View Full Version : i swore i'd never buy another instrument but

Feb-04-2004, 4:46pm
pure hypothesis, mind...but if one were daft enough to even consider buying another instrument...and risking d-i-v-o-r-c-e...would anyone have recommendations for a mandolin suitable for the playing of medieval/renaissance music? #there are some incredible cheapies which pop-up over here on e-bay, most of them old. #i don't know which "hind most part of the human anatomy-hole" coined the term 'tater-bug but a lot of mandolins on offer fit that description. #there are also quite a few flat-back, eastern europen made instruments available. #any opinions? #do's and don't's? #a mandola perhaps?
thank you - bill

Jim Garber
Feb-04-2004, 10:38pm
Take it from one who has been all thru this... I will speak of the vintage area, not the new instrument theme.

I decided to experiment with the bowlback sound after many years of ignoring it. I have accumulated a small stack of ebay "treasures" esp of the vintage variety. Too many of them are awaiting acquiring parts or my finding the time to attempt repairs myself.

Generally, there seem to be bargains out there, but in reality I have yet to buy anything that didn't need a fair amount of repair work in order to be a playable instrument. It is the nature of the beast, however. If you can find a nice playable vintage Vega, Martin or Washburn in a reliable store, go for it, esp if it appeals to you both in sound and playability.

Now we are talking here of 19th-20th century instruments. If you want an authentic mandolin to play medieval/renaissance music, I am not sure what you would get. I don't get the sense that you are looking for a real period instrument.


Feb-05-2004, 12:04pm
Are you seeking to reproduce renaissance/medieval music with an air of historic authenticity, or looking to play it and aren't offended by a modern setting? #If the latter, I'd say play whatever instrument is comfortable and jives with your personal aesthetic. #If the former, I don't think I'd reccomend a proper mandolin at all. #You might want to consider a renaissance mandore or a medieval gittern.