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codygoodman1337

New to Concertina and music in general

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So I’m 33 years old and in my youth I have tried to play all types of instruments...guitar, bass guitar, piano, and others... nothing stuck. I never learned to read music but have a basic knowledge of tablature from my wanna be rockstar days. I’ve purchased Gary Coover’s Easy Anglo 1-2-3 and Pirate Songs for Concertina. I also bought my first 20 button concertina on eBay and have been playing around for a couple of days. 

 

I do medieval re-enactments and LARP events where my persona is a pirate known as Dwarf Dreadbeard. I want to learn shanties and the like to perform around a campfire at our events. 

 

My my question is...what are some other resources I can use without a knowledge of reading sheet music? Is there a website with tablature for shanties? Any and all help will be appreciated. I have attached a picture of my concertina in case that will help  

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Posted (edited)

What kind of tabulature? There are many different. The ones I had to learn at university were the New German Organ Tabulature which Bach used and the German Lute Tabulatur from the Renaissance epoch. Later I learned some more for different instruments and different times in history.

 

If you want access to the music you like, learn the dots.

 

For a collection of tunes notated in tabulature and PDF for your type of concertina, visit https://konzertinanetz.de and click on "Melodien".

Edited by Sebastian

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I am also not really able to read regular dots. I find abc notation works the best for me.

 

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Louisiana has a long maritime history with a plethora of piracy.  Get out and listen to some singers and join in.  Think of the concertina as accompaniment.  If you become a good Shanty singer, a simple wandering drone can suffice.  

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2 hours ago, mathhag said:

I am also not really able to read regular dots. I find abc notation works the best for me.

 

Forgive me but that is like saying 'I am not really able to read regular web pages.  I find raw html works the best for me'. 

 

Also, standard music notation is beautiful and abc notation is fugly.  Abc notation is intended to be written by humans and then read by machines in order to produce ... standard music notation that can be read by humans.

 

My two bits of advice to the OP would be to work with Gary's books, figure out how to capture Youtube videos (especially Gary's videos) as sound or sound+video files and then use one of the many slow downer programs to play them back at a speed that you can play along.  (I like Transcribe! but there are others).   Use Gary's tabs, but also try to figure out tunes by ear by picking them out on a slowed down audio file, then write down the tabs for future reference. 

 

Later. spend some time learning regular music notation, not to become a speed reader but so that you can access the world of music that has only been written down in standard notation - like this book for example.

...

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3 hours ago, Sebastian said:

For a collection of tunes notated in tabulature and PDF for your type of concertina, visit https://konzertinanetz.de and click on "Melodien".

 

Well now, there's a collection of tunes I haven't seen before. And all for the 20-button, no less. Very nice! (I'm going to have to puzzle out enough German to decipher it, but it seems doable. All I need is "push", "pull", and the numbers 1-20, right?)

 

Oh, and Cody, welcome! The books you've got should be a great start. Have fun!

 

Mike

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10 hours ago, MJGray said:

I'm going to have to puzzle out enough German to decipher it, but it seems doable. All I need is "push", "pull", and the numbers 1-20, right?

Druck is "push" and Zug is "pull".

 

You need only the numbers from 1 to 5.

 

Above the horizontal line is the right hand and below is the left hand. The digits on the right of each D or Z show the buttons to press: The superscript digits denote the outer row (C row), the subscript digits denote the inner row (G row). The button numbering goes from left to right (1 = deep sound, 5 = high sound).

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10 hours ago, Don Taylor said:

Forgive me but that is like saying 'I am not really able to read regular web pages.  I find raw html works the best for me'. 

 

Also, standard music notation is beautiful and abc notation is fugly.  Abc notation is intended to be written by humans and then read by machines in order to produce ... standard music notation that can be read by humans.

 

I've spent quite a lot of time with standard notation in my life and still cannot sight read it - it just doesn't make any intuitive sense for my eyes-hearing connection. I still have to decypher it into abc first in order to play it - even more so if I have to read grand staff. So ABC format works great for me because I can read rhytm from noteheads/bars and actual notes from "raw" ABC. But what I can read on sight is chromatic notation, either in form of 6-6 Parncutt notation or common piano roll. Unfortunatelly, no easy software exist for converting common music notation formats to chromatic staff.

 

@ OP: abcnotation.com is a site for you if you happen to know whan exact tune you're after and musescore can label notes automatically if you have musicxml or other file format source to read. As to Anglo tabulatures, common way of presenting those is labeling notes under standard notation in L/R push/pull numbered squares. Be aware though, that different book authors may utilize different variations of such tabulatures.

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Hi Łukasz, great to see you are back!

 

your contri here is very intriguing. My own musical socialisation included standard notation, and I've come to believe that it is the easiest for the brain to translate into music for the simple reason that there is a correspondence between pitch and position on a staff. I am originally a guitar player and I can also read guitar tab, but I still find standard notation the easiest to translate "on the fly." I'm still a fairly poor translator from dots to an instrument keyboard, but one of the things I can do fairly reliably now is look at a score and decipher the corresponding melody in my head.

 

But your testimony again proves the point that the brain is a marvelously adaptive organ. With enough practice and some "anchor" to start the process, apparently every notation can become second nature and provide a good bridge between the eye and the ear. This would also be my advice to the thread opener: Look around and find the translation system that makes most sense to you and then keep practicing that until it has seeped into your brain stem.

 

That said, it's also important to understand that music also has a "swarm" component as Don has pointed out. The more individuals are familiar with one system, the more material will be available in that notation and thus the most music will be accessible to you. In one or two generations there may be more abc scores out than traditionally transcribed music, by which time it may make more sense to educate Newcomers with ABCs. Until then, I'd recommend standard notation for the pool of music available through it will be the biggest.

 

And finally, it should be understood that every visual music notation system must by definition by a crutch because music is acoustic, not optic. So learning by ear is still a very important and indispensable way to approach music.     

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31 minutes ago, RAc said:

Hi Łukasz, great to see you are back!

 

your contri here is very intriguing. My own musical socialisation included standard notation, and I've come to believe that it is the easiest for the brain to translate into music for the simple reason that there is a correspondence between pitch and position on a staff. I am originally a guitar player and I can also read guitar tab, but I still find standard notation the easiest to translate "on the fly." I'm still a fairly poor translator from dots to an instrument keyboard, but one of the things I can do fairly reliably now is look at a score and decipher the corresponding melody in my head.

 

But your testimony again proves the point that the brain is a marvelously adaptive organ. With enough practice and some "anchor" to start the process, apparently every notation can become second nature and provide a good bridge between the eye and the ear. This would also be my advice to the thread opener: Look around and find the translation system that makes most sense to you and then keep practicing that until it has seeped into your brain stem.

 

That said, it's also important to understand that music also has a "swarm" component as Don has pointed out. The more individuals are familiar with one system, the more material will be available in that notation and thus the most music will be accessible to you. In one or two generations there may be more abc scores out than traditionally transcribed music, by which time it may make more sense to educate Newcomers with ABCs. Until then, I'd recommend standard notation for the pool of music available through it will be the biggest.

 

And finally, it should be understood that every visual music notation system must by definition by a crutch because music is acoustic, not optic. So learning by ear is still a very important and indispensable way to approach music.     


Exactly because there is no exact correspondence between pitch and position on staff my brain literally hurts when deciphering standard notation but can grasp chromatic staff notations instantly. It is even more awkward for me because I play on Hayden (isomorphic layout), so same note occuring on different line/space depending on octave and chords looking different depending on root note are most annoying features of standard notation. Sadly it's been more than 6 years now since I first discovered chromatic notations and there is no progress at all in popularising any of them, despite all various open source software projects. And since this in no way relates to Anglos, I'll just stop here :)

But as you and Don have said, the standard notation is "common language" and one simply has to understand it to not only have access to tunes, but to be able to communicate with others or popularise own work. In regards to "how to learn standard notation" I have found that trying to arrange sheet music for your instrument on your own is far better method than simply learning to read already written scores, which I strongly advise OP to do.

 

And thank you RAc for your welcome. Indeed I'm starting my way back into concertinas after nearly five years long forced break...

 

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8 hours ago, Sebastian said:

Druck is "push" and Zug is "pull".

 

You need only the numbers from 1 to 5.

 

Above the horizontal line is the right hand and below is the left hand. The digits on the right of each D or Z show the buttons to press: The superscript digits denote the outer row (C row), the subscript digits denote the inner row (G row). The button numbering goes from left to right (1 = deep sound, 5 = high sound).

 

Thanks! That's an interesting system to try to wrap my head around. I will have to spend some time with it to turn it into music, but even a cursory glance at the arrangements is enough to know they're right up my alley: cross-row octave style!

 

Also, now I know that Germans use lowercase letters for minor chords and "H7" to indicate a B7 chord  (apparently "B" means B flat). Oy. That's a heck of a thing to encounter without expecting it in the first tab on the page... 🙂

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7 hours ago, Łukasz Martynowicz said:

Indeed I'm starting my way back into concertinas after nearly five years long forced break...

 

Pity - but good to learn it’s over (my own break had lasted only for 9 months or so) and you‘re back here to share experiences!

 

All the best - 🐺

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Slow down, dude! You just got this thing and are just learning how to play. When you have learned and can play everything in Gary's 1-2-3 and Pirate book, see where you are then.  You may find that you have a lot better handle on the box and may not even keep the one you have, especially if you are going to learn to sing along (may be too high pitched).  In which case you will be looking for a new box with new button in different keys.  So stick to Gary's fine repertoire and copious videos, for now.  Chill.🦄

Edited by Devils' Dream
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