• If you haven't done so already, please add a location to your profile. This helps when people are trying to assist you, suggest resources, etc. Thanks

What do you use to practise when using the accordion itself isn’t feasible?

OldSqueezer

Member
Joined
Mar 21, 2021
Messages
79
Reaction score
32
Location
Cornwall, UK
There are times when I need to work out or practise some right hand treble, but my PA - even the little FR-1x - is too heavy or awkward for the circumstance, for example sitting (parked, of course!) in the car driving seat, or lying abed. Trying to play one of those accordion apps on an iPad screen doesn’t work for me - spacing all wrong, and no tactile feedback. What does work though is hooking up my three octave iRig midi keyboard (full size, velocity sensitive keys) to said iPad and rotating the keyboard so it fits between my chin and my lap in the normal accordion treble keys position. There is an iPad app called ‘Vintage Accordion’, which is reputedly sampled from a nameless Castelfidardo instrument of the sixties, that I use. As apps go (as opposed to computer programs), it is a little pricey at £9 but the sound appeals to me and it works well with midi. Even with a pair of headphones added, the whole thing weighs very little, and is extremely portable. No bellows effect of course, but the velocity sensitive keys provide for some variation of expression, and this is a only a practice rather than a performance tool.
 

dan

Active member
Joined
Jun 28, 2016
Messages
170
Reaction score
96
Location
Iowa, USA
Good tip on rotating a keyboard controller

I have used an iOS accordion app—the C system CBA tutor by Michael Eskin—and found it helpful for learning the layout and visualizing how I would tackle a fingering problem, but no the spacing isn’t right for practice

I also have found myself playing “air accordion”: practicing the finger motion on a table or my stomach or the car dashboard!
 

Pipemajor

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 16, 2017
Messages
435
Reaction score
157
Location
London, Limousin, France
Good tip on rotating a keyboard controller

I have used an iOS accordion app—the C system CBA tutor by Michael Eskin—and found it helpful for learning the layout and visualizing how I would tackle a fingering problem, but no the spacing isn’t right for practice

I also have found myself playing “air accordion”: practicing the finger motion on a table or my stomach or the car dashboard!
Melodica might be the answer :unsure:
 

TomBR

Prolific poster
Site Supporter
Joined
Nov 1, 2013
Messages
1,033
Reaction score
100
Location
SE. Gloucestershire UK
Casio SA-46 is an inexpensive standalone option - a little keyboard with PA size keys.
About £34 in the UK

An advantage over melodica (or accordion!) is the headphones option.

One up for the PA over CBA!
 
Last edited:

OldSqueezer

Member
Joined
Mar 21, 2021
Messages
79
Reaction score
32
Location
Cornwall, UK
One up for PA...
Oh, oh, here we go again!
That aside, a cheap keyboard is always interesting, but you also need a good accordion sound to encourage you to play it. I really like that of the Castelfidardo Accordion Vintage app, but it is IOS-specific, I think, unless you want to shell out £99 for the Apple or Windows version. And why would you? That's more appropriate for people making music with their DAWs, rather than practising an instrument.
Doug
 

Tom

Been here for ages!
Site Supporter
Joined
May 1, 2013
Messages
2,172
Reaction score
540
Location
USA
Visualization, definetly. I'm one of those people who can "see" the music in my head, especially the chords. If I can't sleep, I can practice memorizing the progression.
 

Seisiuneer

Member
Joined
Jul 26, 2014
Messages
88
Reaction score
6
Location
San Diego, CA, USA
Good tip on rotating a keyboard controller

I have used an iOS accordion app—the C system CBA tutor by Michael Eskin—and found it helpful for learning the layout and visualizing how I would tackle a fingering problem, but no the spacing isn’t right for practice

I also have found myself playing “air accordion”: practicing the finger motion on a table or my stomach or the car dashboard!
Hurray, someone uses my app!
 

Chrisrayner

Active member
Site Supporter
Joined
Jun 18, 2019
Messages
208
Reaction score
74
Location
Bramley, Surrey, England
For those of us wedded to buttons there are few alternatives to a proper accordion. An accordina appeals, but I’ve just sunk the price of one of those on a FRX4.
 

OldSqueezer

Member
Joined
Mar 21, 2021
Messages
79
Reaction score
32
Location
Cornwall, UK
I guess in some ways I wish I was 'wedded to buttons' but it would be unrealistic to think I have enough time left on this planet (or whether this planet has enough time left, possibly) to make that transition. And I see it as an advantage that developing a chord/melody technique on the accordion will also benefit my piano playing.
 

OldSqueezer

Member
Joined
Mar 21, 2021
Messages
79
Reaction score
32
Location
Cornwall, UK
@Seisiuneer Having made the grand declaration of impossibility in my previous post, curiosity overcame me and I downloaded your app to see whether I could at least make sense of this cba stuff, even if I couldn’t learn to play it. With the help of YouTube explanations from Les Titfield, and Leon of Roxy’s (that was), I learned where the logic lay, and your app demonstrated it.

Now a question to you if I may, so I can decide whether to lay out a tenner on another of your apps, your Hohner Chromatic MIDI controller. I also declared above my liking for the Apesoft ‘Accordion Vintage’ app. That can be played from my iRig physical midi controller, but Apesoft say Apple’s Audio Unit 3 format means their app can also be used with compliant hosts like GarageBand. My question is whether that also means that I could load your midi controller alongside the Apesoft app (ie the latter would be in place of eg Sampletank which you recommend as a possible sound source) so the latter provides the sounds to be played from your chromatic button keyboard?

Thanks for your advice.

Doug
 

Similar threads

Top