Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
MrsShevy

445 Hz?

Recommended Posts

5 minutes ago, Wolf Molkentin said:

I absolutely agree, if not in relation to accompaniment, the pitch (within a reasonable margin) doesn't matter that much, if at all. But as Carla seems to intend play with accompaniment by sb. else, things would be different.

+1.

 

In my opinion, one of the cardinal sins in making music is making music all by oneself (I must know because I did that for ~30 years until I realized it wouldn't get me anywhere). The sooner a beginner starts to become engaged in session groups, workshops, playalongs, ceilidhs etc the better and the faster the musical progress. Playing an Instrument that does not allow you to play along with many other instruments really is a turn off, so a compatible pitch should be a killer criterion for picking an Instrument.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, wunks said:

"serendipity"

I believe you've landed on the heart of the matter, wunks. I can look around for years and never come to a firm, informed decision. I'm so grateful for all of the thoughtful advice, and have gained so much invaluable knowledge in the past 24 hours thanks to the wonderful people on this forum. I'm going to see the Lachanel on Saturday. If it speaks to me, I may end up its new caretaker. If it doesn't, I'll walk away with a new experience. And as Wolf says, pitch won't matter so much until I'm competent enough to play with accompaniment, at which time I'll be so addicted that I'll either honour the instrument with a professional re-tuning or buy an entirely new one. And so it begins.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

RAc, I hear you, but I'm by and large a solitary soul, too self-conscious to have ever played music with accompaniment to date. It'll be me alone for awhile, then who knows? An ultimate goal would be to make music in a group. How amazing that would be! So I'm going in to the introduction with an open mind and not deaf, but cautious ear.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, MrsShevy said:

It'll be me alone for awhile

 

o.k., back to zero then - why not buy the "tutor" model at a reasonable price then? you might be willing to "upgrade" at some point later anyway...

 

best wishes - 🐺

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Now that we've gotten you nicely settled in with the Lachenal, it's time to rip the lid completely off that can of "wormes".  I must mention that there is listed on the Facebook public group concertina page, a beautiful looking 31 button C/G Anglo for around 3k (British Pounds I think) and it's in Ontario (somewhere).  Even if it's above your price range you might be able to try it out before you pull the trigger on the L.......🙂

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was planning for the brilliant future, Wolf. 🤣  Fickle, eh? I've been back to zero, up to 100, and down to 445. The more I think I know what I want to do the faster I change my mind! My husband is the most patient man on the planet, or more likely is gleefully plotting my demise as he tunes me out. I still agree 100% with your opinion on pitch, but well see if my romantic heart wins out over my logical ear on Saturday.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, wunks said:

Now that we've gotten you nicely settled in with the Lachenal, it's time to rip the lid completely off that can of "wormes".  I must mention that there is listed on the Facebook public group concertina page, a beautiful looking 31 button C/G Anglo for around 3k (British Pounds I think) and it's in Ontario (somewhere).  Even if it's above your price range you might be able to try it out before you pull the trigger on the L.......🙂

Gah!!!!!!!!! I'll go look at it. Online.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, MrsShevy said:

I still agree 100% with your opinion on pitch, but well see if my romantic heart wins out over my logical ear on Saturday.

 

blessed are they that lack absolute hearing... 😇

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, RAc said:

(if John pitches in, that makes it four Germans and probably six roads)

Well, my road was hearing the concertina at the Salvation Army as a small child, then wanting one myself, as a teenager who'd had piano lessons but played the banjo. All I could find back then was a cheap East German 20-button, and it didn't sound quite like what I remembered from the S.A., but I had a lot of fun with it, and used it in a social context (parties and youth-fellowship meetings). Later, when my concertina had gone way out of tune, I stumbled over a Bandoneon in a junk shop, and started playing it. Again, I had a lot of fun, including social contexts. Encouraged by this, I found and bought a 30-button Anglo, which I was soon using on stage with my folk group.

 

But I never asked myself (or anyone else) the question, "Which system should I choose?" I played what I got, and had fun, and gave fun to others.

 

Not so long ago, I thought it would be a good idea to be able to play in more keys than on the  Anglo, so (now well informed through this forum) I decided to try a Duet. This time, I did ask myself "Which system?" and did what Rüdiger (RAc) advised: I printed out the different keyboard layouts, and tried to finger scales and chords on them. And the winner was ... the Crane! It had a head start, because now I knew that the concertina I'd heard at the Salvation Army half a century earlier was most probably a Crane/Triumph, but I did find that the arrangement of the notes was reminiscent of the banjo and mandolin, two instruments that I've been playing for decades, and this was decisive.

 

When I met Rüdiger, he was a guitarist looking for a concertina, and I recommended the Crane for that very reason: the fingering of the Crane involves pressing buttons along one row until you run out of fingers, then starting with the next row. And this is exactly what you do on a mandolin or guitar. The chords on the Crane are formed with a few basic "shapes" that alter their names when they're moved about the keyboard, like on a banjo or guitar.

 

If some kind Salvationist had bequeathed me his Crane/Triumph back then, there's no doubt that the Crane would be my main instrument today. But as it happened, Fate gave me an Anglo, so that's my main squeeze. My main instrument overall is the 5-string banjo, and I only learned that because my father had a dilapidated one given to him, and repaired it. It happened to be there, and I happened to need a song accompaniment, so I took it up. 

 

So what I say is, accept your Fate, and learn whatever instrument she gives you.

The worst thing that can happen to you is that you realise that this is not the concertina system for you, but by that time you'll have an idea of which system would be better!

 

You'll have fun, at any rate!

 

Cheers,

John

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks so much for sharing John, and for your words of wisdom. Your love of music shines through your words.

As a sidebar (and aren't online forums just full of them!) I have found a retailer within a couple hours drive from me who has a Rochelle and a Jackie and "an older used German made 20 button concertina that’s Anglo style" in stock. I don't have time to check them out before Saturday so I'll just have to let Fate have her way. But at least I know now that there are relatively local options to check out. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I tend to look at the issue this way,

 

If you want versatility in the music you play, you want a chromatic instrument. I play anything between 4 flats to 5 sharps so an anglo would not work for me. If you want to play basic session tunes C; G; D, F then a 30k anglo  with the right accidentals will work.

 

If you are only playing at home for fun, then Old pitch, or concertina pitch does not matter as long as you are not trying to play along with someone else's track. As long as the instrument is in tune with itself.

 

If you want a fully chromatic instrument the Duets are the most complex and heavy, but you can play left hand against the right hand. English are less complex than Duets but more complex than Anglos. 

 

So called 'tutors' can have poor reedwork, brass reeds, can be difficult to learn on and usually get grown out of,  and may not be a good investment. 

 

Black accidental and white natural note buttons could be fitted to good grade instruments, as could brass reeds also of a superior grade. The button colours are not 100% reliable as an indicator of instrument grade. 

 

Finally, instruments in old pitch usually need work doing to them, new valves etc. They are in old pitch because they have not been attended to in a long time. If the reeds are old pitch then usually they have not been messed about with, and the instrument is a candidate for re-pitching to A=440Hz concert pitch. 

 

Wolf's tolerance on tuning of +/- 5 cents is OK for private play, but for group play it is not really good enough, most repairers strive for +/- 1.5 cents, but that is another story

 

Dave

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for sharing your excellent wisdom, Dave. It is most appreciated.

As I get deeper into the well of learning, I wonder if my original gut feeling (well, one of them -ha!) that a duet may be the format for me is correct. Again, not having ever laid a hand on a concertina of any sort, it's difficult to judge. But I find my fingers twitching, and twitching in a left hand "bass", right hand "treble" sort of way. Go big or go home, eh?

Sadly, and I think wisely, I have decided to let the Lachanel Tutor go by, thanks to all the experienced advice I've received from the folks I've "met" on this thread. You guys rock!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Coming late to this discussion, I find many things have been said that I agree with, like the value of playing with others (and having an instrument that doesn’t hinder that endeavor) and the serendipity thing (I was handed a Hayden Duet 30+ years ago, when I wasn’t even thinking I wanted a concertina, and never looked back). My usual advice for those that do want a concertina is to find out what the person was playing who inspired you to want one and get one of those. Otherwise you may always be disappointed.

 

If you do wind up driving to the Button Box and your route takes you through Albany NY and you want to hear what 30+ years of playing a Hayden Duet sounds like, let me know (or just click here).

 

FWIW, I am also classically trained, originally on the cello, also recorder and classic guitar.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

So whereabouts in Central Ontario are you?  I'm in Buffalo about 5 minutes from the Peace Bridge and have a close cousin who lives in Metro Toronto ...And I just bought a refurbished Lachenal 46 button Maccaan Duet  from Chris Algar at Barleycorn  yesterday that should arrive by early June! Unfortunately, I've yet to find anyone in WNY or Southern Ontario who plays Anglo, English or Duet. We do have a local chemnizter club that plays a lot of polish polka music, but you have to have a chemnizter to join....So I am looking for any Anglo, EC or Duet concertina enthusiasts/players  within a reasonable distance to connect with.

 

Before you stop in Albany to see David Barnert on your road trip to Button Box,  you'd also be welcome to stop here in Buffalo   And I'll be in Scarborough , Ontario hanging out with my cousin for a few days later this summer as well.  Perhaps we could meet up and compare instruments and stories.

 

With regard to my decision to go in the direction of a Duet, it went like this - After spending the last few months learning on an inexpensive 30 button Bonetti Anglo (same size as a Rochelle, lucked out with bellows that didn't leak),  I started to look into an "upgrade" purchase.  I realized there were some things I wanted to do musically that weren't necessarily a good match for the Anglo. I eventually went in the direction of the duet due to serious arthritis in both my thumbs (so no EC) and some major neck surgery and shoulder problems.  Also finances.  I have a piano/guitar/voice/uke background, and wanted  something compact that I could both sing with and/or play melody with chords on when I wanted to.  And I just love the right-hand left hand fingers twitching description you gave.  I get it.   Love the Anglo and will keep learning it, but once I learned of the Duet's existence, it appealed to me for many of the same reasons you mentioned. Also, the smaller Duet may be more pragmatic on a long term basis given some of my physical issues.  Also wanted some additional chromatics for some of the types of music I would like to play.  I know that the 46 button compared to the 55+ button duet will take a bit more work on arrangements, but it was affordable (well, affordable after selling my good dreadnought guitar I dearly loved and can no longer play to pay for the Lachenal Duet...).  So clearly, I think the Duet is a great choice! LOL 

 

John, I agree with you about the Crane button layout.  But my finances did not allow, and I wanted at least the 46 buttons to work with...

 

OK, don't everyone groan, but re the making music with others comments which I agree is truly important -  one of my musician friends who teaches ukulele group lessons promised that as soon as I learn three chords on my new duet or a couple of melodies from the Daily Ukulele book I can come hang out at her lesson group and play along!  Note:  my friend is a serious full time musician...she does not play the concertina, but she is a full time gigging musician, music teacher and professional bass and piano player who also leads a 16 piece all female jazz big band. The uke is just her fun thing.  Anyway, should be interesting! :rolleyes:

 

So Congrats Mrs Shevy!  Look forward to hearing what you end up with as your first concertina.

Dee

 

PS - Be sure to listen to some of Jon Boden's recordings online. Among other things, he plays a 46 button Duet concertina.

 

Edited by Dee746

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Dee746 said:

Unfortunately, I've yet to find anyone in WNY or Southern Ontario who plays Anglo, English or Duet.

I haven't met a Duet player yet, but there are quite a few Anglo and English players in the Golden Horseshoe (Hamilton-Brantford-Toronto areas), and I know of one Anglo player(although his main instrument is whistle) in Buffalo who's a regular at the Sat. afternoon session at Nietzsche's in Allantown.  Also a couple of players at the Corktown Tavern session in Hamilton on Tuesday nights, and a quite a few in Toronto.

Edited by Bill N

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/24/2019 at 10:41 AM, David Barnert said:

If you do wind up driving to the Button Box and your route takes you through Albany NY and you want to hear what 30+ years of playing a Hayden Duet sounds like, let me know...

 

2 hours ago, Dee746 said:

Before you stop in Albany to see David Barnert on your road trip to Button Box,  you'd also be welcome to stop here in Buffalo   And I'll be in Scarborough , Ontario hanging out with my cousin for a few days later this summer as well.  Perhaps we could meet up and compare instruments and stories.

 

Nobody’s arranged to visit me yet. And as it turns out, I’m thinking of spending Memorial Day weekend (May 24-26) in Ottawa, home of my concertina.net avatar (a grotesque on the exterior of the Peace Tower of the Canadian Parliament building).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

David - Your trip to Ottawa sounds great.   And I admit, I hadn't noticed that your avatar gargoyle was holding a concertina.  My bad.  It's a fantastic picture!

Share this post


Link to post
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.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...