairness. Also, from the artist's point of view, everyone you sell your second hand cd to, is a potential lost sale, and a transaction for which the recording artist gets nothing.

     

    Then again, if the purchaser likes the album, maybe he or she will then pay in to attend a concert of that artist when next he or she plays in their area. -Which is sort of the direction the music industry is taking now - steering away from cd sales.

     

    Pity it's so damned expensive to record, manufacture and market a high quality album these days. -Two of the albums in the original list were mine and they're gone now, so I guess I'm already down 30 quid in this thread :)

     

    Well, what can I say. If you like it, tell a friend, and if you get a chance to see us in concert, bring ten more :)

     

     

    @chrisstevens - get me a gig in Maine and all is forgiven ;)

  15. With regard to the car. Book online and you can get very reasonable insurance. Make sure you're getting an SCDW (super collision damage waiver). Then you can all but torch the car in the rental lot before handing back the keys and they won't charge you a penny.

     

    As for the sessions - no insurance policy in the world will cover you there :)

     

    Seriously - In Dublin city, The Cobblestone pub in Smithfield is definitely worth a look. High quality music there almost ever night. And not far from there is a pub called Hughes on Chancery Street. Again very good music nightly. Micheal O Raghallaigh (spelling?!) plays in Hughes pretty regularly too.

     

    In Cork City, theres a pub called "An Spailpin Fanach" which still has music most nights. Very good music too. Aidan Coffee (ex box player De Danann) plays there, as does Seamus Creagh (fiddle) and Mick Daly. If you're outside Cork city in Kinsale, which is a lovely coastal town there's a pub called the Spaniard which has good music on wednesdays.

     

    BTW when I say "music" above, I mean session. - That's a few for your list anyway.

  16. "Arrogance" in my opinion, no matter what your level or ability, is elbowing one's way into an established social gathering of any kind, without invitation or understanding of what is going on. I wouldn't do it to a group of people engaged in conversation, a couple playing chess, some people having a drink together, a gang sitting down to dinner, and I certainly wouldn't do it to a group of musicians playing music together. It's nothing more than common sense, and common manners. If musicians sometimes appear elitist or unwelcoming, it's because they have learned to be wary and suspicious of newcomers. The reason for this is the attitude, expressed by some above, that even if all you have is a saucpan and wooden spoon, you have a right to jump into a session unannounced and commence banging away.

     

    Phew, apologies, I'm getting my rant on here.

     

    Anyway all too often what happens is a wonderful session of music stutters to a halt because of the saucepan bearer's cacophony. The musicians in the session are too polite to ask him or her to keep it down / go away and they give up trying to have a nice tune, pack up and go somewhere else. :(

  17. This is a very interesting thread. The social dynamics of a session are a fascinating sociological excericise, and would make a fine thesis :)

     

    I am, I suppose, a professional musician, so (like Cogsey) I have run the entire gamut from concertina learner to improver to serial festival sessioner, to regular session gigger, to seasoned old cranky, crusty seldom public player.

     

    If you try and put yourself for a second in the shoes of a professional musician, lets say you are playing for many years to a high standard, how much enthusiasm are you really going to have on a friday night for the 99 millionth whistle/flute/bodhran/box/concertina player beginner/learner to jump in, pull out an instrument and launch into "Saddle the Pony" or whatever. :). Seasoned giggers/sessioners are wary for a reason - experience. I've literally had people sit next to me with a bodhran announcing "I bought this yesterday, mind if I join in?"

     

    I would not do that.

     

    If I came across some lads playing an informal game of soccer, I wouldn't jump in and start kicking their ball around. And if they were professional soccer players, I wouldn't even dream of participating. But at the very least I would wait to be asked or very politely request consideration for inclusion.

     

    - If I come across a session or gig, even if I know the people in the session, I will slink up to the bar, sit quietly sipping a drink, listen to the music, and generally keep schtum, until someone notices that I have an instrument and extends an invitation to join. If that doesn't happen, I'll wait an appropriate amount of time, and ask politely to join in. Only then will I join the session. AND for the first half hour at least, I will keep quiet, I will not start any tunes (unless asked), I will laugh at everyone's jokes :) and offer to buy the sessioners a drink!

     

    My point is that you are joining a personal congregation, and you are not neccesarily welcome, no matter who you are. If Michael Jackson started singing out of turn in a trad session, someone would tell him to shut the fcuk up :). When you join a session, you are a guest, and you must behave like one.

     

    When I was a young lad and learning I used sessions to great advantage - I sidled up to the periphary, sat there quietly, played (quietly) what tunes I knew, and recorded the tunes I didn't. I went home and learned from my recordings and went on from there. That, in my opinion, is the way to do it. A session is not a stage or a platform upon which to showcase one's talents, it's a group excercise, but it is also, generally speaking, a minority dictatorship, featuring a hard core of 2 or 3 or 4 musicians who started the session and they call the shots. So long as one understands that and respects that, it's all good.

     

    Also, never under-estimate the value of buying a round. ! The way to an irish musician's heart is through his liver :D :D

  18. I just watched a wooden ended 30 button Lachenal Anglo auction on Flogit.

    Hammer price £980.

    Al

     

    Seems like a good price but it's hard to judge the value of an old concertina without having played it. I personally wouldn't think it wise to purchase a concertina without seeing it and picking it up and playing it. You'll tell in ten seconds whether it's for you or not. There is such a massive variation in playability of the old instruments it's a gamble buying in-line. Not a financial gamble in so much as you will always get your money back, but there's definitely no guarantee that it'll play as well as or even in a similar fashion to, another Jeffries or another Lachenal etc.

     

    One thing I would say for the Lachenal's is they can sound really fantastic, but can also be let down in the action department.

     

    A decent 30 key lachenal isn't bad at that price though, I would have thought.

  19. Bhuel a hAogán, Is fearr liom consartáin a Suttner. Tá siad díreach in am agus solad. Maith dom mo chuid

    Gaeilge bhriste a hAogán. Ní fada anois go mbeidh tú ar an mbóthar go Caslale le Suttner no Dipper.

     

    Slán anois.

     

    :)

     

    I prefer the Suttners as well myself. I used to have a cracking 38 key Jeffries, as good as they come, but I then got a Suttner and I honestly preferred it. It would have been nice to have hung on to the Jeffries as well for sunny days and such, as it did sound fantastic but other than decadence, I've no regrets for having sold it.

     

    A dipper is something I've never tried actually. Would love to some day.

  20. Surely, you'd think, that by now, all of the really good playable jeffries and wheatstones have found permanent homes. There must be very few "finds" left on the planet - pristine vintage 'tinas in optimum playing condition. -Which only leaves the modern instruments "new vintage" ones as you put it. I must say I've seen some awful Jeffries and the like. Instruments which I wouldn't play if given them for free, but which are valuable because of the "C. Jeffries Maker" badge. Obviously a good one is a glorious thing, but one has to look beyond the brand :)

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