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Mike Franch

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About Mike Franch

  • Rank
    Chatty concertinist

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  • Gender
  • Interests
    English concertina, English country dance music, folk music
  • Location
    Baltimore Md. USA

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  1. Mike Franch

    Suggestions on an Anglo Concertina Upgrade

    You might also contact Greg Jowaisas, who is on this list or is reachable at gjowaisas (at)insightbb.com. He restores vintage concertinas and often (sometimes?) hs instruments for sale in the range you want. Anything you'd buy from him would be in very good working order and, in my experience, a good value.
  2. Mike Franch

    Concertina Bands

    I often find that when playing my EC while processing that it helps steady it by holding it high, with my elbows braced against my body.
  3. Mike Franch

    55 key Lachenal Maccan For Sale

    Echoing Wolf. Hope you'll hop back into the forum.
  4. Mike Franch

    Beginner English Concertina in PDX

    David, you've got a good beginning, buying yourself a good concertina. That will make learning easier, and you've saved money by not starting with something cheaper and having to upgrade. I don't have advice, other than to enjoy each level of proficiency as you go along. I was thrilled to be able to play "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" (hey, the tune was good enough for Mozart!), even as I aspired to do better and experienced frustration along the way. The frustration moved along as I moved along, of course, but a helpful realization is that my sense of frustration was not saying, "damn, this is too hard for you," but "this is a challenge that you'll surmount and is part of the fun, part of the sense of accomplishment." That by and large, has proven true.
  5. Mike Franch

    The Man - Greg Jowaisas

    Wolf, please feel free to picture me wherever you like. I'm pretty much always here in Baltimore--Maryland, US, not the one in Ireland that we're named after. Thanks for remembering my interest in English country dance (ECD), which, in some ways, is done differently in the US than in Britain. There also seems to be an interest in ECD in Russia; you can find some nice YouTube videos of dancers in St. Petersburg. Maybe it's my turn to do some imaginative relocating, and to think of you in England because you always write so effectively in English. Someday, perhaps, I'll become sufficiently adept in the language of music to be able to follow all your finer points of musicianship!
  6. Mike Franch

    The Man - Greg Jowaisas

    Seconding this. A few weeks ago, Greg gave me a quick turnaround on my Wheatstone Model 21, did some tweaks, and I'm a happy camper. I should also say that I was very happy with the U.S. Postal Service with their track-able two-day delivery. It worked fine both ways. I suspect that the concertina traveled faster than the envelope with my check (for a reasonable amount) to Greg.
  7. Mike Franch

    Help to identify please

    How does one know it was made in 1946?
  8. Lovely! It looks like so much fun.
  9. Mike Franch

    Totm Challenge: Old Meets Néw

    I liked it. Is that you floating down from the sky?
  10. Mike Franch

    French Bagpipe + Concertina

    Very lovely. But I thought of it as the other way around: concertina + bagpipe!
  11. A consistent theme in this forum (and borne out by my own experience) is that you are wise to buy the best instrument you can afford, even if just starting out. Maybe, especially if just starting out. I think you made a wise move, one that will save you money and speed your development on the concertina.
  12. Mike Franch

    My Dream Gig

    Do I remember correctly, Jody, that it was so cold at one Botanical Garden gig that your concertina and Michael Gorin's fiddle stopped working?
  13. Discovered these delightful Russian animations featuring a concertina-playing crocodile. There are a series of them at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lUBNtYixTSs&feature=youtu.be. Edited to change "alligator" to "crocodile" (although I think it might use both).
  14. Mike Franch

    Social Media Circles?

    Regarding the Tradewinds Ted post above, I agree on the importance of what we might call the pan-concertina approach of this site. I play EC, but I find myself reading about anglos and duets with interest, if not always comprehension. Someone in a recent discussion said that they're different instruments that just happen to look quite similar; there's truth to that, but they're pretty much the same inside the box, and an issue for one is often an issue for all. Dammit, it's all so interesting!
  15. Mike Franch

    Social Media Circles?

    What are these things called "smart phones"? I see them mentioned in discussions quite often.