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    Readin', writin', 'rithmatic. General sloughing off.

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  1. While it's true you can't be aware of everything, that's no excuse for not having a passing familiarity with a cornerstone of the literature, at least if you're interested enough to actually build violins and post about them online. Keep in mind that while contemporary violinists may have declined the opportunity to play it, that doesn't necessarily reflect poor construction on the part of Brahms. Also, good to keep in mind that even in the 19th. century, just as today, a lot of music can't always be appreciated in its time. To wit, the late Beethoven quartets were thought implausible; 200 years later, no string player worth his professional salt would think of ever going thru life unacquainted with them. As to the Brahms concerto specifically, I'd have to admit I prefer Dvorak. In my youth I found Brahms to be a favorite, but then with advancing maturity and experience, I have to day the latter has much the same colorful Eastern European color, but in a much more sunny disposition. For instance, since almost everything written is available free on YouTube, I'd suggest you compare the Brahms symphonies (there are only 4, you can hear any two of 'em on your lunch hour) with the popular Dvorak ones. Dvorak is often more fun for string players, and he never wrote anything less than interesting for cellos! PS "Moonlight" must be the only Oscar Best Picture in modern times that only made $22mil. Just like the Nobel Prize, the results often seem dependent on political correctness of the day. But then that's only my opinion, considered as it may be, and yours may very well vary. PPS And yes, definitely listen to the Brahms concerto with a score in front of you if at all possible. You'll be amazed to actually see what the player is asked to do on the instrument!
  2. Depending on condition, etc., an educated guess might be in the neighborhood of $5-7,000. How much are you asking, and where are you located?
  3. Ipsa res loquitur.. Busan instruments are usually demonstrably plain, yet he obviously knew how to choose wood that was perfectly suitable for his purpose, and he's famous for his cellos and basses. Had I known the cello wouldn't have attracted a single bid at $80K I might have been tempted myself. But then, "If I'd only had a million dollars to put into that deal I'd be a rich man today!"
  4. And Nicolo Amatis were made in a shop with scrolls, etc. cut by "God knows who." If you're buying a violin just based on looks, get the cheapest one that satisfies your artistic temperament and buy a very nice house with the remainder.
  5. Auction prices are notoriously low, and don't often reflect what takes place in the retail market, where better quality often is offered up to the public at much higher prices. I haven't followed up on the actual condition of these instruments, but while you and I may very well prefer Pressenda, Vuillaume is thought to be the greatest copyist* of all time, and I suspect some people collect his instruments as "investments." Last I heard, nice ones are in the neighborhood of $250 - 300K these days. Seems to me the real bargain (such as it is), is the Busan cello at $80K, but then again, it depends on condition. A fine 18th. century Venetian one in good condition should bring $400K or more. (Of course, if it requires $100K in restoration I reserve the right to rescind my opinion!) * For what it's worth, a highly respected professional in the field once told me Vuillaumes were skyrocking in price because they were in high demand, and they were in high demand because so many would-be collectors could no longer afford Strads. Back in the 70's, you could buy his violins all day long for $30K, but then that was a long time ago, and reflects how long in the tooth I've actually become...
  6. I don't know how relevant you consider my comment to the thread, but I can reliably say Becker cellos are highly valued today (sorry, I don't know which Becker). I know in recent years one sold to a professional orchestral player for $125,000.
  7. I was a recent cello college graduate. I was stationed at West Point(less), attached to the band, as an enlisted man. Hardly a "ring-knocker" It's how I personally stemmed the tide of creeping Communism from sea to shining sea during Vietnam. If you think that was a cushy life, consider that other players who weren't forced to join up got a 3 year leg up on their careers, and got first dibs on decent jobs back in the days of 42 week seasons and $10,00/yr. Some of my neighbors ended up in Chicago SO, Dallas SO, and were grateful for having done so.
  8. Thank you Nathan, I appreciate your kindness. lemaster6@yahoo.com Have a great weekend.
  9. Sir, it is you who is determined to continue touting Tarisio, not me. Maybe read your own posts. Just a thought. Good day to you.
  10. #1 - I'm admitting upfront that I don't sell instruments, I play them. Most everyone on MN knows this; it's not a state secret. In the natural course of a professional career spanning a half - century I have of must needs come into contact with a great many high end violin shops, both in Chicago and New York, beginning at Wurlitzer in the very early 70's while I was stationed at West Point. Your analogy sucks (in addition to being plain wrong, and most likely posted with malicious intent.) #2 - a couple years back I sent Tarisio my French bow for their "experience and expertise" in setting a range of prices I could expect for it at auction. They responded " $8 - 11 thousand USD." I sold it a year later via a high end dealer in Chicago for $18,000, which netted me a check for $16,000. Consider yourself chided once more.
  11. You are correct, Sir. My bad. I'm always thinking about a gorgeous Cappa cello I once saw for sale at Moenning back in the mid 80's. I couldn't afford it then, and I still can't afford it today. (It was bought by a famous teacher in NY...) Mea culpa...
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