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Hello everyone, my name is Richard and I am from Berkshire, England.

 

Firstly, I would just like to say what a great forum. It was after browsing these pages for a couple of weeks that I was able to make up my mind as to what concertina would suit me best.

 

I decided to go for an English ebony ended Charsley Stafford, aprox: 1873 from Hobgoblin, Crawley. I bought it ten days ago and have not put it down since.

 

This is my second instrument, my first was an acoustic guitar that I have been trying to learn for the past five years but when it came to those barre cords, I struggled so I am limited as to what I can play. No such excuses with the concertina though, none of that stretchy stuff. I intend to be strict and learn my scales before I move on to any tunes so I can get used to the fingering positions, I have learn't my c, g. f and d and tonight shall move onto another scale. I do not move onto another scale until I can play the previous ones backwards and forwards and find them without looking. I hope my neighbours can't hear me.

 

Richard.

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Shiver me timbers Pugwash, welcome aboard! ;)

 

I decided to go for an English ebony ended Charsley Stafford, aprox: 1873 from Hobgoblin, Crawley. I bought it ten days ago and have not put it down since.

Hello Richard,

 

I'm not surprised, it looks very nice:

 

48CR3947.jpg

 

That's a Lachenal Excelsior model, which would have been top-of-the-range at the time it was made, and judging by the depth of the bellows frames it might have double reed pans (an optional extra in the 1862 price list). Do you have the serial number of it?

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Hello everyone, my name is Richard and I am from Berkshire, England.

 

Firstly, I would just like to say what a great forum. It was after browsing these pages for a couple of weeks that I was able to make up my mind as to what concertina would suit me best.

 

I decided to go for an English ebony ended Charsley Stafford, aprox: 1873 from Hobgoblin, Crawley. I bought it ten days ago and have not put it down since.

 

This is my second instrument, my first was an acoustic guitar that I have been trying to learn for the past five years but when it came to those barre cords, I struggled so I am limited as to what I can play. No such excuses with the concertina though, none of that stretchy stuff. I intend to be strict and learn my scales before I move on to any tunes so I can get used to the fingering positions, I have learn't my c, g. f and d and tonight shall move onto another scale. I do not move onto another scale until I can play the previous ones backwards and forwards and find them without looking. I hope my neighbours can't hear me.

 

Richard.

Hi Richard,

 

Welcome aboard

 

- W

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Thank's fella's.

 

Yes Stephen I do have the number - 18336

 

I would be grateful for any information you can give me about the instrument, thank's for that.

 

It not only looks good but feels and sounds good, to me anyway. I was so into it yesterday, as it was a bank holiday, that I forgot to feed my two dogs, the first time I have ever done that in 30 years of dog ownership.

 

I printed out the link you provided, thanks again.

Edited by pugwash
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... the number - 18336

Then it's a Louis Lachenal rather than Lachenal & Co., though I expected that anyway, both from the bright green bellows leather and the deep bellows frames that suggest double pans. Just working on an average (of 833 per annum), that number would indeed seem to suggest a date of 1873 (as Hobgoblin said), but it's probably more complex than that. :unsure:

 

What's the implications of double reed pans, Stephen?

They were intended to try to make the sound of the press and draw reeds more similar by having chambering on both sides of the pan. George Case often made concert-quality instruments that way in the 1850s, and Louis Lachenal made a few of them, both for Wheatstone's and in his own right, but they are uncommon. The 1862 Louis Lachenal price list shows that they were only available on the higher grades of instrument (those with gold-tooled bellows) and cost two guineas extra.

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Thank you for the information and welcome, much appreciated.

 

I have just noticed the link to your website Stephen, when I can prise this tina off my thumbs later, I am looking forward to reading through it in depth.

 

Richard.

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  • 1 month later...

UPDATE.

 

Well, I have had my concertina now for two months. Been practicing my scales for the first four weeks and have now moved on to some tunes because I found myself going backwards and forwards and felt the need to move around on the keyboard a bit, it also helps me to remember where the notes are. I can play four tunes now from memory, just need to polish them up and work on my timing.

 

I know four tunes is not a lot in eight weeks, but I was ill for a couple of weeks at the end of May, this left me unable to play. Back to full fitnes now, I have tryed to make up for it by practicing for about two to three hours a day over the past three weeks, unfortunately, this drove my wife near insane, so I have now toned this down to twenty minute intervals about four times a day. I must admit, that I find this better because when my thumbs and wrist ached, I was messing up.

 

I have been dropping into this forum regually to gather its very usefull information, I have also downloaded Finale Notepad so that I can get an idea what some of the tunes sound like first, very useful program indeed!

 

On a final note (no pun intended) I was chatting to my son today, he is learning the guitar, he went for his weekly lesson last night, he was asked to practice some jigs and reels by his tutor, while in conversation with his tutor, his tutor told him that his tutor (the tutors, tutor) had a very good concertina player in his old band and that they were getting together for his 60th birthday bash, I asked the concertina players name, he said "John Kirkpatrick" I looked at him and said, "bit of an understatement there" and explained who he was. Just goes to show what a small world this is!

 

Anyway, enough rambling, I have some tunes to murder.

 

Richard.

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I know four tunes is not a lot in eight weeks

I find I constantly have to rein myself in from trying to learn too many tunes. I find I make greater progress if I try to learn one tune really well & work on how I can embellish it to my taste - but the temptation is always there to try and get a load of tunes into my repertoire. If you spend all your time focussing on repertoire IMHO you lose the opportunity to work on technique & style. FWIW I'd say take as long as you need to take, and concentrate on quality rather than quantity.

 

I have now toned this down to twenty minute intervals about four times a day. I must admit, that I find this better because when my thumbs and wrist ached, I was messing up.

From the little I know on the subject I believe this approach is both better for learning and certainly better for you physically.

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Thanks for the advise Woody. I practice the tunes I know every day to polish them but the reason I was learning them, is not so much as to build repetoire but to move around on the scales, for some reason, I get to know the position of the notes better by playing a tune on them. What I am going to do now, is transpose the tunes I know into a different key, I shall polish them in the original though!

 

Richard

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Fairly soon it will be worth finding your way to a session (that is, if you're interested in traditional music, but your acquaintanceship with JK suggests you are). There's nothing like trying to play in sessions to accelerated your learning. They're also about as much fun as you can have, state of undress irrelevant.

 

There's an easy cure for driving your wife insane, BTW, find out what sort of musical instrument she'd like and buy her one. Remember the family that plays together stays together.

 

Chris

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Yes Chris, I shall try a session, just want to build a bit more fluency into my playing first.

 

I have already tried that method with my wife, it did'nt work, the irish concertina is in the cupboard!

Its not too irritating for my wife, now that I have cut down to 20 minute sessions (three to four time a day) I did go a little mad on it for a couple of weeks, sometimes practicing for an hour and a half at a time, so my own fault really! All is ok now though.

 

Richard.

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Hi Richard and welcome to the forum. That's a nice squeeze box you've found yourself!! They really have them at Hobgoblin?

Good luck with your playing, and don't worry about increasing your repertoire! I know only four tunes fairly well after 1,5 year (but I also play several other instruments) and I wish I had concentrated on learning some more tunes. The more tunes you know, the more you get used to finding your way around on the instrument. At least that is my experience.

 

Here's my boxes (but the melodeon needs to be repaired - a mystical disease hit it during the Ransäter festival - it's got rust on the reeds, but no other sign on water in it. We have to send it to Italy to be repaired :( Don't know if we'll get any money from the insurance company.)

 

http://www.svalefelt.com/bilder/boxes.jpg

 

Is this forum site gone mad?? I can't use the "insert link" or "insert image" buttons above, they just complain and tell me I have to insert an url, and if I do it, it still complains. ;)

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Here's my boxes (but the melodeon needs to be repaired - a mystical disease hit it during the Ransäter festival - it's got rust on the reeds, but no other sign on water in it. We have to send it to Italy to be repaired :( Don't know if we'll get any money from the insurance company.)

 

 

Got to watch those melodeans, they will sneak a pint on you anytime you aren't looking. :)

 

Alan

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Hi Richard and welcome to the forum. That's a nice squeeze box you've found yourself!! They really have them at Hobgoblin?

Good luck with your playing, and don't worry about increasing your repertoire! I know only four tunes fairly well after 1,5 year (but I also play several other instruments) and I wish I had concentrated on learning some more tunes. The more tunes you know, the more you get used to finding your way around on the instrument. At least that is my experience.

 

Here's my boxes (but the melodeon needs to be repaired - a mystical disease hit it during the Ransäter festival - it's got rust on the reeds, but no other sign on water in it. We have to send it to Italy to be repaired :( Don't know if we'll get any money from the insurance company.)

 

http://www.svalefelt.com/bilder/boxes.jpg

 

That's a nice couple of boxes you have there yourself ennistraveler. <_<

 

The festival you attended, was it near the coast? Because I know that salt air plays havoc on anything metal or leather.

 

Thank's for the welcome and good luck with the repair.

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