2 row button accordion: which key?

2 row button accordion: which key?

Hi everyone -
I searched on this question but couldn’t fine a thread on this topic — so yet another which key to start with question —

I am a beginner bb player — started on a toy 7 button melodion and am ready to invest in a real instrument.

I would appreciate advice/opinions on which key 2 row accordion to buy.

Thanks!
Tedrick Schmenke -
St. Paul Minnesota

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Re: 2 row button accordion: which key?

C#/D ~ C/C# if you like the bounce of the Southwest ~ Cork, Kerry, Tipperary, Limerick ~ etc. But I’m bias and prefer those to the more modern Dublin invention of B/C… However, to be honest with you, there are more B/C squeezers than the others. My bias is that the ‘others’ have more lift, you play the bellows more, akin to a single row. The B/C allows for more legato playing, but there will be many others following this little offering who will guide you further with their wisdom and experience…

Use your ears to see where your heart might lie. You can listen for the difference ~ Johnny O’Leary, Jackie Daly, John Brosnan, etc., on the one hand, and a slew of others to represent B/C ~ Joe Burke, Joe Cooley, etc… I’ll leave that specific guidance for others…

Best of luck, and enjoy the read and the listening…

Re: 2 row button accordion: which key?

If your looking for long term durability with great sound go for a paulo soprani. If your looking for a great sound at a cheaper price go for a castagnari or mengascini

Posted by .

Re: 2 row button accordion: which key?

Being in St. Paul, you might want to talk with Paddy O’Brien about it.

Re: 2 row button accordion: which key?

C#/D if you want to play like Jackie Daly and Màirtin O’Connor and people like them.B/C if you want to play like Joe Burke and Paddy O’Brien.Personaly I’d go for C#D.

Re: 2 row button accordion: which key?

It’s impossible to make generalisations like dinn2’s. There are so many different styles of playing on both systems, and there are people who make great music on single rows, D/Gs, piano boxes. So much of your style will come from who you listen to anyway, that the system becomes less important. People sometimes start on one system and then change later on. Some people play both systems.

I’d be asking what keys you would like to play in mostly. If you play a lot of Fmaj and Cmaj tunes then B/C is probably better. If you play a lot of Amaj and Emaj, C#/D is probably better. If you mostly play Dmaj and Gmaj tunes, either system will do fine. They’re both chromatic and can play all keys, it’s just about what fits the bellows directions better.

PS - ceolachan, Joe Cooley is C#/D, and very few B/C players play quite like Joe Burke.

Re: 2 row button accordion: which key?

as I said in another post the other day to someone - borrow a few different boxes before you choose tuning.

Then buy the best box you can afford in the tuning you like best.

Good luck

Posted by .

Re: 2 row button accordion: which key?

I thought Joe cooley played a D/D# ? Anyway, when I started out I had a b/c box, and I organized my cds in two categories: b/c players and c#/d and after a while I realized I listened to c#/d players a lot more. i was more attracted to their style, so I switched, and I haven’t looked back. So nothing is set in stone. Good luck.

Re: 2 row button accordion: which key?

To the best of my knowledge Cooley played a D/D# in Eb style, meaning he was playing exactly what you would on a C#/D, but havin everything come out a semitone higher. Tony MacMahon does the same (not surprisingly).

Re: 2 row button accordion: which key?

to my knoledge cooley played a grey Paulo Soprani in C#D but on the recording "Cooley" he played a Red Paulo Soprani in D/D#.

Re: 2 row button accordion: which key?

kjay_bc_box & pennhorse & dinn2 ~ right you are, my slip… I suspect it was actually a C#/D ~ either the instrument was tuned as they often were, sharp, almost a full half step. I have some instruments from the time that are that way, which I’ve chosen not to retune to A=440 ~ or ~ as also happened, the recordings were sped up and sharp, a trick used to increase what could go on to a disk at 78 rpm, and also to compensate for the variability of a hand cranked Victrola… Anyway, I should know better… 😏

Cooley’s sound has that lift…

Re: 2 row button accordion: which key?

Sadly, some early B/C players were never recorded commercially.

Tedrick, I would just repeat again, get some recordings, get some recommendations. They are a generally welcoming and helpful lot here, drop a line to some of those who have responded ~ dinn2, pennhorse, kjay_bc_box, and as you’ll find listed in other discussions on the topic here. You could start off with a few compilations as a taster, for example, and it does include piano accordion:

"Masters Of The Celtic Accordion: The Big Squeeze"
https://thesession.org/recordings/display/1617

We all have our biases and it would be good if you developed your own through listening to the music rather than one of my rants or someone else’s… We tend to take one side or the other. When you hear something that makes your heart skip, take note and find out what box they play. Best of luck…

Re: 2 row button accordion: which key?

Hi All !
Will some kind soul get back to me & tell me how i’m supposed to know what key my accordeon is tuned to, as i just play by ear & i aint got no idea about reading music, Help !!!!!!
Tess Rogers.