View Full Version : Stroh-viol mandolin
Yes, I agree, this has got to be a rare one:
Stroh Mandolin (http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=250051095038&fromMakeTrack=true).
The pickguard is a nice touch. You wouldn't want to scratch up the sheet metal when your fingers start flying.
Maybe the mandolin has a place in a modern marching band after all.
The horn would be real comfy on your leg while playing seated.
Playing standing up .... let's not even get into it.
All right, I'm calling dibs. I already have a violn and the ever so politically incorrect "jap fiddle" (one string, played cello style).
The mandolin doesn't have a "player's horn" like the violin does. Too bad...one can't have too many aluminum horns on one's instruments, can one?!?! http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/tounge.gif
Good luck Clem. I think this guy wants serious money. He quotes that a guitar went for $14000.
Plus I would not be surprised if the heavyweight collectors in the vintage instrument scene would fight over this one, assuming it is all original.
I have a 4-string violin. They are neat sounding but get tiresome after some time. Tom Waits uses a stroh-viol player on a few of his CDs.
Thanks Jim. I like the way Waits has used them. And my personal experience (not being aviolin/fiddle player) is that the player makes a BIG difference with a Stroh...and its still an acquired taste.
I realized that my comment above needs a little explanation. I have played my stroh in sessions but it got tiring, not because of the sound but because of the unwieldiness (is that a word?) and imbalance of the instrument.
Dang. The Danish Music Museum in Copenhagen has a couple of unusual Strohs. One might have been a cello, I can't remember for sure. I might have photos.
I was quite surprised at how good the Stroh violin sounded; I was expecting a tinny farce, but it wasn't like that at all. A bit more unidirectional than one might like, but it had a definite charm.
Yeah, the "unidirectionality" was what the Stroh was actually designed to do...focus the sound of the violin in one place so it could be recorded (in the earliest days of recording, e.g. on wax cylinders, regular violins didn't make an impression). The diaphragm and amplifying horn made the Stroh a preferred instrument..until the advent of good microphones.
But nothing looks cooler, eh?!?!?
Here is a scan from the book about the Roy Acuff Museum in Nashville. No mandolin there, tho.
Clem... are you St. Wubby? If so, congratulations!