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Jim Bayliss

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Everything posted by Jim Bayliss

  1. I own two of these instruments and played them for maybe 12 years before I could acquire higher quality Haydens. One of them is still playable and I keep the other for parts. .
  2. Apparently the upper A on the left is the air button.
  3. IMO, if a thumb can reach the buttons, the hand rest is too close to the buttons. I've never been able to reach more than one button on each side with thumbs on a slanted keyboard, and have never felt any need to use thumbs for playing. Thumbs give stability to a player's hold on the hand rest. .
  4. Hi. I just discovered this thread and appreciate everybody's comments. I'll say that the 46-key Wakker Hayden is a W-1 with 3 reeds placed in the center of the reed pans. I now also have a 65 key WW-2 and hope to get around to some more uploads.
  5. You're right, Jim. That's a sculpture of a Native American dancer, though, from a distance, it does look somewhat like the devil down below. The behemoth on the right is my 82-key Wheatstone Hayden. I also like the gender balance.
  6. We had another successful Concertinas at Palestine weekend. The weather cooperated, was cool and clear, and we had concertina players, from experienced to beginning, from as far away as Wisconsin. Anglo, English, and Hayden and MacCann duet systems were represented. Jody Kruskal was our workshop leader and guest performer, and was again a hit with his enthusiastic teaching, and masterful singing and playing. The tunes taught were "Sandy Boys", "Been to the East, Been to the West", and "Cora Dye". We also had a well-attended slow jam and a master class. Everybody seemed to have a good time and get inspired. One of the groups on the bill at Old Pal was the rousing Orpheus Supertones, with Walt Koken, who was a member of the Highwoods Stringband back in the 70s. We, of course, took time to sample the local cuisine, including BBQ and Mexican food. All in all, it was a great time, with great music, people, and food. A group picture is posted on the Facebook site, Texas Concertina Players. https://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/230954200427333/
  7. In Palestine, there's a chance of thundershowers on Thursday, but it looks like it's going to be great springtime weather for the weekend. So, if there are any late deciders out there, let me know and I'll get you Jody's workshop materials before it's time to leave. It should be fun. jmbayliss@juno.com
  8. In addition to Jody's teaching and playing, the opportunites for learning and comradery with other concertinists will be there. There will be a convocation of Duets Anonymous, as well as a slow jam of old time, English, and Irish tunes. Right now, I'm primarily looking at reviewing tunes we have previously gone over in years at Palestine. Please add any suggestions, and, if you'd like to do a workshop, please let me know. We are also planning a concertinists' dinner at a local restaurant. So please email me if you think you'll be attending.
  9. As mentioned above, I'll be organizing the concertina aspect of Old Pal this year. Jody is a great and inspiring player and has a lot of musical knowledge of benefit for players of all levels and systems. And when the concertinas aren't playing, there will be a lot of music and learning opportunities going on at the festival, and Palestine will be in spring with the dogwoods blooming. The festival fee runs about $80, and the concertina fee is $30 to help defray expenses. If you plan on attending or have any questions, contact me at jmbayliss@juno.com. I hope to see you there.
  10. In the letter, he also discussed getting together with Inventor about possibly building a square, double reeded box based on the Hayden fingering system, "the most sensible keyboard I've seen so far for a duet by a long way".
  11. I have a letter from Pat Robson dated 1982 (two typed pages, single spaced!) which he wrote in response to an inquiry about bandoneons, Chemnitzers, and duet concertinas. In it, he states that he built a "square box with the same keyboard as a 30 key Anglo in C & G. Main voice octave deeper though and buttons further apart & 3/8" dia". His return address was in Aldershot. I saved this letter because it had a lot of interesting information and commentary on bandoneons, "Chemmies", and duets.
  12. The hand rests on my 46 key Wakker, parallel rowed, "Wicki" model Hayden duet are about 50 mm from the center of the buttons on the lower C rows. This works very nicely and the straps aren't over my knuckles at any time. I'm 6'1". There is still plenty of room for considerably smaller hands to reach the uppermost rows.
  13. 1 Crane, 1 Maccann, 2 Haydens, 3 English, 9 Anglos, I think.
  14. I would definitely be interested in a midi-Hayden. Roland is doing very well with its electronic accordions.
  15. The main reason for not having the slant is that it seems unnecessary, arbitrary, and complicating. The only reason I've seen for justifying the slant is that it, theoretically, makes the enharmonic notes on the treble side of the instrument the same distance from the hand rest. However, the slant just exaggerates the disparity on the left hand side. You've mentioned that it seemed easy to get lost on the 82 button Hayden, and I believe the slant is a major factor in this. The slant crowds the little finger and makes the pinky have to stretch further to reach the top. I suspect that Stagi's odd, asymmetric button arrangement came about as a reaction to the slant. Both arrangements work, but I prefer the simpler "no slant" option.
  16. I've tried out the Beaumont and would offer these comments. First of all, it's great to see Morse getting a Wicky-Hayden on the market. They are solid, skillfully crafted instruments and I think it's good that they come without the slant. I would offer two criticisms. First, I really missed the D-sharp button on the left. The many fully chromatic tunes I've learned on the 46 key can't be directly transferred to the Beaumont without having to change the fingering to pick up the D-sharp as an E-flat. This is going to be a problem in going to this instrument from a 46-key, and it effectively trades the key of E for the key of B-flat. The second criticism is that the hand rest seems to me to be too close to the lowest button row. I'm ~6 feet tall, and I guess my hands are larger than average. My Wakker W-W1 duet has the hand rest about 5 mm further from the center of the buttons on the lowest row (~48 mm), and this is more comfortable for me.
  17. I also participate with my Hayden duet in a "Rise Up Singing" singalong, which is a joint effort of a Unitarian and a Quaker congregation, currently being done twice monthly. It's a great opportunity to play and/or sing along.
  18. If you're looking for a gathering of concertina players, you might consider coming to the Palestine, TX Old Time Music and Dulcimer Festival in late March every year, where a group of us holds forth. This isn't too far away from Arkansas.
  19. A couple of weeks before Palestine, I attended the National Accordion Association convention in Dallas and heard this fella play this great song, "Palesteena", on accordion.
  20. I've taken to using a "Humistat" (with hygrometer) in the case of my large duet during the hot, dry central Texas summers. Otherwise, there can be a bit of air leakage between reed chambers.
  21. Just a note to let people in the Texas area know that Niall Vallely will be performing and giving an Irish concertina workshop at the Austin Celtic Festival, Nov. 5-6. John Williams is also on the schedule. For more information, go to <http://www.austincelticfestival.com>.
  22. This is very sad. I was looking forward to seeing her again at Palestine. One of the more interesting gigs she spoke of doing was playing concertina at book store celebrations for new Harry Potter releases.
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