Music for Unusual Instruments

Small instrumental groups with or without piano
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fredbucket
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Music for Unusual Instruments

Post by fredbucket » Thu May 06, 2010 6:39 am

By this I mean old, obsolete or otherwise non-'mainstream' instruments not covered in other threads so far. I doubt that there will be many entries in this, but let's kick things off with the English Concertina.

Wikipedia has an article on the concertina here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concertina

At the outside, I can't play one at all well - I can't handle the notes of the scale being on alternate sides of the instrument, but I do have a Wheatstone Duet concertina that I can still get a reasonably musical sound out of, and in my younger days was actually quite profient at, including giving a couple of classical music recitals with a good friend of mine who also played the duet concertina - it might be said that we formed a duet of duets.

I am including here a Fantasia on English Folk Themes by Richard Blagrove.
blagrove - fantasia on english airs (concertina & piano).pdf
It does give a very good idea of what the instrument is capable of, and one can sense there was a reason behind the sentiment in the 19th century that the English concertina could well be a replacement for the violin in some circles, as may be seen here - https://urresearch.rochester.edu/instit ... temId=3951.

Regards
Fred
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timgill
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Re: Music for Unusual Instruments

Post by timgill » Fri May 07, 2010 6:24 am

Hope these soundclips work.

A concerto for sandpaper and wind band http://www.reift.ch/fichiers/mp3/2740.mp3

and a piece called "Watering the Periwinkles" for hosepipe and band http://www.reift.ch/fichiers/mp3/3048.mp3

Can't think of anything more unusual than that...

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fredbucket
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Re: Music for Unusual Instruments

Post by fredbucket » Fri May 07, 2010 6:34 am

timgill wrote:Can't think of anything more unusual than that...
Unless your name is Hoffnung...

Regards
Gerard

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passthesalt
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Re: Music for Unusual Instruments

Post by passthesalt » Fri May 07, 2010 6:41 pm

Music for vacuum cleaners:

"Celeste Boursier-Mougenot's Harmonichaos is a sound installation made of 13 vacuum cleaners fitted with a harmonica in their mouth and a switch that turns them on/off. Each is connected to a sound frequency analyzer (a modified electronic guitar tuner).

Two more installation with vacuum cleaners: Staalplaat's Composition for 60 vacuum cleaners (and 2 cement mixers, 2002) and Wolf Vostell's Fluxus-symphony for 40 vacuum cleaners that dates back to 1976!..."

http://blog.makezine.com/archive/2006/1 ... music.html

The cement mixer music sounds intriguing.

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rob
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Re: Music for Unusual Instruments

Post by rob » Sat May 08, 2010 12:25 am

Malcolm Arnold's A Grand Grand Overture op57
written for the 1956 Hoffnung Music Festival
for 3 Vacuum Cleaners, 1 Floor Polisher, 4 Rifles and Orchestra

http://www.chesternovello.com/default.a ... _3041=7041

kh0815

Re: Music for Unusual Instruments

Post by kh0815 » Sat May 08, 2010 10:24 am

... and from the same evening in the Andante of Haydn's Surprise (!) Symphony: "... the uncertain bass noises at the end of the Haydn were made by members of the august B.B.C. Music Department staff blowing into (or across) hot-water bottles. ..."

For more details see http://www.gramophone.net/Issue/Page/Ja ... .,+39s.+70.).

And purchase the Hoffnung albums if you don't own the since decades!

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fredbucket
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Re: Music for Unusual Instruments

Post by fredbucket » Sat May 08, 2010 10:36 am

Actually, all of this is not the point of the thread - which was for unusual but nonetheless recognisably musical instruments. However much I appreciate the Hoffnungesque sense of humour, I'm not sure that vacuum cleaners and coffee grinders come into that category :)

Regards
Fred

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Re: Music for Unusual Instruments

Post by rob » Sat May 08, 2010 1:16 pm

fredbucket wrote:Actually, all of this is not the point of the thread - which was for unusual but nonetheless recognisably musical instruments. However much I appreciate the Hoffnungesque sense of humour, I'm not sure that vacuum cleaners and coffee grinders come into that category :)

Regards
Fred
Oh don't be such a dyed-in-the-wool conservative traditionalist. Go and play with your didgeridoo, you, you... AUSTRALIAN!!!!

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fredbucket
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Re: Music for Unusual Instruments

Post by fredbucket » Sat May 08, 2010 1:29 pm

rob wrote:Oh don't be such a dyed-in-the-wool conservative traditionalist. Go and play with your didgeridoo, you, you... AUSTRALIAN!!!!
1) I don't have a didgeridoo. I have an oboe, which is entirely different, although probably just as difficult to play.
2) Even if I did have a didgeridoo, I couldn't play it. I can't do circular breathing. I am not a politician.
3) My piano is anything but trraditionalist and convervative - entirely the opposite in fact, much to my enjoyment.
4) I am NOT Australian - I was born in England and I have a European passport to prove it.

So there...

Bleeeeaaahhhhhhh!!!!!!!

Regards
Fred

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Re: Music for Unusual Instruments

Post by Ferruccio » Sat May 08, 2010 8:08 pm

Looking for peace .... sitting in my corner silently :ugeek:
Neither being Australian nor Austrian
Best regards, Ferruccio

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