Physical limitations

Physical limitations

I saw this video and it made me laugh; as anyone who knows me will know I have quite small hands, which are a bit of a limitation on the piano accordion. To get around this I pivot my fingers either side of my thumb; messy but it just about works.

Does anyone else have problems with the physical requirements of their instruments? How do you overcome them?


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ifKKlhYF53w&mode=related&search=

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i have an annoying problem with breathing when im trying to play the lark in the morning (whistle/flute). i just cant play the first part all the way through. i lose the air. havent figured out what to do yet

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Try selecting ornaments that give you a chance to grab some air. This involves skipping a note or two, which gives a syncopating feeling and a bit of lilt. It also gives you time to take a breath without spoiling the flow. Playing the entire phrase on a single breath is not only difficult, but pointless. The tune wasn’t written for flute, but it is one of my favorites to play, and that’s how I do it.

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I have a problem with the joint on my left hand third finger which means that I avoid anything which involves putting it on two strings at once on the fiddle or mandolin. I work round this by playing different notes, or, (ahem) missing one out when nobody’s looking.

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Small hands here too Conan and a very lazy pinky. But have found it a great help switching to a 17 fret tenor. Aren’t there smaller PA’s ? I know there are.

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I can’t adopt the traditional hold for my 10-hole harmonicas because of arthritis in my fingers. My left thumb just sits at the left-hand end of the harp instead of passing under the length of the cover. It affects tone to a slight extent and hand effects slightly more seriously as I don’t form a very good cup with my hands. I get by though, and most people leave the room when I start playing anyway.

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I’ve never really been fat or bald enough to play the bodhran but I’m getting there fast these days. :-(

Look out, Sandy Bells!

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LOL, thanks for the clip Conan! I’ll have to pass that along to my piano-playing brother….

I’ve broken every one of my fingers at least once, and my left pinkie three times, so it doesn’t always work as well as it’s supposed to. One of the joints clicks and catches, like it’s on a ratchet. Oh well.

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I have this big growth in my pants that means I have problems getting my guitar in a comfortable position.

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Great clip - lol!

Wouldn’t have minded one of those yokes to use against the piano teacher way back in the day:-)

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You have an e-mail response to that one. I couldn’t really post it here :o)

Thanks to everyone ELSE for their replies!

Glad I’m not the only one. I think the adage "where there’s a will…" applies here. I know a very talented young fiddler who, some years ago, had an accident with machinery he was operating. As a result, he now plays the fiddle left handed and he’s bloody marvellous. it could so easily have gone the other way.

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My reply was for frisbee, by the way, not you Niámh :o)

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Frisbee - You should really get that seen to.

I took a bit of my LH middle fingertip off with a table saw about 6 years ago. My first reaction was to go out and buy a bunch of harmonicas. But, before I had a chance to learn to play them, I discovered it wasn’t that hard to play mandolin three-fingered. I continued like that for the best part of a year. Even then, when the fingertip was healed enough to withstand pressure, I would alternate between 3- and 4-fingering technique periodically, as it was still tender and got very sore after a few sets of tunes.

Missing out my middle finger did put some extra strain on my hand, as it meant ‘compressing’ my index and ring fingers closer together than they naturally want to be, and I did suffer minor strain injuries a couple of times as a result.

Fortunately, the fingertip is now fully healed. But, because of the loss of a small amount of flesh from the finger, and the hardened scar tissue that has replaced it, this finger is always the first to get sore after a heavy tune session.

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No physical limitations. Just the mental ones, like being fairly insane on and off.

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No physical limitations for fiddle, but I gave up the recorder lo these many years ago because my respiratory system is shot to hell. I even get winded playing the little ocarinas I bought a few weeks ago.

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This is a reply for kevo32 who says:

i have an annoying problem with breathing when im trying to play the lark in the morning (whistle/flute). i just cant play the first part all the way through. i lose the air. havent figured out what to do yet

Ailin is right (above) to say skip a note, but that shouldn’t, IMO make the tune sound syncopated. Noone really plays a 16 bar stretch on flute or whistle (like a whole A part) without taking a breath. It’s possible but it will probably leave you gasping, and you’ll be heading for trouble.

In almost any tune there are long notes that can be rolled, or cranned or whatever, but don’t have to be, and you can usually shorten one of these to take a breath. Or, like Ailin says, you can leave a short note out. You should NOT breath in the same place every time through a tune, and you should always replenish you air well before things get uncomfortable.

The breathing becomes an intrinsic part of Irish music played on wind instruments. It’s not necessarily good to try to disguise your breathing like classical flautists do with circular breathing techniques. Leaving a note out is fine, as long as your rythym doesn’t change.

Best of luck,
Charlie

PS, maybe fiddle player should try leaving notes out too!

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great clip. good laugh

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Wish you’d accidentally sent that to me Conán! I’ve a feeling I’d have enjoyed it!…

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Cheers for the laugh Frisbee, always one joker in the pack ! :-)

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Just watched your clip Conan, excellent mate, well choreographed :-) Tell me this where’s Blas these days ?

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Níamh I still might accidentally send it to you if you enjoy blue schoolboy humour :o)

Strath, haven’t seen Blás around these parts in a while. I’ll be back home at the end of the month so I’ll give her a shout.

Ptarmi, cracking one there of Tommy Tiernan. Mad as a big box of frogs!

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Great clips folks I have tears in my eyes

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Love that Tommy Clip - ‘an eeeyyyy dunnnooooowww’ -

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WOQaK7NHY-4


The piano fun continues - who amongst us would have kept up playing if we had ever had lessons like these? Have any of you experienced this?

My sister’s old piano teacher was a nasty piece of work - every year when the trick or treaters came round he would greet them warmly and say he would be right out with the sweets. He would then go round the back and get the garden hose and……

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Thanks for that Ptarmy. That was the best. Nearly pished masell.

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I would tend to think a big growth in your pants would cause great discomfort to work the bellows of a piano accordion. :)

Which of coarse is why i’m moving on mandolin. ..Not

Great clip Conan, Victor Borge would be proud. Oh, and happy anniversary on the 100 years of piano accordion this month as well to all box players around the globe!!
Raymond

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my physical limitation……is that fine-motor-skills are not my strong point….burning those new neuro-pathways into the old brain (which apparently is a big part of the process of acquiring speed & dexterity) takes a long, slow time in my case…..

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"Strath, haven’t seen Blás around these parts in a while. I’ll be back home at the end of the month so I’ll give her a shout"

Please pass my regards, cheers mate.

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"Love that Tommy Clip - ‘an eeeyyyy dunnnooooowww’ "

And there’s semi concussed children on the walls :-) Tommy’s a funny guy, cheers Ptarmy.

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Ah Ptar - what a great way you just started my day. That Tommy clip just resulted in my computer screen getting sprayed - I think it was the ‘interfered’ reference that did it!!

Brilliant:-)

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brilliant that tommy guy, pure brilliant.
(I’ve bookmarked the link ready for the next time someone posts a discussion about songs in sessions)

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All right, I’m surprised that no one else has derailed this thread thusly:

Cheshire puddy tat, pray tell, how on earth did you break all of your fingers at least once? There’s got to be a story here.