Han's Irish Squeezebox Page.

Last updated: Jun 20, 2005

Latest changes:

This page is created as a means to organize the information I have collected on the Irish button box. At the moment it's not much, but I have some material available that only needs to be converted into proper HTML, so it will fill up soon enough.

First there is an attempt to describe the differences between the Irish system and the system that is found on most other 2-row boxes.

Then there is an article on ornamentation as it's used in Irish traditional music.

And here is an overview of the layouts of the bass (left-hand) buttons you will typically find on most Irish boxes.

Of course, after having read about the most common setups you will now want to learn how to USE the bass buttons.

Now, are you ready for a few tunes ? I've written out some well-known session tunes with the fingerings I use for them: using 1 for index, 2 for middle, 3 for ring and 4 for little finger. Hope you enjoy them !

If you want to spend some time listening to good box playing, check out the selection of favourite Irish box CDs plus a fairly complete discography of Irish box players I compiled. Suggestions for other good stuff are of course welcome.

Now that you've done some listening, here again is something to play: exact transcriptions (I hope) of the playing of Joe Cooley. All the tracks of the "Cooley" album have been notated as he plays them the first time through - including his variations as he goes through each part twice.

Here's a beginning of the picture book of my favourite box players. Currently featured are:

And finally here are some pictures of some of the boxes I play:
Brand-new custom-made C#/D box,also by Frans van der Aa of Heeze, the Netherlands.
New Box, Pic. #1 New Box, Pic. #2
Custom-made C#/D box by Frans van der Aa of Heeze, the Netherlands.
My Black Box

Early 1980's Paolo Soprani Elite I, also C#/D.
Red Paolo Soprani Box

Early 1990's VanderAa, B/C tuning.
VanderAa B/C box VanderAa B/C box
VanderAa B/C box

Mid 1950's "classic" Paolo Soprani, tuned B/C.
4-voice Paolo Soprani Box

Mid 1950's 3-voice Paolo Soprani, tuned D/D#.
3-voice Paolo Soprani Box

Late 1930's 6-reed Baldoni-Bartoli one-row in D.
6-reed Baldoni-Bartoli one-row in D

And finally, here is my collection of links to other sites on the web that have info on (Irish) squeezeboxes and box players.


Check out my Irish bouzouki page. or my DADGAD Guitar page.

Or check out some other Irish music related sites.

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