Learning to type your musical concertina is not a difficult task if from the first moment you commit to dedicating the time that is necessary to achieve it. If you are one of those who think the opposite, you better go right now…
…But we are sure that if you got here it is because you are really excited, enthusiastic and you are a true fan of the concertina . And you know what? We love that 😊
We like people like that, direct, who do not beat around the bush and go for what they want, openly. As such, we must reciprocate, don’t you think? For this reason, we have prepared this article with great affection so that starting today, and forever, you become and consecrate yourself as a true “concert player“
Enjoy it and show us that you are learning your first skills with the instrument by sending us an audio file at an email address that you will see below!
How to play the Irish or Anglo musical concertina?
There is an important distinction to be made. And it is that depending on what type of musical concertina instrument we have in front of us, the interpretation that we will have to carry out will be one or the other
In this case, as it is an Anglo-class musical concertina, its main characteristic will be that based on the fact that we stretch or compress the instrument’s bellows, the sound emitted will vary in its tone.
This will mean that on one side of the instrument or the other its function will differ in two ways: on the left hand we will have the low tones and on the right hand the high tones. Once you understand this, the next step will be to play a scale, such as the C scale (in Anglo-Saxon terms) or the C major scale. With a magnificent YouTube video you will see everything clearer:
First of all, at minute 1:04 a detail that you should know is discussed: on the right side of the head of the musical concertina, that of the high tones, there is a single button separated from the rest. By pressing this button, we will achieve that both when enlarging and tightening the concertina springs it does not sound under any circumstances
Depending on the melody we play, this key will play an important role. From minute 1:28 , we see how the key strums on the right side of the right, just in the series of buttons that is closest to this button alone, pressing the one on the far left of this series of buttons
The two pegs that follow this are the next ones that you will have to press to play a scale in c (said internationally) or scale in C major. These notes will be the D or D major and the E or E major. The musical scale in D and E, as with the C, is how it is known internationally
Once we press these 3 keys successively, our fingers have to go to the top row, thus achieving the remaining scales to interpret the diatonic scale in C Major. Starting from the left, as in the row below, we will play the F, G, L and B, which will be the notes F, G, A and B
The last note of the diatonic scale of C major, the Do, to interpret it is necessary to press the 2nd key starting at the left end of the third row of buttons. Place the video at minute 2:00 and you will know exactly which key you have to press
The button that is just above the latter commented, is capable of emitting a musical note in B flat. Something that highlights the person from minute 2:30 , is that an Anglo-type musical concertina is isomorphic. This means that in the same keys we can interpret musical scales of different tones, such as the diatonic scale of D or D Major
This is exemplified from minute 3:10, where the second key from the extreme left of the row that borders the button responsible for obstructing the sound of the bellows, which is the D, is exactly here where we will begin to execute the musical scale in D major. The next two in this row will be in charge of reproducing the Mi and the Fa
In the next row of keys, the one just above, more of the same: Ignoring the first button on the left, you will press the next 4 keys until you reach the 3 button in the third row of buttons, starting from the left as usual . Once you press it, you will be emitting the last note of the musical scale in D Major, which is the D in high tone
The same happens if we want to play on a musical scale of F or F Major. To do this, start in the second row and starting from the left, press the 3 keys . Then, take your fingers to the third row, where you will strum the 4 buttons, always starting from the left, until you reach the last note, the high-pitched F, which will be the peg that is furthest to the left, in the penultimate row. . From minute 3:20 to 3:30 you can see in detail where exactly he places his fingers
With this that you have read so far, we only want it to be burned into your head that whenever you want to interpret a melody you focus first on the right head of the concertina instrument, it will be your turn to play it with the bass of the left head
From minute 4:00 to 5:00 , you can see in detail how he moves each of his fingers on the successive buttons of the instrument, always on the right hand side. To play this song, first place your finger on the second peg in the first row, the D peg, starting from the left always
Subsequently, take your finger to the peg of G or G Major, which is the second button that is just above this first peg that we press. Then, in this same row, take your finger to the fourth peg, releasing your finger from the second peg, and with little time margin, to the third and second pegs . When you press the third button, you release the finger located in the fourth, when you press the second, release the one located in the third, and so on
When you do this fleeting click of pegs, place your finger back on the fourth key in the second row and hold it down for a few seconds. Then press the third key in this same row and, shortly after, the second. Both pulsations do them for 2-3 seconds
Then move your finger to the third peg in the first row and shortly after to the second peg in this same row. Quickly move your finger to the second button in the row above and repeat the process of fleeting the keys, as explained above. The peculiarity is that here “almost” you do not have to go back
The next peg that you have to touch is the third of the second row, a priori it seems that we are going to repeat another process but no. Then bring your finger to the third peg from the top row. Always remember: all this always starting from the left or above, depending on how you see it. After holding down your finger on this peg, move it to the fourth peg of the second row
And again he plays the same peg from the third row, the third, all of this always pressing it for a few seconds, for a reason we are interpreting a melody and we want to not only play it but also make it sound. As we do this process in such a way that we press the key of the third row twice and once that of the second, we repeat it as is
After doing this, move your index finger to the second peg of the second row of button series and, shortly after, to the second button of the first row and quickly to the third of this same row. For a few seconds, hold and press the number 2 key in this row again
When you have done this step, press the second key of row number two, repeating the first steps that we execute and we explain to you right at the beginning of the explanation to emit this musical interpretation
The reversal of this fleeting keystroke, in this part of the song, will be somewhat slower. We know that explaining this to you in text can be expensive, but with the help of the magnificent YouTube video that you have in this article and placing it between 4:35 and 5:15 minutes, you will see everything easier
How to play the English or Anglo-Saxon concertina?
As you well know, and if not, we will remind you again because it is important: the Anglo-Saxon musical concertina stands out for being unison . This means that the tone of the music, as long as you press or stretch the bellows and the buttons on the right or left side of the instrument, will always be the same and will not vary under any circumstances.
We are going to learn to play a very common musical scale such as C or C major and in an ascending and descending tonal sense. First of all, on the left side of the head of the instrument we are going to place the index finger on the bottom row of pins , which is the one that is just above the row that is lower.
While the middle finger, you are going to place it in the top row, which is the one that is just below the row of buttons that is higher. From minute 0:21 to 1:16 you can see in detail where he places his fingers so that you have no margin for error
Take the same position with your fingers on the left head of the English concertina instrument. The first musical note to be interpreted, guiding us at all times by the score shown in the video, is the Middle C. To do this, place your finger in the top row, place your finger on the peg that is closest to your hand. Position yourself between 1:20 and 1:36 minutes and you will know which pin you have to press
An important distinction that you have to know and it is explained from minute 1:45, since a musical scale of C or C major is going to be played in two octaves, the notes that have horizontal lines on them or go on the lines of the score is played on the left side and those between the lines on the right side. The next note to play is D or D major
By not having a horizontal line crossed out at the head of the note, the side of the concertina that now matters is the right side. To play this note, place your finger on the top row, right on the 2nd peg, always starting from the area next to your hand. The next note to strum, which overflows the line of the score, is the E or E and will be played on the left side
To do this, bring your middle finger to the bottom row of pegs and starting from the part next to your hands, press the second button. From minute 2:26 you can see exactly which button it is and so everything will be clearer. The next note to play is the F or F major. As it is located in the spaces, we will return to the right head
To emit this note, bring your middle finger to the bottom row of pegs and place it on the next button that is closest to your hand, that is, the second. Watch the video starting from minute 2:36 and you will know which specific button is the one that presses. Until minute 2:47, he makes a summary of the first notes
The next note to play is the G or G major. As it is located between a line of the compass, we will have to type a button on the left side, placing our index finger on the second button on the top row. From minute 3:00 you can see clearly where you press
It is the turn of the note L or A, which is located between a space of two lines and, therefore, we will have to press our index finger on the third peg of the upper row. You can see the exact key that it is and so don’t be afraid to get confused from minute 3:18. And, in the penultimate place, it is the turn of the musical note Si, the seventh note of our musical score of C or C Major.
To emit this note, with your middle finger, place it on the bottom row and bring your finger to the 3 peg (minute 3:13). Finally, to interpret the high C or C, which is located between a space, place your middle finger in the bottom row and bring it to the third key (minute 3:17). Starting from minute 3:20, you can see as a summary each of the keys that you press both on the left and right hand
To interpret the musical bar in G or G major, exempting ourselves from any type of video, we will tell you, going to the point which keys you have to press: The C, located between a line of the score, must be played on the left hand side. Therefore, place your index finger on the top row, specifically on the third button
The Re, located in a space, you will have to touch it on the right hand side. Point your finger to the top row, exactly on the penultimate peg. The next note of this scale, the E , is again located on a line and, therefore, your middle finger has to press it on the 4 peg of the bottom row
To emit the next note, the F, point your middle finger towards the 4th peg in the bottom row. The Sun, located in a line, should be touched on the right hand side. Therefore, place your index finger on the top row and on the last button of this, on the 4th peg. The next one to come, which is La, is located in a space. Therefore, bring the index finger of your right hand to the 5th and last peg of the top row.
With the last note of the G major scale score, the B, you also have to bring your finger to a fifth peg, but this time in the bottom row and with the middle finger of your left hand, all on the left hand. From minute 3:36 to 3:48, look at yourself as a summary where you press each of your index and middle fingers, both left and right
We could not say goodbye without revealing something that we promised you at the beginning of everything, our email: From firstname.lastname@example.org or by clicking here , we invite you to send us the first gifts (of which we hope will be many) with your concertina and more, If you have acquired it from the web by and for every lover not of “this” instrument, no, that sounds ugly to say; of ”the” instrument 😉