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Everything posted by michelv

  1. Wow. The examples you gave are really beautiful. I must admit I dont't know much about Russian and Finnish tango, but it is great to hear how they capture the tango feeling and give it their own soul. And you are absolutely right: it is much richer and closer to the Argentine tango than most European stuff. I am Flemish, born and raised in Belgium. Tango is a universal language. I am only influenced by one person: Alfredo Marcucci. I play for more than 15 years with him now. He is 80 years old, played bandoneon since he was 8, professional at 12. Only thanks to this living legend I had the chance to learn to play the traditional old style of tango playing. We call it the "heavy metal" tango: very much dance orientated, not the romantic style modern musicians like so much nowadays. When he was around 20, Alfredo played in all the great tango orchestras in Buenos Aires of that time: D'Arienzo, Di Sarli, etc.. His uncle, Carlos Marcucci was regarded as the best bandoneon teacher ever. This old style tango is the hardest I've ever played in my life. And after 20 years, I'm still learning. The second example you gave is in fact played as "Milonga Campera": a slow milonga style, not intended for dancing. Consider it the "ballad" kind of tango. Astor Piazzolla used this rhythm very much. I'll try to arrange some for concertina in the near future.
  2. Why? I can't find any proof of it on the internet, but I think it has to do with the very first recording of tango in Europe. A composer named A.Villoldo was invited to Paris and there he recorded the very first tango ever recorded in Europe: El Choclo, which he composed in 1905, with a brass band. I think it was even a military band. "1913 was the Year of the Tango all over the world. Tango was the couple dance everyone wanted to learn. In this year the Tango Teas began at the Waldorf Hotel in London, picking up the fashion of Tes Dansants from Paris, and a grand Tango ball held in the Selfridges department store was declared the event of the season. All of Europe was dancing the Tango. There were many disapproving voices, but the mania had bitten. Fashions in clothing, already changing away from the restrictions of the Victorian corset and hooped skirts, changed more quickly under the influence of the Tango. It is said that women in Paris abandoned the corset in order to dance it. The feathers in women's hats moved from horizontal, sweeping across in front of the face, to vertical, going up from the forehead, letting a couple dance without the feather getting in the Tango partner's way. Tulip skirts, which opened at the front, made dancing easier. Women were sold not just Tango shoes, but Tango stockings, Tango hats, Tango dresses, and anything else that manufacturers could think of. And the colour of Tango was orange. " source I guess the European musicians, not being familiar with how it sounded in Buenos-Aires where the Tango originated, played the tangos in a rhythm they did know, and the closest was the military march. Maybe they remembered the recording of Villoldo with the brass band. To be complete, there's also a distinct third offspring: Finnish tango. Later on, both English and American tango dancing split off and became dance forms on their own. And they continued the military march type rhythm. To be honest, since I play the old style Argentine tango, the European form sounds horrible to me. Another influence was the Dutch composer and accordion player Arie Maasland. He noticed that his audience liked tango, and he began to make this own compositions based on the Argentine tango. He developed his own style and changed his name to "Malando". Under that name he became very popular. Many (ok, maybe many older) people know and recognise his composition Ole Guapa. In fact, the music of Malando was my first contact with tango, and until I met Alfredo Marcucci I didn't know that Argentine tango even existed.
  3. There's the traditional Bourrée dance from France, played on hurdy-gurdy and bagpipe. Comes in two flavours: 2 beats and 3 beats. The rhythm is very accentuated: in 3 beats heavy on 3 and 1; in 2 beats heavy on 2.5 and 1. The Czech Mazurka Bourrée on YouTube: they play a real French Bourrée, but the dance is completely different from the way it's traditionally danced in France. They probably invented something just to have fun. The Bach Bourree: these classical guys just gave folky names to their compositions, often to indicate they were influenced by the traditional music. And at the end, their classical versions became standard names within classical music. I had the occasion of playing a (classical) polka with a "real" classical string orchestra once, and I was thrown out because I played it as a real polka. The entire orchestra was speechless. "No, no, no, double bass is never played like that!" It's a bit like Tango: there's the real thing from Argentina, and then there's the European music inspired on that, which people also call tango. European tango has a completely different rhythm: it's based on the military march. Don't ask me why: it's a long story.
  4. Someone recommended me this tune a few days ago on this forum. So I happen to have it at hand. I apoligise for the piano though. I know a morris dance is not supposed to sound like that, but I got a little carried away. At least you got your dots. Step Back
  5. I got it from the "Fiddle Case Tunebook: British Isles" by Stacy Phillips. Sutitle of the tune: "from John Doherty (Comhaltas Ceoltoiri 10). I found this interesting page... Interesting - it sounds just the same. Guess there's been a lot of confusion about whether each is which - but they are very very similar. I love mazurkas - especially the Swedish ones! There are a few mazurkas from Donegal. And this tune is know also under other names. I really like mazurka very much as well. Too bad that, at least here in Belgium, young folkies don't like to play them anymore: too pointed. A few Flemish and French mazurkas are not bad either... I'll try and post some more on my website. Yesterday I've added one from the Auvergne, France, one that I learned from a hurdy-gurdy player: Mazurka d'Auvergne
  6. Thanks. Seems a very nice tune indeed. Far too difficult for my music reading abilities at present though I'm afraid.
  7. I got it from the "Fiddle Case Tunebook: British Isles" by Stacy Phillips. Sutitle of the tune: "from John Doherty (Comhaltas Ceoltoiri 10). I found this interesting page...
  8. I've got some other stuff almost ready: two milonga's and the tango waltz 'Palomita Blanca' we play (it's on YouTube). All for treble EC and piano. I'll try and do some more Piazzolla stuff. We play in Ulm, Germany this weekend, so I'm going to try to get the piano parts of Oblivion, Palomita and Adios Noniño then. Tenor is REALLY an asset: it has the range and timbre of a tenor sax, so it wil sound really nice when you play jazz on it. Problem with tango is that it's not easy to sound convincing comparing against a big cannon as the bandoneon. This music and this instrument are made for each-other. It's like trying to imitate The Beatles. I'm thinking of making sort of play along recordings of the tunes with only the piano and maybe very softly the EC in the background, so that I can excercise and learn to play together with other musicians. Could be like some street musicians who bring along an amplifier with pre-recorded accompagnement... Would that be helpful?
  9. I've added the piano score. Have you watched the YouTube movie? There's a rooster coming to watch what's happening as well.
  10. Hi again - I love your website! Its going to be a great resource - have you shared it with everyone yet? If not folks its really worth a look at the following: http://www.tangosite.com/concertina BTW I have a brilliant EC tutor from the 1930's that was published by The Salvation Army. Its got a wide range of songs/melodies to get your teeth into from simple hymn tunes through to 3part arrangements of the Hallelujah chorus. It's what I started with. I don't know if its available online at www.concertina.com. If not pm your address and I'll post a photocopy of it to you. Finally, I just have to ask you this - do you play any piazzola in your tango ensemble? I am struggling with some tango nuevo on the piano accordion. I'd love to get a transcription of 'Adios Nonino' for EC. Mind you I'd also like the next six months off work to learn it as well! God Bless, AL Hello Al. Yes, we play some Piazzolla. Most of the time however, we play 'guardia vieja', the old style, because we play with one of the few surviving old style bandoneon players still alive: Alfredo Marcucci. I've put some videos on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/user/michelvdm but if you search YouTube for marcucci, bandoneon you will find also other videos of the master. Adios Nonino on EC? Hm. It's worth a try. I will see if I still have the scores. However, I have prepared another tango of Astor Piazzolla for EC... it's called 'Rio Sena' and it's particularily suitable because this Piazzolla was a very clever composer, and he knew that non-tango musicians would have a go at his music, so he wrote the tango in the arrangement: it will still sound tango even if you are not used to play that style. Even my computer gives a reasonable impression of it I'll upload it on my site tonight. Do you have a piano player?? Michel
  11. Let's first say that I'm an absolute beginner on English Concertina, but I've played music all my life, bluegrass, jazz, traditional flemish, gipsy, Argentinian tango. That makes my musical interest very broad, so I've decided to make my own site to share music. http://www.tangosite.com/concertina/ Expect some very odd music here, apart from the more traditional jigs and hornpipes. Folk musicians have always played these 'novelty tunes', tunes they have heared on the radio, popular classical music, etc. And nowadays also YouTube proves to be very inspirational. At present, I've added a , two 18th century Flemish kontradansen and the from YouTube...
  12. I think that it was the "original" English 4-couple square set that the French called "Quadrille" had evolved in America to what we now call "square dance" type of dancing (considerably different from contradancing). -- Rich -- Yes, lots of confusion possible. In Flanders, Belgium, the quadrille or 'Kadril' is part of our traditional folk dance. Many villages have their own kadril. And morris dance is danced here as well, with sticks or swords. The sword dance here was traditionally danced by the city guard, once a year. I played along once, very early morning in Antwerp. Here's the polka I was talking about: the very first polka ever in Europe. Does anyone know it? polka_nationale.mp3
  13. Thanks for the samples, guys. Seems that what you call contra dance in Ireland, here in Belgium we just call it 'Irish music' (grin). And for the US and Canada version: we used to call them 'fiddle tunes'. A very long time ago, I used to play bluegrass (double bass) and from time to time we threw in some dance music, and I would do the calling. It would be very interesting to find out how all these tunes and play/dance styles evolved from each other and how they relate. E.g. I know that the polka came in Europe via Vienna and Paris in 1840. It was an instant hit because until then, the dance had been only contradance and waltz. The very first polka was the 'Première Polka', also know as 'Polka Nationale'. I'll try to get a copy. The tempo advice then was 104 to a quarter... I think the closest related to our contra dance in the US is the 'Quadrille', a dance I think that was very popular with army officers.
  14. It's from a manuscript published in Ghent, 1757. The French title was "Cent Contradanses En Rond", referring to the original English dance in a circle. And each tune is complemented with a description of the dance figures. This manuscript is regarded as one of the most typical examples of European contra dance outside England. The dance figures were mostly French inspired, not English. In Belgium, the term 'kontradans', 'contredanse' or 'contra dance' is used for the dance music in cities in the 18th century, before polka etc. came in. Maybe the term 'contra dance' has another meaning in Ireland? Can you give examples of this wonderful music you refer to?
  15. This is a contra dance from a manuscript from Ghent, Belgium dated around 1770. It's originally written for violin and harpsichord (or whatever musicians you could afford at that time). Other possible instruments in that period were cello, horn and clarino (a kind of trumpet). I tried to fill the harmony in the piano part based on the bass line on the original score. I think it would fit very nicely in the repertoire of an English Concertina player: le_carnaval_anglois.mp3 le_carnaval_anglais_concertina.pdf Looking at the bass line, I might suggests that you play it about as fast as your (human) keyboard player can manage.
  16. Where can I find music for 3 sea captains? Thanks. the_three_sea_captains_concertina.pdf the_three_sea_captains.mp3 I've uploaded the version how I play it. I've added a few notes... And on the original it says 'set dance'. How fast is a set dance??? Since I'm a beginner, I hope they don't dance that fast. I've recorded it quite slow so that I can follow...
  17. I play the English Concertina for only a few months now, and I quickly found out that the 'usual' stuff is way too fast for me. Jigs and hornpipes up to speed will take me at least a year I think. The Three Sea Captains, The Ash Grove and Walz Young Jane is about as far as I get for the moment. Can you advanced EC players remember which tunes you started with and which ones were particularily fun to learn?
  18. Ha. Thanks for the many replies. Blues, jazz or other non-irish or non-classical music are of my major interests: I was a bass player all my life. I've played my fair share of bluegrass, folk, jazz, gypsy swing and even old rock'n roll. A few months ago I picked up the English Concertina, and if I can play jazz or blues on it, I will not hesitate. Apart from the occasional menuets and hornpipes that is. BTW: for the last 15 years, I am playing Argentinian tango, so I certainly will try and play that on EC as well. I'm working on a website for EC and you probably will find some 'weird' tunes on it when I get it online.
  19. Here's a group that uses English Concertina for acoustic blues: myspace
  20. I am working on a website to share sheet music for English Concertina, things I have collected myself. I'm also trying to make some play-along files with piano accompagnement. Since I'm a beginner on EC, lots of easy stuff. But also some things I've picked up from the Internet and reworked for EC.
  21. Hello, I'm a fresh English Concertina addict from Belgium, and I am desperately looking for a copy of the "Pietro Valente mit Otto Weiss Trio" CD. Since I played jazz double bass in a previous life, I'm very interested to hear how the English concertina can be used here. Can someone help me? I tried the e-mail address in one of the other posts here, but it is no longer valid. Does someone have a recent e-mail address where I can order a copy? Or, since I'm afraid the CD is no longer available, would someone be so kind to provide me with mp3 versions of the tunes? Many thanks, Michel
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