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Author Topic: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old  (Read 2526 times)

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Bakerspace

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I have been playing the melodeon for about 10 months now, having purchased a hardly used Hohner Morgane in G/D.
However my 10 year old daughter is now asking about learning to play either the melodeon, or the concertina.
She has had a little go on my box, but finds it rather large to play.
Any recommendations on what to look out for to get her going?  There seems to be much more availability in the world of cheap second hand concertinas (English), and ignoring the small plastic melodeons, i'm not sure what to be looking for that would suit her size (and my small budget!)

All suggestions gratefully received!

Paul
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Thrupenny Bit

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2013, 11:00:19 AM »

Hiya, welcome aboard!
The trouble is with cheap second hand English concertinas is that a lot are of very poor quality and often of value as an object not as a playable instrument. I started this way to be fair, then as soon as funds allowed got myself a proper quality instrument as it was obvious I liked the system and could progress on it. These now don't come cheap!
Have you thought about some of the smaller sized melodeons? They are very playable, are more than a cheap wrecked concertina but not as much as a decent concertina, and have a good resale value if the interest wains. Or keep it as your 'going out' box!
Just a thought
Q


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I think I'm starting to get most of the notes in roughly the right order...... sometimes!

Bakerspace

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2013, 01:01:05 PM »

Hiya, welcome aboard!
The trouble is with cheap second hand English concertinas is that a lot are of very poor quality and often of value as an object not as a playable instrument. I started this way to be fair, then as soon as funds allowed got myself a proper quality instrument as it was obvious I liked the system and could progress on it. These now don't come cheap!
Have you thought about some of the smaller sized melodeons? They are very playable, are more than a cheap wrecked concertina but not as much as a decent concertina, and have a good resale value if the interest wains. Or keep it as your 'going out' box!
Just a thought
Q

Any melodeons you would recommend for being small and compact?  Only one that springs to my mind is a Lilly, and castagnari are outside of budget i'm afraid!

You don't still have your old cheap/poor quality concertina around by any chance....   ;)
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Owen Woods

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2013, 03:25:21 PM »

The Liliput is smaller still, but it can be expensive. If you are lucky you could pick up a restored and converted (i.e. D/G) one fairly cheap, I think that the cheapest I've seen is around £550.
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Steve C.

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2013, 03:39:30 PM »

You only think you need a small box for a small person.
One would not buy a miniature piano for a 10 year old, would one?
I agree that a full size (heavy) box makes no sense (though I did learn from the age of 8 on full size piano accordion, as did most 8 year olds of my day).
I think the Morgane is fine.  You will have to adjust the straps, especially the bass side will take some fiddling.
With the exception of some fancy stuff and using the accidentals, there should be nothing she can't play. 
I bet you can have her playing Twinkle Twinkle in 20 minutes!
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sue higham

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #5 on: April 09, 2013, 04:02:37 PM »

Agree with you GCFMan/Steve. 

Bakerspace - your daughter won't always be 10!

IMHO, it's always worthwhile getting the best you can - for children as well as adults - to encourage playing and feeding enthusiasm ..... and if it all goes terribly wrong, at least you've got something worth selling!

We just bought our nearly 10 year old grandson a Sandpiper. Up until now he's had a £20 single row instrument - then the loan of a 23 button 2-row which did help to a certain extent although it was in C/F, whereas all around him are playing D/G.  He's average size for his age, and he's thrilled to bits with it (as are all around!)  Just checking Music Room's website and the Sandpiper isn't as expensive as the Morgane, but does come with very good provenance and makes a lovely sound.  Another friend of mine has just bought a B/C Sandpiper from the Music Room and she loves it to bits .... although she was a little disappointed that Tim Edey wasn't included in the package  ;)
« Last Edit: April 09, 2013, 04:17:30 PM by sue higham »
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Chris Ryall

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #6 on: April 09, 2013, 05:02:46 PM »

My experience of cheapo concertinas is that they are considerably more "toy"'than similar melodeons. Also the extra left end buttons and need to make own chords won't assist a really young learner. I found my tin Chinese one row melodeon (cost 50p) entirely playable. It was a bit weak in the bellows department but the tin plate s frankly more robust than wood.
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Chris Ryall

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #7 on: April 10, 2013, 10:20:32 AM »

I seem to have picked up more on the third word in your subject than the educational aspects. I guess much depends on circumstances, eg whether further kids are coming through and might also demand"own instrument"  ::)  If "cheap" is because she might start and change her mind .. then those Chinese tinnies minnies aren't rubbish.

But if you feel the young lady to be keen then your ideal is "best you can afford".  I once received a gratuitous letter from Régis Renault (90's guitarist in Maubisson). He'd briefly tutored my 9 year old son; it forcefully urged me to do precisely that.  A £450 guitar hurt, just a year after a divorce, but it led on to GCSE music, and some fun school Rock-band performances! 14 years later it has proved very excellent advice.

As for melodeon:  my #2 daughter had a crack at my own Casta Lilly at age 6 and it was "just right" (she has unusually large hands, but isn't called Goldilocks ;))  Tilly rapidly mastered 6 tunes (!) sadly moving on. So if your own girl is intrinsically musical you have a true delight in store. Family dynamics important again, but at 10 a "cheapo" might be false economy -  in that she'll do better playing yours.  Fundamentally the nicer the instrument, the more it is practiced.

My own brood had access to a room of true "junk" instruments, typically costing £5-30. They picked up whatever they fancied; then had to ask for lessons ;)). But  it was actually that "best affordable" guitar, and a similarly sound piano (inherited from music teacher/great-grandad Cyril) that have led on into adult musical expression.

A more formal appeal on the buy/sell board might discover the ideal piece of kit?  Quite a few MAD members will have something of the genre, rarely played. I feel moral obligation to move such instruments on, and unfortunately passed my Lilly to #1 daughter .. just 8 days ago! But you'll have enough experience to assess a box now. One consideration may be that a melodeon bought from within the Melodeonista corps will usually sell on at zero loss a few years later if it doesn't work out, (or she grows)!

You might also consider a more geographically explicit post on the forum's "tuition network" - this being what it was set up for  :|glug
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EastAnglianTed

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #8 on: April 10, 2013, 10:32:28 AM »

    I started with a chinese £10 jobby as a kid. Good for basics and to be fair they are real (small) instruments, and for the price you can't complain  (:)
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Nick Collis Bird

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #9 on: April 10, 2013, 11:01:27 AM »

    I started with a chinese £10 jobby as a kid. Good for basics and to be fair they are real (small) instruments, and for the price you can't complain  (:)

Especially the way you tweak em Ted (:)
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EastAnglianTed

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #10 on: April 10, 2013, 11:40:32 AM »

    Ah if someone started selling tweaked ones, with new bellows, then that would be the ultimate suggestion for this thread- Nick *hint hint*
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Nick Collis Bird

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #11 on: April 10, 2013, 11:57:42 AM »

 >:quote author=EastAnglianTed link=topic=12059.msg149017#msg149017 date=1365590432]
    Ah if someone started selling tweaked ones, with new bellows, then that would be the ultimate suggestion for this thread- Nick *hint hint*
[/quote]

 ;D >:( :( :'( >:E
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Chris Ryall

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #12 on: April 10, 2013, 02:46:22 PM »

>:quote author=EastAnglianTed link=topic=12059.msg149017#msg149017 date=1365590432]
    Ah if someone started selling tweaked ones, with new bellows, then that would be the ultimate suggestion for this thread- Nick *hint hint*
[ /quote]

As we are well off topic already, may I take the opportunity to complement our colleague on his ever more imaginative butchery dissections of this Simple Message Forum's simple quote facility. We've enjoyed Chateaubriand .. looking forward to (I'm guessing here) Surf and Turf? :|glug

Quote

   ;D >:( :( :'( >:E


.. five-a-side emoticons!
  'fraid I've just eaten ;)
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Bakerspace

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #13 on: April 10, 2013, 04:00:45 PM »

I appreciate all the comments, and also welcome the idea of something tweaked!  I'll try and flesh out the situation a little more...

My 10 year old is the eldest of 3 children, and already plays Clarinet and Piano (having just passed her grade 3 on both instruments last week!).
I am a guitarist of old, but wanted to play more melody, and have just joined a morris team, so took up the melodeon 10 months ago, buying a second hand Morgane as a good (but not too expensive!) starter instrument.
While my 10 year old has expressed interest in wanting to play either the Melodeon, or the Concertina (and i'm not sure where she knows anything about concertinas from!  The hexagon thingy as I believe she described it, not knowing the name!), she does already play 2 instruments, and I don't know whether this is a passing fad, or just because it's what "daddy" does.
I don't want to be constantly adjusting straps if we tried to share an instrument, and it's also much easier to play with her/teach if we have separate instruments.
Ideas of a Sandpiper (£800 from the music room), etc are lovely in principle, and yes, a year down the road are possible.  But the tweaked £20 tin jobbie would be the ideal to see if she was seriously interested in the instrument.  Or the £100 second hand concertina on ebay would be much more appealing!

Keep those suggestions coming in!   Or if anyone has a cheap GD box going spare, i'd certainly be interested.

Thanks

Paul
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Andrew Wigglesworth

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Re: Recommendation for cheap Melodeon or Concertina for 10 year old
« Reply #14 on: April 15, 2013, 12:50:36 AM »

Have a look at Delicias too. Good instruments (proper instruments if you see what I mean) made in the Czech Republic and considerably cheaper than Hohners second hand.
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