minstrel: Re:musical Instruments

Robin Hayes rhayes at powerup.com.au
Wed Sep 17 16:23:50 PDT 1997

At 11:14 16/09/97 PDT, Efenwealt Wystle wrote:
>I wonder about the 
>sanity of anyone bringing a well made lute to a camping event. They 
>start around $1,000 and can cost more than $2,500 and are pretty 
>fragile. I'd be crazy to camp with a viola-da-gamba too. I'd probably 
>break it. Sometimes we sacrifice authenticity for practicallity. This 
>isn't an excuse, just a fact. I think striving for perfection is 
>admirable, but we can't all afford that. (Morgan Wolfinger wrote the "I 
>want to be in period but haven't got the money blues").

And I won't ever take any of my instruments including a reproduction
symphonie (early form of a Hurdy Gurdy) anywhere near any SCA Event of any
type ever again without written indemnity/insurance from the SCA. Certain
Peers thought it would be great fun to steal (and damage before returning
after several weeks) one of mine. Just because they felt that a 6 hole "tin
whistle" - which was the only form I could afford at the time until I had
saved up to get an expensive wooden version -  was just a "cheap toy" (at a
mere AU$40), they also didn't feel any compunction about denying that they
had done the theft (even though they were witnessed by parties who did not
wish to be publicly named!).

I haven't got the money to stand the losses/damages either, especially now
that I am unemployed!
But enough of that - now as to some references.

Flamenco Guitar by Mariono Cordoba (a dual English/Spanish Book)
1971 Oak Publications New York
ISBN 0-8256-0064-2

A method for traditional flamenco with a social history of Andalusian
music. Some of the roots of this are very old. Excellent book.
I have been looking for crosstuning books on the guitar, and haven't found
any out here in the boonies here yet, but do have some for violin/fiddle.

Mel Bay presents Cross-Tuning Your Fiddle
History, Techniques, & Transcriptions.
by Bill Shull
1994 MB95238 $7.95 (US) - No ISBN number

P 5 "Cross tuning has a history coequal with the history of the fiddle itself"
He talks about how the standard modern tuning was only one of many tunings,
back to the 15C. He even discusses how you need to change the fingering,
since the violin/fiddle is not an "even tempered" instrument.

The Fiddle Book
by Marion Thede
1970 Oak Pubications
ISBN  0-8256-0-0145-2

Chap 3 is about fiddle tunings. The book is mainly aimed at US traditional
folk tunes, but contains useful demo tunes in differnt cross tunings.

The New Grove Dictionary is supposed to discuss cross tunings, but I do not
posess a copy. 
I also have a couple of books on Scales and Modes (aimed at guitars) which
may be of interest. I will send the details here if they are wanted. They
give a useful understanding of Period Modes (also very useful for
everything other than guitarists only), as well as many other forms of
Musical Scales. They have useful ways of finding notes on fretted stringed
instruments, some tips are appliable to non-guitars. 


The Wise doth not oft dispute the Foolishness of the Fool,
 But the Fool doth oft abuse the Wisdom of the Wise.
rhayes at powerup.com.au  http://www.powerup.com.au/~rhayes/
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