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Everything posted by LR71

  1. I think I've read about Edel keeping an end on each leg; I tried that at first but gave up eventually. I'm still keeping the left end on the left leg, though, to the best of my ability anyway, but just feeling free to squeeze things together here and there makes such a difference. Watching videos of a few players I do see them occasionally shifting, or perhaps pushing the stable side.
  2. I've read a few quotes here and elsewhere along these lines: Or That one continues: I wasn't sure what that meant - maybe it had to do with how John drapes the bellows across his left leg. Not at all, it turns out - on his DVD he talks about restricting yourself to using just one arm to push/pull as a serious error committed by button box players trying the concertina. Coming from the box and not knowing any better, and reading quotes like these, I figured there wasn't any point in using both arms, that the correct approach was one sided, like the fiddle. But I recently picked up a copy of John's DVD, and gave a try at powering things from both sides, and what do you know - it's like I'm suddenly twice as strong; and have that much more control over what I'm playing, too. Is this explained in other tutors, or just glossed over? It's by far the most important tip I've ever gotten for playing these things. Does Noel - or other good musicians - really play like that?
  3. I learned that tune - or something very like it - a long time ago, from a tape of the famous fiddler Larry Redican. I noticed the Riches of Clare musicians playing it too, and wondered if it's the same. Recording in question. It's 48 seconds long, and he goes into a 3rd part which is cut short. That's all I know, hope this is of interest.
  4. Courtesy the website of Na Píobairí Uilleann, the Irish Pipers' Club, whose Source website has videos of all sorts of musicians and singers. The 2nd tune Noel plays is The Hunter's House. The rest of the 2014 concert this is from is here, along with appearances in 2009 and 2017, if you want to look around; there are other showings from Edel Fox, Cormac Begley, a new one from Brenda Castles, and more.
  5. At the top? Where there's usually e'''/b''? I use that high B all the time, myself; but then I play with the right hand side on my right leg, the opposite of the usual. When I hold it in the conventional manner it's a lot harder to get the leverage to press the highest buttons, I notice. How did you manage to fit in a low octave reed on the right hand side? Thinking back on the pics I've seen of reed pans that doesn't seem so far fetched. It's a bit odd to think of such a low note coming out of what's supposed to be the highest button though, like the accidental buttons on quint accordions, if you know about those - what you'd think would be the very lowest notes in the range actually supply semitones. Some of those boxes have notes at the very highest end retuned to something more useful to modern players, too. I never heard that explanation. I always chalked it up to just finding the pull easier to apply pressure to. My accordion tuner has clients who play Mexican music, norteno/conjunto etc., and he says their big thing is playing big long strings of notes on the pull, constantly breaking reeds in the process.
  6. OK, I updated the chart, thanks for all the extra info. The average price is $5,071.89, fwiw. That includes a price from 7 years ago which is no doubt old, skewing the results. OK, I updated the chart, thanks for all the extra info. The average price is $5,071.89, fwiw. That includes a price from 7 years ago which is no doubt old, skewing the results.
  7. For yucks I made a spreadsheet of Anglo builders who use traditional reeds. I was curious about what prices are these days. There are a surprising number of puzzles, perhaps some of you can chime in with how dear a Dipper of Edgley is these days. Also three makers have closed their books for now, out of 16. Hope this is of interest.
  8. That's the idea. We're talking about using it as a melody note though, this music can really fly at times. I tried playing GFED etc using the D# button - that presents no problem at all. I might just have that note retuned.
  9. Thanks, interesting. Hadn't thought of sacrificing the D#; kind of like having it there for certain tunes, really. King of the Fairies, Pride of Petravore, Dunmore Lassies, etc. Playing E with the thumb seems a better fit too, as one thing I'd like to be able to do is play GFED in one direction if so desired; using the middle digit on the outer row seems like it might really tie you up in knots. Maybe I'll try that later with the D# and try to ignore what it sounds like...I can see how having a pull F# would let you play that all on the push too, that's good thinking. Other thing I'd like pull E for is rolling or cranning. Pigeon on the Gate, Drowsie Maggie, Ashplant, yes. I always pull these if I have a choice, it just sounds stronger. You could alternate E2BE etc without changing bellows direction, and have the option of doing so to mix things up. The Anglo definitely has no end of possibilities here.
  10. I play Irish music. Plenty of boxes have a left hand thumb operated drone note; what I'd like more than anything is a pull middle E - i. e., the same as the C4 button. This note is conspicuous in its absence by only being available on the push. I have no idea what it'd be like to use the left thumb as a melody note. Do people with drone buttons tap them? Certainly we dance on and off the right hand thumb button all day long, though. I'm wondering if my Kensington could be retrofitted with one, too. The left side fretwork mirrors that on the right side, so there's a spot with enough metal for another button; and I notice there's a spare chamber in the reed pans Dana builds. Whether it's big enough for this note is another question, or whether the lever could get there; or if Dana could be bothered, of course.
  11. YouTube Channel. Barry McGee, an excellent modern style player, very florid. He plays things slowly then fast, breaks down what he's doing, various options. Great stuff.
  12. I've a very nice instrument from a reputable maker, traditional reeds etc, am really happy with how it plays and sounds. Its G row is noticeably quieter/sweeter/mellower than the C; is that typical? I don't mind it much, just curious if this is a feature not a bug. It makes me think of diatonic button boxes, where in the old days the inner row was often a bit underpowered compared the outer.
  13. Sorry again - I'm not talking about modifying this Lachenal, but rather having something custom built for a new 30B instrument. It's the E1/F1 button: Don't concertina players roll the 1st octave F#? That would be done with the pinky too, unless you shift your ring finger down for it. Same with pushing the D. Having never used the left hand for melody playing on a free reed instrument what is and isn't possible is kind of an open book for me. Playing "air concertina" my pull E roll doesn't seem too terribly awkward.
  14. I don't think I'm making it clear which E note I want to change - it's the E/F button on the LH outermost row, the row which isn't the C or G row. I'm talking about installing a reed which is tuned an octave higher than the one that's there already - is this feasible? I'm already monkeying around with triplets that aren't all in one direction, I'm familiar with that from playing the box. It's nice to have the option of playing things completely legato if you want, though. Or completely staccato!
  15. Hello, I play Irish music on the box among other things and am messing about with a brass reed 28 B Lachenal. The lowest note on the standard layout LH 3rd row - E/F, down in the basement - is really useless for my purposes, could F#'/E' be put in its place? Imagining what this would be like sounding that pull E with the little finger you'd have the 1st and 2nd free to grace with pull D and G, a true roll; DEF#G can now be played all on the pull - and on the push, too. We don't want to get carried away with this stuff of course but coming from the button accordion I'm like a kid in a candy store with all the note options with just the standard layouts, so why not keep going a little?
  16. 3 row button boxes in C#/D/G are a standard option from Saltarelle, Castagnari, and others, so it's been done there, for people who play both English and Irish stuff. The semitone systems are great for Irish music, as you sound a note on the inside and get the lower grace note from the outside row, which is only a semitone away and right under your finger - on 4th tuned boxes the interval can sometimes be a bit much. On the semitone boxes it sometimes sounds a bit strange, too...anyway this idea is familiar to me, as a box player - I'm waiting on delivery of my first anglo, so have only read about how to ornament notes on the 'tina - looks positively wacky! C/G/Etc has its counterpart in button accordions too - they play them a lot in French music.
  17. Thanks, that's interesting, he certainly added a lot of mass to things there though. The setup on anglos/duets seems much more straightforward; you might have to drill some new holes in the ends of your EC, though. I don't really have any qualms about that as mine is really beat up; in fact it'll take quite a bit of work to make it play at all, looks like. And I'm thinking instead I might just set up in the normal fashion and see what I think first.
  18. I might try attaching a leather wrist strap to the strap screws and see if I can manipulate my Lachenal that way, once I have it up and running. With the straps off it definitely feels most comfortable with the thumbs on the outside of the frames. It's no surprise to me that there's a subforum here on Ergonomics... I think there's a thread here about making thumb straps that can pivot about if so desired.
  19. Actually, no: Playing the English Concertina--My Technique He persisted with holding it instead of relearning to play in the conventional manner for whatever reason: inertia, sloth, artistic basis; but the initial reason was simply lack of guidance. Most good button accordion players make a veritable art form out of fingering, with no end of finger swapping, sliding, crossing over; and also, paradoxically, eschewing the pinky, even though you'd figure that losing a finger would hamper your abilities; but in busy music it's actually more helpful to be able to hop over other fingers than always be utilizing the little digit. Playing the EC with fingers parallel might necessitate the same kind of ability to hop and skip around.
  20. Ah, but duet layouts are 6+ buttons wide, depending on how you look at it - most layouts have the rows at 45 degrees to the player's hand, it looks like. The Hayden maxes out at 8, and it's supposed to be rigorously thought out, no? The "Early Wheatstone Double System" has 4 rows arrayed vertically, I wonder if they didn't intend the fingers to be perpendicular there. The alternating between sides always made me think that the orientation wasn't such an issue, maybe the fact that the duet has the hands playing mostly independent of each other made sense for the fingers to be parallel. I wonder how rigorously these notions were tested when these instruments were invented. Certainly having the fingers held 90 degrees from each other makes these very different instruments to play, without much crossover in technique. Comparable to the difference between violin and cello, perhaps? My Lachenal winged its way across the US in one flight so it'll be on my doorstep today, and I'll be able to test things out for myself much sooner than I'd thought. Found out that a friend has no less than 2 of the things, and had meant to sell them too...only remember him having a hopelessly out-of-tune Wheatstone. Will have to try his out as well, and compare these handholds out. Another guy I know has an 80 key McCann duet. Looks like the beginning of a concertina band!
  21. By "sideways" I mean that the fingers are held perpendicular to the rows of keys, unliked the anglo, the duet, the accordion, the piano, the typewriter...this was discussed in a thread on English Concertina Finger Position, with much ensuing confusion in the written part of the debating; this simple chart explains things infinitely better: "Simon" refers to Simon Thoumire, who holds his fingers 90 degrees to the norm. My question is why wasn't this orientation of the fingers also used for the anglo and duet instruments? Is it because the duet is larger and the anglo push-pull, thus necessitating more force than the thumb and pinky could impart? Incidentally I'm waiting on arrival of my first concertina, an 1890s Lachenal; the straps are shot and I plan to slap on blocks and hand straps like you get on an anglo or duet. Having the fingers perpendicular to the rows just seems bizarre, like playing music on one of those old telephone switchboards. No thank you! I already play button and piano accordions and also the piano per se, so am married to the whole fingers-parallel aspect.
  22. It's been done - seems to occur to a lot of people, too: http://forums.chiffandfipple.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=95855
  23. That's pretty funny, sidesqueeze. Reminds of a fiddling friend who takes the occasional lesson from Kevin Burke, on one occasion he says "Now really lean into the bow for that high G, it sounds grand that way." OK, lesson learned. Next time the student does the same thing in another tune. "Oh, never lean into the bow for the high G, that sounds awful!" The student never got to the bottom of what Kevin was getting at here, maybe he thinks it sounds good in one tune and not the other? Teachers are musicians, which is to say odd ducks. Azalin - I meant F# there, sorry about the confusion.
  24. Oh, I see that I was misled by this a bit: Which would let you play D-E-F all on the pull. But that contradicts this: Was the first layout also offered by Wheatstone? I see they had a couple of different Duet layouts. With either the D and E are on the push, at least, and that F# is the only bump in the road in the D scale. Or the G scale. Doing a bit more reading I see that Paddy Murphy, who inspired or taught Noel Hill, picked up the C/G to try and keep up with William Mullaly's old 78s, he needed to cross the rows somehow to play at that speed. If I were to play 'tina I'd get a G/D - I don't like B/C accordion, pulling for the first note, ecch. G/C is the concertina equivalent. It just doesn't seem very "accordion," when you play on the row you can make the music much more thrashy and violent, or lively, or whatever you call it. It's a real kick! And of course no one wants G/D's, just like no one wants the French simple system flutes I play, because it isn't what Matt Molloy has, so I save a bundle as well.
  25. I play Irish music, on a variety of instruments including accordion, and was curious about bellows changes on the concertina. Looking at fingering charts I see that you could play an awful lot of the scales all in one direction if you so desired; do players look for the fingering pattern that fits the tune the best, that accents the rhythm to its fullest? That's basically a rhetorical question, I suppose. Do you sometimes deliberately use a fingering with more bellows changes in it to punch things up? Have players always shied away from playing too smoothly, have there been players who were chastised for not being punchy enough? Incidentally I tried the C#/D box at first as my favorite players used it, but gave it up after a while, it was irritating to have to change the bellows at such-and-such a point, when the tune seemed to want to keep going, if you know what I mean. To play the D scale on the D row it's push-pull-push-pull-push-pull-pull-push. A B-A-G triplet would be three bellows changes, and that's it - the C# row has no notes to help you out there. Looking at the usual C/G layout I see you can play such a triplet on the push or pull, with a few alternates for fingering too. The B/C accordion is a bit more streamlined, but I just went my own way and bought an ADG box - which isn't an Irish music thing at all, but I just like to have fun, eh? There are no end of options for fingering on those, much like the concertina. When I first got into it I vaguely knew concertinas were a lot more flexible in re: bellows. Of course my box playing friends all look askance at my choice of instrument, but no one thinks concertina players are failing to get the job done, right?
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