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Everything posted by wntrmute

  1. There are XY females. A defect on the X gene interferes with testosterone development starting in utero. However, normally these people grow up completely female (albeit sterile) in both their physical gender and self-identity. There's another X chromosome defect that causes XX females to be more sensitive to testosterone than estrogen, they have a less clear cut self-identity, and are sometimes called hermaphrodites. Then there are cases where there's no physical issue(or known physical issue, at least), but the person more strongly self-identifies with the opposite genetic/physical gender. And this isn't always in conjunction with homosexuality. So, yeah. There is 'other.' It isn't exactly common, but it's not completely off the wall. I also don't think there's much choice involved in it -- in some cases there can be a great deal of psychological trauma involved, and I can't see someone signing up for that just for grins. I don't think humans (or any primates) have true hermaphrodism -- the only animals I know of that do are reptiles. Physical gender issues are frequently (but not always) linked to sterility.
  2. If the books say Ab/Eb, then that's what it is. I didn't have a book. The 'standard' in the 19th cent was kinda sorta the fashion of Paris. But every region, or even part of town, could have it's own standard back then, so there was a great confusion. In some places I've heard tuning forks had A at more than 500Hz, which is quite a bit sharp; so it is hard to generalize. Baroque electronic tuning equipment was apparently not very user friendly. Temperment is pretty much an entire field of study in itself. Modern equal temperment is a fairly recent development, though, based as it is on deliberate imperfection. Prior efforts had been geared to perfect temperments that preserved perfect thirds and fifths. There are philosphical and theological factors behind it all.
  3. Darnit, my ex is right, I am an idiot! Clarinets are in Bb, too.
  4. The standard concert pitch in the 1800's was about a semitone flatter than it is now. Which would make an A/E instrument then an Ab/Eb instrument now. That flatness would have affected every instrument like, oh to pull an example out of nowhere, trumpets. Modern concert pitch dates to the 1930's. In previous centuries concert pitch was several whole tones higher or lower, depending on what decade and what location you are talking about. Fortunately, by the 1800's the Parisian pitch was accepted as the standard by most of Europe in the 1800's which alleviates a lot of this problem. My strong suspicion would be that an instrument from late 1800's or early 1900's that sounds Ab/Eb now was originally tuned in old concert pitch A/E. The issue of temperment is important, because that answers the question "Why not make everything C? Why have things in Bb, D, or whatever?"
  5. My understanding is that two things happened. One is that concert pitch (A=440Hz) went up. Classical vocalists have problems with some of the high notes, I've heard, because they are pitched higher now than when the composers wrote them. The second is that equal temperment took over from just intonation. In equal temperment the relationship between each half tone is equal, in just intonation each scale's notes have their own unique intervals. More or less, anyways. In equal temperment you can play any song in any key, but with the old intonation each key had it's own 'feel' so a song written in D could sound slightly 'off' if it were transposed into A, for example. The Minasi tutor on concertina.com indicates that the original german concertinas were tuned to play the C scale in the key of A. That meant that they would play in A/E, but with the note intervals of C/G which were different from the note intervals of A/E. If that makes sense.
  6. Every time I practice for an hour, I'm thrown two hours into the future. So, apparently you can.
  7. Wim Wakker has been/is designing one. If he stays with the Rochelle setup he's limited to 15 buttons per side which is a tough call for a Hayden layout. Certainly possible if focused on trad tunes in D and G (plus some C and A tunes) but would be pretty limiting beyond that. Brian Hayden told me that he considered a 35-key to be the most practical minimum for a Hayden. I feel pretty strongly that a 40-key would be a preferable minimum, but that was me thinking of it being a player's box rather than an entry level box someone would move upward from. I think a 34-key would be a very good entry level box. I don't know the status of WW's entry level Hayden project. I hope he'll chime in here. My Anglo-Chemnitzer (if you recall it from the Workshops this past April) manages to squeeze 38 buttons into a form no larger than the Rochelle -- maybe even 1/8 of an inch smaller or so. That was using the German style long plate reeds, though, which may be more expensive than accordion reeds. Though there are accordions that use that kind of reed, maybe an Eastern European manufacturer could generate them at a reasonable cost? With 38 buttons you could get 2 1/2 octaves with about a 1/2 an octave overlap. 3 octaves and a note with no overlap. Not good enough for Bach, of course, but handy enough for a few tunes I'd think.
  8. Wheatstone patented a pitch bending system IIRC.
  9. Just to confuddle you more: an F# is a Gb, G# is an Ab, an A# is a Bb, a C# is a Db, and a D# is an Eb. Likewise, a B is a Cb, while a C is a B#. And an F is an E#, while the E is an Fb. Note that this is only true in equal temperment. Otherwise things get real confusing.
  10. What about F# push/C# pull, then you could have b-c#-d triplets on the pull as well as the push. ETA: nevermind, the is a Jeffries, so you gots that already. Rosanne Rosannadanna, that's me.
  11. I was going to get upset at that picture, but then I noticed it was one of those massproduced 20 button elcheapos. And then I wasn't upset anymore. Edit to Add: You know how you can tell that's a fauxtoshop? The catcher would have a bat, too, if it was really a 20 button elcheapo being pitched.
  12. I listen to Dark Side of the Moon quite a lot. Oh, you meant concertina CD's. Mike's second one. Particularly track 11. Though the first track is great, too. Along with the second. And the fourteenth. And pretty much the lot of them. Now, if only someone could figure out how to play the intro to "Time" on a concertina....
  13. More a threat to Englishes, I'd think, as it's unisonoric. In any case, they've been around since at least the 1960's so any damage to the concertina market has been done.
  14. My avatar is a scale representation of Planck Length. Not many people get that, though. I may change it to a picture of the line between inspiration and insanity.
  15. I think there's a melodeon site at www.melodeon.net. That may work better for you.
  16. Longer bellows. Or just use a 2 note power chord on the left hand. The ear will fill in the missing third from the musical context, kind of sort of just go with me on this.
  17. Warning: Pregnant women, the elderly and children under 10 should avoid prolonged exposure to Happy Fun Concertina. Caution: Happy Fun Concertina may suddenly accelerate to dangerous speeds. Happy Fun Concertina Contains a liquid core, which, if exposed due to rupture, should not be touched, inhaled, or looked at. Do not use Happy Fun Concertina on concrete. Discontinue use of Happy Fun Concertina if any of the following occurs: Itching, Vertigo, Dizziness, Tingling in extremities, Loss of balance or coordination, Slurred speech, Temporary blindness, Profuse sweating, or Heart palpitations. If Happy Fun Concertina begins to smoke, get away immediately. Seek shelter and cover head. Happy Fun Concertina may stick to certain types of skin. When not in use, Happy Fun Concertina should be returned to its special container and kept under refrigeration. Failure to do so relieves the makers of Happy Fun Concertina, Wacky Products Incorporated, and its parent company Global Chemical Unlimited, of any and all liability. Ingredients of Happy Fun Concertina include an unknown glowing substance which fell to Earth, presumably from outer space. Happy Fun Concertina has been shipped to our troops in Saudi Arabia and is also being dropped by our warplanes on Iraq. Do not taunt Happy Fun Concertina. (Shamelessly stolen from a Saturday Night Live fake commercial for Happy Fun Ball)
  18. The Disney folk will do everything you described to LDT, leaving out only the moderators' involvement. After that, they'll start to get unpleasant.
  19. I would agree that a Morse, Tedrow, Edgley, etc would be an excellent choice, but they are 6 times the price of the Rochelle. It may be a bit much for someone who is 'testing the waters' so to speak.
  20. I kind of thought the same thing, but I use my Rochelle when I want to take a concertina into work, or if I'm travelling. I'm not as worried about it. I fret when I travel with my Céilí. The other advantage is that if I can play something half-decently on the Rochelle, I can almost play it well on the Céilí. (Almost well is as good as my playing gets, so far. Though it's improving.)
  21. So far as the Hohner goes, it will not work for you in D unless it is tuned to G/D. It's a 20 button instrument, and the more common C/G will not have any C#'s at all. A G/D Hohner, however, may work well enough for you and it may not. Hohner didn't impress me, and I think (this is just a not-so-very-informed opinion) that their quality lately may be pretty hit or miss. The Rochelle has 3 C#'s, and I've been able to use them to play songs in D (and related modes) without much problem. One of the first songs I could play used C#'s in it. On the Rochelle, all of the C#'s are on the push, which is a bit limiting -- but on a G/D 20 button instrument all of the C#'s would only be on the pull (where the F#'s are on a C/G instrument). Same limitation, mostly, just a different direction.
  22. Eh. Go with your first design. It had a celtic/viking/la tene culture look to it. Which is 'wicked cool' as the young'uns say.
  23. Murphy's. Just sayin'. (Ordering Guinness in Cork will earn dirty looks at the very least. As I learned a while back.)
  24. Look here for a description of the Wheatstone/Lachnal/Bastari layout vs. Jeffries. The biggest difference is the right hand third row. You probably have on your current box (push/pull): C#/D# A/G G#/Bb C#/D# A/F and on the highest note of the G row B/F# I think a Jeffries would have: D#/C# C#/D# G#/G C#/Bb A/D and on the highest note of the G row F#/F. The A on the right is the same A as on the second button on the Lachnal layout, the D is the same D as on the push on the middle button on the G row. Or something like that, mostly, kinda, sorta. I think the inclusion of the C# on both push and pull is very useful to those who play in the key of D or A alot -- at least there are a fair number of people who seem to strongly prefer it.
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