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Fs: Dipper Ambonya Anglo Shantyman In C/g

Ed Stander

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Dear All:

I am selling my beloved 35 note Dipper Shantyman concertina. Ambonya ends, 7 fold green bellows with papers, s/n 182. This has been my pride and joy since receiving it some 5 years ago, but college calls and one must obey. It is in perfect condition, plays like a Dipper (fast and loud when you want to be, mellow when you don't), and comes with a magnificent leather case.

For those who have not heard of the Shantyman, it is a concertina designed by Colin to accompany singing. It is tuned in standard C/G tuning, but has longer reeds which, when combined with the wood ends, provides a somewhat mellower edge to the sound. Please E-mail me if interested, quote me your best price, and I'll take it from there. I'll also be happy to provide specific photos on request.

This hurts more than I care to say, but my wife is the final arbiter; and while this will probably keep me up for nights on end, I am happy to report that she has not yet found the Dipper restored Jeffries hidden away in the closet......

The one concession I have received from her is this listing. I'd much rather this go to a CNET player than a collector.

Please E-mail with questions, and I'll try to post photos this evening. Best - Ed.

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Photos as requested, but please don't blame me if it gives you concertina envy. I'm envious, even though I presently own it!

The color of the Ambonya is most like the side photo. I don't know why the other photos are a bit washed out....

I will post the button layout shortly.

I'm located in New York.

Best - Ed





Edited by Ed Stander
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A stupid question but what is Ambonya and Shantyman? What's different with this model than 'normal' anglos?


* oops disregard the question, it seems I can't read, it's all in the initial post.

Edited by Azalin
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Azalin, Amboyna is "the king of the burl". It is a special wood from Laos, Mynmar, Asia used years ago as a veneer on some of the best Lachenal Edeophones ever made. See some of them on www.concertinaconnection.com.


Amboyna is also a wood used in Royals Royce automobile interiors. The wood is used in a veneer form because it is too weak and fragile. The burl is formed as the tree tries to fight a disease or infection. Amboyna comes in different colours eg. gold, red, yellow and white sap wood.


The Shantyman has references to sea shanty's or a style of music and songs employed by sailors. (I think).


With regards to the Dipper...be prepared to pay $9,000.00 and more.

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Regarding the "Shantyman".

From the review in the Autumn 1989 issue of C&S magazine by John Townley:


“This long-awaited Anglo (the first was ordered by George Salley in the summer of ’84) has finally arrived. I have played one (my own) and seen two others almost completed, and they are truly wonders of the free reed world.

The intent of this model is to create a concertina that is made primarily for vocal accompaniment; lower-pitched and a bit quieter, with less upper partials, so as not to overwhelm the voice of the singer. Mine is pitched in F/C, a low baritone instrument ideal for second tenors whose highest comfortable note is an F. The other two I saw were in F/C and G/D. From a sheerly musical point of view, the instrument is a dream; inside are leather baffles (not unlike those in a pump organ) that give it a richer, warmer sound, double-emphasizing the qualities that are unique about Dipper reeds to begin with. The edges of single notes seem to turn over on themselves, giving an interior, hollow sound Reminiscent of a shawn or shenai. The reed response is twice as fast as my older G/D Dipper and the bass reeds don’t vary in pitch nearly so much with varied pressure, a real problem for most low-pitched instruments. This has the effect of vastly increasing the dynamic range as well; it suits as a solo or an accompanying instrument. Musically, it is the best-sounding concertina I have ever heard, bar none.

But it doesn’t stop there, Colin and Rosalie have outdone themselves in the artiface of the body itself. Brass plates on each end feature nautical engravings; on mine, the C.S.S. Alabama leaving Cherbourg on one end, and the CSN crossed cannons and fouled anchor on the other. Brass engraving is brand new to the Dippers, but they have done a smashing job; on the other two I saw various river and canal boat themes. The body is made out of West Indian cocobolo wood and my air button is a bone scrimshawed lever in the form of a mermaid’s arm. Gold tooling decorates the polished blue goatskin bellows, and mermaids frolic about fouled anchors on the bellows [papers with square-riggers ploughing the distant sea in the background. Another significant first for the Dippers is the carved fretwork which is done in relief, more like the decorative work in an English choir pew than an ordinary concertina end.”


There is more, regarding the price back then, which I will mercifully delete.

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Yes - the name Shantyman was the fellow oft times hired by the captain to keep the crew entertained while they struggle along in menial labor.

I've had a number of E-mails asking about price.

I didn't mean to keep anyone in suspense - I just had no idea what it might be worth in the present financial melee. I'm sure it is a good investment - certainly better than money in the bank (or the stock market) these days, and a lot more fun to play with, but actual worth is defined on the basis of a combination of factors - most of which I've little knowledge of. Hence the reticence to quote price.

On the other hand - my wife - knowing little of concertinas and less of the stock market, has suggested a going price of 9500$. This, I believe, is cheaper than a divorce, and so I'll let it stand for the moment, though I'm still open to offers.

Remember, while money is fleeting, a concertina is forever.


Best - Ed

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