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Current players of The Maccann ?


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Thanks for the links Daniel,

I am always looking for tracks of Duet playing. I was under the impression, though, that Jean Megly plays Maccann so that is most interesting.

 

Ceemonster,

I've never tried a Crane but I cannot think why it could be viewed as being a slower keyboard than the Maccann. Whilst the speeds reached by Alexander Prince are a testament to the ability of the Maccann keyboard much should also be made of the shear ability of Mr.Prince.

 

Availability is definately in the favour of the Maccann. Although Lachenals did produce plenty of Cranes ( for the Salvation Army especially) a good close look through the Wheastsone Ledgers does not reveal that many.

 

As to the rise in prices of good Maccann's.... are they not still good value ?

Edited by Geoff Wooff
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Thanks for the links Daniel,

I am always looking for tracks of Duet playing. I was under the impression, though, that Jean Megly plays Maccann so that is most interesting.

Definitely Crane.

 

Availability is definately in the favour of the Maccann. Although Lachenals did produce plenty of Cranes ( for the Salvation Army especially) a good close look through the Wheastsone Ledgers does not reveal that many.

I've heard this before, and I don't dispute it - but I didn't have any difficulty finding a Crane when I was shopping for one not so long ago. Mine is a Lachenal, but it's a nice one, and there are a fair number of Crabb Cranes around too as well as the Wheatstones. Another thing to bear in mind is that the most common Maccanns seem to be the 46-keys, which I believe are considered inadequate by most Maccann players. There are (relatively) a lot of 48-key Cranes, and you can do quite a bit with a 48-key Crane.

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I would recommend that anyone wishing to continue the comparison of different duet systems do so in this thread, which has already covered the subject fairly well. Until this recent digression, this thread been an excellent resource specifically with regard to Maccann players. But adding to it an ongoing discussion of the relative merits of systems other than the Maccann will reduce the usefulness to both those interested in the original topic and those looking for comparison information, for which there is already at least one extended thread.

 

Of course, I can't force anyone, and it's not "my" Topic, but I do think the separation makes sense.

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I would recommend that anyone wishing to continue the comparison of different duet systems do so in this thread, which has already covered the subject fairly well. Until this recent digression, this thread been an excellent resource specifically with regard to Maccann players. But adding to it an ongoing discussion of the relative merits of systems other than the Maccann will reduce the usefulness to both those interested in the original topic and those looking for comparison information, for which there is already at least one extended thread.

 

Of course, I can't force anyone, and it's not "my" Topic, but I do think the separation makes sense.

 

 

Well yes, of course, you are quite correct Jim..... " back on track" everyone.

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Thankyou very much for the comments. Yes, perhaps could be better a bigger model, I really noted how many notes had when I began reading a button layout, 46 buttons seems a lot of notes, but really an anglo with 38 or 40 buttons has a lot of notes, perhaps more range than a 46 duet maccann, as some of them are not duplicated.

But the price 570 uk pounds was a nice price for a beginner that doesn't want to spend a lot of money.

I am now looking for a bigger one ;-) .

I noted that the model that I bought is quickly and responsive enough for me (and it would better with a readjustement).

I like a lot instruments with rosewood ends, with a more dearer sound, not as bright, my first real concertina, a lachenal 30 buttons, that sold me the late Paul Davies, rosewood or mahogany, bone buttons, has the sound that I like more, I enjoy a lot playing it, but it hasn't the quickness and loudness that my dipper county clare 32 buttons with metal ends and my suttner 38 buttons with ebony ends have. (in fact, really I love all of them, all the instruments have some thing special and different tastes).

 

 

 

It might be interesting to see my post on the Buy and sell forum (titled wanted to buy 57key MacCann) regarding Wheatstone production figures for MacCanns during the period 1910-1937. With just 653 being made of sizes larger than the 46key and nobody today really producing new ones , as far as I know, what might happen if there is an explosion of interest in the MacCann ?

 

 

So with some having been destroyed over the years, not many made later and only 20 years of production before 1910, with my 3 instruments I might well own 1% of the remaining big Maccans in the world. What an extraordinary thought.

 

I certainly have been working to sort out my instrument holding NOW for the long term because I feel sure the day will come when supply is badly outstripped by demand.

 

And Felix; good choice of instrument. And for the reasons given above I'd get a larger one, perhaps a 58 or 61, at your first opportunity. You will learn to use all the notes I promise, and the bellows size is much better too.

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As I am a absolute beginner of the maccann system, and anglo player, but a diatonic button acordion player, I can say that I can (with little effort and spend of time) play in one month galician tunes in the key of C easily in the right hand, mainly when the notes are followed, i.e. C D E F, it is more difficult for me when the notes jump i.e. C E F , because I have to think in which button is the note.

I mean that the alternating fingering is easy to take and logical for me, but perhaps not because of my anglo concertina playing and because of my diatonic accordion playing, in which is common playing alternating fingers (i.e. index and middle or index and ring and that you usually play only with three fingers, index, middle and ring).

But this type of fingering appears also in the anglo concertina, almost in the lachenal layout, when you play in D minor in the right hand, as you can almost do a scale pulling using the C row and the accidental row (I use it a lot for playing tunes in D minor and chords in the left hand).

 

 

 

thanks for the two cents and other input. i have eliminated crane based on a) a writeup on duet systems noting that maccann was the one designed specifically for speed and fluidity; and Bee) at least one, i believe more than one, comment here and there by duet attempters terming the crane system too slow for them. at this level of investment, the concertina must be capapable of executing very fast and fluidly even if one has no intention of always playing it very fast. cranes may or may not have that capability, but these refs are too many in the absence of contrary evidence, so crane is out.

 

very interesting, the thought about hayden branching more logically from anglo/maccann more logically from ec. i play anglo, as well as cba, which also is a hayden analogue. but i've recently given ec a try and loved that too. took right to the alternating hands thing, at least for single-line melodies (chords might be diff)... but the price consideration is also a big factor, and new haydens are really, really expensive. but i've been getting the impression that good maccanns were getting up there now as well. i've actually been wondering if stagi would give me a handmade-reed upgrade on a hayden like they offer on their 48-button and 56-button EC models. i am interested in duet for other genres in addition to, perhaps much more than, irish, like some of the duet folks here, and the truth is, irish is the only genre i really would find the concertina-reed sound essential for. high-grade, rich-sounding, fast/responsive accordion reeds would be fine for me on a duet....so there's plenty of puzzle pieces to move around the board before a big jump is made....but all you guys-ez maccann talk is tantalizing, and i really like that "Eloise" record....

I agree with Geoff that Maccann is easier for English players and Hayden for Anglo players, but I think that Crane can come plausibly from either one. I'd suggest that you listen to Jean Megly's recordings here or Paul McCann's here before giving up on the possibility of trying the Crane.

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As I am a absolute beginner of the maccann system, and anglo player, but a diatonic button acordion player, I can say that I can (with little effort and spend of time) play in one month galician tunes in the key of C easily in the right hand, mainly when the notes are followed, i.e. C D E F, it is more difficult for me when the notes jump i.e. C E F , because I have to think in which button is the note.

I mean that the alternating fingering is easy to take and logical for me, but perhaps not because of my anglo concertina playing and because of my diatonic accordion playing, in which is common playing alternating fingers (i.e. index and middle or index and ring and that you usually play only with three fingers, index, middle and ring).

But this type of fingering appears also in the anglo concertina, almost in the lachenal layout, when you play in D minor in the right hand, as you can almost do a scale pulling using the C row and the accidental row (I use it a lot for playing tunes in D minor and chords in the left hand).

 

 

Hello Felix,

I am a beginner on the Maccann and ,like you, I am starting with some local tunes (from the region of France )where I live. One tip I suggest is that when you have a melody going ok on the right hand then try playing it also on the left side, one octave lower. This is what I am trying to do, just as a good exercise for the left hand and for getting to know the keyboard.

Maybe others here would comment on this suggestion ?

Geoff.

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Yes, I shall try the fingering that you suggested to me, at the same time in both hands.

As you told me that 46 buttons weren't a lot I finally bought another rosewood concertina with 56 buttons, this time a lachenal, and form a live auction.

It was in "working condition", and it is true, all the buttons work, bellows in well shape, but some reeds don't work, and it is in old pitch.

I put the links to the photographs.

http://www.invaluable.com/auction-lot/a-late-19th-century-lachenal-rosewood-concertina,-1-p-939cc3327b

 

It comes with original wood case (without key and broken ) and another leather case over a bit damaged.

I liked it because it has in the hand belt gold stamped with the letters and the number of the patent of Maccann "Lachenal & Co. Patent nº. 4752 london"

It puts in the oval paper "Converted Suttons Arrangement by R. Edmonds"

The full description was"A late 19th century Lachenal rosewood concertina, in rosewood and leather cases, the instrument with 56 metal buttons, bears label 'Converted Suttons Arrangement by R. Edmonds', the outer leather case 21cm (8.25 in.) high"

 

But this is the surprise.

The layout is different than my wheatstone 46 buttons and yesterday I was trying to decipher it and it is the Chidley system (I only analized the right hand by now).

Does it mean that it was retuned and changed during the XXth century and converted to the Chidley layout (more probably) or could it be previous to the Chidley invention?

Could be reconverted a typical maccann layout to a Chidley layout easily? (I say it because of the reed chambers, etc.)

Anybody knows who was R. Edmonds?

The reference of R.Edmonds is it related to the special layout of the concertina?

It has inside also a list of the tunes that played his previous owner (written with ballpen, what means that it was played until not many years ago).

 

Regards

 

 

 

As I am a absolute beginner of the maccann system, and anglo player, but a diatonic button acordion player, I can say that I can (with little effort and spend of time) play in one month galician tunes in the key of C easily in the right hand, mainly when the notes are followed, i.e. C D E F, it is more difficult for me when the notes jump i.e. C E F , because I have to think in which button is the note.

I mean that the alternating fingering is easy to take and logical for me, but perhaps not because of my anglo concertina playing and because of my diatonic accordion playing, in which is common playing alternating fingers (i.e. index and middle or index and ring and that you usually play only with three fingers, index, middle and ring).

But this type of fingering appears also in the anglo concertina, almost in the lachenal layout, when you play in D minor in the right hand, as you can almost do a scale pulling using the C row and the accidental row (I use it a lot for playing tunes in D minor and chords in the left hand).

 

 

 

thanks for the two cents and other input. i have eliminated crane based on a) a writeup on duet systems noting that maccann was the one designed specifically for speed and fluidity; and Bee) at least one, i believe more than one, comment here and there by duet attempters terming the crane system too slow for them. at this level of investment, the concertina must be capapable of executing very fast and fluidly even if one has no intention of always playing it very fast. cranes may or may not have that capability, but these refs are too many in the absence of contrary evidence, so crane is out.

 

very interesting, the thought about hayden branching more logically from anglo/maccann more logically from ec. i play anglo, as well as cba, which also is a hayden analogue. but i've recently given ec a try and loved that too. took right to the alternating hands thing, at least for single-line melodies (chords might be diff)... but the price consideration is also a big factor, and new haydens are really, really expensive. but i've been getting the impression that good maccanns were getting up there now as well. i've actually been wondering if stagi would give me a handmade-reed upgrade on a hayden like they offer on their 48-button and 56-button EC models. i am interested in duet for other genres in addition to, perhaps much more than, irish, like some of the duet folks here, and the truth is, irish is the only genre i really would find the concertina-reed sound essential for. high-grade, rich-sounding, fast/responsive accordion reeds would be fine for me on a duet....so there's plenty of puzzle pieces to move around the board before a big jump is made....but all you guys-ez maccann talk is tantalizing, and i really like that "Eloise" record....

I agree with Geoff that Maccann is easier for English players and Hayden for Anglo players, but I think that Crane can come plausibly from either one. I'd suggest that you listen to Jean Megly's recordings here or Paul McCann's here before giving up on the possibility of trying the Crane.

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I have just seen that the layout is very similar (I don't have it here) to the patent 4752 that appears in the following link

http://www.concertina.com/maccann-duet/Maccann-Concertina-Patent-No-4752-of-1884.pdf

The Chidley is very close to this one too.

http://www.concertina.com/chidley-duet/Chidley-Duet-Concertina-System.pdf

I shall write down it one I have it with me.

Félix Castro

 

 

 

Yes, I shall try the fingering that you suggested to me, at the same time in both hands.

As you told me that 46 buttons weren't a lot I finally bought another rosewood concertina with 56 buttons, this time a lachenal, and form a live auction.

It was in "working condition", and it is true, all the buttons work, bellows in well shape, but some reeds don't work, and it is in old pitch.

I put the links to the photographs.

http://www.invaluable.com/auction-lot/a-late-19th-century-lachenal-rosewood-concertina,-1-p-939cc3327b

 

It comes with original wood case (without key and broken ) and another leather case over a bit damaged.

I liked it because it has in the hand belt gold stamped with the letters and the number of the patent of Maccann "Lachenal & Co. Patent nº. 4752 london"

It puts in the oval paper "Converted Suttons Arrangement by R. Edmonds"

The full description was"A late 19th century Lachenal rosewood concertina, in rosewood and leather cases, the instrument with 56 metal buttons, bears label 'Converted Suttons Arrangement by R. Edmonds', the outer leather case 21cm (8.25 in.) high"

 

But this is the surprise.

The layout is different than my wheatstone 46 buttons and yesterday I was trying to decipher it and it is the Chidley system (I only analized the right hand by now).

Does it mean that it was retuned and changed during the XXth century and converted to the Chidley layout (more probably) or could it be previous to the Chidley invention?

Could be reconverted a typical maccann layout to a Chidley layout easily? (I say it because of the reed chambers, etc.)

Anybody knows who was R. Edmonds?

The reference of R.Edmonds is it related to the special layout of the concertina?

It has inside also a list of the tunes that played his previous owner (written with ballpen, what means that it was played until not many years ago).

 

Regards

 

 

 

As I am a absolute beginner of the maccann system, and anglo player, but a diatonic button acordion player, I can say that I can (with little effort and spend of time) play in one month galician tunes in the key of C easily in the right hand, mainly when the notes are followed, i.e. C D E F, it is more difficult for me when the notes jump i.e. C E F , because I have to think in which button is the note.

I mean that the alternating fingering is easy to take and logical for me, but perhaps not because of my anglo concertina playing and because of my diatonic accordion playing, in which is common playing alternating fingers (i.e. index and middle or index and ring and that you usually play only with three fingers, index, middle and ring).

But this type of fingering appears also in the anglo concertina, almost in the lachenal layout, when you play in D minor in the right hand, as you can almost do a scale pulling using the C row and the accidental row (I use it a lot for playing tunes in D minor and chords in the left hand).

 

 

 

thanks for the two cents and other input. i have eliminated crane based on a) a writeup on duet systems noting that maccann was the one designed specifically for speed and fluidity; and Bee) at least one, i believe more than one, comment here and there by duet attempters terming the crane system too slow for them. at this level of investment, the concertina must be capapable of executing very fast and fluidly even if one has no intention of always playing it very fast. cranes may or may not have that capability, but these refs are too many in the absence of contrary evidence, so crane is out.

 

very interesting, the thought about hayden branching more logically from anglo/maccann more logically from ec. i play anglo, as well as cba, which also is a hayden analogue. but i've recently given ec a try and loved that too. took right to the alternating hands thing, at least for single-line melodies (chords might be diff)... but the price consideration is also a big factor, and new haydens are really, really expensive. but i've been getting the impression that good maccanns were getting up there now as well. i've actually been wondering if stagi would give me a handmade-reed upgrade on a hayden like they offer on their 48-button and 56-button EC models. i am interested in duet for other genres in addition to, perhaps much more than, irish, like some of the duet folks here, and the truth is, irish is the only genre i really would find the concertina-reed sound essential for. high-grade, rich-sounding, fast/responsive accordion reeds would be fine for me on a duet....so there's plenty of puzzle pieces to move around the board before a big jump is made....but all you guys-ez maccann talk is tantalizing, and i really like that "Eloise" record....

I agree with Geoff that Maccann is easier for English players and Hayden for Anglo players, but I think that Crane can come plausibly from either one. I'd suggest that you listen to Jean Megly's recordings here or Paul McCann's here before giving up on the possibility of trying the Crane.

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Another interesting excercise, is to play ascending and descending scales with both hands simultaneously! In as many keys as possible!! And if you want to break sweat, try doing the same thing chromatically!

Bloody difficult (can't do it myself yet!) But it's damned impressive when one then challenges an Anglo or English player to do the same!

After that, just away smugly with a gentle smirk!

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Another interesting excercise, is to play ascending and descending scales with both hands simultaneously! In as many keys as possible!! And if you want to break sweat, try doing the same thing chromatically!

Bloody difficult (can't do it myself yet!) But it's damned impressive when one then challenges an Anglo or English player to do the same!

After that, just away smugly with a gentle smirk!

Hey! That I am mainly an anglo player! ;-).

I am by now happy if I can play only with one hand!

 

Definitively this lachenal concertina has the Chidley layout, not the 4752 patent, it is the same than in the 42 page of Robert Gaskins method but without the lower row of the right hand and without the upper notes C3 and Bb2 (it is a 56 keys concertina, really a 55 plus air button).

I didn't chek fully by now about the octaves but they seem to be same. And I didn't write down the left hand by now.

It is a curious thing!.

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[Another interesting excercise, is to play ascending and descending scales with both hands simultaneously! In as many keys as possible!! And if you want to break sweat, try doing the same thing chromatically!

Bloody difficult (can't do it myself yet!]

 

yes, bloody indeed....i am just now starting to haltingly try this with CBA. bloodier yet, the palmer-hughes PA instruction books i used for PA and am now referencing for CBA workouts advises to do left-side/right-side scales simultaneously.....in contrary motion. the instructions note that if you can get a handle on this, it will dramatically advance your chops. i never did it in my PA days, but have resolved to get it into my hands with CBA whatever it takes, and must grudgingly admit it would probably be super-salutory for concertina as well. ergonomic castor oil......

 

i have been "playing" irish and paris musette tunes on the hayden diagram and on the maccann diagram. like past commenters, i'm finding the maccann layout a bit harder to get into your head/fingers and wish there was an abundance of chidleys around. in terms of playing ergonomics, i'm finding the two about par for chordal (once you factor out the learning-the-layout part), but think hayden may have something of an edge for flowing melodic lines.....it's all very intriguing....

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I revised the layout of the lachenal concertina, it has the same Chidley layout but with two main differences, because it is a 55 button concertina, I think.

It has the eb buttons one octave higher than in the Robert Gaskins 67 buttons Chidley diagram, page 45. In the place of the eb, it has the eb1, the same position than in the patent design of Maccann 1884 and the typical maccann.

In the eb1 button it has the eb2 and curiousily instead of the eb2 button of the chidley variant it has the c3 button, and it is more useful than a eb note (and it hasn't any button more for placing it).

In the left hand it has the same distribution.

Perhaps I should put this information in the concertina history forum if somebody is interested in it.

Félix Castro

 

Another interesting excercise, is to play ascending and descending scales with both hands simultaneously! In as many keys as possible!! And if you want to break sweat, try doing the same thing chromatically!

Bloody difficult (can't do it myself yet!) But it's damned impressive when one then challenges an Anglo or English player to do the same!

After that, just away smugly with a gentle smirk!

Hey! That I am mainly an anglo player! ;-).

I am by now happy if I can play only with one hand!

 

Definitively this lachenal concertina has the Chidley layout, not the 4752 patent, it is the same than in the 42 page of Robert Gaskins method but without the lower row of the right hand and without the upper notes C3 and Bb2 (it is a 56 keys concertina, really a 55 plus air button).

I didn't chek fully by now about the octaves but they seem to be same. And I didn't write down the left hand by now.

It is a curious thing!.

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Reporting a new addition to the ranks ... Paul Davenport in Sheffield, who has been playing a Maccann for a few months, and has got the bug - has now upgraded from a 46 to a 58 key Wheatstone 6 sider.... Welcome to the ranks of the seriously strange, Paul!! LOL ;)

 

So, having updated my spreadsheet, with another couple of additions from above, it's now showing 79 known players of whatever standard ... wonder how many others there are (and I'm pretty sure that I've met one or two who aren't on there ... shame I have no idea what their names are).

Edited by Irene S
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Reporting a new addition to the ranks ... Paul Davenport in Sheffield, who has been playing a Maccann for a few months, and has got the bug - has now upgraded from a 46 to a 58 key Wheatstone 6 sider.... Welcome to the ranks of the seriously strange, Paul!! LOL ;)

 

So, having updated my spreadsheet, with another couple of additions from above, it's now showing 79 known players of whatever standard ... wonder how many others there are (and I'm pretty sure that I've met one or two who aren't on there ... shame I have no idea what their names are).

 

I'm a bit worried about the 'seriously strange' (how is that different to 'frivolously strange by the way?) But find it astonishing that we're talking less than 100 players in a world population of 7 billion (or thereabouts). I just wondered whether you'd got John Horsey of Sheffield on your list? Happy New Year.

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