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Jody Kruskal

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About Jody Kruskal

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    Heavyweight Boxer

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    New York City

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  1. Excellent question, Jon: Twinkle is a great tune , simple, but with scope and harmonic possibilities. Mozart admired it. Every beginner should learn it right off. For a tune like this, all keys work fine. Learn to play it in C, G, D and F, one at a time, in that order. Can't go wrong with that, though you might drive yourself "Twinkle Crazy". Each key presents a different set of finger patterns and challenges that you will soon learn to apply to the tunes you learn next. For Twinkle, I don't believe there is a common key for its performance. The "right" key would be more likely to reflect the best key for the singer. Not so for other tunes that have socially accepted keys as a standard... however, since you are a beginner and playing alone without singing, it matters not a whit what key you play any tune in. You will learn a lot, working out a bunch of tunes in a variety of keys. Some keys might work better than others, but none are wrong as long as your instrument has all of the notes in its range. Just play, play, play, listen to yourself and decide what sounds best. It's all grist for the mill. If you do end up playing with others and want to find out what keys are commonly used for a standard tune or song, go to: fhttp://www.folktunefinder.com/ or https://thesession.org/ Enter the title and see what is the most frequent key. This could take a bit of sleuthing, but not much. The most common key played will likely be the one that most folks use on these two sites. On the other hand, If you are playing with others, just ask them what key they play a tune in. You will certainly get an answer, though it might not be the same answer everywhere you go. This key business is all based on context and I would suggest that you, as a beginner, start with whatever key is easiest. Then work out from there. As a beginner, another way to put it might be... whatever key sounds best... that's the right key for now. With Twinkle, you really can't go wrong whichever key you choose.
  2. Hi Mathhag, Thanks for sharing your heartwarming story. Your enthusiasm will surely see you through.
  3. Yeah, now you are talking. Not that sanitized nationalistic polka stuff but rather the real old music that may have been recorder in the early 1900's How about this one at 2:40?
  4. Dear Timv, Any luck yet in finding someone to play with together with in Slovenia? When you find your new playing friend or friends, learn their tunes. That's what I did. Or what about exploring Slovenian traditional music or fiddle tunes or dance tunes or songs on the concertina? That's what I did here where I live. I followed my ear in search of the good sounds and learned the oldest dance music I could find that was active here. Then I looked for like minded musicians. I never would have found them if it were not for the vital traditional dance scene here. Don't you have social dance groups doing Slovenian folkloric presentations or just dancing for fun at local parties and gatherings? For a start, here is what wikipedia has to say about Slovenian traditions: Vocal Rural harmony singing is a deep rooted tradition in Slovenia, and is at least three-part singing (four voices), while in some regions even up to eight-part singing (nine voices). Slovenian folk songs, thus, usually resounds soft and harmonious, and are very seldom in minor. Instrumental Typical Slovenian folk music is performed on Styrian harmonica (the oldest type of accordion), fiddle, clarinet, zithers, flute, and by brass bands of alpine type. In eastern Slovenia, fiddle and cimbalon bands are called velike goslarije. Folk music revivalists include Volk Volk, Kurja Koža, Marko Banda, Katice, Bogdana Herman, Ljoba Jenče, Vruja, Trinajsto praše, Šavrinske pupe en ragacone, Musicante Istriani, and Tolovaj Mataj. One of the best Slovenian diatonic accordionists is Nejc Pačnik who won the accordion world-championship twice, in 2009 and 2015. Slovenian country music From 1952 on, the Slavko Avsenik's band began to appear in broadcasts, movies, and concerts all over the West Germany, inventing the original "Oberkrainer" sound that has become the primary vehicle of ethnic musical expression not only in Slovenia, but also in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and in the Benelux, spawning hundreds of Alpine orchestras in the process. The band produced nearly 1000 original compositions, an integral part of the Slovenian-style polka legacy. Avsenik's most popular instrumental composition is the polka that is titled "Na Golici" (in Slovene), or "Trompetenecho" (in German), and "Trumpet Echoes" (in English). Oberkrainer music, which the Avsenik Ensemble popularized, is always a strong candidate for country (folk) music awards in Slovenia and Austria. Slavko and his brother, Vilko, are usually credited as the pioneers of Slovenian folk music, having solidified its style in the 1950s. Many musicians followed Avsenik's steps, one of the most famous being Lojze Slak. Slovenian song festival A similarly high standing in Slovene culture, like the Sanremo Music Festival has had in Italian culture, was attributed to the coastal Melodies of Sea and Sun (In Slovene: Melodije morja in sonca) and Slovenian song festival (In Slovene: Slovenska popevka), dedicated to a specific genre of popular Slovene music.[10] ------------------------------------------------- Best of luck!
  5. Hey Pike Man, Better snap that G/D up or I might get it myself for a camping concertina.
  6. I feel for you. Where best to spend your $500? A nice beginner instrument like a used Morse from the Button Box costs $2000 or so. In looking on Amazon just now, there were 30 button Anglos less than $300 from Trinity College and Bonetti, though I have never tried them. Also promising looking was the Swan for $883. Long ago, I started on a cheap Bastari Italian instrument which worked pretty well for a few years. I think they are called Stagi now. I see that the Button Box has a used Stagi G/D for $595. That's what I would get. The G/D key is great for songs and session tunes in the harmonic style. G/D is what I play 95% of the time. https://buttonbox.com/concertinas-in-stock.html#cau0843-1
  7. I've been asking some of my students to play along to a metronome. Have you tried it? Now that youtube has playback speed tools, does anyone have youtube suggestions for good sounding mellow backing track practice loops... like this for instance?
  8. Bolivian traditional concertina players mostly use the English system.
  9. Lots more traditional African Anglo Squashbox and Palm Wine Concertina on the web if you search hard. This is one of my favorites... SQUASHBOX - LE CONCERTINA ZOULOU ET SOTHO EN AFRIQUE DU SUD (1930-1965) (1993) and the last I checked, can be downloaded here: https://liradopovo.blogspot.com/2008/11/squashbox-le-concertina-zoulou-et-sotho.html Great stuff!
  10. Dick LeVine plays the English concertina like a voice from the past, echoing up to beguile again, our forgetful ears. Long ago In 1967, Dick began studying concertina with the great Boris Matusewitch who became more than a teacher and mentor but also a dear friend. When Boris passed away in 1978, Dick put the instrument down for what he thought would be a week. The week turned into 22 years! He began again in 2000 and continues to play the old English concertina arrangements that he learned from Boris so long ago. Matusewitch cleverly packs dense harmonic information into a tiny package with his sparse arrangements that are both terse and romantic while flirting with the constraints of an English concertina singing torch songs. In the capable hands of Mr. LaVine, the concertina does indeed sing the old songs clearly. It's a sad and lonely vigil of despair and regret in LaVine's rendition of “Speak Low”. http://jodykruskal.com/player_profile/dick-lavine_assets/09 Speak Low.mp3 In his Sophisticated Lady, the chromaticism and lyricism, and I'm sure several other related is-ms... all entwine to delight and thrill, even the most jaded of listeners. http://jodykruskal.com/player_profile/dick-lavine_assets/12 Sophisticated Lady.mp3 Hear all 5 selections at: http://jodykruskal.com/player_profile/dick-lavine.html
  11. My mouth is still watering even though she is on to another.
  12. No problem Hielandman. Sorry if my teasing you on your typo caused you distress. I also had gigs that kept me from NESI this year... shucks! Perhaps I can attend next year, I do love the NESI weekend. Sure, stop by when you are in Brooklyn.
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