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Tutorial Book For 30 Button English Concertina ?


Bald Reynard
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Can anyone recommend ANY Tutorial books which cover the 30 button English. The only one I can find, is the 'Jackie & Jack' Tutor, which normally comes only with purchase of their Concertinas. As far as I can ascertain from Bookseller Product Descriptions, all the established English Tutors (Butler, Wade, Watson etc) only deal with the 48 button and don't even have the key diagrams for the 30, let alone any practices or tunes. I think Alistair Anderson's CD Tutorial is also the same. There was a Tutor by an American listed, Richard Carlin, but I can find no description of what that covers.

Edited by Bald Reynard
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The Jack and Jackie 30 button layouts are strict subsets of the 48 button layout: missing the higher notes and some enharmonics.

 

IIRC, you can use much of the material in the standard tutors with the 30 button boxes - at least the earlier chapters - with a minimal amount of fudging for missing enharmonics.

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Can anyone recommend ANY Tutorial books which cover the 30 button English. The only one I can find, is the 'Jackie & Jack' Tutor, which normally comes only with purchase of their Concertinas.

This sounds as if you have a 30-button English that's not a Jackie or Jack. I know that's possible, though I haven't seen any for decades. If you do, I'd be curious about the details.

 

The Jack and Jackie 30 button layouts are strict subsets of the 48 button layout: missing the higher notes and some enharmonics.

 

IIRC, you can use much of the material in the standard tutors with the 30 button boxes - at least the earlier chapters - with a minimal amount of fudging for missing enharmonics.

Absolutely so. The arrangement of the notes on a 30-button is exactly the same as a 48-button, except that some buttons are "missing". As with introductory tutors for most instruments, the early lessons don't go beyond a simple few notes, anyway, and there will be few lessons -- if any -- in the books already mentioned that expect one to use buttons not available on the Jackie/Jack. In other words, I think it's reasonable to say that all those tutors "cover" the 30-button instruments, but they're just not deliberately "restricted to" the 30-button layout.

 

Bald Reynard, I think you should start by downloading the tutors available on the internet and start working with them. If there's a lesson that requests a button you don't have, just skip over it. (If the "missing" button is an enharmonic -- e.g., D# vs. Eb, -- you might return to that piece later, after you've learned enough to create your own alternate fingering.) You'll have enough to keep you busy and learning for quite a while on a 30-button.

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Stagi make (or made?) a 30 button EC, model A30. I think it has the same layout as a Jackie.

 

Good to know. The few I remember are ones I saw in the early 1970s, with pearloid (aka "mother of toilet seat") ends. I don't recall a maker's name, but like the Jack/Jackie they had the proper spacing of the buttons. Also smaller diameter buttons than the Stagi line, and I suspect (though I didn't look inside) a non-Stagi kind of action.

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Stagi make (or made?) a 30 button EC, model A30. I think it has the same layout as a Jackie.

 

Good to know. The few I remember are ones I saw in the early 1970s, with pearloid (aka "mother of toilet seat") ends. I don't recall a maker's name, but like the Jack/Jackie they had the proper spacing of the buttons. Also smaller diameter buttons than the Stagi line, and I suspect (though I didn't look inside) a non-Stagi kind of action.

Maybe a Wheatstone Mayfair?

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Stagi make (or made?) a 30 button EC, model A30. I think it has the same layout as a Jackie.

Good to know. The few I remember are ones I saw in the early 1970s, with pearloid (aka "mother of toilet seat") ends. I don't recall a maker's name, but like the Jack/Jackie they had the proper spacing of the buttons. Also smaller diameter buttons than the Stagi line, and I suspect (though I didn't look inside) a non-Stagi kind of action.

 

Maybe a Wheatstone Mayfair?

 

That one would have metal ends then, wouldn't it?

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Can anyone recommend ANY Tutorial books which cover the 30 button English. The only one I can find, is the 'Jackie & Jack' Tutor, which normally comes only with purchase of their Concertinas.

This sounds as if you have a 30-button English that's not a Jackie or Jack. I know that's possible, though I haven't seen any for decades. If you do, I'd be curious about the details.

 

It's a Scarlatti SCE-30. Pretty basic I know, but I just wanted a cheapish model to get to learn the English.

 

I think the button arrangements are different from the Jackie, but I don't know how easy it is to relate the two, until I see that Tutor book. If anyone knows the Scarlatti, are there any other Tutors that could be used - if not another for the 30, perhaps one of the '48's' (Butler, Wade or Watson) that can be easily adapted ?

Edited by Bald Reynard
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Can anyone recommend ANY Tutorial books which cover the 30 button English. The only one I can find, is the 'Jackie & Jack' Tutor, which normally comes only with purchase of their Concertinas.

This sounds as if you have a 30-button English that's not a Jackie or Jack. I know that's possible, though I haven't seen any for decades. If you do, I'd be curious about the details.

It's a Scarlatti SCE-30. Pretty basic I know, but I just wanted a cheapish model to get to learn the English.

 

I think the button arrangements are different from the Jackie, but I don't know how easy it is to relate the two, until I see that Tutor book. If anyone knows the Scarlatti, are there any other Tutors that could be used - if not another for the 30, perhaps one of the '48's' (Butler, Wade or Watson) that can be easily adapted ?

 

If any of the notes that are there on your Scarlatti are not the same as those in the same position on the Jackie -- or any standard 48-button English -- then your instrument is put together wrong. I'm sure Scarlatti didn't make as standard a different note arrangement, so you won't -- and shouldn't -- be able to find a tutor to match your instrument. If the locations of some of the reeds have been carelessly exchanged, it might be possible to switch them back to where they should be, though that's not nearly as simple as exchanging the positions of strings on a guitar. If notes in various locations aren't just exchanged but are simply wrong, then you have a bigger problem, and one that will likely take more money to correct than the instrument is worth.

 

But you say "I think". Why are you not sure? Compare each note on your Scarlatti with a standard 48-button chart, and find out. Then report back to us. If there are indeed differences, we should be able to advise you what to do about that. And if there are no differences, then you can just start to work with a standard tutor... e.g., the Butler tutor, which can be downloaded for free.

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Can anyone recommend ANY Tutorial books which cover the 30 button English. The only one I can find, is the 'Jackie & Jack' Tutor, which normally comes only with purchase of their Concertinas.

This sounds as if you have a 30-button English that's not a Jackie or Jack. I know that's possible, though I haven't seen any for decades. If you do, I'd be curious about the details.

It's a Scarlatti SCE-30. Pretty basic I know, but I just wanted a cheapish model to get to learn the English.

 

I think the button arrangements are different from the Jackie, but I don't know how easy it is to relate the two, until I see that Tutor book. If anyone knows the Scarlatti, are there any other Tutors that could be used - if not another for the 30, perhaps one of the '48's' (Butler, Wade or Watson) that can be easily adapted ?

 

If any of the notes that are there on your Scarlatti are not the same as those in the same position on the Jackie -- or any standard 48-button English -- then your instrument is put together wrong. I'm sure Scarlatti didn't make as standard a different note arrangement, so you won't -- and shouldn't -- be able to find a tutor to match your instrument. If the locations of some of the reeds have been carelessly exchanged, it might be possible to switch them back to where they should be, though that's not nearly as simple as exchanging the positions of strings on a guitar. If notes in various locations aren't just exchanged but are simply wrong, then you have a bigger problem, and one that will likely take more money to correct than the instrument is worth.

 

But you say "I think". Why are you not sure? Compare each note on your Scarlatti with a standard 48-button chart, and find out. Then report back to us. If there are indeed differences, we should be able to advise you what to do about that. And if there are no differences, then you can just start to work with a standard tutor... e.g., the Butler tutor, which can be downloaded for free.

 

I say, "I think", because it hasn't arrived yet ! It was ordered last week and delivery is expected any day. The only way I think the Scarlatti is different from the Jackie, is by comparing the pictures of the two on the Hobgoblin website - the button layouts vary.

 

When I get it, I'll do as you suggest. All I wanted to do, prior to its' arrival, was to try and track down suitable Tutors, so that I can get learning as quick as possible.

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At least one accidental is missing on the Jack/Jackie, possibly swapped with the enharmonic equivalent...

 

In any event nothing but a selection from the full 48b layout, every single button at its place...

 

I couldn't find a layout for the Scarlatti (did you?), but only the photo of the one end (which same photo is also found on non-Hobgoblin web sites). Judging from the photo, there's at least one difference from the Jackie/Jack, but any differences have to be just different selections from the enharmonic duplicates (i.e., G# vs. Ab or D# vs. Eb). The Jackie isn't missing any notes of the chromatic scale, and it would be strange indeed (or I should say "wrong") if the Scarlatti were.

 

So my former advice still holds. Use a tutor or tutors intended for the 48-button English and just skip over those lessons which include buttons that your Scarlatti doesn't have. Here are a couple of well-regarded tutors that can be downloaded as PDF files:

I wish you great enjoyment.

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I would second Jim Lucas's tutor recommendations above. Both good fun and Alistair Anderson's is, in particular, well paced for a beginner giving a good sense of achievement as one goes. I am guessing an interest in folk music from Bald Raynard's name - in which case Anderson's content should be very much to your liking.

 

Good luck - and most importantly - ENJOY!

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