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Author Topic: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers  (Read 1928 times)

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Anahata

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #20 on: March 01, 2017, 11:22:12 AM »

I DO think a lot about hand positioning and will play notes with a less obvious  finger because that moves my hand into a better position for the next bit of the tune

I think that's part of what using three fingers makes you do. If you go up a scale using the little finger and you then need to go higher, it's a big jump in hand position. If you have to make the change earlier, you'll also start deciding whether to move after you've used two fingers or three.

I haven't done what Stiamh suggested long-term, but I have occasionally tried deliberately not using the little finger and got better results - but it just seemed too much like hard work. I'm seriously thinking I should try harder...
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Andrew Wigglesworth

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #21 on: March 01, 2017, 12:22:45 PM »

In terms of how Irish box players are usually (though it seems not always) taught, we've discussed this kind of thing before.

The three finger technique definitely tends to promote a particular style of playing that is popular in Irish button accordion playing. Using it on my D/G and one rows, it certainly changes how the tunes sound, and it's a technique that I use on some tunes as it seems to fit them.

However, if I'm playing English dance music I often (even generally, though that would mean investigating a large number of tunes) do what Steve_freereeder describes. My little finger and first finger may be playing parts of the tune, whilst my index finger is playing a rhythmic accompiament. Or vice versa to add a bit of "light" to  some tunes that grumble around the bottom few notes of the G row. Or I'm punching in two or three note "chords" or working the octaves, all of which require the use of the little finger.

I don't think I ever consciously copied this habit, but started to do it more or less naturally to emulate the sound that English musicians (not just melodeons) were getting.

So, yes both are perfectly good techniques for getting whatever it is you want, and consider the fact that four finger techniques also incorporate many three fingered tricks and I've seen players who favour a three finger technique using their little finger when required.

boxcall

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #22 on: March 01, 2017, 01:43:41 PM »

four fingers for me but I don't think one way is better.
these players use four and it doesn't slow them down. also some lift their fingers up a fair amount, yet still play with speed and accuracy.
Rejean Simard https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwltqwDCGKk  his hand is pretty straight to keyboard and lifts fingers

Frank Sears https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gbzwDuZayVA  his hand is at an angle to key bd. and lifts fingers off buttons a fair amount.

Gilles Poutoux https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L3TYciqLUS8  similar

Johnny Connolly https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0DnkFCcYbe8  hands straight not much lift on fingers






« Last Edit: March 01, 2017, 04:43:30 PM by boxcall »
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george garside

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #23 on: March 01, 2017, 03:35:48 PM »

provided a one row is firmly attached to the person, which most are not but mine are, it can be interesting to occasionaly use 5 fingers i.e. play the tune at the knee end with 3 or 4 fingers as required and occasionaly chuck in some grunters from the chin end with the thumb

george
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Stiamh

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #24 on: March 01, 2017, 04:09:50 PM »

Rejean Simard https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwltqwDCGKk 
Frank Sears https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwltqwDCGKk 
Gilles Poutoux  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwltqwDCGKk 

Actually these are Réjean Simard!

Quote
Johnny Connolly https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0DnkFCcYbe8  hands straight not much lift on fingers

I am unconvinced. His little finger is certainly moving but I think that is sympathetic waggling. If you can identify a spot in that clip - or any other clip - where you are sure he is pressing a button with the little finger, please give the mins:seconds.



Rees

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #25 on: March 01, 2017, 04:25:51 PM »

I spent a week with Johnny Connolly. He told me he uses four fingers.
I watched him very closely and never saw him use his little finger once during the whole week!
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boxcall

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #26 on: March 01, 2017, 04:54:08 PM »

Rejean Simard https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwltqwDCGKk 
Frank Sears https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwltqwDCGKk 
Gilles Poutoux  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwltqwDCGKk 

Actually these are Réjean Simard!

Quote
Johnny Connolly https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0DnkFCcYbe8  hands straight not much lift on fingers

I am unconvinced. His little finger is certainly moving but I think that is sympathetic waggling. If you can identify a spot in that clip - or any other clip - where you are sure he is pressing a button with the little finger, please give the mins:seconds.

sorry , links fixed

If he said he uses four that's good enough for me ;)  well it looks like he's brings it in here and there. I can't point out any spots in videos ( bad angle or lighting in most ), you got me less convinced now.

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tirpous

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #27 on: March 01, 2017, 06:24:10 PM »

Quote
I am unconvinced. His little finger is certainly moving but I think that is sympathetic waggling. If you can identify a spot in that clip - or any other clip - where you are sure he is pressing a button with the little finger, please give the mins:seconds.

This one maybe ?  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jt4DjASIHbM  Around the 1 minute mark...
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boxcall

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #28 on: March 03, 2017, 03:21:18 PM »

still hard to tell, there's seems to be something blocking the view in all the videos.
but early in that video around 20 to 25 seconds it looks like he does.

I haven't seen this "Guy" before, It came up on my suggested or recommended list on YT.
very good playing, I think and He uses four as needed. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sr0bSJMDVHE

I'm thinking the box he's playing is a four voice? maybe just a stop for low and high voice.

I noticed he's playing to a track and was wondering can you get these backing tracks somewhere or do you have to make your own. There's probably some on YT but wondering if there's more?
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Stiamh

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #29 on: March 03, 2017, 03:32:37 PM »

I haven't seen this "Guy" before, It came up on my suggested or recommended list on YT.
very good playing, I think and He uses four as needed. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sr0bSJMDVHE

I'm thinking the box he's playing is a four voice? maybe just a stop for low and high voice.

BTW he's a "ghee" rather than a "guy"... and those knobs are probably not stops - just handles for bathroom cabinets screwed on for decoration. Some of Messervier's earlier models have the same "feature".

richard.fleming

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #30 on: March 03, 2017, 04:10:08 PM »

Why use three fingers if you've got four? Makes no sense to me.
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boxcall

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #31 on: March 03, 2017, 05:29:18 PM »

I haven't seen this "Guy" before, It came up on my suggested or recommended list on YT.
very good playing, I think and He uses four as needed. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sr0bSJMDVHE

I'm thinking the box he's playing is a four voice? maybe just a stop for low and high voice.

BTW he's a "ghee" rather than a "guy"... and those knobs are probably not stops - just handles for bathroom cabinets screwed on for decoration. Some of Messervier's earlier models have the same "feature".

Thanks for the name info, I can barely do English as you know (:)
It sounds nice too!
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Stiamh

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #32 on: March 03, 2017, 05:57:02 PM »

Why use three fingers if you've got four? Makes no sense to me.

Made none to me either - until I was persuaded to try it.

george garside

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #33 on: March 03, 2017, 06:55:47 PM »

the question of how many fingers to use arises with all diatonic boxes not just one rows  and whether 1, 2 or 3 rows and semitone or 4th apart  oron one the row on the row ( where else)  there are no hard and fast rules as what's best for the individual .It can vary not only from tune to tune but also with different bits of the same tune.  As an example for the run down in harvest home  on a 2 or 3 row semitone box I find that using 2 fingers works better than 3 or 4 but tend to use 4 most of the time  while on a one row I use always 4 fingers  for the same bit of harvest home .

the how many fingers debate never seems to crop amongst piano box players? 

george
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richard.fleming

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #34 on: March 03, 2017, 07:14:50 PM »

So Stiamh, can you explain why it is better to use 3 fingers? I've given it a go but I'm not an instant convert...
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boxcall

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #35 on: March 03, 2017, 07:45:34 PM »

the question of how many fingers to use arises with all diatonic boxes not just one rows  and whether 1, 2 or 3 rows and semitone or 4th apart  oron one the row on the row ( where else)  there are no hard and fast rules as what's best for the individual .It can vary not only from tune to tune but also with different bits of the same tune.  As an example for the run down in harvest home  on a 2 or 3 row semitone box I find that using 2 fingers works better than 3 or 4 but tend to use 4 most of the time  while on a one row I use always 4 fingers  for the same bit of harvest home .

the how many fingers debate never seems to crop amongst piano box players? 

george
  I like Discussion rather than  debate for I'm not taking a side.
My teacher never mention it when I started. I been trying it but think it would take a lot of retraining.
Rejean Simard https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwltqwDCGKk 
Frank Sears https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwltqwDCGKk 
Gilles Poutoux  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwltqwDCGKk 

Actually these are Réjean Simard!

Quote
Johnny Connolly https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0DnkFCcYbe8  hands straight not much lift on fingers

I am unconvinced. His little finger is certainly moving but I think that is sympathetic waggling. If you can identify a spot in that clip - or any other clip - where you are sure he is pressing a button with the little finger, please give the mins:seconds.




this video is good and I believe He does use it, and clearly using it at around 4.25 >:E

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Pv8VcBvrn0
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Anahata

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #36 on: March 03, 2017, 08:08:16 PM »

Why use three fingers if you've got four? Makes no sense to me.

In a nutshell, because the little finger tends to be weaker and less co-ordinated than the other three.

Try playing a fast trill, first with 1st two fingers, then with 3rd and 4th, and you'll soon hear the difference.
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Stiamh

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #37 on: March 03, 2017, 08:10:01 PM »

So Stiamh, can you explain why it is better to use 3 fingers? I've given it a go but I'm not an instant convert...

Before Anahata beat me to it, with admirable brevity, I was in the process of writing the following!

Richard, I'm a bit weary of discussing this subject because it has come up many times and in years past I probably came across as a bit of an anorak | nerd | preacher.

Rather than say it is better, I'll say it has helped me a) get around the keyboard faster and b) hit buttons, esp. remote buttons, with greater certainty. Some varieties of Irish tune have us scooting up and down the keyboard much more than say québécois tunes, and so what québécois (or English) players do, with their own stylistic conventions, and with most of them having their thumbs in a thumbstrap, is of academic interest only to me.

On the lines of what George said above, I also coined the phrase, "if a passage is too hard using 3 fingers, try it using 2"... Chris Ryall liked that one.

Here's one thread in which I was asked to explain my adherence to the 3-digit school.

There are earlier ones if you feel like trawling. But if you've tried the approach and not found it to be of benefit, then there's no point. If I had tried it and not found it so useful, I would have certainly have consigned it to the rubbish bin of useless advice.

For you, to paraphrase George Orwell, "3 fingers good, 4 fingers better." For me it's the reverse. (:)

playandteach

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #38 on: March 03, 2017, 09:23:10 PM »

Seems to me we're saying: Train the little finger equally hard, but then keep in on the bench until needed.
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oggiesnr

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #39 on: March 03, 2017, 10:42:09 PM »

I also play double bass where you use your fouth finger, in fact use of your second finger is a no-no.  It's surprising how quickly you can build up strength and dexterity in your fourth finger  (:)

The other thing that double bass playing teaches you is hand shifts and that is what has really transferred to melodeon playing.  So I need to go up to that set of notes?  Right where are the logical places to move my hands?  Often (on a G box but it holds good for other keys, just change the notes) I'll anchor my first finger on D and then shift it to B.  If I have to go really high I'll shift to the octave D but this is rare, I can enough buttons with my hand to use mt little finger for octave harmonies.

Steve
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