Kerrin's parents were traveling ethnographers. That is to say that they
roamed the countryside seeking to collect stories, oral histories, folk tales,
traditional songs, and ancient poetry from all they met. While in pursuit of
their studies, their children - Kerrin, Heathly, and Foa - traveled with them.
This made for a rich and unique childhood. These childhood experiences exposed
Kerrin to many different peoples and cultures and he took the most pleasure in
learning the songs and music of the people he met.
Kerrin also took a special interest in the wide variety of musical
instruments used, and became most fascinated by a rather uncommon instrument,
the concertina. He greatly enjoyed the rare chances he got to play one, even if
it was only for a few minutes. While he longed for a concertina of his own they
were not particularly common and the current owners were never willing to sell
or trade theirs. A brand new concertina was unheard of, and Kerrin wondered who
had made the ones he did see on occasion.
When Kerrin came of age he set out for a life in Sable City with the
intention of honing his experiences as a member of the famous bards guild. He
had hoped the resources of the guild might lead him to a concertina of his own,
but alas the instrument was just as rare in and about Sable.
After many years Kerrin received a package from his parents containing
Lachenal Concertina. They had bartered and traded quite a bit to get the treble
folk concertina from someone who had inherited it as part of an estate from a
Unfortunately, the state of the concertina was a complete disaster and it
was unplayable. The keys were oxidized and the surrounding felt bushings were
worn and damaged - which caused various keys to stick instead of moving freely.
The leather thumb straps were brittle and cracking with age. The lacquer finish
of the rosewood end panels was completely worn off and so the underlying wood
itself was damaged. The internal springs were rusty and the valve pads were
badly deteriorated. The reeds were a mix of steel and brass with the steel ones
being rusted and useless. Finally, the leather and linen bellows contained many
cracks from both age and use or perhaps misue, and they showed bad wear spots
from rubbing against the Gods only knew how many different musicians.
While Kerrin was overjoyed at receiving such a fabulous and unexpected gift
from his parents, he knew restoring the concertina to a usable state was going
to be a long and difficult process. For that he would enlist the help of a very
clever gnome, Khortez, for he was exceptionally good with delicate mechanical
devices. After many a trial and error and much rework the concertina was not
only restored to fine playing condition, but the artistry of the piece itself
was once again visible.
These days Kerrin Gaile the Wren of Wassail can be heard playing Lachenal
Concertina throughout the realm entertaining audiences both large and small
and from all walks of life as folks gather to hear one of the land's most
famous bards perform.