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Concertinas Portugueses


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Cycling through the small town of Amares near Braga in northern Portugal, we saw some posters that indicated we had just missed a concert by “As Concertinas do Homem”. This literally means “The Concertinas of Man”, but clearly referred to the nearby river Homem, which runs through the neighbouring town of Terras do Bouro. Closer examination of the publicity material showed a quartet of button accordions, rather than what we call concertinas.

 

A few days later we were in St George’s Castle in Lisbon. On a temporary stage a button accordion quartet were rehearsing for a concert. The long weekend 10-13 June 2005 includes a double public holiday for both the Portuguese National Day (Camões Day) and the Feast Day of St Anthony of Padua, or St Anthony of Lisbon as he is locally known (he was born in Lisbon), and which is a big street party and public concert weekend in the old parts of Lisbon. This quartet was called Danças Ocultas. One of the players had a very large bass instrument, with bellows that open at least 1.5m (5 feet) wide – I counted 33 folds on a publicity photo. They were playing a mix of Portuguese trad, oompah, and some unusual modern music played from scores. They also made use of pitchless sighing noises perhaps made by pressing hard with an air button partly open - or maybe it was a trick that depends on the amplification mikes. Some additional instruments (double bass, guitar and cross-between-lute-and-guitar) and a vocalist also joined in for some pieces. This web-page has some photos and details about their instruments, but unfortunately not a shot of the bellows fully extended.Rootsworld Dancas Ocultas

 

Fans of names-that-are-accidentally-rather-naughty-in-other-languages will be pleased to know that Quim Barreiros, a Portuguese folk singer, is still touring the small towns of central Portugal, where I first picked up a publicity card for one of his concerts over 10 years ago.

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Ivan Viehoff -

...This web-page has some photos and details about their instruments, but unfortunately not a shot of the bellows fully extended.Rootsworld Dancas Ocultas...

 

Interesting site! I like the 'Free Reed Jukebox' there. Have listened to a few of the performers so far.

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Ivan Viehoff -
...This web-page has some photos and details about their instruments, but unfortunately not a shot of the bellows fully extended.Rootsworld Dancas Ocultas...

 

Interesting site! I like the 'Free Reed Jukebox' there. Have listened to a few of the performers so far.

Up till now for me "Peter Bellamy" was more or less a name that is mentioned evry now and then on this forum, till I just found this page via the Free Reed Jukebox. What a voice and what an Anglo playing!!!

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