Mandolin and violin

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Mandolin and violin

Post by Spearmint » Thu Mar 30, 2006 2:55 pm

Thanks. I'm getting ready to check out that washtub link right now. I've always wondered what it sounds like.

I really didn't know what a bazouki was. Sounds pretty interesting. Especially if I already know how to chord it.
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Mandolin and violin

Post by Spearmint » Thu Mar 30, 2006 4:34 pm

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Mandolin and violin

Post by Spearmint » Thu Mar 30, 2006 4:37 pm

Sorry about that last post. I can't remember my password to delete it. I didn't think my reply was posted, so I made another one. I failed to realize that it started page two. Duh.

Hey, I found a site that has a washtub bass fiddle! Now I've heard it all. Can't remember the address.

Here is a site that has some good sound samples, but their voice harmony...well... anyway, you can hear some instruments. http://www.oriskanystrings.com
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Mandolin and violin

Post by Bobinwales » Thu Mar 30, 2006 4:49 pm

Spearmint, I'm not sure that you can claim to play bouzouki just because you can chord it. It is a melody instrument primarily, and in the same way that although you can, and should , play chords on a mandolin it sounds infinitely better playing a melody, and that after all is said and done precisely what it was intended to do.

Actually, I don’t think there is a standard tuning for bouzouki, the player chooses one that suits that player best.

I own a balalaika, three strings two E’s tuned the same and an A above. Now it doesn’t take a huge amount of musical knowledge to chord one of those, but if you listen to the instrument being played as it was designed to be played, it is superb. So, yes, I can chord a balalaika, yes, I can get a tune out of a balalaika, but I can’t play one.
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Signature: All those years gone to waist!
Bob in Wales

Mandolin and violin

Post by Spearmint » Thu Mar 30, 2006 5:00 pm

I guess the bazouki and I would get along really well then. I first learned how to play the guitar and the mandolin the wrong way - melody first! I'd hear a song, and then play it - long before I learned how to chord either one of them. One of the blessings, (or curses) of playing by ear.
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Mandolin and violin

Post by haro » Thu Mar 30, 2006 8:37 pm

The traditional Greek bouzouki is based on the Turkish saz. The term 'bouzouki' most likely was derived from Turkish 'bozouk saz,' which, according to sources whose reliability I cannot judge, literally means 'broken saz,' meaning a smaller (actually medium-sized) saz.

The traditional bouzouki has three courses of double or triple wire strings, standard tuning D A D. Greeks just call it 'old bouzouki.' The 'new bouzouki' was introduced by Manolis ("Manis") Hiotis, one of the rembetiko stars, maybe some time before WW II. Rembetiko (plural rembetika, more often used in English) is sometimes dubbed the Greek blues, a highly improvized music style originally blooming in prisons and hashish dens in the Aegean Sea in the early 1900s and culminating between the first two world wars. The new bouzouki usually is tuned C F A D. It is the standard bouzouki in modern Greek folk music, but some traditionalists still prefer the old three-course instrument.

The new bouzouki was introduced into Irish music in the mid 'sixties by Johnny Moynihan, who bought his first bouzouki from a friend who had brought it home from Greece. Moynihan and other Irish musicians used G D A E or G D A D tuning. Also in Irish music, Alec Finn experimented with three-course instruments, mainly tuned D A D.

Irish music, but also direct influence from Greek music, brought the bouzouki to America too. Maybe first used in psychedelia experiments in the 'sixties, it became the object of many experiments, msome of them again changing the tuning.

This wide variety may be the reason why Bob thinks there is no standard tuning for a bouzouki. The original Greek bouzoukia (yup, that's the Greek plural!) does have a standard tuning, or rather two, old and new. The rest actually has mostly experimental character.

Ok, back to mandolins and violins then?
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Signature: Hans Joerg Rothenberger
Switzerland

Mandolin and violin

Post by Bobinwales » Fri Mar 31, 2006 9:19 am

Thanks Hans Joerg, I am grateful for that. I didn't know about the three course instrument, and tunings do differ with various musicians. When I played in a band with a bouzouki player he used GDAE, which personally I found handy!
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Signature: All those years gone to waist!
Bob in Wales

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