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Author Topic: What to put on the flip side of a low G  (Read 979 times)

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Tone Dumb Greg

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What to put on the flip side of a low G
« on: September 15, 2018, 02:53:14 PM »

If you're bored with layout questions please look away now. It's a simple one, though.

I need a low G for a tune the side want me to play, so I am planning on  changing to my poker work (4th button start) layout from the current push F3 (that I never use for morris tunes) to G3, and can't make up my mind what to have on the flip side of it. An  A3 (as in Anahata's layout). or a D4 (as in my current layout).
What do you think?
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Gena Crisman

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2018, 04:26:59 PM »

Wait, so, what is your current layout exactly? For normal low notes there'd be is a push F#3 / pull A3 located on the D row - see the Standard low notes layout here. Normally I would expect, if you have a pull D4, that it would be on the inside row opposite a push B3. Perhaps you're already somewhere a bit unusual?
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Lester

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2018, 04:29:36 PM »

All my D/Gs use the G Scale layout. Seems to me to provide all I want and allows me to play a lot of tunes down an octave on everyone else thus providing some variation in the overall sound of the session/band.

https://forum.melodeon.net/files/site/keyboards/2%20Row%20-%20D_G%20-%20G%20Scale%20with%20accidentals.jpg

Thrupenny Bit

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2018, 06:28:56 PM »

I use an A as per Anahata layout.
It gives an octave of G below and I do use the A in the tunes I play.
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george garside

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2018, 07:41:08 PM »

on my 4th button start Dg I have  in effect the DG version of BC  layout i.e. on the push everything  repeats every 4 buttons and on the pull every 5 buttons.    on the g row button 2 (1 being standard accidentals) is B push/E pull and on the D row F# push/ B pull.  This works well for me and helps prevent cock ups as I play  both DG and BC

george
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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2018, 03:01:01 PM »

Wait, so, what is your current layout exactly? For normal low notes there'd be is a push F#3 / pull A3 located on the D row - see the Standard low notes layout here. Normally I would expect, if you have a pull D4, that it would be on the inside row opposite a push B3. Perhaps you're already somewhere a bit unusual?

Yes, It's a personalised layout already, Gena. Layout attached. I am changing button 2 on the G row. I am considering G3/A3 and G3/D4 as possibilities.

For general playing it has served me well for a few years as an accidental (think libullero) or for occasional C major, A minor and D minor tunes but I want to make it my morris box. We have a tune that goes down to low G and doesn't work properly without it.
None of our morris tunes use a middle F (well, none of them use any Fs, to be  honest. They're like the practice season. No  F in morris (:)).

So, my F4 is likely  to become a G3.  I think I've a reed fairly close somewhere
(hmm, I've just had a quick look and the nearest candidate I've found is found A3/C#4. Do-able, I think).

I rather like the pull D4 I have now. I would need a very good reason to change it. I use it a lot.
What I'm wondering is, Is there a benefit to Anahata's layout that I am missing?

I have issues with button 1 on the G row, as well. This is the standard F5/Eb5. I don't use either of those notes playing morris tunes  (although I do use Bb4 a lot, so that stays).  I wondered if I should just dump them and make them G3/A3 and leave the D row alone. The argument against that is that I would like to set my CF  up with the same pattern of notes, a tone down. I do want to play a wider range of tunes on that. It's currently set up with standard 3 button start low note layout.
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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2018, 03:39:49 PM »

Greg, it always comes down to the mantra 'what do you want to play?'
You mention your pull D you use a lot, whilst Eb or D# as I think of it, you never use.
By contrast, I don't think I've ever wondered about or missed a pull D and I use my D# a lot!
The Fnat too I use, though not as frequently as the D#.
The tunes I play take a frequent trip amongst the accidentals and they all are used to a greater or lesser amount. I could not play a significant number of tunes that I enjoy without them.

If there's a combination of notes that suits you and your tunes then its difficult to advise, not knowing know your repertoire.
Good luck in your considerations.
Q
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george garside

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2018, 05:10:39 PM »

rather than finishing up with a non standard treble layout just to get a low G for a particular morris tune why not just pot it in with the G Bass note? or if playing with other instruments that have the low G just miss it out - probably the dancers and any 'audience' won't even notice.  The noble art of faking, which is part and parcel of playing a melodeon ,  can often be used on the basis that 'bullshit baffles brains!'


george ;)
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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2018, 08:11:41 PM »

rather than finishing up with a non standard treble layout just to get a low G for a particular morris tune why not just pot it in with the G Bass note? or if playing with other instruments that have the low G just miss it out - probably the dancers and any 'audience' won't even notice.  The noble art of faking, which is part and parcel of playing a melodeon ,  can often be used on the basis that 'bullshit baffles brains!'

george ;)

Well, I have no problems with a non-standard layout, if it works better for me (it's non-standard, already).
As I think I've said, or maybe implied, using the bass note doesn't do it for me in this tune. I don't care if the audience doesn't notice, all our musician's will.
It's the opening note of the tune. If it's not right it will stick out like the proverbial. Anyway, I love low Gs on a D/G.
This is an instance where, effective though it can be, the BBB approach doesn't really work.
Anyway, a fairly standard solution is available. I am just dithering over the fact that I think I will prefer my variation and I'm wondering if anyone can give me a reason for favouring Anahata's solution over my preference.
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Greg Smith
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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2018, 11:23:24 PM »

There's a thread about it here: http://forum.melodeon.net/index.php/topic,14991.msg184818.html
And another here: http://forum.melodeon.net/index.php?topic=16251.0
And others that Google will find for you.

Part of the logic of my layout is that it gives you two buttons with the first 4 notes of the low G scale with identical fingering and bellows direction to the next octave (so the basses fit too).
Compared with a standard low notes layout, it adds a C natural and a G and loses a low F♯. It also loses a low pull D but I don't miss that as I've never had one.

Everything's a compromise, but quite a few people seem to think this is a fairly useful one. YMMV.
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Gena Crisman

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2018, 01:21:49 AM »

Yes, It's a personalised layout already, Gena. Layout attached. I am changing button 2 on the G row. I am considering G3/A3 and G3/D4 as possibilities.

Ah yes, that would explain it. I'm a master-a-single-layout type of person I think - I wouldn't really want to feel like I was playing some kind of special puzzle box of my own design that I have to solve while in public, so, I think I'd aim to match my one-true-melodeon I'd like to play as closely as possible.

While I think your idea to replace the currently idle accidental button could work well, as it should be easy enough to pick out tunes to play that will avoid it. More importantly I'd say that if you're using your pull D note a lot, then idk I feel like I would bump headfirst into that repeatedly for quite a long time if it was suddenly absent, as surely it is going to alter both your bellows direction choices and bass button choices. And obviously, you don't really need that A on the pull to have the whole low scale, as you do have it on the push and that one note shouldn't make or break having air in your bellows. But, no pull A does stop you combining that low A note with either your A basses or right hand side C# and E notes. But, just the same, having no pull D also stops you playing that D on the pull. Both feel a somewhat like a bit of bonus gravy.

I've already wrought my brain about the idea of living without pull D notes, so, I would pick the pull A because I want to play it over my A basses - the push A actually seems the less useful of the two, at least in my mind.
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Mcgrooger

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2018, 01:59:21 PM »

When I asked Mike Rowbotham to put together my Hohner Pressed Wood I asked for 4th button start and low 'Anahata' scale.  None of my other boxes have it but it's my favourite and has opened up lots of tunes in the lower octave (where they need to be on a 2 reed box) that I can't play on my 3rd button start L'Elfique.

As Anahata and many others have said the melodeon's a funny beast requiring compromises but it also provides loads of fun working out ways round any limitations.

Another small point is that it's not necessary to have the same fingering if you have more than one box. It's surprising how your fingers get used to the slightly differing layouts. I have 3 different layouts on my 2 rows and can still cope but l do tend to reach for the Pressed Wood first on a new tune.
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Thrupenny Bit

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #12 on: September 17, 2018, 02:57:52 PM »

I chose to convert my first box to the Anahata layout very early on when still very much a beginner.
It seemed eminently sensible to have a low G as apparently that is the lowest note on a fiddle, and seeing as most were fiddle tunes it allows one to play those tunes.
I've copied this onto subsequent boxes and even have a BbEb  built the same way, as I didn't want the hassle of trying to remember which box I was playing. Having only taken it up relatively recently compared to the old sages, I didn't want an added complication.
I bow to those that can switch their brains between layouts and between 2row 8 bass  and 2.5 row 12 basses, and perhaps that'll come, but now I'm taking the straightest way through it all!
cheers
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Thrupenny Bit

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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2018, 12:59:09 PM »

Thanks for your comments. You have all raised points that have helped me think things through. Maybe, as Devil's advocate.

My understanding of what I want to add (G3) and why has become much clearer (thank you George). So, the question becomes, what don't I want to lose and why not? I can see a few options:

1. Lose the current D4 pull and adopt Anahata's layout. Much as I like this layout, I really don't want to do this. The pull D is an integral part of how I play a lot of tunes. I use it for a few things in particular. Pull D chords and arpeggios (these definitely simplify air use); for runs down, the pull D matches the pull E and its helps changing harmonic options from G based to D based, in slower tunes, without running out of air (I know what I mean). I could still play without them, but would far rather have them.

2. Lose Anahata's option of  a pull A3 back to back with G3. I  don't have this on  my pokerwork but I do have it on my 2.4 row and I do use it. Especially as a harmony note (thank you for the reminder Gena) with  A chords.

3. Lose F5/Eb5. This is becoming increasingly tempting. There is not a single tune that I play on a regular basis that uses F5. F4, yes, a few (I would be quite happy to lose The Trumpet Hornpipe but the rest of the band like it). F5, no. I do use Eb on at least one tune that I love, Crested Hens. Hmm. I don't, really, want to lose F4 or Eb5. F5 can go in Room 101 (special reference for Winston).

The comments by Gena, Quentin and McG have given me food for thought. I don't mind a layout being non-standard, Gena. If that's the best, or the only, way to get what I need I will do it. I can change my mind if it really doesn't work, or doesn't really work..
On reflection, Quentin and Gena, I don't mind layouts being different on different boxes (but thanks for making me think about this). McGrooger has an excellent point about it not actually being that difficult to cope with different layouts. I am already doing this without too many difficulties. Different boxes for different situations makes sense.

So, unless anyone comes up with a really good reason not to, I'm keeping the F4/D4  combination and I'm adding G3/A3 as button 1 on the G row. That leaves Eb5. I can only think of one place for it. That's down at the squeaky end. I suggested this a few years ago and it sees to be a sacrilige to most. Quite honestly, though, I don't think I would miss the high E/G combination at all. I rarely, if ever use it. I think it's redundant on a D/G. Especially if your goal is an emphasis in on playability in the lowest octave. I've tried using the top notes for harmony and playing in the upper octave but, frankly, it's squeaky enough without them (actually, I think it's about right without them).
And (I've just had a sudden rush of blood to the brain),   I could combine a push Eb5 with a pull D5. Or, a push E5 or C4, with a pull Eb5. Now, there's a thought. How non-standard can it get? But I'm certain I would use that button and I can think of tunes for them straight away. While I'm at it, I think I'll dump the taped off B chord and make it Bm. I'll reinstate the A major, as well. Layout attached.

I want a morris box to suit me and my side, but it's nice to keep a few fingers and toes of the baby.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2018, 01:01:02 PM by Tone Dumb Greg »
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Rees

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #14 on: September 18, 2018, 01:39:36 PM »

Pull D every time for me - I'd be lost without it.
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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #15 on: September 18, 2018, 01:57:56 PM »

Wouldn't the G3/A3 reed be much larger than the current F5/Eb5, so fitting it may require some surgery?
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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #16 on: September 18, 2018, 02:11:13 PM »

Wouldn't the G3/A3 reed be much larger than the current F5/Eb5, so fitting it may require some surgery?

Good point. I don't know how the reed frame sizes compare or whether the block tapers. I shall have to look.

Or, can anyone advise? It's a bog standard Chinese Pokerwork.

[Edit: Modified to a 4th button start, as in the layout I posted earlier on]
« Last Edit: September 18, 2018, 02:15:25 PM by Tone Dumb Greg »
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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #17 on: September 18, 2018, 03:41:49 PM »

Pull D every time for me - I'd be lost without it.
Me too.
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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #18 on: September 18, 2018, 04:08:28 PM »

What's occurring?
In my opinion, to be honest, I'll not lie to you - if you really want to change the standard 2-row factory layout, which has been around for a very long time and works very well, then go for the basic Anahata layout as shown here. It does everything the OP seems to want, and it has the F4 and D#4 in a useable place (reverse them if you wish). It preserves the pull A3 and pull D4, so it would keep Rees (and me) happy, especially when doing droney things.

Also - someone else buying your box after you've decided to trade it in (and you probably will at some point), won't be thinking 'why the f*** on Earth did someone do this to it?'

Edited to correct mistake about the pull D4, sorry.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2018, 04:27:25 PM by Steve_freereeder »
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Winston Smith

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Re: What to put on the flip side of a low G
« Reply #19 on: September 18, 2018, 04:17:03 PM »

"thinking 'why..........on Earth did someone do this to it?'"

Surely that in itself is good enough reason to do it? Personally, I'd be lost without my low pull E (on the 1 row) now that I've got used to having it.
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