Minstrel Banjo

For enthusiasts of early banjo

I just got an old (Lachenal 1870s) anglo concertina and couldn't resist doing a duet with myself. (I probably should have given myself another day to get used to the instrument - but I couldn't wait) This is my version of Joe Weidlich's version of Frank Converse's version of the Cotton Pod Walk Around. It's really pretty clawhammer-y. The concertina's a C-G so the banjo's tuned high. Along with the usual bunch of shamelessly pirated old images.

Views: 210

Favorite of 2 people

Comment by Tim Twiss on May 16, 2010 at 10:47am
I like this Ian. I'm growing to appreciate the concertina. Nice how it lays behind the banjo melody sometimes. I had been thinking about that tune recently.
Comment by Ian Bell on May 16, 2010 at 11:12am
Thanks Tim. I'd love to find find some opportunity to try it out with a banjo player other than my digital self sometime. I wish I could get down to the event in Harpers Ferry next weekend, but I can't find the 16 hours of there-and-back driving time this time around. I guess it's probably about the same from where you are. I'm sure it'll be a great time.
Comment by Rob MacKillop on May 16, 2010 at 11:32am
Sounds great, Ian. I really like it!
Comment by Ian Bell on May 16, 2010 at 1:20pm
I think the lighter single reed sound of the anglo sounds better with the banjo than the two-reed sound of the old melodeon. The concertina's also been recently restored, so it's actually in tune and that doesn't hurt either. It'll be fun getting to know the instrument better.
Comment by Rob MacKillop on May 16, 2010 at 2:58pm
I know zip about concertinas. Do they also come in E/A or D/G tuning?
Comment by Ian Bell on May 16, 2010 at 7:36pm
The most basic anglo concertinas have two rows of buttons (spread over the two ends) that play the notes of two diatonic major scales - C and G. they also come in D-G, D-A and F-B flat. Fancier models have a third row of accidentals that allow a lot more flexibility playing in other keys. English concertinas usually have 48 buttons that play the same note in both directions and are completely chromatic. English concertinas were invented first in the 1830s. Anglos became popular in the 1850s.
Comment by Rob MacKillop on May 17, 2010 at 1:57am
Thanks, Ian.
Comment by Lonnie Blackwell on September 6, 2012 at 9:54pm

Love that sound - and the tempo is just right!

Comment by Bell Banjos on September 6, 2012 at 10:10pm

This is great. Ian, in October bring a few instruments with you.

Comment by Strumelia on September 22, 2012 at 1:13pm

I just love this Ian.  So pretty!!!  Great yummy instrument combo sound, and you play it with such joy and life.  it's sooo begging for dancers to add their feet to the mix!

I'm learning this simple tune right now- it's a great tune choice for beginners I think.


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