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Newly made English's ?


Geoff Wooff
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I am considering the purchase of a 'New English'. Does anybody here have some thoughts about this?

 

There are, I think, not many makers offering EC's but I would like to hear comments from anyone who plays one made during the last few years.

 

I must add that I am not thinking of a 'starter' instrument, more a 'top end' model.

 

Thanks for any ideas,

Geoff.

Edited by Geoff Wooff
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Hi Geoff

 

I have a treble Morse Albion. I'm happy with it and don't find the 37 button range limiting at all. There is an occasional passing thought to replace the air button with an "E" to fill out one more note, but the thought doesn't last. I don't play the music that needs those notes and I only play for my enjoyment. At the time, the Geordie Model was non existent. It has 45 buttons, and like the Albion is available in a tenor and baritone range. I'd be hard pressed today to decide which one, if I had to buy one now.

 

Thanks

Leo

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I am considering the purchase of a 'New English'. Does anybody here have some thoughts about this?

 

There are, I think, not many makers offering EC's but I would like to here comments from anyone who plays one made during the last few years.

 

I must add that I am not thinking of a 'starter' instrument, more a 'top end' model.

 

Thanks for any ideas,

Geoff.

 

Hi Geoff,

I persuaded Andy Norman to make his first Ashdown EC (a tenor) a few years ago and I believe it's subsequently become quite a successful line. It's 45 key, but Andrew was able to keep the weight well down (it's about the same as my 48 key Lachenal) and the action, tone, dynamics and response are all good. If you use a lot of low notes and/or chords on this one you have to keep the bellows moving a little more than usual.

I've also had a few minutes playing a Marcus baritone and thought it was rather good. Whether or not I'd buy a treble at this sort of price (around £1750), given the vintage machines that are available, I'm not sure.

I'm currently contemplating parting with mine, but only because I don't get to play it enough. (It's good for song accompaniment but I can't do two things at once!) If you find yourself anywhere near Gloucestershire before you've made up your mind and while it's still around feel free to get in touch and have a look at it to get an idea of what it's like.

Best wishes,

Mike Davis.

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I'm coveting a Morse baritone for the near future (e.g. when we've finished spending on rebuilding the house), and take every opportunity to play them and the other 'new-build' ECs I come across.

 

Although I quite like the Marcus trebles, I've not played anything that felt and sounded nicer than the Morse boxes. I've not had a chance to play a Geordie ...

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Hi

how about Wim Waker's?

chris

 

 

Well, yes indeed. I would like to hear from an owner of one of Wim Wakker's EC's and owners of any of the current maker's instruments.

Of course it would be great to be able to try any,or all, before making a commitment but that is probably not possible, therefore a discussion here is the next best thing, I hope.

Geoff.

Edited by Geoff Wooff
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I remember talking to the late Rich Morse about the EC market. He was surprised that there was demand for new instruments, given that the supply of old ones was much better than for anglos. But at the time we spoke, he said that EC accounted for about as many sales at his shop as the Ceili anglo concertinas. Who knows, maybe duets are next!

 

This conversation is one anglo players started having a decade ago - "Where can I try these models?" No easy answer, but you'll admit it is a nice problem to have so many choices now. (I was fascinated enough to assemble a rudimentary EC Buyer's Guide on the static side of C.net, which is in serious need of revision.)

 

I can only play a couple of tunes on EC, but another model I tried ages ago was a Holmwood; it was clearly a top-notch instrument.

 

Ken

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This conversation is one anglo players started having a decade ago - "Where can I try these models?" No easy answer, but you'll admit it is a nice problem to have so many choices now.

 

 

Ken

 

 

Exactly the point Ken, the choice looks good, much larger than when I and many others here started to play. I do have a couple of very nice EC's of the vintage variety but they are OLD ( 113 years old for the oldest) and I do use them a lot and sometimes in trying situations.

 

I was listening to the old recordings on English International and thought that these wonderfull players were using instruments of current ( to them) manufacture. The quality of these old players and their instruments made me think that maybe I should be looking at the 'New' market.

 

 

I have not seen any of the modern maker's EC work... well save for one or two of Steve Dickenson's, but that was back in the 1970's, hence ,from my point of view,it is high time for this topic.

Edited by Geoff Wooff
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Hi

how about Wim Waker's?

chris

 

Wim's instruments are fantastic. I just received a beautiful baritone English concertina from him. I requested and got a beautiful mellow sound. I had to open it to adjust a rattling reed (humidity change) and spent a fun time admiring the construction. I think you should try them if you get a chance.

 

ocd

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RE: how about Wim Waker's?

 

In a word ... Sublime!

 

I have two Wakker concertinas - one English and one duet.

Both are truly extraordinary.

In my opinion, Wim and his work do not receive the recognition and "hype" that others receive, and thus both he and his instruments are comparatively under appreciated.

 

Dan

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If at all possible, I would highly recommend attending every concertina gathering you can find, be it the Northeast Squeeze-in, Concertinas at Witney, Bradfield, Old Palestine, etc. There's bound to be lots of players and lots of instruments at hand for trial and comparison. At last years Old Palestine Concertina Weekend we had instruments from just about every maker there is, old and new, and what a wonderful opportunity it was to hear and play all the different boxes, plus hear comments and recommendations from the owners.

 

Gary

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Then there's always that obscure Scottish concertina maker, Hamish Bayne, Geoff. His concertinas are works of art to look at. No point in asking Colin Dipper to make one for you, unless you want to wait for 5 years or more. And, finally, there is your namesake, Geoff Crabb, who I believe sometimes makes a concertina to order. See this link here , for more information concerning English concertina makers, though it's a bit out of date.

 

Chris

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Then there's always that obscure Scottish concertina maker, Hamish Bayne, Geoff. His concertinas are works of art to look at. No point in asking Colin Dipper to make one for you, unless you want to wait for 5 years or more. And, finally, there is your namesake, Geoff Crabb, who I believe sometimes makes a concertina to order. See this link here , for more information concerning English concertina makers, though it's a bit out of date.

 

Chris

 

 

Hamish Bayne has been mentioned to me in a PM by someone who has one of the man's instruments. Am I more likely to see one of these closer to home (Western Europe) than a Wakker ?

 

Has anyone seen a Dipper English ? I vaguely recall 5 and 7 sided models from the early '80's but maybe I am dreaming. Long waiting lists (?) ,Oh I am well used to those. Currently I am making Uilleann pipes for people who ordered them more than ten years ago.

 

I don't know quite what I am looking for in a new Concertina yet, just trying to get other people's views and experiences.

Edited by Geoff Wooff
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If at all possible, I would highly recommend attending every concertina gathering you can find, be it the Northeast Squeeze-in, Concertinas at Witney, Bradfield, Old Palestine, etc. There's bound to be lots of players and lots of instruments at hand for trial and comparison. At last years Old Palestine Concertina Weekend we had instruments from just about every maker there is, old and new, and what a wonderful opportunity it was to hear and play all the different boxes, plus hear comments and recommendations from the owners.

 

Gary

 

 

Yes that is a good point, I must try to get to a Concertina event.

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I am considering the purchase of a 'New English'. Does anybody here have some thoughts about this?

 

I had a similar thought 3 or 4 years ago .. I've only had 2nd hand reports and none from players I know well.

 

Wim had just moved or was moving out to the states. I couldn't find a way to try an instrument before ordering. The import duty ultimately made the instrument unaffordable and I stopped pursuing that option (Sorry Wim).

I spoke to Colin Dipper - he was not very keen as he had masses of work and was concentrating on making Anglos. He also held the opinion that the supply of older quality EC was strong enough to mean the new cost differential would be very high. I got the impression he hadn't produced a new EC for some time.

I'd played a Suttner years ago and heard a Norman (or was it the other way round?) but didn't feel they offered much over an good well restored historical instrument for the cost. Not a heard a recent Steve Dickinson (Wheatstone) instrument.

 

And I'm still waiting for the right instrument to come along...

 

cheers

 

Rob

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Hi

how about Wim Waker's?

chris

 

Wim's instruments are fantastic. I just received a beautiful baritone English concertina from him. I requested and got a beautiful mellow sound. I had to open it to adjust a rattling reed (humidity change) and spent a fun time admiring the construction. I think you should try them if you get a chance.

 

ocd

 

 

As you have just recieved your Wim Wakker, can I ask how long you had to wait for it ?

Geoff

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I am considering the purchase of a 'New English'. Does anybody here have some thoughts about this?

 

I had a similar thought 3 or 4 years ago .. I've only had 2nd hand reports and none from players I know well.

 

Wim had just moved or was moving out to the states. I couldn't find a way to try an instrument before ordering. The import duty ultimately made the instrument unaffordable and I stopped pursuing that option (Sorry Wim).

I spoke to Colin Dipper - he was not very keen as he had masses of work and was concentrating on making Anglos. He also held the opinion that the supply of older quality EC was strong enough to mean the new cost differential would be very high. I got the impression he hadn't produced a new EC for some time.

I'd played a Suttner years ago and heard a Norman (or was it the other way round?) but didn't feel they offered much over an good well restored historical instrument for the cost. Not a heard a recent Steve Dickinson (Wheatstone) instrument.

 

And I'm still waiting for the right instrument to come along...

 

cheers

 

Rob

 

 

I also have played one of Jurgen Suttner's Englishes, more than twenty years ago now, I think that is what he started making first.It was ok, a copy of a Lachenal 48.

 

The main reason, for me, to buy 'new' would be the options to have the range and tone and maybe some other features like internal microphones.

 

When I lived in County Clare I often made little repairs for the local Anglo players. When a parent and child came to me and I could see that the 7/8 year old was going to be a fine player, I would strongly suggest that the parent put in an order for a new instrument because the old Lachenal might not be

able to support the type of playing pressure it would be put under in the years to come. So I am having the same thought for myself.

 

The point about import duty is a good one, sometimes this can be got around by flying out and collecting 'in-person' , and having a nice holiday into the bargan.

 

Geoff.

Edited by Geoff Wooff
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