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Rod Thompson

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Everything posted by Rod Thompson

  1. Slightly off-topic, but not too far. An Indian friend introduced me to the harmonium, which is a very popular instrument in the sub-continent. This is played one handed, while pumping the bellows with the left hand, and has banks of reeds controlled by stops. Wikipedia entry The connection with this thread is that it has a piano keyboard, but it transposable to any key withoout a change of fingering. There is a simple mechanism that moves the keyboard left or right along the box, and means that the keys actuate different reeds. Very simple in principle, but I'm sure it is tricky in the mechanism. You can still play the black notes (as accidentals or for key changes during a piece), but if a singer says "it would be better a semitone lower", click and its done!
  2. Obviously not! Apart from not having arrived at MC, you have crossed an ocean without first having declared a Grand Farnarcle. This sets you back several points. (Can anyone remind me exactly how many? I don't have the rules with me). But my reply is to proceed to Euston. (It seems so obvious that it is probably a very bad move - like QxP in chess).
  3. As another beginner, I'm rather awed by the standard of play so far! I play: Gloucester Road This has memories for me from the 70's.
  4. Tall ship sighted - sailing very close to the wind!! Has the oyster been taken into account in the latest rules (my updates haven't arrived yet)? I could never get the hang of the thing.
  5. Be warned - I've been doing some on-the-ground preparatory studies under the ground, on a recent visit. =(-; PS. is DLR permitted?
  6. An excellent article - thank you, and I look forward particularly to the "Concertinas at Sea". It is a subject that I find very interesting.
  7. What if they are putting an earplug in? (In the concertina-facing ear only?) (It did happen to me)!
  8. Surely this belongs in the topic "List of things not to do with your concertina"
  9. Two questions: - have you done this? - did you film it?
  10. This could be me - apart from "Suttner" instead of "Dipper", and the final sentence. My Suttner is out of her box 6 days a week on average. I am as typical as mr/s dpmccabe's example - and at least I exist!! What fired me up enough to reply to this thread - which has obviously sparked more replies than it deserved, is the invocation of the "Professional/Joe Amateur" divide. This is a disease that pervades all our endeavours these days. Remember that music is not for listening to - it is for making. <end rant mode>
  11. Run - don't look back - get out while you can!! In 1995, I was in a play "Reedy River", playing the mouth organ. The director suggested it would look better if I could play the concertina instead. (I had a rough idea what a concertina looked like). I am now hooked - with more concertinas than I could possibly play at the same time, and my hands shake if I don't play for more than 2 days.
  12. A question - is the cargo hold pressurised on a 747? and what is the effect on bellows of exposure to low pressure (should we strap down the air button)? (Or strap down a note and let it play a tune). If we ever do get to take instruments as hand luggage again, there is the issue of having a screwdriver with you - damned if you do - damned if you don't (and someone demands you open the instrument to see what is inside). I have taken to carrying the screwdriver bit from a cordless drill. It is only 1cm long with a screwdriver end and hex on the other. Not easy to use, but I can get the screws out using it if needed. Certainly not much use as a weapon. The irony of "security measures" is that they only seem able to think of one risk at a time. Travelling through LAX some years ago, the delays at security were so bad that we missed our flight (delayed by a passenger before us in the line having nail scissors in her hand bag). BUT our bags didn't - they went on our scheduled flight and were waiting for us when we got there. Now that makes me feel secure!!
  13. Liquids and gells are prohibited on certain flights here, but the real problem is that anyone flying from here connecting via London (e.g. to UK, Ireland or Europe) will not be able to take hand luggage on from London. I don't know what that means for anyone already in the air??
  14. What's wrong with going to hell anyway - "the devil has all the best tunes" as they say!
  15. G'day: Hope we can meet up while you are here (please e-mail through this forum if you can get to a machine). We are planning to go to "Music in Bridgeman Downs" this Saturday - mainly to hear Warren Fahey and Dave de Hugard (both notable concer squeezers). Perhaps we might see you there? Rod
  16. Slightly off-topic, but how is gigue pronounced? as jig?
  17. The concertina is clearly and obviously the best instrument ever invented. It is: Lighter than a grand piano More mellow than a kazoo Easier to play than a bandonian Less intrusive than highland pipes Louder than a penny whistle Cheaper than a bass saxophone More serious than a doodle sac Funnier than a fiddle More modern than a sackbutt More traditional than a synth More portable than a pipe organ Larger range than an ocarina Less damaging to the nails than a thumb piano More versatile than the triangle Less annoying than a bodhran In short - obviously perfect. (Even the English ones).
  18. Maybe this solves a problem. Someone was asking how to do a drone on the concertina. I was going to suggest a separate instrument, played like a footbase, but with double acting pedals to play a continued chord. This is a simpler solution - just have the hohner kettle tuned to the required note - or 3 for a full chord, get them boiling and play along!
  19. Thanks Henk - for the sessions and the invitation - if we get any time out from my studies, we will try to make it to the Arnhem session. And also Phil - if we get time, I'd love to get to Sheffield. (But I can't resist the question "what's Dungworth?" bet that's never been asked before!) I don't know what my workload will be in Delft yet, so can't make any plans. So hope to see you soon!
  20. Maria and I will be in Europe for 3 months - March to May this year. We will be based in Delft, The Netherlands, and I would like to meet some of my fellow c.netters over there. Are there any sessions planned around that time? (Anywhere near Delft, which is near Rotterdam)? We will probably take the chunnel across on a few occasions as well. (And I will be taking my new Suttner, of course).
  21. My name is Rod and I am a concertinaholic: It is a long, sad story, and mainly my wife's fault. She bought me a Scholler 20 button. Then, when that started breaking reeds, she bought me a Chinese 20 button (Milan). From there it all started. Before I knew it I had progressed to a Lachenal 30 button, but soon after put in my order for the Suttner 31 button. Then, I had a 32 button G/D Kookaburra made for me (mainly for accompanying singing). Then a 40 button Jeffries in Bb/F insisted I buy it. It had had a hard life, and was in bad condition, but Richard Evans put it back into very good shape. Then, the Suttner came through. So it is certainly in good company. Before the Suttner, I was about equal in my use of the Lach, The Kooka and the Jeffries. The choice being the key required, and the style of playing - e.g. for Irish music, the Lachenal. Now - it remains to be seen which I turn to most often. Will I sell the others?? Maybe, but not soon. (Put down that deposit - then forget about it - you too might get a nice Christmas present in about 5 years).
  22. Well - I have had my new Suttner for just over a fortnight now, & I thought I had better report back. She is a 31 button C/G wooden ended, Jeffies layout. First the positives: She is the fastest, most responsive little beast I have ever handled! Sweet clear tone - bright, but never harsh. (I claim credit here for asking for wooden ends). Great dynamic range. I think it can play so quietly because the reeds are very consistent in starting to sound. Thus I can squeeze quite softly without the risk of a non-sound. But also quite LOUD! (I played "La Paloma" at a family get-together, and a small nephew was staring goggle-eyed with his fingers in his ears - he later asked his father if he could have one too)! Now the negatives: Hard to get my hands out of the straps. (Late to work again this morning). I still love my other concertinas, but find it hard to get time to play them. In Summary: Congratulations to Jurgen - well worth the wait!! ( do you get the impression I'm happy? )
  23. She's here !!! Absolutely brilliant - looks and sounds. Arrived yesterday - would have replied sooner, but took this long to prise my fingers off the buttons!! All I can say is it was worth the wait!! Happy Christmas to all !!! (Now going back to playing) P.S. I will give a fuller report soon, but first impressions are the tone and lightness of the action (and speed). I am a fan of wooden ends, and this little beast justifies my opinion (at least to me). It is a bright, but not harsh tone, and doesn't seem to need any breaking in. It is all I had hoped, and a little more. As I said - more to follow Rod
  24. hmmmm - a comment probably best made a long way from western Queensland. The bloke with the big hat mightn't like being called "slightly odd"!!
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