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Brand new to concertina


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Hi folks,

 

Great forum you've got here :)

 

I'm an absolute beginner on the concertina. I just got my Rochelle from the Button Box last Friday, and I have been having a lot of fun learning how to play it. I've been working through some of the exercises that are in the tutor, but I really want to jump in and play some Irish tunes (I also play a little bit of fiddle).

 

I ordered the John Williams Irish concertina DVD, and I'm sure that when I get it and watch it that most of my questions about how to play Irish tunes on the concertina will be answered. But since it might be a while before it arrives, I thought I'd give it a try on my own. So I started with the first couple of measures of "Out on the Ocean," playing on the C row, which sounded OK to me. I'm just wondering if that's right. And I was also wondering if most Irish tunes are played on the C row or on the G row. And is there a way to know which row a tune should be played on?

 

I apologize if these are silly questions. Most of the fiddle tunes I know I learned by ear, so I'm kinda clueless when it comes to keys.

 

Any advice you'd be willing to share would be most appreciated.

 

Cheers!

Liz

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Hi, Liz; and welcome! :)

 

I don´t know about J. Williams tutor, but for a beginner the one by Mick Brammich is quite useful - was to me! -. The tutor of Frank Edgley has a couple of typo mistakes, but to me is the one who better gets into ornamentation, and the one from Niall Vallely... well, very virtuosistic but a little disappointing. You can´t really see what this guy is doing with his fingers.

 

'Out on the Ocean ' was my very first tune on tina - I do play fiddle as main weapon - and still play this tune mainly on the C row. Other easy peasy tunes for to begin with are 'Off to California' or 'Cronin's Hornpipe' all of them in G.

 

In A min - more precisely, A dorian - 'Humours of Tullycrine' works very well when played slowly, and is quite easy to learn. If you already didn't, go to Henrik Norbek's page & download his monster collection in abc. It'a an endless resource for ITM players.

 

Again, welcome to the six sided madness...

 

Cheers,

 

Fer

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Hi folks,

 

Great forum you've got here :)

 

I'm an absolute beginner on the concertina. I just got my Rochelle from the Button Box last Friday, and I have been having a lot of fun learning how to play it. I've been working through some of the exercises that are in the tutor, but I really want to jump in and play some Irish tunes (I also play a little bit of fiddle).

 

I ordered the John Williams Irish concertina DVD, and I'm sure that when I get it and watch it that most of my questions about how to play Irish tunes on the concertina will be answered. But since it might be a while before it arrives, I thought I'd give it a try on my own. So I started with the first couple of measures of "Out on the Ocean," playing on the C row, which sounded OK to me. I'm just wondering if that's right. And I was also wondering if most Irish tunes are played on the C row or on the G row. And is there a way to know which row a tune should be played on?

 

I apologize if these are silly questions. Most of the fiddle tunes I know I learned by ear, so I'm kinda clueless when it comes to keys.

 

Any advice you'd be willing to share would be most appreciated.

 

Cheers!

Liz

 

It sounds as though you are going to play by ear. Good for you. Don't get bogged down by tutors and musical theory. Feel your own way, get to know your instrument intimately, have the courage of your own convictions and if eventually the results begin to sound OK to you, they probably are OK. (Irish traditional music is unknown territory to me).

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You'll learn, Liz, that the tunes can move all around the three rows and that you should try playing each tune from varying starting points. "Out on the Ocean" in G can start on the G row, the C row or the third row. It could be played all on the G row, partly on the G row or hardly at all on the G row. The Williams video will clarify some of this but certainly not all of it.

 

I started on Bramich's book, too.

 

Good luck!

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Hi Liz,

 

Welcome to the forums! I am also just learning on a Rochelle anglo! If you know a little bit about reading music, I second the recommendation from Fer to get Mick Brammich's tutor. I got several tutors a couple months ago, and Brammich's tutor is the one that really spelled it out for me how all the different cross-fingering tricks worked. Happy music making!

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Thanks for the replies, everyone. I looked up Mick Bramich, and it appears that he has two books: the Absolute Beginner's Concertina and the Irish Concertina. Which would you recommend?

 

Fergus, thanks for the tune suggestions. I know "Off to California," but I'm not familiar with the others. I'll be sure to give them a listen.

 

Jeff, hope you're enjoying your Rochelle as much as I'm enjoying mine.

 

Cheers!

Liz

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Thanks for the replies, everyone. I looked up Mick Bramich, and it appears that he has two books: the Absolute Beginner's Concertina and the Irish Concertina. Which would you recommend?

 

Fergus, thanks for the tune suggestions. I know "Off to California," but I'm not familiar with the others. I'll be sure to give them a listen.

 

Jeff, hope you're enjoying your Rochelle as much as I'm enjoying mine.

 

Cheers!

Liz

 

The Mick Bramich book I was referring to is "The Irish Concertina." It assumes knowledge of reading music, but little to no experience on the concertina. Lots of great diagrams of cross-fingering in different keys, tricks for playing all on the pull, ornamentation, etc. There's apparently also an audio disc to go with it, though I don't have that. Cheers!

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Thanks for the replies, everyone. I looked up Mick Bramich, and it appears that he has two books: the Absolute Beginner's Concertina and the Irish Concertina. Which would you recommend?

 

Fergus, thanks for the tune suggestions. I know "Off to California," but I'm not familiar with the others. I'll be sure to give them a listen.

 

Jeff, hope you're enjoying your Rochelle as much as I'm enjoying mine.

 

Cheers!

Liz

 

The Mick Bramich book I was referring to is "The Irish Concertina." It assumes knowledge of reading music, but little to no experience on the concertina. Lots of great diagrams of cross-fingering in different keys, tricks for playing all on the pull, ornamentation, etc. There's apparently also an audio disc to go with it, though I don't have that. Cheers!

 

Yes, that's it. That book with the CD + music CD's ( Noel Hill, Michéal Ó Raghallaigh,... )+ Ronie Amazing Slowdowner is a great way to begin with ITM on the 'tina. Also, I would say that if you master several tunes on fiddle, wouldn't have much trouble playing them with the box - not the tricky ones, of course - ;)

 

Cheers,

Fer

 

P.S. If you will slowdown some Cd track with Slowdowner, have into account you would have to fiddle a bit with the pitch, because some players like to play with instruments tuned to Bb/F instead the standard C/G. Otherwise, is quite simple.

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Thanks Fergus... for the advice on Slow Downer! When the going gets fast, and your learning by ear, it can get pretty daunting to move in with your own notes on the tune. Its taken me quite some time to edge away from the written to the hearing - wish I had done it earlier :huh:

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