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Shas Cho

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  • Interests
    Ukulele, pennywhistle, concertina, wooden boat building, sailing, writing.
    We're off the grid (but on-line!) on a nearly self-sufficient little farm
    a long way from 'civilization.'
    The trade-off is having to figure out the concertina on my own...
  • Location
    The beautiful Fraser River Canyon in BC, Canada

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  1. I guess these will do for my contribution: My photoshttp://tinyurl.com/ShasView
  2. Oh, dang, dang, DANG! I can't believe I did that. It was sidesqueeze Ken who dragged me over here. Man, I miss my brain. Sorry, Ken. That picture, which I cannot find, is no doubt a pre-Rochelle photo of my first concertina, a leaky Stagi my in-laws brought home from Ireland. Either that or you caught me plinking on my ukulele...
  3. Good afternoon, y'all. It's been a while. Ken (tall ship) dragged me over here and I thought I might use the opportunity to say a general 'howdy' and to ask for the thoughtful advice of the group. With the encouragement and assistance of you good folk I adopted a Rochelle last autumn and have never regretted it for a minute. In fact, I'm very grateful to you and for her. I don't know that my playing has reached any stellar heights but my enthusiasm for the instrument has never flagged. Very few days have passed without my playing it, at least for a few minutes and I often spend a good bit of the evening playing Irish tunes and pr-1980 favourites. I just play the melody line in a one-note-at-a-time style, like a wood wind or a hand-operated harmonica. I haven't heard many decent players use that technique, but it's all I can manage and I get a lot of pleasure from it. Actually, it just occurs to me that you might be able to advise me... I pretty much live in bed, and most days I lack the strength to hold the tina up for more than a few moments. Typically I rest it on the bed clothes while playing. As you can probably imagine, the 'bottom' creases of the bellows are becoming quite worn. I'm sure that prevention is easier than repair but I don't know what sort of prevention to apply. I look at these increasingly threadbare folds and think about gluing on chafe patches of cloth or soft leather, but my courage fails me when I consider that my modifications could spoil the action or create excessive resistance. I would be very sad to damage her. Suggestions, please? After looking at Pete's shoulder harness I'm thinking the ultimate solution might be to hang a pair of long straps from my ceiling to suspend the instrument just a centimetre above my bed!
  4. You've nailed it, John. Took the words right out of my finger tips. I play my Rochelle every day and love it, but stiffer straps and a larger gasper would be a substantial improvement. I'm rather amazed that I haven't yet done both. The other improvement is to re-sew the strap attachments on the carrying case. Or more accurately the storage bag. Higher-quality concertinas are produced, of course, but only by building them from the ground upwards. I don't think the Rochelle could be improved significantly beyond these simple changes. Nor does it need to be. I still smile every time I pick mine up!
  5. Prague!

    What an excellent place to begin 2012.

    All the best to you,

    and thank you for the smile.


  6. Hi Shas,

    just logged in to send you my remembrance from Prague, where we shall slip into the next year tonight.

    Thanx for the good wishes, which I reply herewith! Good health & all to you...

    Your brother Wolf

  7. Merry Christmas, brother Wolf!

    I wish you all the best.


  8. Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Blessed Solstice, and a Prosperous New Year! This has been a year of really good things and really difficult things. The difficulties have prevented me from being as interactive as I would have liked, but discovering the concertina and this community of friendly, generous, enthusiastic squeezers has been about the best of the year for me. I feel privileged to have met several of you (in a virtual sense) and I hope your holidays are filled with family and warmth, music and affection and peace. Shas
  9. Thanks, Nancy. For simple, incremental, and fun exercises I am still very enthused about Alan Day's tutorial. True, it's for a 20-button anglo, but that's no doubt where we all start, eh> http://www.concertinaman.com/concertina-tutorial/ I have several 'big name' tutorials now, and Alan's is still my favourite. Speaking of tutorials, I don't have the tutorial that comes free with new Rochelles. Does anyone have a not-being-used copy they'd like to sell cheap? Shas
  10. Here is "Bile Them Cabbage Down" using both hands an octave apart, to demonstrate the relative volume of the two sides of the Rochelle. Nothing fancy, just using Audacity with my MacBook's built-in mic. As you can hear, the upper register is almost entirely hidden by the lower. I'm using the bellows to break between notes because in my first take the mic picked up the buttons, making it sound like a musical type writer! Bile Them Cabbage Down, 2 hands.mp3
  11. Thanks, Malcomb, to you and to the Dippers. I'm listening.
  12. Ah-hah! Evidently tiff images are not supported. And I thought I had this image-posting thing figured out. Sorry about the chaos.
  13. Camera case.tiff This looks like the right kind of thing for a "soft" case. It seems to have every virtue. £20.90 with free shipping in the UK. Not bad! http://www.ebay.co.u...545196558331534
  14. Dang. It's not often I wish I lived in England, but that's a classy case! Now I know what I'm going to look for. Thanks for the inspiration!
  15. Thanks, Ann I can reach the burp button okay, though a half inch further outboard would be ideal. What bothers me is that when I press it nothing much happens! I am definitely going to double the size of the gasper. I'm afraid I'll damage the bellows (or my pectorals!) trying to gulp a bit of air during a speedy tune. I'm not knocking the Rochelle, at all, at all. I am loving the precision, the air-tightness, and even the voice is growing on me. But the more I like her the more frustrated I am to be wrestling with such an obvious and easily-addressed (at the factory) handicap. This is an instrument with a helluva lot of potential.
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