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Do I Really Need A Mandolin?

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tradsteve 20 Aug 00 - 07:11 PM
catspaw49 20 Aug 00 - 07:14 PM
Jon Freeman 20 Aug 00 - 07:16 PM
KT 20 Aug 00 - 07:17 PM
Malcolm Douglas 20 Aug 00 - 07:31 PM
sophocleese 20 Aug 00 - 07:34 PM
bigchuck 20 Aug 00 - 07:43 PM
oggie 20 Aug 00 - 07:49 PM
Midchuck 20 Aug 00 - 08:07 PM
tradsteve 20 Aug 00 - 08:16 PM
Jon Freeman 20 Aug 00 - 08:28 PM
Alice 20 Aug 00 - 08:46 PM
jeffp 20 Aug 00 - 08:49 PM
Cap't Bob 20 Aug 00 - 08:56 PM
Sorcha 20 Aug 00 - 09:32 PM
Susan A-R 20 Aug 00 - 10:29 PM
Susan A-R 20 Aug 00 - 10:30 PM
gillymor 20 Aug 00 - 10:51 PM
Sorcha 20 Aug 00 - 10:58 PM
gillymor 20 Aug 00 - 11:38 PM
Sorcha 21 Aug 00 - 12:21 AM
gillymor 21 Aug 00 - 01:03 AM
rangeroger 21 Aug 00 - 01:22 AM
Jon Freeman 21 Aug 00 - 03:33 AM
Lady McMoo 21 Aug 00 - 03:40 AM
Brendy 21 Aug 00 - 04:00 AM
Brendy 21 Aug 00 - 04:02 AM
Lena 21 Aug 00 - 07:04 AM
GUEST,Ketil 21 Aug 00 - 08:15 AM
Mikey joe 21 Aug 00 - 08:20 AM
Brendy 21 Aug 00 - 08:27 AM
Lena 21 Aug 00 - 08:28 AM
Mikey joe 21 Aug 00 - 08:36 AM
Brendy 21 Aug 00 - 08:38 AM
Whistle Stop 21 Aug 00 - 08:38 AM
Marion 21 Aug 00 - 09:12 AM
Morticia 21 Aug 00 - 09:42 AM
Lady McMoo 21 Aug 00 - 11:37 AM
Mikey joe 21 Aug 00 - 12:13 PM
Bernard 21 Aug 00 - 01:43 PM
Rollo 21 Aug 00 - 04:36 PM
Vinland 21 Aug 00 - 09:44 PM
Hardiman the Fiddler 21 Aug 00 - 11:23 PM
ol'troll 21 Aug 00 - 11:38 PM
LR Mole 22 Aug 00 - 11:13 AM
Brendy 22 Aug 00 - 11:24 AM
Rick Fielding 22 Aug 00 - 01:04 PM
Wesley S 22 Aug 00 - 02:06 PM
Susan from California 22 Aug 00 - 11:34 PM
Brendy 22 Aug 00 - 11:41 PM
pastorpest 23 Aug 00 - 12:40 AM
Chicky 04 Sep 00 - 10:15 AM
Morticia 04 Sep 00 - 01:41 PM
Brigie 04 Sep 00 - 05:42 PM
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Subject: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: tradsteve
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 07:11 PM

Do I? I'm tempted, but I already have so many instruments lying about. Hmmmmm. Any thoughts?


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: catspaw49
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 07:14 PM

Of course you do. Completely dumbass question.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 07:16 PM

What do you play, steve? There is no answer that I know of to how many different intruments one should have but if you get on well with stings, you would probably like one. If you use GDAE tuning for other instruments, e.g. fiddle - even more reason to consider one.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: KT
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 07:17 PM

AW, go for it!!! And may you also have a friend like I have...one who gets on your case if you neglect it to the point that the strings get rusty!!!! So much music to be made and so little time.....or as another friend put it....I don't mind that the day is only 24 hours long....if only it was a little WIDER!!


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 07:31 PM

Everybody needs a mandolin.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: sophocleese
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 07:34 PM

Well they can be awfully decorative...


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: bigchuck
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 07:43 PM

Of course you do. How else can you be heard when you're playing with a banjo or fiddle in the group?


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: oggie
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 07:49 PM

If the mandolin needs a home you are morally obliged to give it one.

All the best

Steve


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Midchuck
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 08:07 PM

"Of course you do. How else can you be heard when you're playing with a banjo or fiddle in the group? "

Martin 12-fret dreadnought.

P.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: tradsteve
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 08:16 PM

Well, Jon, I already play guitar, banjo,harmonica, and a little ukelele. I figure, now is the time to add mandolin. my house is so crowded though... ahh what the hell looks like I'm gonna purchase one, guys!


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 08:28 PM

I think a mandolin will feel quit at home with you with all that family! Steve - I hope you enjoy it.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Alice
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 08:46 PM

After you learn the fingering on a mandolin, get a fiddle to add to the collection.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: jeffp
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 08:49 PM

Go ahead, adopt one. They're an awful lot of fun to play. Once you get used to it, you may end up throwing caution to the winds and getting a fiddle. If you do, plan on years of torture for your family and pets. *BG*

Seriously, though, have fun with it.

jeffp


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Cap't Bob
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 08:56 PM

You just reminded me that I do not have a MANDOLIN! See what you have done ~ now I have to start looking around and try to figure out what kind I should get. Hmmm, most likely the Irish type. At least it's better than buying another guitar.

Cap't Bob


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Sorcha
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 09:32 PM

Should I really get a mandola? I have this mandolin I can't play, and no money, and my hand won't fit a mandola neck, but..........they sound sooo neat. I don't think I can count high enough to count all the instruments in the house, or even the ones we own and nobody does play, let alone Can Play. There is this banjo on the wall, 2 fifes, 1 Baroque wooden flute that really belongs to my sis, a Jew's (Juice/mouth)harp, 2 harmonicas.........(but I did sell or give away 2 violins and 1 lap dulcimer in the last 6 months, does that count?)

How about a cello and a stand-up double bass just for school demos? Huh, huh, can I, can I ? I already need a pony cart to get stuff from the parking lot to the school.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Susan A-R
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 10:29 PM

Tradsteve, that MUST have been a rhetorical question among this crowd. As for me, I've decided to concentrate on fiddle and voice, and let the other stuff under the piano (my husband owns the piano) collect dust. The viola, electric bass, guitar and (yep, you guessed it) Mandolin are looking a bit gray. But, do what you gotta do.

Susan A-R


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Susan A-R
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 10:30 PM

But wait!! Sorcha, did you say mandola??!! Say, do I really need a mandola?

Susan A-R


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: gillymor
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 10:51 PM

Playing a mando gives me a fresh perspective when I come back to the guitar and sometimes opens up possibilities that hadn't occured to me. The GDAE configuration seems to make more sense for figuring out melodies and improvising. It's just a nice little vacation from the guitar.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Sorcha
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 10:58 PM

VACATION?! VACATION? You surely cannot be saying that fiddle/mandolin/melody is a nice vacation from guitar/backup can you? Surely not, you must be a melody picker, of whom I know very few personally, but they do exist. Oh, and BTW, IMHO, mandolin chording just might as well be non existant, for all the help it gives a group. Give me a mandolin melodist, any day, and I will GLADLY give he/she a break or several. Gives me a rest.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: gillymor
Date: 20 Aug 00 - 11:38 PM

STOP SHOUTING, Sorcha!*g* I mostly fingerpick on the guitar nowadays and playing mando somehow causes me think in a more linear fashion (as does flatpicking tunes on the guitar) and to maybe grab for notes that are outside of the comfortable confines of the chord my left hand has formed. BTW, where would Bluegrass be with out the famed mandolin chordal chop. Bill Monroe would spin in his grave if he could see what you wrote!

Regards, Frankie


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Sorcha
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 12:21 AM

sorry frankee. i only shout occasionally, and you are right about Bill M. I just have never played with a good mandolin chopper, and seldom with a good mando/guitar melody player. In my group, fiddles play melody (except on 3 tunes) and everybody else chords. Bill would have a conniption fit if we called it BlueGrass, but we call it OldTime instead.......(*G*)


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: gillymor
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 01:03 AM

But then Bill did love twin fiddles so he'd probably forgive you (if that were necessary) *bg*. G'nite.

Frankie


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: rangeroger
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 01:22 AM

I want a mandocello.

rr


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 03:33 AM

I've only played one mando-cello - an old Gibson and it's tone was superb - maybe one day...

Jon


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Lady McMoo
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 03:40 AM

Why not adopt a whole family, i.e. mandolin, mandola, octave mandolin, mandocello!

Sorcha, there is almost nothing more pleasing than a good mandolin chop, except perhaps a good pork chop!

Peace

mcmoo


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Brendy
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 04:00 AM

All you ever needed to know about mandolins, etc., and Joe Foley, friend, and one of the best luthiers that I know of.

B.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Brendy
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 04:02 AM

Oh dear, it happened again.

Joe Foley


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Lena
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 07:04 AM

Yes you bloody do they're fantastic animals!!! The other week in my father's messy house I found the most beautiful instrument ever!!!It took me a bit of wondering before discovering it was a mandoloncello(lower than a mandolin),and now I'm saving all my money to get it fixed.Even if I still have that "where is the mouthpiece to blow?" need(woodwind player...)and don't have a clue of how.I think they're unique instruments,so Renaissance like and so narrative with their squeaky linear sound


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: GUEST,Ketil
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 08:15 AM

Of course, then you can get a tenor banjo too :)


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Mikey joe
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 08:20 AM

anyone for some bouzouki??


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Brendy
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 08:27 AM

I saw a guy once or twice who used to have a T Shirt with a tin whistle, and a pair of hands covering a few of the holes, emblazoned on it.

When he walked to the bar, he looked as if he had four arms, and a whistle stuck out of his neck.

But he actually played the banjo.
But depending on what you had ingested, it could look like he was duetting with himself.

It used to get a bit surreal, at times.

B


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Lena
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 08:28 AM

So,what's the stiry of the bozouki in folk music.How comes its sudden popularity.Doctor Folkenmuzic where are you.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Mikey joe
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 08:36 AM

Origianlly a greek instrument.

Andy Irvine is generally accredited with inroducing the bouzouki to irish folk music when with the band Sweeney's Men in the 60's, others like Donal Lunny only increased it's popularity


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Brendy
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 08:38 AM

Here's what Andy Irvine has to say about it.
Also included is a link to an interview with Alec Finn.

B.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Whistle Stop
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 08:38 AM

I agree with Frankee -- a mandolin gives you a fresh perspective and opens your mind to melodic/harmonic possibilities that might not occur to you otherwise. I'm a guitarist who plays some mandolin on the side, and I love it. I like the different tone -- not only higher pitched, but also the fact that the strings are in pairs, and the intervals between strings are wider, which encourages you to find different melodic patterns and chord voicings. I also play with a band and do a lot of recording on my own, and the addition of the mandolin in either context is refreshing. It's a great instrument in and of itself, and it also broadens you musically and helps you get out of the ruts that we all fall into from time to time. Go for it, Steve.

As for the bluegrass "chop," in some ways it helps take the place of drums, which aren't generally found in bluegrass (although there is a lot of music that is bluegrass-based and does have drums). The standard bluegrass lineup (consisting of various combinations of guitar, mandolin, fiddle, banjo, bass, dobro) has a lot of instruments playing melody/harmony, and although they all tend to be played in a pretty rhythmic fashion, the "chop" adds an element that isn't there otherwise.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Marion
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 09:12 AM

With trepidation I write:

No, not everybody needs a mandolin, and you may not need one. I don't. I play guitar and fiddle; a few months ago somebody gave me a mandolin, which I thought I wanted at the time, but I haven't been able to find a niche for it. After all, I have a guitar for harmony and a fiddle for melody, and the time I have for practice has to be allocated wisely.

Maybe you personally do need a mandolin, but don't assume that because you love the instruments that you have that you would obviously love more.

What the mandolin does do for me, however, is make me even more grateful that I'm a fiddler. When I play around with the funny-looking mando, wracking my left hand and wrist just to get some pingy little sound, then put it down and pick up my fiddle which is drop-dead gorgeous with strings like butter and a beautiful voice, I know what heaven is.

Marion


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Morticia
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 09:42 AM

Well, mandolins don't eat much, don't take up much room and seldom give you earache if you neglect them for a while ( although mine has mastered a reproachful look that tugs at my catholic roots guilt- strings), they are forgiving of learners in a way that fiddles are not and can sound wonderful in the hands of someone who knows what they are doing and then come back without looking too smug.......I love them.....get one....hell, get two.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Lady McMoo
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 11:37 AM

Re: the bouzouki, ...many consider that Johnny Moynihan once of Sweeney's Men and De Danaan was the first to popularize its use in Irish music although Andy Irvine was of course becoming known round about the same time.

Peace

mcmoo


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Mikey joe
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 12:13 PM

that is correct mcmoo, in fact it was probably Johnny who introduced Mr. Irvine to the bouzuoki @ least that is the impression I got from the interview posted by Brendy.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Bernard
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 01:43 PM

Mandolins are small and cuddly. I've got two! I'd really like a 'banjolin' to keep them warm...

A bloke I used to know had a 12-string mandolin years ago. Interesting beast, and so was the mandolin. Strung in 3's instead of 2's, if you see what I mean...

Stu Butterworth, where are you?


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Rollo
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 04:36 PM

There is no question, everybody needs a mandolin... they have a wonderfully curved body, a sweet voice (although they can be a little bit shrill sometimes...) and maybe you can teach them to bring beer, too.

but now I got a mandolin banjo by chance... I could not imagine anybody needs THAT, but even this little bastard has its points... well, in a way it blends the worst of two instruments. nothing so perfect to get the qguitar man quiet when he starts telling banjo jokes again. Just play one of theese funny little tunes sounding like a Laurel/Hardy Movie Soundtrack and he will pray for mercy.

Okay, what I wanted to say is just this: you never know wether you need an instrument until you discovered it for yourself. Maybe you might find a new love.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Vinland
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 09:44 PM

I'm a guitar player who recently bought a mandolin for its smaller size - it fits beautifully in the nose of my kayak. It's great around campfires and the sound carries well outside. Everyone should have one! It is a nice holiday from the guitar, but no replacement!


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Hardiman the Fiddler
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 11:23 PM

I confess that I have a mandolin, and that I enjoy playing it regularly, especially when I'm trying to learn a new fiddle piece. It is less frustrating to me to learn the fingering on the mandolin first, and then translate that to the fiddle. Also, fiddles can be finniky travelling companions, and mandolins are not quite so delicate, so I sometimes take the mandolin as my "travel fiddle," for when I am away.

This last trip, when I was in the big windy was interesting. I took my fiddle with me this time, and took a break from driving at a small town park in New York on the way back home. There were a number of people who seemed to enjoy the strange out of town guy who stopped in their park to fiddle. It was probably the most entertaining thing that happened in the park in years. I really liked the young ten year old boy who parked his bike where he could hear, without (as he supposed) being seen by the fiddler! I hope he goes home and begs his mom for fiddle lessons!

Hardiman


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: ol'troll
Date: 21 Aug 00 - 11:38 PM

Sure. Why not? Just don't be like my buddy Charlie who has one of the worlds largest (I think) private collections of bowl-back mandos.About 80 at last count. And he doesn't really play mando. He's a 12-string bules man. He just likes bowl-backs.

Marion, while I of course respect your dedication to your chosen instruments, I feel that you are far too serious. You need a little recklessness in your life. Have you considered a tiple? Spaw can probably give you some pointers. (heh heh)

troll


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: LR Mole
Date: 22 Aug 00 - 11:13 AM

Well, I never thought I wanted a mandolin until I got one, almost. The early Ry Cooder albums made me hear them in a different way, though. Do bluegrassers get annoyed with that sort of thing (Bela Fleck, for example, who showed up on Austin City Limits last Saturday and was wonderful) i.e. if you want a guitar, get a guitar? For me, blugrss is like reggae: after about the fifth number I lose dedication and appreciation of subtlety. But some instruments (and rhythms can show up in such odd places and sound so RIGHT.) Of course you need a mandolin.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Brendy
Date: 22 Aug 00 - 11:24 AM

Indeed Mikey Joe, and mcmoo. There was a link in the interview with Andy to an interview with Alec Finn about the introduction of the Bouzouki into Irish music.

"Hey, Johnny Cope, are you a walkin' yet,
Or are your drums a beatin' yet.
If you were a-walking, I would wait
Tae gang with the Copes in the mornin' o

B.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 22 Aug 00 - 01:04 PM

Jeez, if you'd asked "Do I need THREE mandolins?" I'd still be forced to come down on the "yays". Then again I'm a sick puppy!

Rick


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Wesley S
Date: 22 Aug 00 - 02:06 PM

Tradsteve - Yes - you not only need a mandolin, you need MY mandolin. If I sell my Mid Missoiri M-4 I'll be able to afford all the bells and whistles that I want on the octave mandolin I've ordered.

Seriously - what I liked about learning the mandolin after years of playing the guitar was the ease of "translating" my guitar chords over to the mandolin. Just take the bottom four strings of the guitar, turn them upside down and you have a mandolin { GDAE from low to high }. With your guitar knowledge you can easily visualise the chords for yourself. Solos seem to make more sense also. They travel easier across the mandolin neck. Aside from all that the next time you go to a session count the number of guitars vs mandolins that you'll see. Mandolins are a lot lighter too.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Susan from California
Date: 22 Aug 00 - 11:34 PM

I wonder why I hadn't noticed this thread earlier? I inherited an old bowl back/tater bug mandolin that my Grandfather played back at the U of Cinncinati back in around 1913. It is in bad shape--lots of splits, etc. It only has one string, but I tell you, even with all its problems, that one string sounds great:-) Even tho my Grandfather was not a nice man, and the only memories I have of him are of things that I try to forget, I really want to have this mandolin repaired. I am afraid it is going to cost a fortune, so I have been looking for an inexpensive one to purchase. Hours ago I found an interesting one that I hadn't seen before, but since it could be had for just over $75 I decided to buy it. (blond wood, and only 5 pieces to form the bowl, instead of the usual multitude of splines. Give me a few weeks, and I'll let you know if I'm happy about it or not!


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Brendy
Date: 22 Aug 00 - 11:41 PM

Good point, there, Wesley. About the transition from the guitar to the mandolin, and, by association, to the mandola, and all scales ascending.

It's much easier to 'come at' other stringed instruments, when you have the guitar knowledge, than it is the other way around, I think.

B.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: pastorpest
Date: 23 Aug 00 - 12:40 AM

Of course you need a mandolin! I am a wind player and I needed a mandolin. It is a great melody instrument and you never know when the urge will strike to sing O Sole Mio accompanying yourself on mandolin.


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Chicky
Date: 04 Sep 00 - 10:15 AM

I didn't think I needed a mandolin. But I did.

I was having trouble playing guitar around my hugely pregnant belly last year, and borrowed a mandolin from my brother, who had in turn borrowed it from his best mate. I loved the sound and feel of it, but felt unmotivated to put the work into learning to play the darn thing because it is (truly!) one of the most hideous looking things I've ever seen, and I was embarassed to be seen playing it in public. Orange and red paint - big pointy shoulders (that manage to jab you in the most uncomfortable places) - just UGLY in a 70s kind of way. Callie calls it the Jimmy Page mando.

Tonight, just before a gig singing for Nelson Mandela (yes, I DID just name drop), Callie solved my problem. My lovely lovely lovely cow of a friend had ordered the mandolin of my dreams from a website in the U.S. and it arrived this morning. I'm so blissed out on the sound and feel and GORGEOUSNESS of the thing, I can hardly bear to sit here and type rather than play it.

Yes, unbeknowns to me, I needed a mandolin. And now I have one!!!

(Thanks again sweet Callie.)


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Morticia
Date: 04 Sep 00 - 01:41 PM

thanks to this thread I went out and bought a new mandolin too.......it's a flat back and very sweet and it's been very kind to my old one.........you may not have needed a new mando Tradsteve......but clearly some of us did ( the definition of need being somewhat loose you understand)


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Subject: RE: Do I Really Need A Mandolin?
From: Brigie
Date: 04 Sep 00 - 05:42 PM

Hello all you mandolin fans!!!!!!!! I have been playing the little mite for a few (quite) years. But to this day I don't play cords........I seenm to have too many fingers or else they're too thick!!!!!! But what a wonderful instrument both for accompanying songs and for the great dance tunes.


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