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Author Topic: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers  (Read 1889 times)

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richard.fleming

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #60 on: March 08, 2017, 10:38:53 AM »

No-one has mentioned the importance of being able to stretch the index finger sideways to reach to low notes.. Look at videos of really good Irish players for example.
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george garside

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #61 on: March 08, 2017, 10:47:53 AM »

the thumb will reach even further!

george
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TomBom

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #62 on: March 08, 2017, 11:50:58 AM »

I can't recommend my mowing technique, but as an exercise 'wrong finger' playing was quick and effective.  I adapted a 'no bandage' verion to get all 4 digits working on my left hand.
Your training method seems to be quite common:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NNnAeAwUTiw
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mselic

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #63 on: March 08, 2017, 06:05:38 PM »

I do use my pinkie, but for repeated single notes (which are common in Irish music played on a melodeon) the pinkie struggles. If I have to hit a note three times in quick succession and that note happens to fall where my pinkie is, I will often re-think my fingering. I learned to touch type - I use all four fingers without difficulty....I can also tap my pinky three times in a row on a counter top no problem....but to reliably reproduce that when pushing a button on a four voice box is a different story, at least for me.
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Psuggmog Volbenz

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #64 on: March 09, 2017, 03:46:54 AM »

I thought it was the middle 2 fingers (excluding the thumb) that were connected as with the hand on a flat surface lifting one sort of tries to lift t'other. The same does not apply to lifting the little finger trying to lift the 3rd finger not does the reverse apply. ...
george
The middle finger also has a forked extensor tendon.
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mselic

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #65 on: March 15, 2017, 03:54:06 PM »

I had the good fortune to see Jackie Daly play last night and watched his fingers closely (he plays C#/D).  Afterwards, there was an informal session of sorts and I watched a young player, who I believe is Gaston Nolet's nephew, and a HECK of a box player too, play a one-row box along with Jackie.  I watched them both closely and never saw them use their pinkie once.  I then asked them about it, but both claimed that they used all four fingers!
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911377brian

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #66 on: March 15, 2017, 05:47:39 PM »

Mselic, that's really interesting. I played a couple of tunes to the long suffering Mrs Brian and she tells me that I do use my pinkie but in a random kind of way. I wasn't aware that I ever used it.... ???
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george garside

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #67 on: March 16, 2017, 08:56:47 AM »

using the pinky in an unconscious way is probably the best way - thinking about it the same should apply to other fingers ( and thumb) the use of!

Experiment slowly as to fingering when learning a tune is ok  but when playing there isn't time for any conscious thought about which digit prods which button

george
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Chris Ryall

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #68 on: March 17, 2017, 10:27:53 AM »

Just to tidy up (I'm an anatomist) the extensor tendons at back of hand do vary. I was taught that a slip joining 4-5 was the rule.  Feeling there on my own hand there is a strong diagonal ligament,t which affects 4 when I move 5 . "Classical pianists used to pay for this to be cut, surgically", the professor said.

Looking at diagrams on't'Internet - there are all sorts(!) of other little slips,  and I can 'just' feel one between 3-4 on my own hand - though it doesn't seem to move anything!

Having said that I've been a 4 finger player ever since my little attempt at self-amputation with that lawn mower  ::) The slip between my extensor tendons seem to cause no problems at all!   I 'd guess that in some of us it is more rubust, and might?

The more fingers the better, in my view. 
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boxcall

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #69 on: March 17, 2017, 05:05:59 PM »

I had the good fortune to see Jackie Daly play last night and watched his fingers closely (he plays C#/D).  Afterwards, there was an informal session of sorts and I watched a young player, who I believe is Gaston Nolet's nephew, and a HECK of a box player too, play a one-row box along with Jackie.  I watched them both closely and never saw them use their pinkie once.  I then asked them about it, but both claimed that they used all four fingers!
I think he uses it in the Video you posted in the other thread, check out the close up during ballydesmond polka at the end of tune. But He appears to mostly use three, wonderful stuff!!

From my experience the pinky has got stronger and more independent by using it, not that it makes for better playing using it or not. That comes from knowing the instrument and more importantly the music I think.
How are you liking the Beltuna?
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mselic

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #70 on: March 17, 2017, 07:45:55 PM »

Quote

How are you liking the Beltuna?

I love the Beltuna - it's a fantastic box.  I've tried several different one row boxes over the last two years, and this is the first one that made me lose interest in window shopping for others...My only real issue with it has been the last couple of buttons beginning to stick a little, presumably due to environmental conditions causing swelling of the wood, or something to that effect.  This is apparently not an entirely uncommon issue, as the dealer that I bought mine from said they have had to fix the same issue on a few boxes.  They'll be fixing mine in a few weeks, free of charge.

I also noticed a big difference between the box I walked away with, and the one that was on display on the shelf; the one that was on display felt a bit more "worked-in", and mine felt a bit tight in comparison. They all had excellent reed response - the slightest amount of pressure would begin to sound the reed.  I'm quite happy with it.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2017, 07:47:56 PM by mselic »
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Psuggmog Volbenz

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #71 on: March 18, 2017, 07:58:51 AM »

Just to tidy up (I'm an anatomist) the extensor tendons at back of hand do vary. I was taught that a slip joining 4-5 was the rule.  Feeling there on my own hand there is a strong diagonal ligament,t which affects 4 when I move 5 . "Classical pianists used to pay for this to be cut, surgically", the professor said.

Looking at diagrams on't'Internet - there are all sorts(!) of other little slips,  and I can 'just' feel one between 3-4 on my own hand - though it doesn't seem to move anything!

Having said that I've been a 4 finger player ever since my little attempt at self-amputation with that lawn mower  ::) The slip between my extensor tendons seem to cause no problems at all!   I 'd guess that in some of us it is more rubust, and might?

The more fingers the better, in my view.
I took five quarters of anatomy inclunding one quarter specifically dealing with the upper extremities only, and one of the five was neuroanatomy. This was the basis for my previous comments. These classes were over four decades ago, but hand morphology hasn't changed. I am a four finger player and have noticed steady, measurable inprovement over time. This thread has resulted in my closer monitoring of my right hand motor activity, but not to the extent of interferring with musical expression.
« Last Edit: March 18, 2017, 08:11:52 AM by Psuggmog Volbenz »
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Psuggmog Volbenz

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #72 on: March 18, 2017, 08:09:49 AM »

I have unconsciously learned to somewhat divorce unwanted coextention of my fourth and little finger by slightly energising the intrensic flexor muscles of my ring finger while extending my little finger. The flexor tension is not enough to move the finger, but rather provide cocontraction to stabilize the metacarpal-phalangeal joint while allowing independent extension of the little finger. Of course, I don't think of this, but there is a sensation/feedback loop which accompanies this incedent.
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george garside

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #73 on: March 18, 2017, 10:00:19 AM »

as a non anatomist it seems to me that our two anatomical experts are saying words to the effect of '' if you just get on with it ( using the little finger)  the 'strings' in the hand  will just get used to it and any problems will take care of themselves''????


George - (a 4 or occasionaly 5 finger player whose stings do not cause any  problems)
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Chris Ryall

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #74 on: March 18, 2017, 11:57:21 AM »

Depends 'how you are made' George (our psychologist, as we see above ;)).   I've never had any problem, once I realised it was there.  As per above, several concert pianists in the early 20th century had the slips 'snipped'  - but then that's one way to get one's name in the papers, and so 'back to psychology'. 

I stick by 'the more fingers the better', while noting that Django Rheinhard did OK with 2! 

An exception  is the 'built in blues scale' that runs in an  ◥ ◢◥ ◢◥ ◢ zig-zag pattern along a 2-row (off topic!) quint box, eg F#m on a D/G.  That has a such a totally regular 3 button shape repeat - that we are best to stick to three fingers. As a policy. 
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Katie Howson

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #75 on: March 23, 2017, 10:15:25 PM »

I hesitate to dip my toe in the water here, as although I’ve been playing the one-row melodeon for 40 years, I’m not prone to analysing things too closely.

I always used to feel second-best for not using my fourth finger, as I presumed from the two piano lessons I had as child that it was compulsory to do so, but then I learned to play C melodeon sitting alongside older generation traditional musicians in Suffolk who never really gave you any hints about what to do, and if it was your turn to play Pigeon on the Gate for stepdancing, you had to do it on your own whether you knew the tune or not – so individual habits evolved to make the sound I wanted to get out of the box.

Since those days I’ve taught many people to play in classes and workshops and my mantra has always been ‘there are no rules’ - this is what is so different and liberating about our genre of music in comparison to having conventional piano lessons. It’s really great to find other people on here also recognising - not only is it OK not to use your little finger - but that there are actually benefits to it! I still have students who clearly don’t quite believe me, but who have been struggling to make their music fluent because of over reliance on the smaller fingers.

The thing with the one-row of course is that you play up the ‘dusty’ end of the keyboard so much more, that you really have to move your hand position more often than those who play safe with short-stretch tunes based on the G row (talking D/G here, sorry) near your chin.

The week with Johnny Connolly was as enlightening as Rees says – but glorious music and I do now have a better insight into reels on the ‘melojun’.

I was prompted to join this discussion because just minutes before logging onto melnet I was playing a tune and without thinking about it, used my little finger for the last note. So there you go, some people say they use it and don’t, and others say they never use it and then take even themselves by surprise!
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Steve_freereeder

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #76 on: Yesterday at 12:13:41 AM »


... Since those days I’ve taught many people to play in classes and workshops and my mantra has always been ‘there are no rules’ - this is what is so different and liberating about our genre of music in comparison to having conventional piano lessons. ...

Well said, Katie. This is exactly my philosophy too.  (:)
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boxcall

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #77 on: Yesterday at 01:04:58 AM »

I agree with Steve, Thanks for contributing to the topic Katie!
I have been using and may still use four fingers , thought it would be difficult to change now to three. I surprised myself playing the Liverpool hornpipe with three fingers pretty well ( for me anyway )after reading your post.  I had to think about the movements but this would pass I'm sure.
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george garside

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #78 on: Yesterday at 09:36:01 AM »

totally agree with Katie and Steve!

george (:)
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baz parkes

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Re: One row playing - 3 or 4 fingers
« Reply #79 on: Yesterday at 12:30:49 PM »

I have been worrying about this since I started to read the thread...so much so I had to work out what I do.

I decided to find out...concentrating so much on which fingers I was using I managed to cock up virtually every tune I tried on both 1 and 2 row boxes.

Having taken the easy way out I am reliably informed by Mrs P that I use all 4 fingers whether it be a 1 or two row.

To my chagrin, I remain a mostly 2 finger bass player,,, :|bl
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