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Any Long-Time Jackie Owners?


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Besides this classical piece (the only one I've tried to play so far and which has done a lot to my finger agility) I am bored to death with single line melodies.


I've been trying to use chords, thirds, fifths, sixths, all that but nothing comes that pleases me. It does enrich the melody a bit but I still find it boring. What I like best in the recordings I've heard on Youtube is drones or when a note runs under (or above) a triplet or a series of notes.


When I try to do that on the Jackie (besides terrible difficulties in finding finger position) either the note covers everything (if it is low) or it mushes everything (if it is high).


Long-time owners, have you managed to achieve that with the Jackie? Is it to do with pressure - should I learn to put less but even pressure while giving a full blast to the melody notes? Is it really something that changes immensely with a high-end concertina?


Geoff Woff said that the limited range of the Jackie meant also less possibilities in chords etc, but 37 button concertinas (like the Albion or the Marcus) don't have many more, so does this mean that the ideal upgrade would be a Geordie ?


I know I'm still a beginner, having only started to really try to understand the concertina for...err...2 months? - but I'd like to know whether I'm trying to achieve the impossible due to the instrument or if it will eventually click. Needless to say, even the Marcus (2000 pounds) won't be in reach before a long time.


Could Jackie owners tell a bit about their story and evolution with that instrument?


Here's my little bit - without repeats and cut at the end (apparently my landlord decided it would be good to keep renovating a flat at this time of the day)


Edited by TimTim
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You have more than enough notes on your Jackie to do lots. You only need two or three notes to build a chord (or partial chord) and from your little recording, albeit melody only, you seem to be progressing well for only a short time player. Remember you must walk before you can run. Regarding the notes competing with each other, perhaps finding alternate ways to build your chords might help but I haven't played a Jackie so I can't be sure. If financial constraints compel you to persevere with the Jackie then just make the most of it. You will be able to achieve quite a lot and if you do carry on you'll know when an upgrade is due. Then somehow it will happen, maybe you'll get lucky.

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You could add single harmony notes ( bridges) below that melody. Some people would say it is better to take the harmony notes ( or part chords) further away from the melody, like an octave further down, but this is not often convenient especially on a truncated keyboard like the Jackie, and with those harmony fingers being needed the next moment to play melody notes.... I tend to keep harmonies closer, and have grown used to that sound.


Above is an example of the use of simple triad harmonizing. err...... obviously not done on a Jackie but much of it would be possible on one.

Edited by Geoff Wooff
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Thank you Steve and Geoff,


Remember you must walk before you can run.

Exactly what a friend told me - I know I'm too impatient but that's how I've always learned, not linearly but jumping all over the place. Probably not the most effective way of learning but it is something I've always done! And I've stopped myself from posting a thousand times already, knowing it was too soon, that I ought to work more and find out by myself...but sometimes if does feel lonely!




You could add single harmony notes ( bridges) below that melody.


Ok, back to work. Sometimes if feels like the jump from single note to two notes is a huge difference - I go from too thin (melody line) to too much, but I guess I'm just not used to it.


So much to learn!


I'm still curious about other Jackie owners though.

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  • 1 month later...

Hmm. Long time no see. I've not been here for years.

Picked up Jackie again recently.

Several notes:

1. The sound of Jackie (or any other concertina) is rather thin, so it benefits (or suffers) from the acoustics of the room and (!) recording.

2. With modern technology you can learn two instrument pieces. Record one line and play another with it being played out.

3. As a guitar player, find the chords to the piece and do no.2, but with the concertina and a guitar. Works wonders.

4. According to presented recording you have lots to learn to add life to the music. Give it time. Listen to clarinet players and figure out their phrasing and try to apply some. I recently found Sidney Bechet to be an excellent source of inspiration. He's very emotional and favors slow tempos. Outstanding player, one of true gems. Get your simple one line melody toward that level. I guarantee you forget about boredom.

5. I personally think an EC is best at single melody playing together with other instruments. Using thick chords or even chordal accompaniment is not that hard, but lack of separation leads to a compromise in the quality of accents



For the music search: sidney bechet si tu vois ma mere

The sheet music is here: https://www.scribd.com/mobile/document/352791019/Si-Tu-Vois-Ma-Bechet-leadMere-Sidney--sheet

Edited by m3838
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