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About tzirtzi

  • Birthday 08/06/1989

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    Linguistics, languages, poetry, concertina playing
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Chatty concertinist

Chatty concertinist (4/6)

  1. Thank you both for your replies (and sorry for my own slowness in replying!) I'm glad it's not just my perception (or my concertina) that might hear a problem here. I'll go through the piece and experiment cutting down each chord to something a little more easily playable--hopefully they'll then turn out to be easier on the ear, too. If case anyone's interested, I might post what I end up with when I'm happy with it
  2. I came across this very nice arrangement of one of the melodies from Jupiter from the Planets for guitar, which seems quite playable on concertina. Playing it, though, I find a lot of the chords rather a lot clashier than I feel they should be - much more so than they sound on the guitar. I wondered whether anyone might have any general advice on what changes to make from guitar to concertina arrangements? It is, of course, possible that my concertina is just out of tune... :/
  3. When I upgraded, I fondly imagined that I would keep playing my Concertina Connection Jackie too... It won't suprise many of you that I was quite wrong I bought the concertina two years ago for something like £340. It has some visible wear (scuffs around the edges of the bellows) but plays perfectly - I'm happy to provide photos if wanted. I'm based in the UK and looking for £220+P&P - but given that I can find no eBay completed listings or any other second hand sales in the UK, that's a shot in the dark, so throw me an offer if you think that's too high. Transport wise, I'm based right now near Bristol and soon to move to Oxford - if it's the cheaper option from either of those locations then I'll happily transport it myself; otherwise it'll be whatever the post office charges (buyer obviously specifies the type of post they want). Now sold
  4. Thanks for all the replies! Sadly, my plans to spend some time every evening this week preparing and learning new tunes (the supper is on Saturday) have so far come to naught - very busy time at work is draining my free time - but tomorrow I'll get down to it! I believe that it will be quite formal - certainly it will follow the traditional format and I'll be expected to 'pipe' in the haggis. I'm not sure whether I'll be expected to play for renditions of Burns' songs - I'll prepare as much as I can so as to be ready for whatever I'm asked to do! Thanks particularly for the tip about squeaking for the haggis! I'll definitely make sure to do that Thanks for the link Your story makes me glad I've come here for advice rather than just winging it! That must have been an awkward evening indeed... That's good to know - I guess that means I can be a bit more relaxed in my selection of tunes, and choose some fiddle tunes if they're easier/I already know them! I'll look up the tunes you suggest
  5. I've been asked to play at a Burns supper as no actual piper can be found - I play the EC. I was wondering if anyone could suggest to me some tunes? I haven't been able to find anything to suggest that there's a specific, traditional tune played by the piper at a Burns night - though if there is, and someone here knows about it, I'd love to hear! - so I'm just looking for some good trad Scottish tunes, perhaps something which I could use to immitate the sound of the pipes (putting in a drone + appropriate ornaments). Thanks, tzirtzi
  6. Thanks to you both for your advice. It would be very useful to have a way to try to prevent this happening in future, so I'll definitely buy some natural shoe cream and use that. I am quite attached the bellows papers, so if possible I'd like to preserve the ones I've got (though if this turns out to be impossible, then such is life). I do have a copy of the concertina maintenance manual at home (that is, at my home near university, whereas at the moment I'm at my parents' home) so when I go back in a few weeks I'll have a look at it as well. So in the meantime I'll get together the parts I would need to do the repair and then see how things look. Thanks again for your replies
  7. To my horror, I have just discovered a split in the bellows of my concertina. I've attached a couple of photos, but they were taken on a phone so in case they're not clear: the split is along the in-fold, and it isn't fully split along its length yet. It's on the top of the bellows when held upright to play. The concertina is an 1856 George Case EC, but the bellows are probably much younger, only 30 years old or so I think (there's a label inside with a date which I can't quite remember...). I was wondering if anyone could advise me: is this likely the result of something that I've done wrong in terms of concertina-care, or is it just the inevitable result of passing time? Is this something that I might be able to fix myself, or should I definitely be sending it to a professional for repair? Does this mean that the bellows need replacing, or is it possible to patch a hole like this? Thanks in advance
  8. I think this is a very interesting question. I haven't been able to find much Regondi concertina sheet music that isn't way beyond my abilities (if anyone knows of any online / has any they'd be willing to scan, I'd be very interested!) so I've found it difficult to judge. On the plus side, I understand that his guitar compositions are highly respected amongst classical guitarists and I seem to remember reading somewhere that he himself regarded the guitar as his secondary instrument in terms of composition. The guitar pieces of his that I've played I haven't found especially inspiring - but then they're very easy stuff, so perhaps not representative. I may have a search around for performance recordings and videos online of Regondi music on whatever instrument - that would seem a good way to begin to judge.
  9. I understand that the optimal number of buttons on the EC for classical music would be a tenor-treble: it has the 48 buttons of a treble (that is, the whole range of the violin) plus (I believe) an octave below, going down to the G two below middle C (that is, the whole range of the guitar) (...I think that's right. Someone correct me if I'm wrong!). That enables you to play all guitar, violin and flute music, which is massively useful. However, larger range instruments like this are much more expensive and harder to come by than trebles, as well as heavier - not good beginner instruments. I play a (48 key) treble - with a treble like this you can play all violin and flute music, and in practice a good half of guitar music doesn't go below the bottom of the range and that which does is mostly easy to adapt. An antique treble (as opposed to a modern one like a Jackie) is also very nice and light. But of course a playable antique treble will set you back quite a bit - Chris Algar has written a good guide to prices. He suggests that a "better quality brass reeded instrument" would be about £650 - that's probably a good place to start, as below that price the instruments may be in bad enough condition/quality that they'll make it rather harder for you to learn. So it's worth considering the modern budget instruments - the Jackie and Jack (and possibly the budget '50s Wheatstone just put up in the Buy/Sell forum). These have 30 buttons, with only 3 and a half octaves range. My experience was that I had to put some effort into searching around for music that fit on this range, although there was certainly lots there to find (and I hope I've begun to make the search a bit easier by putting together lots of EC-playable music on my site). These instruments are also heavier, and (due to the accordion reeds? I don't know) the top of their range becomes rather squeaky. On the other hand, they play much more responsively and easily than equivalently priced antiques. If you primarily want to play folk music to begin with (as I did) these are excellent starting instruments. It is possible to buy ECs with fewer with 30 buttons, but they're generally gimmicks made by professional makers and so very expensive and (I can only imagine) very limited due to their range. In between the Jackie/Jack and full 48-key trebles there are also instruments such as the Morse 37 button, AC Norman's 45 key, and Marcus Music's 37 key. But with these you're looking at much higher prices.
  10. Lots of good thoughts being aired in this thread! I hope the OP finds it informative and useful for their decision making I just wanted to post to disagree with the assertion that's been made that classical guitar music played unadapted on the concertina sounded bad. I play a lot of guitar music - the majority of the classical music I play is unadapted guitar music (well, I'm playing a treble EC so I'm adapting in the sense of ignoring the occasional bass note) - and it seems to work fine to me. In fact the relatively "thin" style of music written for the guitar - two or three note chords or a single melody line with a single bass accompaniment - seems perfectly suited to the concertina. It would be nice to be able to play oom-pah waltzes etc. as well - but I actually find the bass notes of any concertina a bit too overwhelming to want to play lots at once. They seem to me to overwhelm the melody line. So I'm not too bothered by that difficulty, and remain quite happy with my guitar music. Pianos - with a much louder, more even range all the way up - and accordions - with reinforced treble notes - are well suited to very heavy chordal stuff, and I greatly enjoy playing heavy chordal piano music on the piano. Also, although it's true that playing very complex chords on the EC is very hard to do fast - it's perfectly possible slowly, and actually the only time I want to do this is when accompanying voice, when I generally am playing slowly. And looking at Regondi's concertina works (which remain way beyond my ability for now) I think it would be possible for a more talented player to play very complex works at speed. Most of what we're talking about shouldn't be thought of in terms of "the EC can't do this and the duet can't do this" - I reckon it's more about comparative difficulty and so comparative skill needed. Fiinally (sorry, longer post than I intended!), here's some classical music which I play and think is appropriate for the EC: Minuets from Bach's 2nd Cello Suite, Batti Batti O Bel Masetto from Mozart's Don Giovanni, C.P.E. Bach's Solfegietto for violin in Cm.
  11. Yeah, that's* what I did at first also - I felt that the chords with the low G# weren't as nice and full as the original. But each to their own - this version certainly works as well! *Referring to the solution for the problematic low E, not the other additions.
  12. I've typed up the sheet music for Greensleeves from a borrowed book for classical guitar pieces. It's very nice on concertina, so I thought I'd share it . The original is in A minor, which is very easy to play, but contains a few bass notes that go down to a third below the range of a treble EC. So I've transposed it up to C# minor, which is all in the range - but a lot harder. Here's the C# minor version And here's the A minor version
  13. I'm glad you liked the bass notes Fraid I don't know what the problem might be the link to the score - it works for me. What error message do you get? Well regardless, I'll attach it to this post as well and see if that works better. gardenersdelight.pdf
  14. As lots of others have said, a very enjoyable tune Here's my attempt at it: recording and score. I've added some simple bass notes. Have a feeling I played the middle section wrong, though..
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