The First Ever Southern England Chromatic Button Accordion Rally
Saturday 7th October 2017 near Didcot Oxfordshire
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Hello from France !

Give us a clue - who, and where, are you?
Posts: 181
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2017 1:41 pm
Location: Brittany (35) France

Re: Hello from France !

Post by Corsaire » Fri Jan 13, 2017 5:28 pm

That's really interesting about musette, Maugein - thank you. I'm still clinging to "musette pur" which has a sort of sweet and sentimental innocence about it and which I still enjoy playing. I find modern day musette too "swingy" for my taste and much more difficult. A lot of what Jerome Richard plays is the sort of commercial musette that presumably is what people want to hear (and pays the bills), but it's understandable as people like him are looking for something more challenging than the waltzes of years ago. They must find something to attract young players who want music that's more up to date in rhythm and style. I can't say I'm mad about it but perhaps need to be a bit more open minded !
Maugein wrote:Musette used to be fairly simple easy going music, but it isn't any more. It probably needed bringing up to date, but I just wish they had given it a makeover, rather than demolishing it and starting again!
Very well put !

It was Galliano playing Libertango that made me want to try the CBA ... but it would have taken me years to be able to play it myself !

I do have some nice paso doblé music that I have just fished out of the cupboard ! With the sea shanties, the musicians are pretty well tied into the singers, though there is a little room for freedom (but I've been told "strictly no musette" !)

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Posts: 207
Joined: Mon Apr 06, 2015 1:32 pm
Location: West Sussex England

Re: Hello from France !

Post by hais1273 » Fri Jan 13, 2017 6:24 pm

Hello Corsaire. Two fans of Breton music and dance here on the South coast of the uk. Several years ago we were camping near Roscoff and had the huge pleasure of seeing "A Virer" sing at a small harbour and village (Moguirriac?) just up the road from the campings, typical Breton/French fete, good food (sardine grille et frites) good company, good music, bon cidre, and a little dancing as well. Vraiment, une belle soiree! Enjoy the forum, lots of good advice from sensible and knowledgeble people here.!!

Posts: 825
Joined: Thu Jul 17, 2014 9:56 pm
Location: Scottish Borders

Re: Hello from France !

Post by maugein96 » Fri Jan 13, 2017 11:45 pm


If you've never heard of him before, check out Edouard Duleu from Wattrelos, to the north of Lille, right on the Belgian border. He played "musette pur", but was able to "swing" it without going into jazz. He's actually the only guy I know who successfully managed to "swing" three voice musette. He played a B system Do2 Charleroi accordion with Belgian basses, so his style has remained unique to this day.

Your sea shanty friends will definitely not approve, but he composed a number of tunes with Andre Astier and Joss Baselli which are epic works of the musette accordion.

Geoff de Limousin
Posts: 197
Joined: Tue Dec 01, 2015 1:28 pm
Location: Centre of France

Re: Hello from France !

Post by Geoff de Limousin » Sat Jan 14, 2017 8:20 am

Hello Corsaire,

as another Brit who has moved to France ( a dozen years ago) and gone back to the accordeon, after a break of 50 years, it is good to read of your exploits. My early dabblings were on a junkshop PA which soon died and I took up the Concertina which has remained a constant companion ever since.

We had a similar experience after moving to Limousin (my wife is also a musican) in not finding local people to play with. Our many years of living in Ireland did allow us to find some people who played Irish Trad in the region but it took a chance encounter to open a new door for us into the world of the Bal Folk. Although the Diatonic accordeon tends to dominate in this genre of traditonal dance music there are people using the chromatic boxes.

A couple of years ago I could no longer resist the urge to have another go at the accordeon and looking at the market for second hand models decided the best choices were to be found in the CBA's, even though a friend suggested the PA's that do come up are generally cheaper. So I have started down the chromatic button road and really enjoying it.. Working on a genre of music that pre-dates the early Musette styles of Vacher and Peguri but little reflections of it can creep in. A friend who'd attended a week long summer school ( studying the use of the CBA in Trad. music) came back with three volumes of partition arrangements for Auvergne dance music . Walzes,Mazurkas,Scottish's, Polkas and Bourrées... unfortunately not a commercial product but very helpfull for the autodidactic.

Some of the repertoire currently in the traditional ( folk) music comes from accordeonists like Martin Cayla and Jean Vaissade, even Segurel... and these tunes hark back to the early Musette styles... fun to play and not too difficult .

I recently drummed up the courage to introduce the CBA into our dance band (where the other accordionists play the Diato and I usually play the Concertina) , trying hard not to add too much of those early Musette accents, and I think it was well enough received .

So, good luck with the Sea Shanty group and this forum, which is a mine of usefull information.


PS; there are some nice examples of Chromatic accordeon use in the French Trad Folk on Youtube. Search for "Duo TTC" or " Hervé Capel" .

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