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Author Topic: Beginner with Sherwood b/c box  (Read 1244 times)

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Danny

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Beginner with Sherwood b/c box
« on: December 29, 2018, 05:56:51 PM »

Hello every one. This my very first post so please be patient with me. I am a 65 year old beginner with the melodeon, although I have played other instruments.
I purchased a "Sherwood B/C melodeon about 5 months ago and I am enjoying the process. I have no idea whether this box sounds as good as it should as I have only on lie videos to go on.
The high notes sound a bit weak, but other than that it sounds ok to me. I like the playing of the late Joe Derrane and wonder what kind of boxes he used. I know I will never get to play like him, but it's the sound I am after .
My box came with I believe is standard BASS tuning, and I wonder if it will help me if I get the re-tuned to say Joe Burkes set-up?
Thanks Danny
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Danny

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Beginner with Sherwood b/c box
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2018, 06:01:23 PM »

PS
I have seen a "Victoria 4 Voice, 2 Coupler B/C Melodeon, made in Italy, Paolo Soprani style" box on sale for £600. I cannot find any information on this make. has any one heard of it?
Would this kind box give a different sound suitable for Irish Music
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Stiamh

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Re: Beginner with Sherwood b/c box
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2018, 06:51:05 PM »

Hi Danny, Joe Derrane played the D/C# system. It won't be easy to duplicate his style on another system (mind you, given his prodigious skill, it would be far from easy to duplicate it on the same system!).

On his later recordings, he played a 3-voice instrument tuned LMM (one bassoon or low voice, two clarinet or medium voices). That voicing is an important part of his sound.

As for your bass system, yes, Joe Burke layout is simpler than the standard. Whether it is worth getting your instrument retuned rather depends on how much you think you'll be able to use the basses.

Welcome to the forum, by the way.
Cheers, Steve

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Danny

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Re: Beginner with Sherwood b/c box
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2018, 06:58:06 PM »

Hi Steve
Thanks for the welcome and you're info. There are some great players out there, such as Mairtin O'Connor but I cannot fail to feel uplifted when I listen to Joe Derrane.
Any thoughts on what my next box should be? Quality wise
Thanks
Danny
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Stiamh

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Re: Beginner with Sherwood b/c box
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2018, 10:25:59 PM »

Any thoughts on what my next box should be? Quality wise

I take it that "quality wise" means you don't want us to tell you to take up the D/C# system?  (:) Which would be the logical choice if you want to emulate Joe Derrane... Or C#/D, if you want to follow in Mairtin O'Connor's footsteps.

If you like the LMM sound I'd suggest a 3-voice instrument. If you want to go fancy then a Castagnari Dinn III would fit the bill, or maybe a Saltarelle Aether 3-voice (21 buttons) or Saltarelle Awen (23 buttons). You can see and hear the latter two played by Martin Quinn here.

Edited to add: A Serenellini 233 is also a very good choice. It may be a little bigger than the models I mentioned above, but a top-quality machine and possibly a little less expensive than the others.

High notes sounding weak: often, you have to push a little harder to get higher reeds to speak as easily as lower ones. Don't be scared of working the bellows to give the reeds the air they need!
« Last Edit: December 29, 2018, 10:32:50 PM by Stiamh »
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Pearse Rossa

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Re: Beginner with Sherwood b/c box
« Reply #5 on: December 30, 2018, 06:38:11 PM »

This one here I presume?
I have heard of the make, but I haven't tried one.
It should be ok, but it won't be anywhere near as good a box as a 1960s or 1970s Paolo Soprani.
A Paolo would cost at least twice that amount though.

Quote
Would this kind box give a different sound suitable for Irish Music

If you mean different to your Sherwood; it would.
The Sherwood is a 2-voice. The Victoria is a fuller 4 -voice, with an option for 3-voice.
So you could play it on 3 medium reeds which is very trendy for Irish music, or 3 medium + 1 low reed
which would be like the old Joe Burke sound that is still very popular.
« Last Edit: December 30, 2018, 06:58:32 PM by Pearse Rossa »
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Pearse Rossa

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Re: Beginner with Sherwood b/c box
« Reply #6 on: December 30, 2018, 06:51:38 PM »

I like the playing of the late Joe Derrane and wonder what kind of boxes he used. I know I will never get to play like him, but it's the sound I am after .

Hello Danny.
Joe Derrane played different boxes throughout his long career.
He would have started with a single row 10 key melodeon. Later he played a Walters 10+5 key with 4 bass.
A Baldoni 19+4 key with 4 bass, and latterly a couple of Bertrand Gaillard boxes (That were especially made for him). One was a 23 key with 14 bass, and a 23 key with 12 bass.
As Steve has pointed out, he played D/C# system which is referred to as Irish/American.
It developed in America back in the day as single row players needed additional notes
to expand their repertoire and develop their technique and array of ornamentation and thrills and spills!

Quote
I purchased a "Sherwood B/C melodeon....came with I believe is standard BASS tuning, and I wonder if it will help me if I get the re-tuned to say Joe Burkes set-up?

A Sherwood is never going to sound like anything that Joe Derrane played, so personally I wouldn't waste my time or money making any changes to it.
Very few people play D/C# style, and as a consequence, a box in this tuning is hard to find.
You can't buy a Walters or a Baldoni off the shelf any longer. But all is not lost...check out this lovely Bouchard
melodeon
. One of those will not come cheap though!
You could look for a D/C# or have a C#/D converted for you. That wouldn't be difficult to do, but would cost
a fair amount.
A good quality one row melodeon would also go a fair distance towards the sound and style you like.
« Last Edit: December 30, 2018, 06:56:12 PM by Pearse Rossa »
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Danny

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Re: Beginner with Sherwood b/c box
« Reply #7 on: December 30, 2018, 07:51:42 PM »

Hi All
  Thanks very much for all the advice and feedback. I am a long way off emulating Joe Derrane or anyone else yet. But I have a goal...and it won't be for the want of trying.
Where I live in Sheffield it is really difficult to find anyone I can learn from, so at the moment I have a few dvd's to work from and I'll keep plugging away.
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Pearse Rossa

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Re: Beginner with Sherwood b/c box
« Reply #8 on: December 30, 2018, 08:03:30 PM »

Where I live in Sheffield it is really difficult to find anyone I can learn from

You could go along to one of these sessions. You never know, you might meet someone who
is willing to give you pointers.
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Stiamh

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Re: Beginner with Sherwood b/c box
« Reply #9 on: December 30, 2018, 08:16:50 PM »

You can't buy a Walters or a Baldoni off the shelf any longer. But all is not lost...check out this lovely Bouchard
melodeon
. One of those will not come cheap though!

They are even lovelier these days - André has perfected his design, using new precision mechanisms and a beautiful mix of woods. His friend, one-row virtuoso Sabin Jacques, has told him that now, after more than 10 years, he has really got it right. That's the good news.

The bad news is that André isn't interested in making lots of them. He told me this summer that for the next few years he plans to make two a year - one in early summer and another at the end of the year. He doesn't take deposits or keep a proper waiting list either - just a list of names on a sheet of paper. When he has a box ready he contacts the first name on the list to see whether they are still interested. Based on the state of the list in August this year, you'd be waiting over 5 years for a new one - that's if André keeps at it and if everyone buys when their turn comes.

I write all this just in case you were starting to set your sights on one, Danny!  :|glug
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Pearse Rossa

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Re: Beginner with Sherwood b/c box
« Reply #10 on: December 30, 2018, 08:28:38 PM »

You can't buy a Walters or a Baldoni off the shelf any longer. But all is not lost...check out this lovely Bouchard
melodeon
. One of those will not come cheap though!

... after more than 10 years, he has really got it right...
The bad news is that André isn't interested in making lots of them.

Any idea how many he has made to date?
Just wondering what the chances are of a second hand one coming on the market.
Not great I would hazard.
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Gromit

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Re: Beginner with Sherwood b/c box
« Reply #11 on: January 05, 2019, 05:24:48 PM »

Quote
Where I live in Sheffield it is really difficult to find anyone I can learn from

Debbie Garvey teaches box - she's in Manchester.
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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: Beginner with Sherwood b/c box
« Reply #12 on: January 05, 2019, 11:54:09 PM »


Where I live in Sheffield it is really difficult to find anyone I can learn from...

Things must have changed. When I lived there the Irish music scene was vibrant. Three places I knew were The Red House, The Dog and Partridge and the Irish Centre. Maybe if you go into the Grapes on Trippet lane and ask Ann Flynn if she knows anyone in the swim of it...back in the day she knew everyone.
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