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    SoCal, SoCool. Live Long and Prosper
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    Diving, Hacking, WorldBeat, Jazz, Blues, Folk, Classical

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  1. 24 Bucks, free shipping with prime! https://www.amazon.com/Viola-Making-Step-Use-Violin/dp/0962067393 And $25.00 from Strobel himself: https://www.henrystrobel.com/booklist.htm#viola
  2. @matesic I have rarely heard of contracts specifying what could be played as an encore; that's the musician's choice. Hendrix is pretty popular universally - apologies for the youtube links not showing up above- so @Bill Merkel this isn't "fake" racism - it certainly seems like they (classicfm) are being stuffy shirts. Most US classical audiences welcome music that pushes boundaries -esp. if it's a short piece - and is lyrical as well - most of the violin soloists I have seen throughout SoCal do this routinely. So what's with Royal Albert Hall? Are English audiences different? Why so quick to claim fake racism? I have a fair amount of arts production as a youth. The producer usually is familiar with the artists' personalities, and their rider usually provides explicit details. It's a matter of negotiation for the big stuff - i.e., The Four Seasons, but the small stuff - you have to let the artist be them, or if they show up, you get a subpar performance. And when you engage with an artists, you get stuff they do: Keith Jarrett and his vocalizations (and still people complained); George Winston (he pecks out his concert one key at a time late the night before, so hall has to be available); Mel Torme had the temperature set to mid 60's, so he didn't sweat; one of the rock n roll bands required M&Ms with certain colors removed (apparently as a way of discerning whether people were paying attention to the rider); Albert Collins had a 200' guitar cord, and would walk into the crowd high fiving with everyone, and woe if the stage hands weren't prepared; etc. This doesn't even cover the music artists chose to play. How much control is realistic? Some perhaps. Here, classicfm was being completely unreasonable, and completely stereotypical. As someone pointed out, Nigel is known for breaking staus quo, so...what really was classicfm trying to so? Wow, so many fuddy duddies...
  3. Maybe Cantiga A? Fairly low tension, likely won't t overpower the gut strings.
  4. So...Nigel Kennedy withdraws from a signed gig. In this case, I think he was completely correct. https://www.udiscovermusic.com/classical-news/nigel-kennedy-cancels-classic-fm-concert/ and https://www.thestrad.com/news/nigel-kennedy-pulls-out-of-royal-albert-hall-concert-citing-musical-segregation/13663.article Literally, classicfm said no we don't want you because you want to play a small, lyrical piece - likely an encore - that might not be "understood" by our target audience???? Even the orchestra acceded to his wishes for no conductor for his main piece. I don't get this at all. Full disclosure: I have become a jimi hendrix fan as I heard others play his work on different stringed instruments. I would love to see a Nigel cover of this... and and
  5. for a microsecond...I read Jezzupe stripper. @chiaroscuro_violins I have wondered about that too... I have seen a few violins that were extensively repaired - oodles of cracks on the top - would never consider buying, but they sounded great. A topic for another dicussion... Also, probably impossible to know with certainty what other "repairs" might have beeen done - regraduating, bassbar, etc. Controlled experiment - sets of 2 identical violins, as practically can be done; smash (lightly) and repair one; gauge results....Smash differently - once, sound board, small cracks; another, cracks the length of the top, etc. Repeat, with various parts of the instrument, then combine in defined patterns...Then we could have Andreas french polish and see if they sound or measure differently... Impractial, to say the least...
  6. Yes, @Davide Sora I knew it was the same referred article we have discussed before. I am impressed that there are so many articles in the popular press referencing it; this one seemed a little more balanced. @Don Noon slo-o-ow burn! Trenchant. Exactly, @chiaroscuro_violins. We know that not all of AS's violins were equally good - at the very least, there are different shapes - i.e. long pattern, and we have what is nearly universally recognized as his golden period, etc. I have also heard from way more than 1 dealer that not all Strads are equal, and as discussed before, someone trying to make their mark will not turn down a Strad if it is loaned to them, unless they are already famous. Of the 3 or 4 of Tony's creations I have been privileged to play, I can attest that even in my hands they are most definitely not equal, though all were set up by known luthiers, and in good condition (irrespective of past repairs). OTOH, @Strad O Various Jr., I also believe you are correct, our man Tony got many things correct, and wasn't afraid to experiemnt. That seems to have been his "secret," with lots of self promotion, an astute business sense, and the fortune to have had most of the world's best players on his violins. I recall many here pointing out that at one time, Stainer violins were more popular than Strads.
  7. Some denatured alcohol includes some proportion of methyl alcohol; the fumes can be poisonous. Common denatured alcohol in the US may include as little as 50% Ethanol, and can include up to 10% methyl alcohol. Stick to everclear.
  8. Sadly, there are many states where you can't buy everclear 190, including Nevada, so it's not just CA. I think everclear is preferable to denatured alcohol, as it doesn't have benzene added to form an azetrope to aid distillation. Or at least, that's the rumor. The benzene could be removed, but I have never been able to find if that's usually done. I wish there was a luthier or woodworking license one could obtain that would allow us to buy Everclear; it's not like we plan to drink it.
  9. Yet another article about the Strad varnish chemistry - the Angewandte Chemie, 2021 paper...https://arstechnica.com/science/2021/09/study-confirms-superior-sound-of-a-stradivari-is-due-to-the-varnish/ Any additional thoughts? At least this summary and intro was written well, and fairly conveys some of the prior work...
  10. There is more discusssion of Yitamusic at violinist.com. You will find opinions all over the place. IIRC, setup is only, mostly OK, and can usually be improved. Definitely not the worst, and usually not as good as what a good shop stateside will do... Realize that must maestronetters don't deal with stuff this low end, except to tell people, "you get what you pay for..." (Thanks chiaroscurro. ) :-) Looking at your past posts, why not go to a shop or three in your area and try a few violins, rather than trying mail and auction offerings?
  11. I would look for members of the American Federation of Violin and Bow makers, or at least VSA members: https://www.vsaweb.org/ Years ago, I had similar fears: most violin shops seemed to work in an older fashioned way - they would give you a receipt describing your violin, but many wouldn't even slip a tag on violin- how they kept them separate I'll never know. (It seemed that all the luthiers I dealt with had a razor sharp memory) Most shops now label the violins, and they have insurance against damage, theft, fire, etc. Many photograph the instrument both before and after, to avoid specious damage claims. You might ask the shops their policy regarding lost violins, and how they care for the instruments set for repair. Really, though, my violins always arrived better than when I left them. Except for Auctions, some seemed to be the worse for wear compared to their picture. :-)
  12. There is/was an Aussie project on kickstarter to create a very small long lifed (battery) GPS tracker. Likely still too big for a violin, unless one were to hollow out a larger chin rest, but easily concealable in a case... From what I have seen, better than all the other solutions extant. Still waiting for mine. Project delayed considerably because of COVID, shipping restrictions, and esp. the "chip shortage." There are the blue tooth trackers (trackR, Apple's entry, etc.) that have a limited range, used to be ~ 30', now IIRC, some can go to ~ 120', and are small enough to be concealed under a finger board or under a chinrest, and resonably negligible weight. These devices rely on crowd sourcing for tracking, so perhaps not immediately useful in the case of theft, but the batteries usually last 6 months to a year, so a reasonable chance the location could be found eventually, unless someone discovered the hidden device. My guess is most thieves wouldn't check. Maybe later, when the violin passes to an intermediary?
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