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Author Topic: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?  (Read 1349 times)

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Steve C.

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #20 on: August 28, 2019, 01:06:57 PM »

Chris has it about right.  There is a huge connection between the Quebec/LA traditions.
What there is as evidence of crossover are band like the Red Clay Ramblers and other contemporary Southern "trad" bands that don't mind any boundaries.  They use horns, piano accordion, etc.
But diatonic?  Most folks I know say "too hard to play!" 
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Steve C.

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #21 on: August 28, 2019, 06:06:56 PM »

Should have noted to Chris' comment that there are are members from Q and the Provinces much more knowledgeable than me.
Going out on a bit of a limb (and sorry for the thread drift, Grape) I would say that, absent a festival, one is most likely to hear diatonic melodeon in the States along the Texas border.
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Gary

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #22 on: August 28, 2019, 10:46:36 PM »

DG box  G row for
An instrumental version, as collected by John A. Lomax under the title "Angelina the Baker"[3] is a popular fiddle or banjo tune, and differs from the Stephen Foster melody. It is part of the old time fiddle canon, but is also played by bluegrass musicians.[4] This old time tune was also played as bluegrass by Stuart Duncan at the 2007 Delaware Valley Bluegrass Festival.

Also Shove the Pigs Foot

Good fun to play and certainly is a surprise to throw into the mix in a session.
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baz parkes

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #23 on: September 30, 2019, 12:22:22 PM »

I've been asked to leave bluegrass/old-timey sessions

I've been asked to leave sessions in general... :|glug
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GPS

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #24 on: September 30, 2019, 03:32:24 PM »

I've been asked to leave bluegrass/old-timey sessions

I've been asked to leave sessions in general... :|glug

Including ones you were running?   >:E

I can't find an emoji for "I'll get me coat"......
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melodeon

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #25 on: September 30, 2019, 03:50:52 PM »

Good Morning from the State of Jefferson The 51st state of the United States
(So Oregon)

I have some experience with Bluegrass having played banjo for  same from 1971-79.
My current appreciation of the genre is limited.

By my observation, Bluegrass is a "closed" society with an appearance of being welcome.
They take themselves ( and sometimes the music) very seriously.
Keep in mind resonator guitar was not allowed for many years, though now a mainstay.
As to keys. For Bluegrass, .. consider fiddle keys and mandolin as the primary influence.
Keys of A,D,G the relative minors sometimes C,  "fancy" players will wander off into the flat keys.

Olde Tyme music is a different story.. often welcoming and not so closed, nor elitist.
In recent years I have been playing clawhammer, one of the main styles adopted by the genre.

Here is a link to a group out of Baltimore, Maryland fronted by  B/C box player and son of Billy MComiskey.

They play quite a variety of tunes to include Old time, Contra , Bluegrass  and Americana.

Note the use of open back banjos and played mostly in the clawhammer style..

I have their CD "Charm City Junction" in play at this moment... quite good.

They have several youtube videos to include this one:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Aa_7THMWCo




 
« Last Edit: September 30, 2019, 04:09:48 PM by melodeon »
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Winston Smith

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #26 on: September 30, 2019, 06:25:05 PM »

That was very nice, thanks. I found it very easy to listen to, but I've little idea of keys.
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Chris Ryall

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #27 on: October 01, 2019, 09:25:59 PM »

By my observation, Bluegrass is a "closed" society with an appearance of being welcome.

Olde Tyme music is a different story.. often welcoming and not so closed, nor elitist.

Very nicely put, in both cases IME 🤔
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Alan Pittwood

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #28 on: October 01, 2019, 11:21:31 PM »

Here is a link to a group out of Baltimore, Maryland fronted by  B/C box player and son of Billy MComiskey.
They play quite a variety of tunes to include Old time, Contra , Bluegrass  and Americana.
Note the use of open back banjos and played mostly in the clawhammer style..
I have their CD "Charm City Junction" in play at this moment... quite good.

Charm City Junction (2015) was Charm City Junction's first CD, their second, Duckpin (2018), is also worth a listen.

https://charmcityjunctionmusic.bandcamp.com/releases
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melodeon

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #29 on: October 02, 2019, 12:17:56 AM »

Thanks for the heads up Alan.
Was not aware there was a second CD.
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Steve C.

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #30 on: October 02, 2019, 12:51:31 PM »

I like their sound. Thanks for the link Melodeon.  The B/C does seem a bit like an afterthought, tho.  OT is a banjo/fiddle driven style when played in a band.  Solo, tho, anything goes.  I am particular these days to OT on Anglo.
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melodeon

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #31 on: October 03, 2019, 01:55:34 AM »

Currently ?  Do you have an Anglo concertina ?

Are you familiar with Jody Kruskal.. concertina player ?

I believe he often plays a G/D Anglo.

I like concertinas.. and though I have owned some of the best to include Wheatstone, Jeffries  and Lachenal..
I preferred the Button Box TAM Italian reeded Anglos.
« Last Edit: October 03, 2019, 01:59:59 AM by melodeon »
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Steve C.

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #32 on: October 03, 2019, 01:07:48 PM »

Some thread drift here, but Jefe, you must be looking in our windows (thought we had the shade down!)
Last Fall I decided I had to have a Morse GD Anglo TAM, I mean they are hand made, I have been there many times and seen the folks building them from the raw...  No idea how to play.  (70th birthday present to self)  Sold a Tommy to cover.
And yes, have been to NESI and seen Jody and others playing all sorts of tunes.  Also discovered Gary Coover, the patron saint of Anglo learners.
Anglo:  an easy instrument to play badly, hard to play well, especially in the harmonic style....
Grape: sorry for the drift, but relates slightly to your OP re: bluegrass/OT
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melodeon

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Re: Best keys for playing Bluegrass?
« Reply #33 on: October 03, 2019, 02:43:53 PM »

Drifting home:

The G/D Morse Anglo may be perfectly suited to Blue Grass.

I also think an A/D melodeon or a D/A Anglo would be well suited.

I see no reason NOT to use a diatonic box for Blue Grass.
Much as with Cajun music, the fiddle/violin may have been first but now the  1 Row defines the Cajun sound. A band in a box.
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