Jump to content


  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Interests
    Morris music, English trad. song & music
  • Location

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

chrism's Achievements


Member (2/6)

  1. I find writing the layout into a spreadsheet works very well -- no special diagrams or software needed -- it happens I put the push on the top but I had to check a layout to confirm that. Chris
  2. To add to the confusion -- or p'rhaps knowledge -- I have a Lachenal 32 button (plus air), now G/D, probably Ab/Eb in its youth. Serial number is 179577. I have no knowledge of its date but it was evidently made for the Salvation Army -- there's "S A" in the metal end plate -- and if anything is known about when the Salvation Army bought such bespoke instruments perhaps a date could be derived from that. I got the instrument from Malcolm Clapp, luminary of this parish, who might know more of its history. Chris
  3. There's the Baring Gould Festival in Okehampton -- W/E 24th to 26th October -- that's always fun. Chris
  4. I happen to have a very pretty little Lachenal of about this class -- 26 button C/G Anglo -- 5.3" across the flats. Chris
  5. Dragging the thread back to the original topic --- I've come accross a current one-handed player -- he only has one hand that works, and plays a concertina with that one hand (rather well) for Morris dancing. The instrument's basically the right hand end of a duet, lightly modified because his good hand is the left. The other end is simply blanked off with a strap to go round his thigh -- he's wheel-chair bound. Chris
  6. Just to add to the collection: Robert Louis Stevenson, in his short story "The Isle of Voices" in "South Sea Tales" has a character Keola so desperate to acquire a concertina that tries to blackmail the island sorcerer into buying him one. Not a good idea it turns out. Chris
  7. Just a few comments to add to this -- I've attd the layout for a Dickinson 40 button C/G -- just for interest. (no I haven't -- the site doesn't like my format -- Open Office spreadsheet -- but the layout is nearly identical to the one Geoff gave above) Noting Dave Elliott's comment on chamber sizes etc -- this instrument is a tad bigger -- 8 sided, 6.75 inches A/F rather than the standard 6 sided 6.25 in A/F -- I assume this reduces the difficulty. It's instructive to listen to John Kirkpatrick's playing on this topic (as on all matters Anglo) -- he makes his bellows reversals where the phrasing of the music requires it, not allowing the instrument to dictate them, particularly on song accompaniement. He plays (I think) a 40 button Crabb. Chris
  8. Some of the comments about concertinas on board ship are a little too pessimistic -- I've played mine while sailing pretty often and it seems to survive reasonably. (Mostly I use a Lachenal D/G that escaped from the Sally Army a while back). It is huge fun -- sweeping into Binic for a festival on a 3 masted wooden lugger, two concertinas playing in the bow as we did so -- cheered from quay to quay; or playing for a Remembrance Service on Tenacious while crossing the bay of Biscay two or three Novembers back -- concertina box floating as the seas came over -- many more occasions like those. P'rhaps add "For those in Peril on the Sea" to your list -- also, someone already mentioned "Fiddlers' Green", it's good because it contains the line "I'll play my old squeeze box as we sail along" -- and you can. Wishing you a fine and pleasant gale. Chris
  9. Can't offer an opinion on this particular box but I have seen/heard someone playing an Anglo back-to-front. He was part of a little ceilidh band in, I think, Tolpuddle -- quite some years ago. I asked him how come he played like that and he told me he was left-handed and self-taught and that way came most readily to him. I seem to remember he sounded pretty good at it too. Chris
  10. Those two lines are in Henry Lawson's "Good Old Concertina" -- thussly: The Good Old Concertina ’Twas merry when the hut was full Of jolly girls and fellows. We danced and sang until we burst The concertina’s bellows. From distant Darling to the sea, From the Downs to Riverina, Has e’er a gum in all the west Not heard the concertina? ’Twas peaceful round the campfire blaze, The long white branches o’er us; We’d play the tunes of bygone days, To some good old bush chorus. Old Erin’s harp may sweeter be, The Scottish pipes blow keener; But sing an old bush song for me To the good old concertina. ’Twas cosy by the hut-fire bright When the pint pot passed between us; We drowned the voice of the stormy night With the good old concertina’s. Though trouble drifts along the years, And the pangs of care grow keener, My heart is gladdened when it hears That good old concertina. Henry Lawson
  11. I caught, and liked, that "Last Word" piece as well -- The other contributor was Sam Lee, very much younger but also a great singer of traditional song. There is also a couple of pages in the current EFDSS magazine. Chris
  12. Yes -- as has been said -- a great loss. I remember, perhaps around five years ago, Louis was the visiting tutor at the Baring-Gould song school down in Devon and on the last night we were all in the pub in Bridestowe, doing the usual singaround with the usual mixed quality of such affairs. When it came round to Louis he (as she was then) sang the "Flying Cloud" -- stunning. There were 'civilians' as well as song-scholars there but you could most certainly have heard the proverbial pin drop. One of those occasions when a chunk of music happens by and it just knocks you back on your heels. Chris
  13. I've been playing concertina while sailing for a good few years and haven't found any problem with rust or rot -- decent instruments too. My sea-going box is now a Lachenal 32 button G/D anglo. There's some of it in this clip: http://www.youtube.com/user/aeproduction?gl=GB&hl=en-GB My feeling is that there's no fun in keeping these instruments at home in cotton-wool -- sure, there's always risk of damage but a reasonable level of care and a bit of luck should see you right. (Isn't there a story somewhere of a rather nice Jeffries drifting ashore from a wreck ? Surviving better than its owner.) Chris
  14. While we're talking about Morse Code -- which, really, we're not, but what the hell -- have you noticed that Morse Code is now in more general and widespread use than ever ? Just two letters I'll admit, but that's a start. That little song the mobile 'phone sings when it gets a text message "dit dit dit dah dah dit dit dit" -- SMS in Morse Code. Now doesn't that make the World seem a nicer place ? Chris
  15. Hi, It's a really good excercise to draw up a lay-out of your own box. It's not hard to do (you can even shuffle it into a spread-sheet so's you can print lots of copies to scribble cords and such-like on.) Start with the 'C' row; you know what the notes must be -- just play thru the Do, Ray, Me tune & note where each note comes. Then do the same on the 'G' row. Once you've written all of these down you can explore the outer row -- some of the notes are the same, often going the other way, as those you've found already -- some are inbetween the notes you've found already -- sharps and flats. If you do this you'll get a better understanding of where stuff is -- also, when you've found a difficult piece to finger you can look at your chart for possible ways round. Of course, this will then help you into other keys -- 'F', 'A' and further exotica. Chris
  • Create New...