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Author Topic: Decent beginner Anglo wanted  (Read 3652 times)

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Helena Handcart

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Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« on: March 18, 2018, 03:57:58 PM »

Yes, I know I could post in Concertina.net but lots of you either play Anglo as well or maybe tried it out and have one mouldering on the shelf unloved so worth a try to post.

I'm looking for a decentish beginner Anglo - possibly a Lachenal tutor model or similar. 30 button preferred.

Asking for a friend, obvs.
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RogerT

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2018, 07:35:22 PM »

It's a slippery slope. Next it'll be a PA  >:E

John MacKenzie (Cugiok)

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2018, 07:55:55 PM »

I'm looking too, and find that 20 button can be had for sensible money, but the minute you get to 30, the prices go daft. Chris Algar said that this is because the Irish will pay silly money for them.

Sir John
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Lester

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2018, 08:02:22 PM »

These are very good I'm told.

https://wolvertonconcertinas.com/page/

JimmyM

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2018, 10:59:39 PM »

These are very good I'm told.

https://wolvertonconcertinas.com/page/

indeed they are :-) Jake made me one last year. Incredible value for a hybrid and plays like a dream
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lachenal74693

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #5 on: March 19, 2018, 07:09:44 AM »

...Chris Algar said that this is because the Irish will pay silly money for them.

He said the same to me. Have you considered (say) a 26-button? These will kick in at lower prices than 30-button.

R.
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Helena Handcart

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #6 on: March 19, 2018, 08:18:16 AM »

It's a slippery slope. Next it'll be a PA  >:E

Never. I can safely say, never.
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Steve_freereeder

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #7 on: March 19, 2018, 08:29:14 AM »

Helena,
PM sent.
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Steve
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Robin Tims

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #8 on: March 19, 2018, 04:40:43 PM »

These are very good I'm told.

https://wolvertonconcertinas.com/page/

indeed they are :-) Jake made me one last year. Incredible value for a hybrid and plays like a dream

Hear hear, me too.

Rob
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RogerT

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #9 on: March 20, 2018, 08:55:45 AM »

If I was looking for a Tina suitable for a beginner...i.e. Easyish on the pocket, I'd get one of these. NB this one is SOLD. There is a short demo vid. I got to like it and it's very playable.
http://www.jollyrogeraccordions.co.uk/archive_of_boxes/sale-stagi-w-15-ln-cg-gremlin-anglo-concertina-30-key-425/

John MacKenzie (Cugiok)

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #10 on: March 20, 2018, 09:14:29 AM »

I was wondering about Stagi. They make more than one model, and I have heard various comments about them, both good and bad. Someone on here said that his was always needing work, while another said that those with the metal,ends are good. (Which model is that?)
So it's interesting to hear comments from Melnetters on this one.

Sir John
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Steve_freereeder

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #11 on: March 20, 2018, 10:11:51 AM »

I had a Stagi/Gremlin anglo once, but I would never recommend them even though they are relatively cheap.
Mine was OK at first, but the mechanism wore very quickly and was difficult (= well nigh impossible) to repair. Also the sound from the rather indifferent quality accordion-type reeds was weak and didn't sound much like a concertina at all. In the end I sold it for just a few pounds to someone who wanted it almost as a toy instrument (yes, it was that good)

Hybrid concertinas can be a good alternative to paying huge sums of money on a traditionally reeded instrument, but you have to choose your hybrid carefully. Having played quite a few, I can recommend these makes:

Morse (from the Button Box, Sunderland, MA).
Marcus (Newport, South Wales)
Tedrow (Homewood Music, Birmingham, AL)
A.C. Norman (Shrewsbury)
All of these play very well with a good sound and quick response.
I haven't yet played one of the new Wolverton instruments made by Jake Middleton (a member here) but I understand they are very good.

The are also the 'rescue' instruments made by A.C. Norman, which usually have old Lachenal concertina reeds harvested from scrap concertinas and installed into a newly-built Norman instrument. Usually excellent value for money. They play and sound like a Lachenal.

Sadly, I can't recommend the Concertina Connection 'Rochelle' anglo, intended for beginners. Having known two of these instruments, they are disappointing in sound and response, leading to one of the players giving up and the other rapidly upgrading to a Morse.

I wouldn't recommend the cheap Chinese instruments with Italian sounding names: Scarlatti, Rossetti, Rossini, etc. They are pretty much clones of the Stagi-type instruments and have much the same drawbacks. 
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Anahata

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #12 on: March 20, 2018, 10:40:59 AM »

I would, however, recommend Kensington Concertinas. If I wanted a brand new Anglo now, it's where I'd go. I have played one of those and to me it felt and sounded exactly like a good concertina should (and I'm used to playing a Jeffries).

It may be a bit expensive for a beginner not sure if they'll even get on with the Anglo system, but if you continue with it, it could be your first and last box, and if you don't, I don't think you'd have trouble selling it on.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2018, 05:09:28 PM by Anahata »
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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #13 on: March 20, 2018, 12:03:19 PM »

I had a Kensington for a while.  Very well made, lovely instruments.  They are, of course, real concertinas (i.e. with concertina reeds), not hybrids.  My only negative was they were a little heavy.  Definitely recommended.
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Jesse Smith

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #14 on: March 20, 2018, 01:14:47 PM »

Last autumn, when I was debating between learning the melodeon or anglo concertina, the difference in price was a factor. I was able to find a vintage Pokerwork for $700 USD (and I think D/G melodeons carry a premium in the States just due to their scarcity), but there doesn't seem to be a corresponding affordable concertina in the same general price range. Unless maybe the two row melodeon is more comparable to a 20 button anglo?

In general I am more attracted to vintage instruments than new ones, mostly for an admittedly superstitious sense of imbued character or "spirit", although handmade instruments like the Morse or Kensington concertinas have a lot to recommend them as well (except the price!). I'm not as keen on modern mass produced boxes, although of course that's what the Pokerwork was in its day! ::)
« Last Edit: March 20, 2018, 02:58:22 PM by Jesse Smith »
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RogerT

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #15 on: March 20, 2018, 01:30:09 PM »

It's horses for courses. Best advice I can give is to try a few to compare...don't just buy one without trying it. I recently worked on an expensive one and an old 20 key lachenal, all beat up. Much preferred the Lachenal, which was great fun to play.

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #16 on: March 20, 2018, 01:57:50 PM »

...Unless maybe the two row melodeon is more comparable to a 20 button anglo?...

Not really comparable, in my opinion. A two-row, fourth-apart tuned melodeon is generally more versatile than a 20-key (i.e. two-row) anglo. A two-row melodeon is more than just two 1-rows stuck together because of the extra dimension which cross-row playing brings.

But a 20-key anglo is basically much more limited in scope. I've never really analysed exactly why, but I think it is to do (a) with the rows being a fifth apart, combined with (b) the split in the scales over the left and right ends. Somehow, cross-row playing is doesn't seem so intuitive - but perhaps that's just me. Also, the useful reversals and accidentals which are found on the third row of a 30-key anglo (particularly the A/G reversal and the C#) simply aren't there on a 20-key instrument.
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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #17 on: March 20, 2018, 07:09:48 PM »

I have a 30 key Lachenal C/G anglo (concert pitch) for sale. Recently refurbished by AC Norman & Co. Metal ends, bone buttons. £1750.
Picture attached.
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pgroff

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #18 on: March 21, 2018, 02:10:58 AM »

...Unless maybe the two row melodeon is more comparable to a 20 button anglo?...

Not really comparable, in my opinion. A two-row, fourth-apart tuned melodeon is generally more versatile than a 20-key (i.e. two-row) anglo. A two-row melodeon is more than just two 1-rows stuck together because of the extra dimension which cross-row playing brings.

But a 20-key anglo is basically much more limited in scope. I've never really analysed exactly why, but I think it is to do (a) with the rows being a fifth apart, combined with (b) the split in the scales over the left and right ends. Somehow, cross-row playing is doesn't seem so intuitive - but perhaps that's just me. Also, the useful reversals and accidentals which are found on the third row of a 30-key anglo (particularly the A/G reversal and the C#) simply aren't there on a 20-key instrument.

I agree!  On the other hand, 20-key anglos can be considered comparable in many ways to 1-row melodeons . . . including the idea that a good example of either can be a very complete instrument, if you are willing to choose music that works within a somewhat limited number of pitches.

Of course, 1-row melodeons were mostly cheap, disposable instruments, but some were made in better quality, like the Globes and Sterlings, and the modern cajun and Quebecois instruments.  Similarly, most 20 key concertinas, even the London-made Lachenal and Jones anglos, were made with severe compromises (5 fold bellows with shallow folds, unreliable actions, sometimes mediocre reedwork in the Lachenals). Sometimes you'll see a nice Jeffries 20 key anglo which might be comparable in quality (if not superior) to a great vintage Globe melodeon. And back before the "hybrid" accordion-reeded concertinas such as Morse and Edgley were invented, I often commissioned concertina makers to install riveted action and good 6-fold bellows on a decent Lachenal 20-key, then I'd upgrade the reedwork as necessary - that made a very nice quality instrument comparable in many ways to a nice quality 1-row melodeon. There are a lifetime's worth of great tunes that can be played either on a 1-row melodeon or on a 20 key anglo, if the instrument is of sufficient quality to hold up -- and to keep up with a good musician.

These hot-rodded 20 key instruments were great for my concertina students starting out, and then I'd take them back in trade toward a nice 30 key if / when the student was ready.

But these days most of the market would prefer a light, fast, reliable hybrid 30 key anglo, so I wouldn't necessarily recommend the "hotrod 20 key" approach. One advantage of the latter was a more traditional concertina tone and reed response.

PG
« Last Edit: March 21, 2018, 02:15:12 AM by pgroff »
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pgroff

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Re: Decent beginner Anglo wanted
« Reply #19 on: March 21, 2018, 02:14:03 AM »

I have a 30 key Lachenal C/G anglo (concert pitch) for sale. Recently refurbished by AC Norman & Co. Metal ends, bone buttons. £1750.
Picture attached.

Very nice! There's one well worth considering.

PG
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