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Very sad news

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I haven't been on C-net for awhile, but I just got this email from my dear friend Carol Compton who works at CDSS:


"For those who had any reason to know Rich Morse, builder of concertinas, owner of The Button Box - he had been recently diagnosed with quite advanced cancer and died last night - at home. Another tough loss for the morris community."


I am surprised to see nothing here, and I don't have regular access to internet these days, but I wanted to come straight to this fine community and share my sadness at the loss of a wonderful man.


Sad news indeed.

I first met Rich at one of the early NESI, either the first or the second, when building and marketing concertinas was little more than a gleam in his eye.

I can't claim to have know Rich well but he will surely be missed.



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I'm genuinely shocked and saddened at this news. Rich was a true gentleman, so patient with answers to questions which he must have answered over and over. A real loss to the concertina community, but he does leave a great legacy, both as a designer/manufacturer and as an honourable, patient person who helped so many others on their concertina journey.

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Thanks for all the great music you have created. You are deeply missed.

To his family and friends my greatest sympathy.


Great music -- does everyone knwo that among all his other talents and achievements, Rich was a composer?


He wrote at least three piano rags, plus several tunes for concertina.

One, "The New Box", is included in the book "Along The River."

Another, "Leap of Faith", has been used in teaching, and is a great dance tune besides.


We should make sure Rich's music is available here.

--Mike K.

Edited by ragtimer
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Great music -- does everyone knwo that among all his other talents and achievements, Rich was a composer?

He wrote a tune widely used by Morris dance groups for the dance "Three Musketeers." It also goes by the name "Mr. Morse's Morris." Here's the abc:


T:Three Musketeers
C:Rich Morse
GABc d2G2|e3e  dBG2|GABc d2g2|edcB AcBA|
GABc d2G2|e3e  dBG2|c2ec dBAG|E2F2 G4  ||
G2G2 E2E2|F2FE D2F2|G2E2 F2D2|E2F2 G2A2|
GABc d2G2|e3e  dBG2|c2ec dBAG|E2F2 G4  |]


I'm not sure if the last 3 notes in the first line are part of the tune or embellishment, but it hardly matters...

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Does anyone have a sheetmusic copy? I would like to learn one of his tunes.



Copy the abc I posted above (everything inside the "code" box) and paste it into the box at the ABC Convert-A-Matic . Click "Submit."


You can read the music off the next screen. You can hear the tune as a MIDI or get a high-resolution pdf for printing by clicking the appropriate links above.


If you have trouble, e-mail me directly and I will send you the pdf.

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I met Rich at the shop and at the 3 or 4 Squeeze-In's I've attended.

Though I did not get to know him real well, he appeared as a kind and gentle person and always very enthusiastic, no excited, about almost any subject with which he was involved in discussion in which I was involved or might have overheard.

He has done a tremendous service for the contemporary concertina world, especially here in the U.S., with The Button Box, his beautifully designed instruments and organization of concertina, and yes, accordion related events.

He will be missed.

A trek to Massachusetts will not be the same without Rich being at the shop.

I just hope The Button Box will continue to function on 47 buttons.

It would be a great tribute to it's founder.


Perry Werner

Edited by Perry Werner
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I was away for a week (including a vacation from computers), so I just heard the news. I had no idea Rich was not well, which is representative of how he conducted himself over the 12 years we were acquainted.


Like many of you I got out my Morse concertina, but instead of playing it myself handed it to someone Rich cited not too long ago as an example of a beginner on concertina, a market he served and encouraged well. Me, I got out the battered but most excellent fiddle I bought from Rich Morse two years ago (and play a lot). It was his "number two" fiddle, and he told me he hardly played since the 1970s, having devoted his time to free reeds. We had a duet - the most fitting tribute we could do on the spot.


Ken Coles

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