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simonlewin

Should I buy an English?

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At the risk of diverting this thread into an entirely different discussion, IMO the function of percussion (in the folk music of the British Isles, at least) is not so much to keep other instruments in time and more to emphasise the rhythm of the music. Good percussion supports the melody, it does not simply beat out the time. Indeed, I know percussionists who say you cannot play percussion unless you know the tune.

 

I have no problem with percussionists in sessions who can do this, but I do disagree that it is a suitable option for people who feel left out at a session, just so they can join in. Percussion instruments have to be learned, just like any other instrument.

 

The problem with percussion is that it is by its nature intrusive. It is very difficult for an aspiring percussionist to sit quietly on the edge of a session and join in without disturbing others, whereas this is possible on most melody instruments, including concertina.

 

Back on topic, I am an anglo player who cannot get to grips at all with the English system. It's not just that I want to pump the bellows, but I struggle with the way the tune switches from hand to hand. However I find push-pull instruments intuitive to play. You won't know which way your own brain works until you try it.

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why are bodhran beaters called brian, because there brain is confused

Great stuff! Some humour is breaking through. I feared to hear the jungle drums and the boiling pot....

 

I also hear some bodhran players have metal inside some of their beaters and I am sure they would be pleased to put the beat into an Anglo player trying to join in with a group of English players and vice versa for that matter.. for a small fee... That said, Anglo and English often find they can accommodate each other - just watch the odd one out, quietly and softly seeking some matching notes and chords! The happy people at the George Inn do it all the time.

 

This is all definitely ON topic --

 

it is about encouraging beginners to get stuck in and feel at home, so keep up the positive comments folks. That way we will see Simon blossom into an angloish player who keeps perfect time (with his tapping foot hitting a double bass pedal on a parcel string soundbox (and banging a basshran=drum!)) while doing Larry Adler riffs on his neck-harmonica as he plays us Banks and Braes. He will also of course, have an underarm bellows pulsing out a deep and entrancing highland drone, accompanied by those humming along in the audience :P

 

Welcome again Simon! And yes, I seem to prefer Scottish to Irish music but the most important thing is a good toon, whatever nationality it is.

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As someone who now plays Anglo and EC, I took to EC straight away after 30 plus years on Anglo.

You do have to treat them as totally different instruments - you can't think of them just as concertinas.

I took up EC as I got fed up of grappling with Bb and A on a C/G - you do have to learn your scales on EC though, you can't just play up and down the rows. Once you have learned your scales, EC makes for much faster fingering.

If you treat them as totally seperate instruments, you should be able to switch from Anglo to EC mid-tune - I have never had problems getting my "bellows-moving head" out of gear, although I am accused of making an EC sound like an Anglo.

 

Naturally, some tunes are easier on one than the other, but I generally stick to Northumbrian and hornpipes on EC, and English and Irish on Anglo.

 

If you want to play Scottish, seek out some recordings of Norman Chalmers or Simon Thoumire (he is awesome) - the Scottish grace notes etc. are a doddle on EC.

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it is about encouraging beginners to get stuck in and feel at home, so keep up the positive comments folks. That way we will see Simon blossom into an angloish player who keeps perfect time (with his tapping foot hitting a double bass pedal on a parcel string soundbox (and banging a basshran=drum!)) while doing Larry Adler riffs on his neck-harmonica as he plays us Banks and Braes. He will also of course, have an underarm bellows pulsing out a deep and entrancing highland drone, accompanied by those humming along in the audience :P

Que?

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que sera sera

Ain't that the truth? The whole thread boiled down to three simple words.

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You also need to go to a session (take a triangle if you want to join in and feel at home....

Triangle:

  • orchestral?

  • Cajun?

  • chuck wagon?

No matter which, I will not second that advice, as I think the triangle is a rare thing... a portable, potentially musical instrument that is both more obtrusive and more difficult to play quietly and/or tastefully than even the bodhran, bones, or spoons.

 

Discretion is the better part of music.

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"Que será, será,", he says.

(translation for those who need it: "What will be, will be.")

Aye, but many things that
will be
depend significantly on what
we
do beforehand.

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Discretion is the better part of music.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Amen!

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the best percussion instrument is the silent clap. :lol:

Best done one-handed.
That way the other hand can be used to hold your drink.
;)

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the best percussion instrument is the silent clap. :lol:

Best done one-handed.
That way the other hand can be used to hold your drink.
;)

 

That's why you sould always play with one of these...

beerhat-772303.jpg

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That's why you sould always play with one of these...

beerhat-772303.jpg

Take it from me - it doesn't work with draught beer. Supporting a 9 gallon firkin on your hat requires hefty reinforcements to your neck!

 

go with the english! it sounds like it would be a perfect fit. good luck!

Good luck indeed, but make sure you try it first before you part with your cash! And, if you can, try an anglo (or two) first. There's nothing like making a decision informed by your own experience.

 

Chris

Edited by Chris Timson

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