Melodeon.net Forums

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

News:

Welcome to the new melodeon.net forum

Pages: [1] 2   Go Down

Author Topic: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?  (Read 1455 times)

0 Members and 2 Guests are viewing this topic.

Larry Powers

  • Member
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 11
  • Bouchard 10+4 in D
Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« on: March 13, 2018, 02:10:16 PM »

I am currently researching the purchase of a single row melodeon in D to use for learning Quebecois tunes.  This will be my first melodeon although I currently am learning the hammered dulcimer and the guitar.  So why a melodeon at this time?  We travel quite a bit to Quebec for music festivals and there are often workshops for accordion.  After our last tip I started to think it would be fun to be able join in.  On a lark my wife and I made a run up to our local melodeon shop, The Button Box, to see what was available and for what price.  There were no single rows in stock and only a few two rows with a D.  While there I did find a used A/D Lilly that I really liked and it would allow me to start playing using the D row.  Not really knowing much about melodeons and the fact that it was not the single row melodeon I was originally interested in, I decided to leave empty handed and do some research.  Since then I have been searching the internet and spending most of my time on this site.  Lots of good info but I still have a couple of questions.

After doing my research I decided that one of my best options would be a Weltmeister Cajun and have it retuned to Quebecois standards.  I called the Button Box and the cost to retune it was $65 but he did not have any in stock and said that Weltmeister was now going to do limited runs of the Cajun and they did not know how long it would take to get one.  I found Weltmeister Cajun at another shop and they quoted me a price of $300 to $400 to retune it.  That sounded high and also seemed like a lot to invest in an instrument of this quality.  I am waiting to hear from my local shop on when they might be able to get one.  I will weigh my options when I hear back from them.

After all that we get to my questions.  Are there any 1 row melodeons in D with 4 voices being made that are not tuned for Cajun music?  I assume that if it has Cajun in the name it probably is.  I noticed that the Castagnari Melodeon does not have Cajun in the name but I can not find a definitive answer on how it is tuned.  The price of this instrument would make it a real stretch especially since this would be a first instrument.

What is involved in retuning a Cajun melodeon to standard tuning?  My understanding is that on a single row in D it would the the F# and C# reeds that need to be modified.  Is this correct?  Is it all 4 F# and C# reeds that need to be modified, only the 2 MM reeds or just 1 M reeds?  Would there be any thing else needed?

Any suggestion for instruments that would have the correct tuning out of the box would be greatly appreciated.  A quality used instrument for $2000 or less would be of great interest to me.

I am forcing myself to be patient as something used will probably turn up either on this site or at the Button Box in the near future.  I have decided that I do not want a Chinese made instrument and would prefer to have all 4 stops be functional.  This may provide me with an excuse to take a road trip to Quebec in search of a used instrument.

Thanks.
Logged

triskel

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3273
  • Learning all the time...
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2018, 02:42:10 PM »

After all that we get to my questions.  Are there any 1 row melodeons in D with 4 voices being made that are not tuned for Cajun music?  I assume that if it has Cajun in the name it probably is.

No, very few accordions made outside Louisiana are actually tuned "Cajun" - and they'd all be hand-made ones, not factory produced. Whilst, to special order, new Louisiana-made boxes can be ordered from some of their makers tuned "Québécois" (I got one like that off Marc Savoy some years ago).

Quote
What is involved in retuning a Cajun melodeon to standard tuning?  My understanding is that on a single row in D it would the the F# and C# reeds that need to be modified.  Is this correct?  Is it all 4 F# and C# reeds that need to be modified, only the 2 MM reeds or just 1 M reeds?  Would there be any thing else needed?

"Cajun" tuning is also usually "dry" - meaning there is no tremolo on the two middle reeds, whilst "Québécois" is with varying degrees (anything between 5 and 15 cents) of tremolo.

Also, "Québécois" tuning can commonly be with the middle reeds tuned either side of concert pitch, but I'd prefer the more normal arrangement of having the three LMH reeds tuned "concert" and the fourth M+ one sharp.
Logged

Steve_freereeder

  • Grumpy old git (sometimes)
  • Content Manager
  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Online Online
  • Posts: 5481
  • MAD is inevitable. Keep Calm and Carry On
    • Lizzie Dripping
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2018, 03:09:40 PM »

Are there any 1 row melodeons in D with 4 voices being made that are not tuned for Cajun music?  I assume that if it has Cajun in the name it probably is.  I noticed that the Castagnari Melodeon does not have Cajun in the name but I can not find a definitive answer on how it is tuned.  The price of this instrument would make it a real stretch especially since this would be a first instrument.
The Castagnari 'Melodeon', or 'Max' as it is sometimes known, by default is not Cajun tuned and generally would be very suitable for Quebecois music.
Logged
Steve
Sheffield, UK.
www.lizziedripping.org.uk

triskel

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3273
  • Learning all the time...
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2018, 04:16:40 PM »

Are there any 1 row melodeons in D with 4 voices being made that are not tuned for Cajun music?  I assume that if it has Cajun in the name it probably is.  I noticed that the Castagnari Melodeon does not have Cajun in the name but I can not find a definitive answer on how it is tuned.  The price of this instrument would make it a real stretch especially since this would be a first instrument.
The Castagnari 'Melodeon', or 'Max' as it is sometimes known, by default is not Cajun tuned and generally would be very suitable for Quebecois music.

Andy Cutting makes a great fist of playing Québécois music on a Castagnari: Andy Cutting plays a reel

But even though they might praise the keybord action and quality of the Castagnari in Quebec, they don't like the sound so much, and they haven't found favour there - with comments like "What a fast little box! Best keyboard I've ever played. Too bad it doesn't have the right sound for the music that I play!"

And then you've got that Italian organetto-style bass box/windkey arrangement, which I found downright painful to use (with extended bellows) on the one I had. :(
Logged

tirpous

  • Respected Sage
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 372
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2018, 04:51:58 PM »

The word Cajun is often loosely used to describe one-row melodeons of German model with exposed pallets on the treble side and a growlbox on the bass side, no matter how it is tuned.  From what I see on The Button Box web site (http://www.buttonbox.com/new-button-accordions.html) the Weltmeister is available with either 'Cajun' or 'Québecois' tuning, so I'm not quite sure why they would charge any extra tuning fees.


 
Logged

Andy in Vermont

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 948
  • Mélodie
    • Melodeon Minutes (blog)
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2018, 05:08:26 PM »

I would say that there are multiple levels of what it means to say a one-row is “tuned” for Quebecois music.
1. The key, if it’s your only box, should be D. Quebecois players sometimes own a second, third, etc box in another key but D is the main axe.

2. Tuning as in: Relative pitch of notes of the scale: the box should be equal tempered I.e not Cajun tunes.

3. Voices: 4 voice, including LMMH voices, is currently preferred for D boxes, although at some points there were many two-voice boxes (extremely loud ones).

4. Tuning (wetness): this varies and I believe the variation has widened, with drier tunings more frequently heard than say 20 years ago. However: what Triskel said above is still most common.

5. Finally, the actual sound quality of the one-row typical design. The Castagnari melodeon, for whatever reason, has a “tinny” sound compared to what Quebecois players want. It’s still a great box though!

I will also say that I believe some of this is in flux. My recommendation is to get any box with a D row to start learning and worry about the particulars later when you upgrade and have a better idea what you want and what it all means for getting the tone you seek!

-Y-

  • Regular debater
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 166
  • Handry 18 (G/C), Club IIb (A/D), Double Ray (C#/D)
    • dia.to
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2018, 05:18:16 PM »

What I don't really understand, is that it really doesn't matter what tuning any box is, as you can have it retuned the way you like (be it just intonation or equal temperament) once you bought it, what really matters is that the box has 1 row and 2 basses and that you have a good feeling when playing it. 65$ seems quite reasonable for a retune (400$ seems a lot though).
Also, on the matter of tremolo, I've got the feeling the very wet tuning is losing grip on Québecois players, has anyone noticed that too?
Logged
Y.

Planchée, folk music from Eastern BrittanyIsidore et les sans-soucis, folk music from Québec

(please excuse any misspelling or odd wording, english is not my mother tongue)

Larry Powers

  • Member
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 11
  • Bouchard 10+4 in D
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #7 on: March 13, 2018, 05:19:05 PM »

Interesting information.  I was speaking with another shop and he told me that most of the European melodeons with Cajun in the name are actually set up with equal temperament.  So out of the box they should not have that Cajun sound.  I think he said this was true for most although he might have said it was true for those in the key of D. 
Logged

Andy in Vermont

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 948
  • Mélodie
    • Melodeon Minutes (blog)
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2018, 05:21:17 PM »

What I don't really understand, is that it really doesn't matter what tuning any box is, as you can have it retuned the way you like (be it just intonation or equal temperament) once you bought it, what really matters is that the box has 1 row and 2 basses and that you have a good feeling when playing it. 65$ seems quite reasonable for a retune (400$ seems a lot though).
Also, on the matter of tremolo, I've got the feeling the very wet tuning is losing grip on Québecois players, has anyone noticed that too?

Totally agree. But I think it’s still the majority if you consider all the amateur players who own Messerviers etc.

-Y-

  • Regular debater
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 166
  • Handry 18 (G/C), Club IIb (A/D), Double Ray (C#/D)
    • dia.to
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2018, 05:29:36 PM »

Also, I should add that IMHO when you buy a box new, it's only decent to expect that it is tuned to your liking, included in the selling price, and not as an extra. The local Castagnari seller did shift its policy on that and charged several hundred euros (on boxes that could cost several thousand euros) for any tuning that was not factory tuning.
Logged
Y.

Planchée, folk music from Eastern BrittanyIsidore et les sans-soucis, folk music from Québec

(please excuse any misspelling or odd wording, english is not my mother tongue)

tirpous

  • Respected Sage
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 372
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2018, 05:33:14 PM »

Hmm, it also very much depends on one's definition of 'very wet' ...   ;)
Logged

-Y-

  • Regular debater
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 166
  • Handry 18 (G/C), Club IIb (A/D), Double Ray (C#/D)
    • dia.to
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2018, 05:37:18 PM »

Hmm, it also very much depends on one's definition of 'very wet' ...   ;)

If your wallpaper starts to fall off your wall when you play, then it's very wet tuning  ;D
Logged
Y.

Planchée, folk music from Eastern BrittanyIsidore et les sans-soucis, folk music from Québec

(please excuse any misspelling or odd wording, english is not my mother tongue)

triskel

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3273
  • Learning all the time...
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2018, 05:37:58 PM »

Hmm, it also very much depends on one's definition of 'very wet' ...   ;)

+15 cents on the "strong Québécois" tuned one Marc Savoy made me, which produces a good "rasp" off it - but I'd like a good bit more on an MMM box...  ;)
Logged

Andy in Vermont

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 948
  • Mélodie
    • Melodeon Minutes (blog)
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2018, 05:46:32 PM »

I like the sound of Marc Savoy’s variation of Quebecois tuning but it’s not as wet as standard Messervier tuning.

boxcall

  • You got to love it!!!
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1140
  • Do what you love, love what you do.
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2018, 06:12:15 PM »

You could,
Buy it from the second shop and then have the button box retune it for you.

The word Cajun is often loosely used to describe one-row melodeons of German model with exposed pallets on the treble side and a growlbox on the bass side, no matter how it is tuned.  From what I see on The Button Box web site (http://www.buttonbox.com/new-button-accordions.html) the Weltmeister is available with either 'Cajun' or 'Québecois' tuning, so I'm not quite sure why they would charge any extra tuning fees.


 

I don't think they would if he ordered one new in that tuning, that was a quote to retune an existing "Cajun tuned" box. But they (the button box)  don't know when they could get one.

Quote from Larry,
"I called the Button Box and the cost to retune it was $65 but he did not have any in stock and said that Weltmeister was now going to do limited runs of the Cajun and they did not know how long it would take to get one."
Logged
Hohner 1040 C, Beltuna one row four stop D, O'Byrne Dewitt/ Baldoni bros. D/C#, Paolo soprani "pepperpot" one row D

tirpous

  • Respected Sage
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 372
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #15 on: March 13, 2018, 06:30:47 PM »

Quote
I don't think they would if he ordered one new in that tuning, that was a quote to retune an existing "Cajun tuned" box. But they (the button box)  don't know when they could get one.

That's not the way I read it  - but Larry will know, anyway.

Quote
I like the sound of Marc Savoy’s variation of Quebecois tuning but it’s not as wet as standard Messervier tuning.

Savoy's normal equal-tempered tuning (what people outside Quebec call 'Quebecois'  ;)) is a nominal +5/-5 cents.  Messervier is more like 0/+12.

Maybe this one is wet enough for Triskel ?  https://www.kijiji.ca/v-autres-instrument-de-musique/lac-saint-jean/accordeon-jean-claude-paradis-2-rangees-ad/1300706063?enableSearchNavigationFlag=true
Logged

triskel

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3273
  • Learning all the time...
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #16 on: March 13, 2018, 06:33:54 PM »

I like the sound of Marc Savoy’s variation of Quebecois tuning but it’s not as wet as standard Messervier tuning.

In fact he doesn't have one "standard" Québécois tuning - he does various ones to suit different players - but after talking with me about it (and my telling him about how my 1930's Baldoni, Bartoli was tuned) he concluded I'd need what he termed "strong Québécois".
Logged

Andy in Vermont

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 948
  • Mélodie
    • Melodeon Minutes (blog)
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #17 on: March 13, 2018, 07:15:12 PM »

When I bought a box from Marc Savoy sometime around 2000 or 2001, he explained the tuning as “the one I usually do for orders from Quebec” or something to that effect. I’m sure he varies it — of course. But the fact is, he has a way of doing it that can be described as standard.

Messervier also tunes to suit but it doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a default zone of wetness when someone doesn’t specify.

It doesn’t matter anyhow. One row boxes require touch up tuning if they are played in earnest  and can easily be adjusted to suit after the initial tuning.
« Last Edit: March 13, 2018, 07:19:35 PM by Andy in Vermont »
Logged

melodeon

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1631
Re: Any Quebecois 1 Row Tuned Melodeons?
« Reply #19 on: March 13, 2018, 11:56:12 PM »

"I found Weltmeister Cajun at another shop and they quoted me a price of $300 to $400 to retune it. "

Give me liberty or give me death?
Logged
Pages: [1] 2   Go Up
 


Melodeon.net - (c) Theo Gibb; Clive Williams 2010. The access and use of this website and forum featuring these terms and conditions constitutes your acceptance of these terms and conditions.