Bones and Concertina: The Sailors’ Instruments that Have Survived Over the Centuries

Annika Mikołajko


The history of the sailors’ instruments is currently a barely investigated area. In the past, bones were used frequently in a variety of music genres, whereas today they seem to be forgotten in certain countries. The simplicity of playing that once was their advantage has also resulted in the small number of written sources concerning the technique of playing as well as the way of producing of this instrument. Despite this fact, bones were the ground for what is called the “musical recycling”. Concertina, in spite of its much more complicated structure and technique of playing, is more popular and has been described in several secondary sources. There are even schools of playing on this instrument available. Unfortunately, concertina is rarely used in concert halls too. Both instruments, thanks to their simplicity and small size, visited almost every part of the world in the era of great sailing ships, but today they remain known and used only in specialised environments.

Słowa kluczowe: bones, concertina, sailors’ instruments, Ten-a-penny Band

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