Yum, Koa smells like barbeque sauce.Originally Posted by (danb @ Nov. 29 2005, 06:07)
Yum, Koa smells like barbeque sauce.Originally Posted by (danb @ Nov. 29 2005, 06:07)
Eastman 804D two point, blonde
Nothing is fool proof for a talented fool
one of the best sounding loars i have played (i've probably played 6-7 loars) is the monteleone f-5 that greg boyd has..hearing chad play lonesome moonlight on it was kind of like a religous experence...it would have been cool if it had a "the gibson headstock" and a loar label... i could have some fun #....no financial interest..(cause #my wife wouldn't let me buy it..)
1980 Monteleone m-5 (#46)
Collings mf-5 (#88)
I seen a real good fake one year in Missouri and when I showed the owner the things about it that stood out as a fake he wanted to beat my head in...A year later I seen him and he said he had it checked by an expert and he said he was sorry for acting the way he did...So now if someone says he has a Loar I just congradulate him and go on my way....No offense to those of you that have let me hold and play your real ones....Willie
"I seen a real good fake one year in Missouri and when I showed the owner the things about it that stood out as a fake he wanted to beat my head in..."
Hey, we're only talking $125-150K here...
In the violin world, an appraiser like Charles Beare in London can change your net worth by $5,000,000 with a stoke of the pen...
There are famous stories of the resulting anger and threatened fisticuffs...
I remember one episode of "Antiques Roadshow", where a woman brought in a violin that her family had traded a house in Boston for back in the 30's...
It was very difficult to watch the appraiser inform her that her fiddle was worth about $750.00...
Everybody's hoping for that lost Loar or Strad; a guy here at work came in a couple weeks ago asking where he could take a violin and get a good price for it. It belongs to his B-In-Law and has been sitting in his closet wrapped in newspaper since it was given to him in Argentina years ago. My coworker and his wife seemed pretty convinced that it was built by a Cremonese master back in Antonius Stradivarius' day since it "looks old" and has a label from one of these non-Strad builders in Cremona (he can't remember which one). I gave him the name of a couple places that I know could give him a realistic estimate, but was having a hard time convincing him that he shouldn't get his hopes up too high; that millions of violins have been built with these labels... some very good and some pretty mediocre. This guys' in-laws are all struggling financially and hoping the goose that lays the golden eggs will build a nest in their yard!
"... beauty is not found in the excessive but what is lean and spare and subtle" - Terry Tempest Williams
Paul, I like the "Argentina" touch--hey maybe it was one of those Cremonese instruments that was stolen by the Nazis!
I used to have one of those typical, 100-year old German violins with an old, convincing-looking Strad label--which, of course, didn't fool me at all. I took it into Gary V's shop for some work, and it reminded him of a story. Apparently, it was very similar in workmanship and finish to another violin he had seen years before, maybe even from the same factory. This violin belonged to a local celebrity, Eugene Jelesnik, who had bought it at a well-known shop in New York way back in the 1930s (if I recall correctly).
The shop had sold it to him as an authentic N. Amati, and had charged thousands of dollars for it--as much as a house in those days. Today, an authentic Amati would be worth millions. Mr. Jelesnik implored Gary to be very careful with his "precious Amati," keep it in the safe while not working on it, etc. Fortunately, he didn't ask for an appraisal or even an opinion on it, because he already "knew" what it was. Gary did not have the heart to tell him it was a cheap piece of German junk.
It was apparently a good playing and sounding piece of junk--as they sometimes are--since Jelesnik was no slouch as a violinist. He has since passed away in blissful ignorance, but I'll bet his heirs were pretty disappointed.
"Few noises are so disagreeable as the sound of the picking of a mandolin."
I owned a "Strad" many years ago... ; bought it new!....
i was in a violin shop in Raleigh, NC about 10 years ago to get a violin appraised. it was made in 1970, but a very nice work from a luthier i had never heard of, so i figured it was in the $2K range.
there was a guy in there getting a really old violin appraised that he thought was worth $25K and it was interesting to see the shock when told he *might* be lucky to get $6k at an auction - i was expecting him to faint right there. - as he had just paid $12K for it and wanted an insurance appraisal.
when i put my violin up on the counter, i was expecting to get reamed too, but he actually offered me $3500 right on the spot for it - which made the other fella none to happy.
when you get into the world of violins, you are in a completely different league.
"when you get into the world of violins, you are in a completely different league."
A league that the Loars will enter at some point down the line...
Or at least a lot more than the 25K they were fetching not all that long ago...
At 250K, it makes it a little more tempting to get the details right.... #
There are some very sneaky Les Pauls and original Flying V's floating around out there...
spruce, you're so right - just check out ebay auctions for original late 50's gibson HARDWARE. i about choked when i saw PAF's going for over $10K, and those bumble bee capacators for a couple thousand. i saw a plastic LP pickguard go for $3000. you think this is all crazy UNLESS, you are the guy using the parts to make an *authenic* 59 burst you can pass off at $150K+++
No one here has said that they could not be fooled, but have implied it would be hard. I agree. Hoever, once you think you can't be fooled, there is always someone a couple of steps ahead. IN additiona to southern pottery (Edgefield), I collect southern art, particularly by a Charleston artist by the name of William Aiken Walker. Walker was born in the 1830's and painted until about 1921. Much of his work was scenes of southern sharecroppers. Neat stuff. A few years ago, there were a number of forgeries going around that fooled the top experts. Eventually, the only way many were detected was by chemical analysis of the white paint. The paint used during Walker's era did not include some of the modern ingredients.
Certainly it might be possible to analyze a part of an old Loar (maybe the varnish) and determine it's authenticity, but I would not assume that one could go strictly by looks, smell, sound and playability alone. "Gut feeling" may play a part too, but that won't go too far in a court of law or an insurance appraisal.
By the way, I have never been fooled by a fake piece of Edgefield pottery, but I am sure that day will someday come!
What I don't get in all this (whether violin, mandolin and especially electric guitar) is why in the world anyone would pay more than it costs to contract the top builder in the world today to make you a perfect instrument ... maybe three of them so you can pick the right one. OK, I understand historical interest (e.g saxophones made by Adolphe Sax himself or WSM's mando) but apart from that... if I had $100K why not ask Gilchrest to make me one, OAI for one, etc.? I realise this is getting into psychology. Is it just confidence game like the stock market, where I think because I pay a lot for it it's a good investment? Or are people buying these because they actually sound better than anything that can be made today? (I know about breaking in and aging, but that is relatively short term, or...?).
There is no "logical" explanation. To carry your point further, why would WSM's be worth any more than another Loar. Quite frankly, I had rather have a mint Loar than WSM's beat up instrument. But that's just me - which is the explanation for all of this. I can't explain why I like old, rare stuff - I just do.
I guess it is good that everyone doesn't want this old stuff or there would be even more demand and the prices would be even higher! Ain't this a great country!
[ Or are people buying these because they actually sound better than anything that can be made today? (I know about breaking in and aging, but that is relatively short term, or...?). ]
Nothing sounds like a real Loar, real pre-war Martin or Gibson. Nothing.
You may prefer the sound of a new mando, but in all my years of playing instruments I've never heard or played a new one that was the same as an old original instrument.
As to whether old instruments are worth their current prices we must go to the economic definition of value. If someone pays $XXXX for something, then it is worth that amount, till the next one is sold and then it is worth whatever that one went for. Thoughts about whether something is worth $XXXX don't count, only actual exchanges of money for product. By that definition old Gibsons are worth what they cost because people pay that amount for them. Your opinion of whether that amount is crazy or sane is completely inconsequential.
Sorry, but ecomomic theory dictates that whether something is worth its current price only matters to as a personal opinion in so far as it dictates whether you would buy that thing at that price. You obviously would not, but as the market has readily indicated, many people have and will.
on fakes, violins, etc.
I was given a violin sounded good so I kept it my repairman said it was a fake, then tried to trade me out of it. After playing it for several years I sent it some where to be appraised etc. , turns out it's a real __ violin, far from perfect. The man asked what KIND of appraisal I wanted, for insurance or personal? I told him I just wanted to know if it was real and a kind of ball park what it was worth as is condition. He said if a violin house had it it might be offered for above 20K, if I took it to one of the auctions it might sell for 7K-10K as is, or I could have it repaired(for about 5K) and try to sell it and might get the 7K plus the repair or not, that it was kind of a risk. The violin market is weird if your instrument gets passed over at an auction it may not sell for a fraction of the appraised RETAIL value. When my friend say 'now how much is that fiddle worth?" I say either 20k or 200 bucks some where in there. If I don't sell it, it ain't worth nuthin.
Was that Monteleone "Loar" serial #2 by John.
I had a chance to buy that mandolin about 6 years ago for $9,000.00 but did not do it.
I could not talk the little Mrs. into that type of investment at the time.
Adam F. Hardcastle
1996 Custom McConnell F5 #004
F5 Loar Clone #75875
Isn't there a list of the serial numbers of the known Loars still living, and who has them? I had always heard that. Does such a list exist? And, sorry for being so 'out of the loop, but how many are unaccounted for? I guess if this info. were available, that would cut down on the fakes, huh?
Yes, there is a list of serial numbers, called the F5 Journal. I believe the very early list Darryl Wolfe put together also listed the owner's names, but as the values went up, that practice was dropped for obvious reasons.
A wrong note played timidly is a wrong note. A wrong note played with authority is an interpretation.
Darryl has the most complete list of KNOWN loars. There are gaps in serial numbers and either they are just not documented being not yet known, in somebody's attic, retired, or never existed.
The names were removed in the next issue of F5Journal because a few complained about there name being used without expressed or implied permission. Most wanted their names listed since it provided not only proof they owned the Loar but would help in case of theft. Loars are like fingerprints, no 2 alike. You can tell by the wood grains and the hand applied stains which one is which without the serial number. A theif would likely remove serial number labels but the photos in the archives at F5Journal would easily identify which one it was.
A few have made comments about never having been fooled by a fake whatever.
I am not going to say any of you that have made such a comment have in fact been fooled, but if you had been fooled you would not have known you were fooled.
Reminds me of the time I saw violin historian Charles Beare give a talk about the infamous "Messiah" Strad violin, which has always had a swirl of fraud-laden mystery surrounding it...
He told the story of when a well-known and respected violin dealer acquired it in the earlier part of the 20th century, and thought it might be a forgery...
Or at least Beare speculated that they might have possibly thought it was a fraud.
So-ooo, they had 3 choices in front of them:
1) #Unmask the forgery, with the resulting financial loss, not to mention the loss of a damn good story...
2) #Sell it as a Strad, with the risk of permanently damaging their reputation...
3) #Donate it to a museum where it will be displayed under very poor lighting, and thus gaining the tax benefits resulting from said donation...
The Messiah now rests in the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford, indeed under very poor lighting... #
"Nothing sounds like a Loar" First, all Loars don`t sound the same and secondly, a preferred sound is what the pickers wants...I have heard a many mandolin that I think sounds as good and some better than a Loar, to my ears that is...Someone else might not think so...I have played 12 Loars and only two really impressed me as far as a "complete" sound goes...Just like the comparison of an A model compared to an F model, you can`t comvince some people that some A`s sound as good as F`s...A lot depends on the strings, the pick you are using, the acoustics in the room...A lot of it is a status symbol, "got to have an F model, got to have a Loar" etc....Just my opinion....Willie
I agree. I'm not an expert. I've played 4 loars briefly. Only one seemed really exceptional. I'm sure there are people on this board who can tell the difference. But, I'm not sure that I could pick out the Loar, if someone blindfolded me and handed me 10 high quality mandolins to play and told me to identify the Loar. Let's say Compton's Gil, Sam's Hoss, Larry Rice's '50s Gibson, Marty Stuart's whatever, Grisman's many non-Loars, one of Doyle's Peganonis(sp). Are all Loars better sounding, better playing?
also, Roland's Wood(does he still have it)