minstrel: Re: bones

J. Michael Shew jshewkc at pei.edu
Sun May 4 16:44:39 PDT 1997



On Sun, 4 May 1997 CONSORTMUS at aol.com wrote:

> I just saw a man fall off my neighbor's roof, and his leg bone was sticking
> really far out of his skin, so the idea of touching any bone, ever again, is
> unnerving, to say the least.  
> 
> But, exactly how does one play a bone?  
> 

	Okay, this might be out of period, but the group I used to play
with was black-powder, and bones were a regular rythum instrument in that
society.
	The bones were almost always mule rib bones, from animals who had
died naturally, I assume.  Since they were flat and regularly shaped, a
section of a pair of ribs, say eight to nine inches of each, were held in
one hand between the fingers.  (My brother played them, using the space
between the first and second finger, and the second and third.)  The other
hand was used as a secondary striking surface, and the ribs were played by
rattling them together, striking them against a leg and the hand in rapid
motions, or swinging them up to work like castenets and then occasionally
striking them with the free hand to make extra beats.  The Chieftains use
them in a lot of songs.  The "Bells of Dublin" video I have shows one of
them playing them, but the set is of wood.  Probably easier on the
mule....
	Mikal Hrafspa
____________________________________________________________________________
    Mikal the Ram; an annoying Bard of no redeeming qualities
__________________________(jshewkc at pei.edu)________________________________
Dread Jarl of the Vanir       in the storm wind victorious
By your grace this sea steed      treads pathways of silver.
We honor with whispers     like the sound of wave song
Your wild waters     and fair wind words

                        (JOHNSAGA)
 


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