Great that you’ve found that old recording of ‘Rakes of Kildare’! I’m glad yo u like it – I haven’t heard that for a few years 🙂 I recorded that just after I’d discovered the Clavietta, and before I’d really experimented with other models.
The Clavietta has a beautiful tone, but in my experience, lacks the volume and tonal weight to play in sessions, which is a real shame. If someone could make a louder version, it may well come close to the dream melodica…
Talking of dream melodicas, I emailed Karen, and she says she played a Hohner melodica from around 1975. She doesn’t have it anymore, as she lent it to a pupil some years ago, but stresses they don’t make them like they used to. Can you guess what model it might be Oscar?
The bounce I was referring to is in the breath. It’s hard to describe, but the cheaper reed plates (lots of reeds on one plate, harmonica-style) have a sort of elasticity, which make it easier to get into the Irish rhythm, e.g., accenting beats 2 and 4 on a reel. You can do that on a Clavietta or a Vibrandoneon, but you have to work much much harder.