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  1. It's there. In this "just received" cardboard package. Chris from Barleycorn has taken all precautions for the shipment, from "Fragile" tape outside to polystyrene chips inside. When opening, a small smell of antique things... or probably more likely shoe polish, perhaps because of new straps. The concertina is comfortably but tightly installed in its hexagonal wooden box. I dream of this since a year ! What a beautiful instrument. So tiny ! I must say I never held a concertina before, and am surprised by the size, the delicate fretwork, the small but protuding buttons. I carefully respect a warm up time of half an hour, "tasting" this moment, admiring the object without hearing it yet. I let it breathe a few times with the air button, and try some strap adjusting with these small flat screws. A bit afraid of any possible damage due to delivery conditions (not related to Barleycorn), I hesitate before pushing any "singing" button.... but wow ! What a sound ! "Clear", "bright", "without artifice yet so lovely and true" are some of the things which come up to my mind when playing a little. So close yet so different from my Castagnari 3 voices melodeon. I'm so happy to have chosen a vintage instrument with its "true" reeds (no offense meant here), helping me to clearly put a place in my heart "side by side" with my melodeon (but again that's personal). I'm surprised to find very fast a way to handle the air button (the right thumb can have its revenge on the left one), and already note that I must be careful about "bad habits" (well some that I guess, such as helping the push movement of a right hand melody with left fingers pushing the left end instead of resting on buttons). C/G melodeon playing helps sometimes, like the diatonic scale on right hand. But for the left hand used to "prepared" bass chords, it's another story. Well I am happy to already have a "strong" left little finger. The notes "spreading" among both sides is truly new and I'm loving it. Left and right ears are equally happy :-) Makes me think a little about the church organ. I've "played" concertina for half an hour so far, but I am truly happy with this instrument, and wrote this post to tell it to you :-) Good day to you all !
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