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Sorry for the long post, but I don't think there's a better place for me to express this. My interest in concertina is by far the most peculiar interest I've ever had in an instrument. I wasn't originally interested in music. My great grandmother bought me a piano when I was about 7 years old. I became fascinated with it when I realized I could learn music by ear. That fascination drove me for almost 10 years before I fell in love with music. Within' that 10 years, I became interested in violin, mostly cause I didn't like my singing voice and there was a handful of classical pieces I wanted to learn. It was almost a year from the day I decided to get one that I received one. Some friends found out I was interested and gave me one Christmas. I wrestled with the instrument for about a year before I realized I didn't wanna play classical, or rock, or jazz... One day I realized that there was Irish music. A wild, fun, beautiful, and free style of music. A kind of music I had never played on piano. Since then, it's been all tunes, and lovely songs. Learning more about a music and culture that had fascinated me for quite some time before. Living in Austin, Tx. for 3 and a half years, I developed an interest in more music, many of the people I associated with being musicians, or enthusiasts. I had a very short-lived interest in bass guitar and ukulele after finding out how easy they were. I would've gotten a uke, but a delayed shipment that continued to get delayed caused me to refund my order. I had a bass for a while, was keeping it for someone. But it didn't grab me. So I decided it was just infatuation and moved on. With concertina, it was none of that. First off, and I may get flogged for saying this here, but I don't particularly like free reeds(I'm a string man). Just like woodwinds and horns/brass, I'm very indifferent towards them. But concertina(along with the Uilleann and small pipes) is definitely the exception. Instruments like these, their tone is so unique. I don't even know how to describe the energy, the magic I feel. Not to sound childish but they leave me at a loss for words. I feel so happy and easy going when I hear a concertina especially. And I mean, from the first time I ever heard one http://youtu.be/7Igvp6Aw66I I've been seriously considering taking it up. I mean really? http://youtu.be/MWosPa3SuNM after witnessing something like that, who wouldn't consider it!? Over the last 3 and a half years, I've heard this instrument in sessions, on cd's, in videos and slowly but surely it's worked it's way in. I finally cracked when I heard Caitlin Nic Gabhann's album, recommended by a peer from thesession.org. It's official. The decision has been made. I already have a session, teachers, even a repertoire. And thanks to resources like this, I'm already learning. The hard part is getting the instrument. But when I get mine in my hands.... Sphew, I can barely contain my excitement. Thanks for allowing me to get that off my chest. No one else understands lol. So what's your story? What brought you to the concertina world?