Italian musette from Carlo Venturi

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maugein96
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Italian musette from Carlo Venturi

Post by maugein96 » Sun Aug 19, 2018 8:48 pm

Probably very few will have heard of Carlo Venturi. He was probably the best CBA player in his day in Italy. He played Italian musette (incredibly well).

Here is an excerpt from a concert held in in his memory. The player is Daniele Donadelli, and the tune is "Rebello" by Carlo Venturi.

I know this is more of a demonstration of virtuosity rather than music, but I posted it do demonstrate what CBA players in Italy can do. You'll see Daniele plays Modenese bass (appropriated by the Belgians and claimed as their own when Italian coalminers from the Modena area brought their accordions to Belgium).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0sUS0LdTXV4

I know very few will probably listen to that clip all the way through, so here is a clip of Maestro Venturi, played at a pace we can all follow:-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vAdILVNGQt8

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Re: Italian musette from Carlo Venturi

Post by Pipemajor » Mon Aug 20, 2018 3:08 pm

For those who may be interested in learning some of his tunes, if you go to www.novalis edizioni musicali e discografiche you can download a pdf of two of his books of tunes for free. It's under "Italy tunes". There's also loads of other tunes to download. :)

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Re: Italian musette from Carlo Venturi

Post by Pipemajor » Mon Aug 20, 2018 3:14 pm

If you just click on the bit in red, it comes up as not found. you have to key in the whole Italian bit but I don't know how to bring this up in red. :(

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Re: Italian musette from Carlo Venturi

Post by maugein96 » Mon Aug 20, 2018 3:52 pm

Pipemajor wrote:
Mon Aug 20, 2018 3:14 pm
If you just click on the bit in red, it comes up as not found. you have to key in the whole Italian bit but I don't know how to bring this up in red. :(
Hi Pipemajor,

The Novalis website has changed recently, and the link you provided doesn't work on my UK laptop. Try this link:-
http://www.novalis-music.com/index.cfm

If you go to "cerca" at top right of the welcome screen and enter "venturi" you'll get a list of his tracks. Select any out of Il Mito or Fuoriclasse, and double click them. Navigate to the album cover, and just below it you should see a link marked "spartiti.PDF", with other text to the right saying the music is for instruments in C (Do).

If you click on that link a pdf booklet will appear in Italian with the relevant scores distributed throughout. Most of Venturi's pdf booklets will open automatically, but I see Davide Salvi's needs a tool like WinRAR to open it.

As you say, there are literally loads of scores on the site, which has had previous mention on here on several occasions. A tremendous source of Italian popular accordion music, all free.

A few years after I started playing, I discovered Italian musette and liscio, and became interested in the CBA players from the Emilia Romagna area, largely because they play French type accordions. I have stated on here in the past that had I known about people like Venturi before I started playing, French musette would probably have taken a back seat. Granted, Italian musette is probably even more repetitive than French, but in general terms it is just that wee bit easier to manage for people like myself who weren't child prodigies.

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Re: Italian musette from Carlo Venturi

Post by Corsaire » Mon Aug 20, 2018 5:26 pm

Love the Venturi waltz and the tonality of his accordion. Italian musette sounds a little gentler than French but that might just be the style of playing !

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Re: Italian musette from Carlo Venturi

Post by maugein96 » Mon Aug 20, 2018 8:04 pm

Corsaire wrote:
Mon Aug 20, 2018 5:26 pm
Love the Venturi waltz and the tonality of his accordion. Italian musette sounds a little gentler than French but that might just be the style of playing !
Sally,

The playing in general is a little bit slower and expressive with big bellows pulls and pushes, and more pausing between phrases. Venturi's accordions were pretty sharp tuned, a bit more than the usual Italian, but nowhere near like Verchuren or the older French players.

A lot of Italian players don't have three voice musette on their accordions at all. Barbara Lucchi here, whose father Dino is also a pro player, has it on this 4 voice Piermaria, but seldom uses it. This is the usual Italian tuning for liscio, bassoon and two flutes. There is some great stuff on the second clip if you have the patience. She never uses the bass side at all, and you'll see her constantly "shunting" the bellows in so she can play mostly on the draw.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HWQdiJmFDKE

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ve5Rk2V1rW8

Listen to Massimo Venturi (no direct relation to Carlo) play the little PA in this clip. That's nice Italian musette on a little Lucchini. He gets off to a shaky start with the mike adjustment. I could listen to that all day (or maybe watch Barbara dancing all day, I can't remember, now!) Watch her face when Massimo fluffs those notes at the beginning!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k-Bq1QPrtbo

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Re: Italian musette from Carlo Venturi

Post by Corsaire » Mon Aug 20, 2018 11:06 pm

Nice videos - I like the sound of Barbara Lucchi's Piermaria - I wonder how many PA players manage the runs of the first tune at that speed. She makes it look so easy on a CBA.
Yes, it's interesting to see how she "shunts" and also that she doesn't use the bass side. If you have another instrument providing rhythm and bass, it doesn't seem necessary (I could learn from that !).

Poor Massimo, not a good start and she looked pretty unimpressed !

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Re: Italian musette from Carlo Venturi

Post by maugein96 » Tue Aug 21, 2018 1:22 am

Hi Sally,

Once you get the hang of them CBAs take a lot of work out of playing. Carlo Venturi mainly used 4 row C system and Barbara Lucchi would have learned an awful lot from her father and Venturi.

In light of the fact that the original organettos from the Bologna area were devoid of them, very few pro players from Bologna bother with the bass, and the only one I've seen who actually plays bass whilst accompanied by a band (to almost no effect at all) is Davide Borghi. You simply cannot hear the bass notes he plays.

What Barbara does is just shove the bellows in, either using the air button or by sheer brute strength built up over many years of playing. She's wearing rather well considering she's 47 years old. I remember her as a fresh faced kid beaming at Venturi, who taught her well it must be said. She is a better player than her father was, but don't tell him or her that. Incidentally, Dino never played the basses either when he had a backing band. Not sure if Dino is still on the go, but he's not that old, maybe early to mid 70s.

If you don't play the basses you can work on whatever method works best to perform that bellows shunt.

No it's not correct and shouldn't be encouraged, but Barbara and others like her have made a decent living out of being "one side wonders", so if the "bass" doesn't fit, too bad.

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Re: Italian musette from Carlo Venturi

Post by Glenn » Tue Aug 21, 2018 7:01 am

I guess if you are not using the left hand for bass notes you can hover over the air bleed button and shunt the bellows closed as a when it suits you. It does look rather odd on an accordion (more like a bandonion player) and am sure it’s not the done thing in “classical” circles. Maybe it helps when standing so that you can have gravity on your side when playing long runs.

By the way, I listened to the whole Donadelli performance. Impressive and a lovely piece of music.
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Re: Italian musette from Carlo Venturi

Post by maugein96 » Tue Aug 21, 2018 8:38 am

Glenn wrote:
Tue Aug 21, 2018 7:01 am
I
By the way, I listened to the whole Donadelli performance. Impressive and a lovely piece of music.
Hi Glenn,

I "cheated" as I've actually posted that clip of Donadelli before, and the feedback was that it was just a display of pure showmanship. He does actually "play" the bass, even although you cannot hear it, as I suppose there's no point in paying good money for "Modenese" bass as an extra then not using it. He's quite a whizz kid on French musette as well, and plays it on a beautiful sounding old black Crosio with Belgian/Modenese bass. I believe he's from the Parma area and was probably influenced by the late Gigi Stok, who played the same bass system, but with an extra 7th inner row which I believe corresponded with the inner row of a 3x3 (but obviously upside down). I've never seen any other current player on You Tube using Modena bass, and as far as I know it was very localised to the city of the same name, and neighbouring Parma.

Dino Lucchi probably taught his daughter how to use the shunt, as their bellows "technique" is identical. Carlo Venturi sometimes played bass and sometimes he never bothered. Many other Italian players are the same. He also used that "shunt Bolognese", whether he was playing bass or not. The bulk of his playing was done on the draw, as practised by most players from in and around Bologna. Most of them keep bellows movement to an absolute minimum, and once it has travelled more than about 15cm they start to work them back in again pretty sharpish, usually with a firm push.

Here's Massimo Dellabianca playing one of Venturi's old accordions, and the style is aptly demonstrated.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0OQ1VJ9GOzI

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Re: Italian musette from Carlo Venturi

Post by Corsaire » Tue Aug 21, 2018 9:08 am

Hi John

You can detect the shunt, a quick movement of the left hand but it's an interesting technique that Barbara does very well ! I don't see that it matters whether it's classically approved or not if the result is pleasing on the ear. If you think about it, diatonic players use the shunt (at least, they do here), so why not chromatic ?

You're right about the bass often not being heard, particularly if you play with other instruments. Those videos have made me rethink whether the bass is really necessary when I play in our group. I use chords in the right hand, particularly for diminished sound so reducing the bass notes is an interesting idea. I'll give it a try and see if anyone actually notices !

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Re: Italian musette from Carlo Venturi

Post by maugein96 » Tue Aug 21, 2018 10:07 am

The last time I posted about accordionists in Emilia Romagna I believe the subject of the unorthodox bellows movement also raised its head. It appears to be a localised technique practised by most, but not necessarily all pro players.

The accordion style of the area is very much influenced by the small "organetto bolognese" which has no bass buttons at all. I don't know if there were chromatic versions made, but some of them have four rows of black and white buttons which correspond to C system CBA.

Ruggero Passarini and his grandson, Massimo Budriesi, both play(ed) small CBAs with no basses, and Andrea Scala plays a little PA with no basses. Stocco and Fratelli Crosio made these "senza bassi", but maybe only a handful. Modern players use small 48 bass size CBAs or PAs and just don't play the bass buttons.

When you first try to play "senza bassi" it can feel pretty weird, as the fingers on your left hand start wanting to do "something", However, if you persevere with it you should find that you can put more concentration into your right hand, and of course you can keep your left thumb near the air button.

Last time this was discussed there was outrage on the forum, with people remarking as to why those Bolognese players bother with bass buttons at all, and they weren't playing "properly". Once you start that argument you then get things like "Passarini and Budriesi don't use their thumbs either, and that isn't the correct way to play CBA".

It's a local accordion style at the end of the day, and I'm not trying to tell anybody they should actually like it. When I first got to know about it the draw was the "sistema francese" type accordions and the tunings. After trying to research who copied who with regard to the CBA accordion types I drew a blank, but would opine that French makers copied the "sistema francese" accordions from the type the Italians made in Emilia Romagna. The Italians brought accordions to France and not the other way around.

One or two former forum members had a more extensive knowledge of Italian accordions than I have, but the instruments and playing style in Emilia Romagna are markedly different from the rest of Italy. There is also a proliferation of CBAs in the area compared with other parts of the country.

I've put another post on the same board regarding Filuzzi, a dancing style from Bologna comprised entirely of waltzes, polkas, and mazurkas. All of the tunes in the genre were originally played on the "organetto bolognese", which in the hands of a good player, is an incredible little instrument. However, the playing position with the left foot on a stool isn't exactly "cool", in contrast to the accordion, which is, isn't it?

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