Greetings from Paris

Give us a clue - who, and where, are you?
Post Reply
Krikri
Novice
Novice
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Jun 07, 2018 10:08 pm
Location: France-Bagnolet

Greetings from Paris

Post by Krikri » Fri Jun 08, 2018 10:14 pm

Hello everyone,

I'm 40 years old and I live in Bagnolet, a small town close to the east of Paris. I played diatonic accordion for years. Some months ago, I decided to switch to CBA system to discover new tunes. I have no regret: CBA is heavier ofc, but it's really not a problem. CBA is easier than diatonic system in my opinion.

I play on a LMM 96 basses Cavagnolo (80's). 2 weeks ago, I found an old Cavagnolo on Ebay. I won the bid almost for nothing. I'm not sure but it seems to be a virtuose 12 orgue version. 5 voices LLMMM. No cassotto (tone chamber?) but "double peigne" (idk how to say that in english sorry). One basson is REALLY low, almost unplayable by itself but very powerfull with triple musette or another voice. I enjoy playing it. It needs a little bit of maintenance and I will do it this summer.

For years I used to connect every week on www.melodeon.com, an Uk diatonic forum. I really appreciated that one and this one seems to be the chromatic version, it's perfect :) :b :ch :b

20180608_230647-ConvertImage.jpg

maugein96
Should get out more!
Should get out more!
Posts: 1414
Joined: Thu Jul 17, 2014 9:56 pm
Location: Scottish Borders

Re: Greetings from Paris

Post by maugein96 » Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:18 pm

Bienvenue Krikri,

That Cavagnolo is a pretty unusual instrument, and there is no real translation for "peigne arriere", which as you probably know was intended to give an effect similar to cassotto. .

Seems like you have one set of double bassoon reeds and one normal. I've seen similar instruments advertised on French websites, but cannot remember how they described the basson tuning.

Have you tried to find out anything about the player whose name is on the bass side of the Cava? It would be very interesting if you could find out who the player was, as it might give more clues about the instrument. You'll know that Cava has used the same grille since about 1948, but if you look at the serial number inked onto the treble reed blocks you may be able to get the year of manufacture from those. There is a French chromatic accordion forum that has a list of Cava serial numbers, and I should be able to find it you need help with that.

There are a few members on here with a general interest in French accordion music, and some of them are very knowledgeable about the mechanics of the accordion.

I live in Scotland and began playing the accordion when I was 32 years old, way back in 1985. I decided to play musette but had to try and teach myself to play, as the French playing style is not really compatible with UK teaching methods.

I ended up using the Ferrero method, but never really managed to progress much beyond the intermediate level, due to the fact that it was impossible to interact with other players, and French accordion videos were not playable on the UK VHS systems in the earlier years.

I have a Cavagnolo Bal Musette MMM, but it's in a poor state of repair and I seldom play it.

My main instrument is a Maugein Mini Sonora LMM, tuned just a bit too sharp for americain, and is therefore "moderne legere" or celeste.

I also have an old Marinucci LMM, made for the French market, and a little Hohner Nova 80 light, but it is not a very good accordion.

French musette is often regarded by other non-French accordionists as an "easy" style to play, but few of them have ever tried it.

At first the only recordings we could get here were Verchu, Aimable, Edouard Duleu, Larcange, Yvette Horner, Emile Vacher, Emile Prud'homme, and other players who mostly played "musette pur".

After a few years I realised that there was more to French accordion than musette pur, and became interested in LMM accordions.

There are very few French accordions in the UK and it is very difficult to have them repaired here, as our accordion repairers are not familiar with French made instruments at all.

Sorry, that's probably way more English to translate than you had bargained for, but I am interested in most aspects of French accordions and the music, so feel free to post anything you like on the matter and I'll be happy to try and assist. I have some knowledge of French, but not at a conversational level, and being Scottish my English is not that great either, but I can usually manage. We write English the same as English people do (with some exceptions), but the speech is rather different.

"Cheers"

Johnny Walker (yes, really!)

Stephen Hawkins
Should get out more!
Should get out more!
Posts: 1067
Joined: Mon Jan 25, 2016 11:59 pm
Location: Lancashire.

Re: Greetings from Paris

Post by Stephen Hawkins » Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:27 pm

Hi Krikri,

Welcome to the forum, where I feel sure you will be very comfortable.

I look forward to reading your future contributions.

Also, I can vouch that Johnny Walker is Maugein's real name.

Kind Regards,

Stephen.

Tom
Superstar
Superstar
Posts: 540
Joined: Wed May 01, 2013 1:08 pm

Re: Greetings from Paris

Post by Tom » Sat Jun 09, 2018 12:36 am

Welcome! That's a beautiful accordion and I wish you the best of luck! As a non-French accordionist, I have to say that I have never considered French musette easy to play.. Quite the contrary.

User avatar
debra
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 2018
Joined: Wed Jul 16, 2014 2:45 pm
Location: Eindhoven, the Netherlands
Contact:

Re: Greetings from Paris

Post by debra » Sat Jun 09, 2018 9:24 am

Welcome and best of luck with that instrument. I never heard the term "double peigne" or "peigne arrière" but I think it may refer to something like a declassement. What it means is that the L reeds are in the back, meaning closest to the player's body. Because they are behind the keyboard they then have a more mellow sound, a bit like with cassotto.
Paul De Bra (not Debra...)
http://www.de-bra.nl

maugein96
Should get out more!
Should get out more!
Posts: 1414
Joined: Thu Jul 17, 2014 9:56 pm
Location: Scottish Borders

Re: Greetings from Paris

Post by maugein96 » Sat Jun 09, 2018 11:32 am

Paul,

The current Maugein catalogue refers to two different types of cassotto, "front" and "rear". My instrument is one of the "rear" versions and the tone chamber is at the rear of the keyboard.

I don't think I'd know what a standard tone chamber looked like, and am led to believe Maugein's "cassotto" is not conventional. Again, I wouldn't really know what to look for, as I've never previously owned a model with cassotto.

Cavagnolo, and others, marketed "peigne arrière" for some time, although it seemed to fall out of favour some years ago.

Krikri
Novice
Novice
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Jun 07, 2018 10:08 pm
Location: France-Bagnolet

Re: Greetings from Paris

Post by Krikri » Sat Jun 09, 2018 2:50 pm

The previous owner died 4-5 years ago. I think he bought this accordion in 1956 or 1957 (I checked serial number). His family sold all his stuff to a guy who resold it by Ebay. He really took care of his accordion for more than 50 years. I opened it and there is no trace of dust. Main problem is the accordion didn't play for 3-4 years and the keyboard is a little bit "sticky", the felts should be old and need to be renewed. Fortunately no air leak and not out of tune.

Peigne or Double peigne was a former system to amplify the bassoon sound. It works very well but the problem is weight. That's why builders chose to use chamber tone.

To be honest, I'm not a big fan of musette. Generally left hand and harmony is a littlte bit "poor" and right hand melody tends to overwrite harmony. I grew up in Britanny then I played traditionnal (briton and irish) for years. But CBA allows to explore more various tunes: classic, klezmer, pop...but next tune I will work on it will be "Reine de musette" because it's a standard!

I listen various types of music. In accordion world, I appreciate Peirani, Galliano and master Marcel Azzola.

maugein96
Should get out more!
Should get out more!
Posts: 1414
Joined: Thu Jul 17, 2014 9:56 pm
Location: Scottish Borders

Re: Greetings from Paris

Post by maugein96 » Sat Jun 09, 2018 4:11 pm

Hi Krikri (got your name wrong in my last post).

I'll check out Vincent Peirani, as I'd never heard of him before.

Galliano seems to be the guy they all love in France at he moment, and I'm not surprised that you aren't a fan of musette.

I do believe it got a degree of over-exposure in France in the years between the end of WW2 and the 80s. Most younger French people I've spoken to recently don't care for traditional musette either, which they believe has had its day.

Here in the UK it did have a degree of following, but the French specification instruments used to play it weren't very popular here due to the smaller treble buttons, the treble couplers being on the rear, no bellows straps etc., etc. The accordion repairers were out of their league with them as well, and very few of them would undertake to work on a French made accordion.

Only UK player I know of who ever tried his luck with French musette (in France) was a guy named Albert Delroy. He played a white Cava PA when playing French music, although he was more into the lighter jazzy versions of French "chanson" type music (Trenet etc). He died in 1996, and only made a handful of French style albums. I used to have them on K7 cassette, but they all got damaged years ago.

Marcel Azzola is probably one of the most versatile French accordionists ever, and I don't think I've ever heard another living player who can turn his hand to such a broad range of styles. A fairly recent acquisition of his is one of the Gadji manouche accordions

Good luck with getting the pallets done on your accordion. I once had mine done on a MMM Cava "Bal Musette" model, and unfortunately the guy who carried out the work made a rather poor job of it. The treble keys are now a lot stiffer than they used to be, but I'm sure a French repairer will know how to do it properly.

Reine de Musette is certainly a "standard" and I'm sure you'll make a good job of it. Keep us posted with how you get on.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests