• Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Posts posted by J-G

  1. Thanks for that, FC.  So my dealer may have been right:  go figure! :unsure:

    [edit]  Eric:  Guitar is long gone and that's the only photo I have.  But yes, I wondered about the size of the piece.  In any case it's not one of the standard guitar rosewoods, I think.

  2. I remember Malcolm Arnold telling a group of students at a summer workshop about his experience attending an orchestra performance of one of his works in the USSR.  At the reception after the concert a woman approached him bearing an envelope containing his fee for the rights.  It contained banknotes and coins.  He asked how they had arrived at such an odd figure.  "Oh," she said, "we pay by the note."  

    Unlikely, though, that any of Mozart's patrons hired note counters.

  3. Another tale (maybe equally apocryphal) of a critic unimpressed by mere technical display:

    Dr. Johnson was observed by a musical friend of his to be extremely inattentive at a concert, whilst a celebrated solo player was running up the divisions and subdivisions of notes upon his violin. His friend, to induce him to take greater notice of what was going on, told him how extremely difficult it was. "Difficult do you call it, Sir?" replied the Doctor; "I wish it were impossible."

    (from the Samuel Johnson Sound Bite page)

  4. 1 hour ago, Dwight Brown said:

    I cannot read the letter (I am a worthless monolingual) i don't imagine it has anything to do with JBV though.



    The 1944 certificate seems to say it's a genuine J-B Vuillaume with a da Salo label indicating model.  (But frankly, my Dutch ain't so good either.) ;)

  5. Also the Hill Bows site, if your tastes run that  way. And I like the photos of their bows in stock on the West Country Violins site, as they show the full length of the stick under tension instead of just frog and tip. (The hype there is a bit off-putting though.)

  6. The responses here to an honest query seem needlessly nasty. Question (I think) is whether this violin could have been given to an American just after the war. The fact he could have bought such a violin hardly answers that question. Nor does the fact it was likely built during the Nazi era. 

    Can anyone interpret the symbols on the scroll?

  7. Vathek, I would think the long tradition of vibrato-less choral singing works against that idea.  There hasn't been much said in this discussion about vocal vibrato, which a priori would seem to be the model for instrumental, and which likewise seems to appear first as an ornament before becoming generalised. 

  8. And Addie:  thank you for that interesting monograph.  Another good academic discussion of vibrato is in Ruth Rodrigues' 2009 Birmingham thesis, Selected students of Leopold Auer: a study in violin performance-practice.  It is available for download.  A 50+ page chapter is devoted to discussion of vibrato and close analysis of its musical uses in a number of old recordings by Auer students and others.  (I don't think this has been mentioned here;  if it has, sorry to duplicate.)  Of course, it doesn't answer the question we began with, but gives us lots of angles to think about.

  9. On January 22, 2017 at 7:35 AM, gowan said:

    I don't think frets prevent vibrato,after all we hear it on guitars.  Vibrato can be done by pressing the string with a a down and up motion after the string is in contact with the fret.


    Modern classical guitarists (nylon strings, metal frets) use a vibrato motion similar to that of cellists, but with a different logic. The fret fixes string length for each note, so instead of rocking the finger to alter length, guitarists rock the finger to alter tension; rocking towards the bridge reduces tension and so lowers pitch, and vice versa. The player is actually pushing or pulling a bit of string over the fret with each oscillation.

    I don't know whether the old lute and viol players (gut strings, gut frets) used a similar effect, but I wouldn't rule it out.

    The effect we see rock guitarists use-- squeezing the string along the fret-- can only raise pitch, and only works well with metal strings.  (So a "vibrated" C natural is done by playing a B natural or even Bb and raising it to C, then wobbling the C.)

  10. Looks like it was a pretty decent six-string guitar.  Early to mid-nineteenth century probably:  6-string guitar didn't exist yet in 1720, nor did the machine heads for tuning that this one was built to take.  Almost no one nowadays plays on this type of guitar, so it's hard to imagine anyone will want to restore yours.  But you never know...

  11. Tried this on my two violins.  Very tricky on the good one, easy on the Jackson-Guldan, a fiddle with crummy sound but very easy response.


    For the kind of bow control required, Simon Fischer has good exercises on "pivoting" in his book Basics.  But none with a harmonic, and the harmonic increases the difficulty here. 


    BTW, getting too far from the bridge will put you near a node where the harmonic can't sound.