Jump to content

winter wonderland


Recommended Posts

My first amateur video on You Tube

.

 

I thought I'd spring this one up before spring! I've added a description too. I've also discussed such songs on the General Discussion Page.

 

I concede the glissandos need practising - these were the last priority - however, as they are doable - through time and familiarisation - the piece will eventually be able to be played with greater character, swing, parody and of course much smoother, etc..., like second nature - Can't wait!

 

I read somewhere that this number almost never seen the light of day after it was composed in around the early 1930s until a change of heart - in fact Bernard may have even uncrumpled it from his bin (?)

Edited by kevin toner
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Rod, other than the slight modification below, the spec is on the video info - click on more info to see this.

 

...My range preference remains:

 

1) tenor-treble EC (have); then

2) baritone-treble EC (don't have) [ps: plus perhaps Duet (don't have)]; then

3) bass EC (don't have); then

4) extended treble EC (have)

 

Some of the notes I have to play are outside the bass range of the instrument. I then have to decide on what notes/bars or section of bars that I can raise an octave where necessary in order to retain the character of the piece. Some of these are deep double octave notes jumping down to the Bass EC range, which I'm happy to lose without detriment to the piece. This can all be pulled off by using either a TT or BT depending on the written piece. I'm lucky to have the extra low Bflat (Bf32) instead of the duplicate D#3, which helps minimise the need for the BT - meaning I can get on with a quite a lot until the latter can be acquired. I'll definitely be able to complete or extend upon my planned repertoire if so...

 

Thanks guys for these comments/questions. I've tracked back to an extract from an earlier comment as quoted above. This explains my luck of having a low Bflat in place of a low D# duplicate - therefore not feeling as much need for a baritone-treble just yet i.e. until I complete the some batches on my target repertoire using the [slightly modified] tenor-treble that I've inherited.

 

"...plus perhaps duet...", thanks Jim for your opinion on this. Bass/treble clef piano notation can be mixed using the EC layout, but I believe you can only site read one cleff at a time - I don't know if the duet layout is easier than EC, more like piano, in terms of being able to sight read both clefs at once!

 

In order to mix both clefs on EC, you have to laboriously construct the best fall-into-place fingering possible on a note-to-note/bar-to-bar/verse-to-refrain basis..., etc. then memorise/revisit until familiar. As said previously, I've inherited the added difficulty of de-memorising the treble-clef playing on my target repertoire. So hopefully that'll be some encouragement. This "Winter Wonderland" video is an example of starting afresh with that handicap - had I started without a knowledge of the treble clef on this song the video you see now would have been before you probably in mid January. Looking forward to now getting on with these. Through time I believe I may acclimatise to reading both clefs with greater ease - I can feel improvement already since adopting treble/bass reading since mid 2011.

 

ps: I've upgraded the link to a less blurry file. The former file had 49 hits - hoping to get more with the better file!

pps: regarding reading bass/treble together on EC - It was perhaps knowing how my granddad played/spoke that made me believe that this was possible. I've recently heard a fascinating interview/session with my granddad on such issues courtesy of Stuart Eydmann's PhD material, which I now have a copy of. Extracts of the interview are written in "The Life and Times of the Concertina" by Stuart, downloadable from this site on Concertina.net. I'm hoping Stuart can host the interview/session at some point on his raretunes or Scotchmusic.com URLs - fingers crossed, albeit it's almost an hour long despite being worth it. You will find out more on the specification and the remarkable history of this particular EC TT instrument. The copyright is Stuart's and family of the interviewee so I will have to consult him (and family) before any uploading can be done...

 

ppps: I'm going to have to reupload the older blurrier one as the unblurry one is not sound-to-vision coordinated. As mentioned I'll produce an actual mp3 later for sound quality, but for now I'm afraid we'll have to settle with the preferred lower res flv files. Here's the

again, sorry! Edited by kevin toner
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks Kevin,

that was really interesting to see what you are up to!

I am also trying to do this sort of playing on the EC and it is inspiring to here the efforts that you are going to.

 

Oh, and the result was very pleasant listening as well.

 

Looking forward to hearing more,

Geoff.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks Kevin,

that was really interesting to see what you are up to!

I am also trying to do this sort of playing on the EC and it is inspiring to here the efforts that you are going to.

 

Oh, and the result was very pleasant listening as well.

 

Looking forward to hearing more,

Geoff.

 

Thanks Geoff, glad to hear you're interested and that I'm not alone. Although, I already had the impression that you (and others) were inclined towards exploring this side of the EC, thanks again. [ps: also looking forward to comparing renditions (of this song and others) no doubt at some point in the future]

Edited by kevin toner
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've still got till midnight on the eve of March 21st to correct a couple of things on this song!

 

Both of the glissando bars are really troubling at the moment - as to be expected when left to the last.

 

Two things that are preventing me from keeping to the rhythm {during these) are:

 

1. I need to tighten up on the arpeggiated chords at the end [which is at the end of the bridge] so that they can be differentiated from the adjoining glissandos without being lost; &

2. The downward glissando ending in a chord (near the start of the bridge) will need to be re-fingered with the pinky otherwise I will get a bruised index. I had this same configuration on the other hand with a different song and I changed my tact after getting the bruise - it worked and made my playing smoother with less effort required. It should have occurred to me earlier that I'd encounter the same trouble on the other hand at some point. Don't persevere when you get too much pain - simply reconfigure fingering!

 

[i've been here before though - a little patience/review sorts things. I've no regrets about being premature with the recording - as a before-&-after will be a worthwhile demo., whereby later the glissandos will fit within the constancy of the tempo - there are no ritardandos or the likes in "Winter Wonderland", so I can't lax here-and-there making up my own ones - not for me!]

 

I think I can pull this one off within the Moderato tempo. Watch this space! After that I can familiarise and get on with the character build up and feel...

 

[the current upload is embarrisingly clumsy - I know I can do better and this will be uploaded soon!]

Edited by kevin toner
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well Kevin,

for you to say "it's embarrisingly clumsy" is ok... I would suggest it is a great start and I fully appreiciate just how much work has already gone into getting this far.

 

For my part I am taking two approaches to this sort of playing; the first is, perhaps similar to your method, where I take a normal keyboard score and try to extract as much as I can starting with the treble clef and including some notes from the bass clef . Then a revisit to the score, after a digestion period, to see if I can extract any more from the bass clef.With the Baritone/treble my fingerings will be a little different, having the low Bb on the left etc.

 

The other method is to take a known melody and see what sort of arraingement I can come up with; I'm doing this mostly with Traditional (folk) tunes and have dubbed it "Trad Stride EC".. it is not really much different than following a piano score except that I'm making it up as I go along. The slightly debilitating problem with the French Traditional dance music that I get to play quite a lot, in our local band, is that most of it is in C which is a constrictive key on the English for a four finger configuration. The more complicated Hornpipes from Scotland and Northumberland are provding a better starting point for "Striding" across the keyboard.

 

Your video is almost clear enough to see what both hands are doing at the same time ... though it is never possible to see what is happening inside your hands, so to speak, and this will allways be a problem with videos of the English. The camera angle is perhaps as good as can be and it adds well to the overall effect.

Edited by Geoff Wooff
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well Kevin,

for you to say "it's embarrisingly clumsy" is ok... I would suggest it is a great start and I fully appreiciate just how much work has already gone into getting this far.

 

For my part I am taking two approaches to this sort of playing; the first is, perhaps similar to your method, where I take a normal keyboard score and try to extract as much as I can starting with the treble clef and including some notes from the bass clef . Then a revisit to the score, after a digestion period, to see if I can extract any more from the bass clef.With the Baritone/treble my fingerings will be a little different, having the low Bb on the left etc.

 

The other method is to take a known melody and see what sort of arraingement I can come up with; I'm doing this mostly with Traditional (folk) tunes and have dubbed it "Trad Stride EC".. it is not really much different than following a piano score except that I'm making it up as I go along. The slightly debilitating problem with the French Traditional dance music that I get to play quite a lot, in our local band, is that most of it is in C which is a constrictive key on the English for a four finger configuration. The more complicated Hornpipes from Scotland and Northumberland are provding a better starting point for "Striding" across the keyboard.

 

Your video is almost clear enough to see what both hands are doing at the same time ... though it is never possible to see what is happening inside your hands, so to speak, and this will allways be a problem with videos of the English. The camera angle is perhaps as good as can be and it adds well to the overall effect.

 

Thanks Geoff, very kind too

 

I understand your points, and I think I understand your last point too regarding seeing what the hands are doing - with EC there appears to be certainly a lot of times when fingers hide behind other fingers. I don't know if you are implying this and that Duet playing doesn't engender equivalent hiding of the fingering. Certainly Anglo fingering looks like it all might be visible. Is this what you meant on your last point?

 

Your point on constrictiveness is spot on - this corroborates my troubles into the bridge of WW at the downward glissando, whereby the key changes from E flat to G [i'd wrongly guessed to F, meaning one more note in my glissando has to become naturalised, which won't be a problem - thanks for your post as the error might not have passed my mind later when I come to re-finger this particular glissando] and therefore puts yet another note into a constrictive middle row position. Some Hugh S Roberton pieces posed these problems for me earlier on the other hand - the way round it is to engage the pinkie where necessary. This helps to put less stress on the main fingers. If I had my Granddad's hands it might not have been an issue though (?) With regard to composing your own bass notes, I'm sure you're not alone; it's something I might acquire later the more accustomed I become to bass notation. You might hear some of my Granddad's work later (with harmonica and banjo trio accompaniment), whereby he's obviously thinking in bass terms alone. He was a great advocate for Bass playing on the Tenor Treble, albeit he was trained to read treble clef by the teacher.

 

Your 1st point regarding a piecemeal approach is not exactly what I'd advocate due to my experience with trying to re-finger and de-memorise the previous fingering. It is definitely more conducive for me to take the bull by the horns straight away - I dispense with the almost irrelevant lowest note of any bass double-octaves. If any runs are beyond my range and that of the Baritone, I make a conscious effort to raise them an octave i.e. if they don't conflict with the treble clef. This works I think! I’d like opinions though once examples have been uploaded.

 

I was going to wait to tell the forum of an incidence [on “Memories of You”] where I had to make a choice between pursuing a publisher's (Lawrence Wright Music’s?) accidental or lucky mishap (?) or go with the norm of most other interpreted reprints of the song... This lucky mishap happens to be a significant blemish (i.e. on all of the 30s Decades Series that I’ve seen), which I’ve scanned as per the link at the bottom. Luckily for me that series never cleaned up the blemish on any of its reprints. This blemish is of a note that appears at once to be either a C or a B flat. If it is construed as a plain B flat (naturally suiting the key of E flat) as per all other redrafts by other compilers (as I’ve seen from the local library) then slurring off treble B flat [i.e. at “Hea-ven” or “Time Heals” within the double refrain part of the song] would entail joining the high un-slurred (bass clef) B flat, which is the same B flat as precedes on the treble clef – meaning it has to be sustained for a further minim and therefore meaning loss of the rhythmic flow of the bass line, especially for reed instruments/organs. Had the treble clef not been so slurred it might have made a difference, i.e. to EC TT and organs but not the piano per se as the bass clef B flat minim is accented, hence a piano would be able to restore the bass flow much easier than a reed instrument. Therefore a reed instrument would be best to construe the blemish as the C and not a B flat. Furthermore on the 2nd previous bar i.e. the very first note of the double refrain at [“why” or Tho’”], and contrarily to most other edits of the sheet music, it would appear to make more mathematical sense to go with the C as opposed to the B flat anyway! So a reed player would have 2 reasons for going with C not B flat. My theory is that it was indecision either from the writer or the publisher.

 

I’m therefore over the moon with the blemish as I might not have been musical enough to decipher what would've been best for the song on my own account, especially at my early [stabiliser] stage of reading both clefs.

 

On the contrary, I did seem to decipher the following error as mentioned on an earlier post, where McHugh appears to have conceitedly erred on “On the Sunny Side of the Street” , [a similarly LTM published song albeit undoubtedly legendarily drafted by McHugh himself as opposed to the publisher] at “crossed” (i.e. at the bridge on the middle part of the chorus) whereby an A should be substituted with a B. Every print I’ve ever seen of the sheet music has the awkward B instead of the A!

 

I therefore appreciate your “trad-stride” approach given that sheet music is not always the best interpretation. Going on my learning to date, I’d presume that publishers’ piano sheet music appears to have been geared for simply piano. The above blemish appears to have been purely accidental to the reed player’s advantage, but I’m not so sure. Make up your own mind. I’ve scanned it on this link here.

Edited by kevin toner
Link to comment
Share on other sites

...On the contrary, I did seem to decipher the following error as mentioned on an earlier post, where McHugh appears to have conceitedly erred on “On the Sunny Side of the Street” , [a similarly LTM published song albeit undoubtedly legendarily drafted by McHugh himself as opposed to the publisher] at “crossed” (i.e. at the bridge on the middle part of the chorus) whereby an A should be substituted with a B. Every print I’ve ever seen of the sheet music has the awkward B instead of the A!...

 

I've since and soon discovered that when playing the bass clef double octave C#, the treble A sounds rather nice and okay, albeit replacing the treble A with a B, again, mitigates the clash when playing merely the treble clef. The treble B appears to work in both configurations, whereas the A will only work if you add the Bass C#.

 

I mentioned previously on the other aforementioned post that this was the only instance of such a clash in all of my experience of chording as read from the treble clef, so therefore I think I still have a pretty pertinent point in respect of the A to B message. Can't wait to play the bass clef in context later in another batch of practising, I might find I prefer the A at the end of the day - time will tell! The image of the chord is here on my photo album of notation curiosities.

Edited by kevin toner
Link to comment
Share on other sites

For those that might be inspired by such – and before I crack on with the numbers and the stories/curiosities behind them – there’s yet more inspiration that I can offer especially to those giving such piano scores second-thoughts. I should get this off my chest anyway!

 

Believe me, if I can do it, anyone can!

 

The one thing you don’t do (like me) is reside in the downtown. I can give you literally 101 ways how this hinders, but I won’t bore. I’ve already mentioned a couple of sound hindrances, which I don’t think were attributable to wax in my ear. A couple of ongoing official ones are still to be resolved - what's new I ask!

 

Imagine when all hell breaks loose in the natural kingdom during Macbeth. That’s what you’ve got if you try to learn/practise in the downtown. Mix that with the occasional eerie silences and you’ve got downtown on a platter, compare John Cusack’s experiences of “Room 1408”.

 

I’ll bore you with one curious incidental of the mechanised world that gives the natural world a run for its money. Unusually, since becoming redundant from permanent-style architectural employment over the downturn/recession, as you’d expect since late 2008, there’s been conversely and fascinatingly a localised construction boom on my side of the block and large swaths all around within a stone throw of this, yet there’s nothing else outwith 1.5 blocks or more across the rest of the downtown for at least a mile, as you’d not expect.

 

I’m talking since 2008/09 right around me there’s now been three post-war office blocks either razed for redevelopment or given substantial surgery. Nestled amongst these there have been A - sudden decisions to actually build on derelict or vacant plots after neglect during the boom years; and B - forced redevelopment upon some of the successfully occupied historic buildings that were hitherto thriving with various kinds of hospitality land uses during the recession. In fact the latter was one of the very few CPOs undertaken nationally. The demolition and construction sectors have never had it so good in this neck of the woods since the early-mid 1960s!

 

Yet something even stranger is happening between [silent] periods of construction from within 2 blocks' distance around me. Since 2009 some owners have been stubbornly happy to let their piercing alarms sound off over unbearably long periods during these inactive phases - fingers crossed that’s been a thing of the past, but somehow I doubt it... I (and the council should) have a record of these absurdities.

 

I won’t bore you stiff with my traffic noise problems, but must share a couple of conventions, which funnily sometimes annoys yet other times doesn’t. 1) I’ll never have to walk to any downtown taxi rank as there's a favoured hackney route passes 0.5 blocks away – recently, when I was going to a cousin’s birthday party, I simply went to that street; shut my eyes; put my hand out; and along came a taxi. [if I try to practice after 9pm, it becomes a battle with Revs – when I look to see where the constant revs are coming from I see a never-ending convoy of Hackneys, chronically relieved by an occasional but controlled red light]. So yes, I rarely play when it’s more often quite at night as a taxi convoy will be sure to ensue [i.e. be noticed]. One more thing on Revs Vs peace and tranquillity: boy-racers naturally use the downtown to show off, which I don’t mind. However, what is more annoying is when you see a little car with 6” exhausts lurking about and invariably mixing revs with muffled/bassy noises from inside the car. One of the most hilarious moments recently was when I looked one Saturday? morning to try and find/source a rather disturbing revs noise [after bearing it for around 20mins] only to see a traffic warden heckling a young driver in a Fiat Uno [or perhaps smaller FIAT]. As he drove off I then got a glimpse of the exhaust/s – 12” at least!! Ha ha ha; why not just buy a Ferrari for goodness sake?

 

So if I’ve been slow in learning during this period of available time on my hands, you’ll know why: A - being thrown off track; and to boot B - having to de-memorise all my treble-clef-alone endeavours, i.e. about 5 years worth up to mid 2011.

 

Again, if I can do it, i.e. overcome difficulty, then anyone can! On with the show as they say! If I weren’t focussing on such 1930s standards etc. then I might have had an easier time.

 

Remember, this lineage of music was broken or practically put to bed abruptly eight decades ago without recall. I say let’s have a product recall, a “total recall” or we’ll have to wait on Scotty beaming us down to it centuries later!

 

ps some risque, but apologies for the diversion off track:-

 

i.e. don't ask me to complain about the regular sirens too! I might need them myself some day, and I'm not talking about the ones that come with surplus straight-jackets, or am I...? I might also not have grown out liking like the sound of these distractions just yet - too many Starsky & Hutch's to blame I'm afraid.

Edited by kevin toner
Link to comment
Share on other sites

...On the contrary, I did seem to decipher the following error as mentioned on an earlier post, where McHugh appears to have conceitedly erred on “On the Sunny Side of the Street” , [a similarly LTM published song albeit undoubtedly legendarily drafted by McHugh himself as opposed to the publisher] at “crossed” (i.e. at the bridge on the middle part of the chorus) whereby an A should be substituted with a B. Every print I’ve ever seen of the sheet music has the awkward B instead of the A!...

 

I've since and soon discovered that when playing the bass clef double octave C#, the treble A sounds rather nice and okay, albeit replacing the treble A with a B, again, mitigates the clash when playing merely the treble clef. The treble B appears to work in both configurations, whereas the A will only work if you add the Bass C#.

 

I mentioned previously on the other aforementioned post that this was the only instance of such a clash in all of my experience of chording as read from the treble clef, so therefore I think I still have a pretty pertinent point in respect of the A to B message. Can't wait to play the bass clef in context later in another batch of practising, I might find I prefer the A at the end of the day - time will tell! The image of the chord is here on my photo album of notation curiosities.

 

I've just had another look at this chord notation [from "On the Sunny Side of the Street"] and I'm afraid I'm going to have to wait for a baritone-treble for this particular song - so it'll be a while before I'll be recalling this one. Look at the dips or swooping down on the bass clef after "rover" & "over", which swoops down to G(2) i.e. the very lowest note on a BT EC Wheatstone Aeola! I won't be wasting any energy on the TT for this song - no way. Here's the link again if you'd missed it earlier: link

Edited by kevin toner
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sparky-ling white! Much enjoyed.... now how much of it will work on a 20 button........... :rolleyes:

 

Actually, the voice stave will be doable I'd think - and worthwhile. The voice stave treble notes here are all within one octave from Eflat(3) to Eflat(4). [ps there's a half note drop to D(3) natural at the bridge key change - so it's marginally beyond the one octave!] It would be good to add the voice stave on top of my finished copy - on its way shortly - or on top of what I've done so far.

 

I'm tearing away at the problem glissandos - almost there! I'm also playing this number smoother now especially the more I focus on the remaining problems.

 

Thanks Kautilya. [ps thanks also to Geoff Crabb for his kind comment on the Buy & Sell Forum today]

Edited by kevin toner
Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

 

 

 

I understand your points, and I think I understand your last point too regarding seeing what the hands are doing - with EC there appears to be certainly a lot of times when fingers hide behind other fingers. I don't know if you are implying this and that Duet playing doesn't engender equivalent hiding of the fingering. Certainly Anglo fingering looks like it all might be visible. Is this what you meant on your last point?( quote Kevin)

 

 

Yes Kevin this is exactly what I mean.. that certain fingers are hidden underneath the others... still it looks good and is as clear as possible with the one camera set up.

 

 

 

Your 1st point regarding a piecemeal approach is not exactly what I'd advocate due to my experience with trying to re-finger and de-memorise the previous fingering. It is definitely more conducive for me to take the bull by the horns straight away - I dispense with the almost irrelevant lowest note of any bass double-octaves. If any runs are beyond my range and that of the Baritone, I make a conscious effort to raise them an octave i.e. if they don't conflict with the treble clef. This works I think! Id like opinions though once examples have been uploaded.(quote Kevin)

 

 

Hmmm ,yes Kevin perhaps you are correct, I do find that I have to re-think fingerings if I do not take the all encompasing approach in the first instance.

 

I also agree that at times the sheet music arrangements have "mistakes" or chords that sound horrible on a concertina and need to be modified for sound and playability. However, my "self arrangement" system only works easily for me when a piece is in a key that I am familiar with.

 

Geoff.

Edited by Geoff Wooff
Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

...

 

I also agree that at times the sheet music arrangements have "mistakes" or chords that sound horrible on a concertina and need to be modified for sound and playability. However, my "self arrangement" system only works easily for me when a piece is in a key that I am familiar with.

 

Geoff.

 

Thanks Geoff for your answers and further comments. I myself are familiar with all of the stipulated keys in my repertoire, which is basically any key signature up to and including 4 flats and sharps. I will find it interesting to approach something with 5 - or greater - flats or sharps outside my current repetoire. In fact, looking very much forward to a number of such scores.

 

ps I said earlier that I'd have to naturalise a Bflat at the bridge glissandos. I forgot to mention that I'd also have to sharpen the F natural on these glissandos too - it completely escaped my mind as my interpretation brain wasn't working. Your earlier post definitely coincided with me getting my interpretation thinking cap on - the score doesn't spell out the key change to G at the bridge so you have to bear it in mind when you're interpreting glissandos, thanks again

 

pps I'm still working on the two key changed glissandos at the bridge, i.e. with a now slightly greater re-memorization involved as above. These are around one octave each, as I've had to raise the bass clef an octave here, so they'll not be too much of a problem through time. However, at the very last glissando of the first-played refrain, which is open ended, I've decided to interpret this going down 2 octaves i.e. from Aflat(3) down to my baritone Bflat. You'll hear on the earlier recording that I'd cut this one way too short. If I manage to pull this latter 2-octave range gliss off within the moderato tempo then I'll have succeeded in my objectives for the piece.

 

ppps RE self-arrangement - On chords, I occasionally raise a note that's fallen outside my range into the body of the chord. This doesn't stray much at all and sounds as intended/written - basically the lowest note of a chord sometimes has to become the 2nd or 3rd lowest note in the chord; and that's how I get away with using the Tenor-Treble for such scores. WW doesn't have an example of this as all chorded notes are reachable. However, I'm finding this is very necessary for several piano scores. I'll point these out when I get round to recording any of them later. An example where I may actually need to augment a piano score shortly is twice (at two bars) at the lyric "boys" (ie at the last line of the repeatable chorus to "Mingulay Boat Song" whereby Roberton has ghosted/sub-divided the treble chording (at these particular bars) making them sound perhaps too bare on concertina - if my instrument was in better condition I might think otherwise...

Edited by kevin toner
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...