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Thread: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

  1. #1

    Default Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    ... is your go-to at home to pick up and have a little fun the same as the one you play live?

    Also, what they are and adding pictures to your response would be wildly entertaining

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  3. #2
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    It depends. When practicing at home I tend to use one particular mandolin - the one I will use for the gig. So like a classical ensemble I use one mandolin, an open mike solo or with friends playing fiddle tunes or bluegrassy another, when playing a contradance, I would use a loud instrument. So when practicing material for a gig I use the one I would use for the gig.

    For messing around at home I just pick up my current favorite. And also that is the one I would take to a jam session. My current favorite depends on my mood. Presently it is my recent purchase, but soon enough I will put into rotation and fall in love with one of the others in my closet, waiting to come out and play.
    Indulge responsibly!

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  5. #3

    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    You sir, know how to have fun - and I dig that about you! :D

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    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    Well to balance it out, my newphew, when he was pretty young, asked me very earnestly: "Uncle Jeff, why do you play the mandolin? Isn't that something musicians do?"
    Indulge responsibly!

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  8. #5
    Registered User Aaron Bohnen's Avatar
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    Big mandolins are a lot of fun. This Weber Guitar-Bodied Octave Mandolin "Octar" has been getting plenty playtime at home on the couch. It's totally awesome with tons of voice and resonance - it sounds great alone.

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    Regular-sized mandolins are fun too. They get more playtime away from home though - I like them better with others. These two from Gavin Baird are very different from each other (there's such a world between F4's and 5's!) but I really enjoy both!

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    Enjoy!
    Gavin Baird F4 & F5
    Weber Octar
    Gibson K-1

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  10. #6
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    Quote Originally Posted by mojocaster View Post
    ... is your go-to at home to pick up and have a little fun the same as the one you play live?

    Also, what they are and adding pictures to your response would be wildly entertaining
    No, when my group plays I use my A or F5 due to chop used when playing chords. However, at home I normally play my Girouard oval which I prefer to play other than when playing a Bluegrass chop !
    My two favorite pastimes are drinking wine and playing the mandolin but most of my friends would rather hear me drink wine! Adapted from quote by Mark Twain------supposedly !

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  12. #7

    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    Quote Originally Posted by JeffD View Post
    Well to balance it out, my newphew, when he was pretty young, asked me very earnestly: "Uncle Jeff, why do you play the mandolin? Isn't that something musicians do?"

    HA! Oh man :D

  13. #8
    Registered User Eric Platt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    Yup! My sitting around home practicing instrument right now is this one -

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    1935 Kalamazoo KM-21 with sinking top and replaced bridge. Living in the northland, things can get dry in the house. But I need to have a mandolin out to give me incentive to practice more. At present, it's got the balance of easy to play, and it's not too precious that I have to worry about it. It does have a damp it in the F hole which I fill every couple of days.

    This mandolin has a wonderful bass response. And needs a pick like a Wegen Bluegrass to pull out enough treble to be heard in a group. That's another reason it's my couch instrument.

    For my main band (Laulu Aika) this is what I normally play now -

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    Collings MT with Tonegard and arm rest. It's modern sounding, but has the best treble to compete with the fiddler and clarinet player (when she is able to make gigs). It's also easy to play and I have no hand fatigue even after a couple of hours. Easily the best instrument for a full band, but I want more tonal depth when playing in a small ensemble.

    This mandolin has mostly replaced my A Jr. That was my first "good" mandolin and it still gets played if I need to plug in as I have a JJB pickup system on it.

    For my duo with a fiddler, I now use this one -

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    1935 Gibson A-50, with elevated fingerboard. This is a true gem of an instrument. It's between the other two in tone, which makes it just right for a small group. I had been using the Collings, but was dissatisfied. This one came along and is everything I could ask for. The neck is basically identical in shape and feel to the Kalamazoo. No surprise, both are 1935.

    Full disclosure - the Kalamazoo has been out of the house a couple of times for jams, vacation and one duet practice. So it's not just an at home instrument right now. However, for performance, either of the other ones will get picked first.
    1935 Gibson A50, 2018 Collings MT, 1989 Flatiron Performer A, 1929 Gibson A Jr., 1935 Kalamazoo KM-21, 2018 Eastman MDO-305
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  15. #9
    Lurkist dhergert's Avatar
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    I have two mandolins that are in playable order right now, both are F-style and both are setup pretty close to identically. One would cost quite a bit to replace today, the other was quite inexpensive.

    Of the two, the inexpensive mandolin is my backup for those situations where I don't want to play the more expensive instrument. This inexpensive mandolin is pretty loud and has respectable tone, and I wouldn't be at all ashamed to play it in front of people. However I do prefer the tone of the more expensive mandolin, and lately it is my go to mandolin for playing at home as well as for gigs.
    -- Don

    "It is a lot more fun to make music than it is to argue about it."

    2002 Gibson F-9
    2016 MK LFSTB
    1975 Suzuki taterbug
    (plus a large assortment of banjos, dobros, guitars, basses and other noisemakers)
    [About how I tune my mandolins]
    [7/29/2019 -- New Arrival!!!]

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  17. #10
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    My usual and the one that I would play at home and at a gig, should I have one that calls for a mandolin—most of my gigs these days are fiddle and guitar, rarely mandolin:

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    Jim

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  19. #11

    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    This 2010 Heiden is my all time favorite. Check out the music in my signature to hear why.

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    Palatable to a Goat: New Music from Gregg Daigle and Don Grieser, now on bandcamp
    http://HillbillyChamberMusic.bandcamp.com

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  21. #12

    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    In my case, it's a Kentucky KM-272.

    Just about anything and everything that you could possible want to know about the mandolin (including video) is in this old thread:

    https://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/t...+km-272+review

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  23. #13
    Registered User Ken's Avatar
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    I play an oval hole A at home, its also the mandolin I carry to the grandkids house when I sit for them. I think its got great sound and good volume, but its older and has been around the block a time or two and I don't worry about scratches and etc too much. For playing with the band I use an F hole A model. I think that it also sounds great plus its got a little extra punch and volume so I feel it can get heard a little better. Click image for larger version. 

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    Peace

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  25. #14
    Registered User archerscreek's Avatar
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    I only have one mandolin, an Eastman MD515, so it's in my hands wherever I play. But based on 25+ years of playing my guitars, I know that when I upgrade my mandolin, the 515 won't see the light of day except for rare circumstances.

  26. #15
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken View Post
    I play an oval hole A at home, its also the mandolin I carry to the grandkids house when I sit for them. I think its got great sound and good volume, but its older and has been around the block a time or two and I don't worry about scratches and etc too much. For playing with the band I use an F hole A model. I think that it also sounds great plus its got a little extra punch and volume so I feel it can get heard a little better. Click image for larger version. 

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    I the same !!
    My two favorite pastimes are drinking wine and playing the mandolin but most of my friends would rather hear me drink wine! Adapted from quote by Mark Twain------supposedly !

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    Ken 

  28. #16

    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    I had a feeling you guys would 1. provide thoughtful replies, and 2. nice pics... and you didn't disappoint!

  29. #17
    Registered User Bob Clark's Avatar
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    Kind of odd, really, but my 'best' instrument (Phoenix Neoclassical) isn't the one I pick up just for playing around the house. That is usually my Crystal Forest flat-top, or lately my Ovation MM68. The Ovation is getting a lot of play time these days both at home or out, especially out. These CT made Ovations are often overlooked for acoustic play, but really sound great. The neck feels great, too.

    If I am playing around the house just for my own pleasure, it is often on my Mike Black Piccolo mandolin. Not so much if I am preparing something for playing out with others, but just for my own pleasure, getting my head into the music and the music into my head, that piccolo is just the thing.
    Purr more, hiss less.

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  31. #18
    Registered User Randi Gormley's Avatar
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    I own a bunch of mandolins but i only play one -- my snake -- both at home noodling around and at gigs, with one exception. if i'm playing plugged in, i'll switch over to my Eastman since I have a bridge mike on it. Then i'll practice on that to make sure i'm used to it before I go back to the snake. alas, I don't appear to have a photo of my Eastman readily available.
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    --------------------------------
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  33. #19
    Registered User Jill McAuley's Avatar
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    I only have one mandolin so that's the one that gets played all the time - my Girouard Concert oval A. I'm enjoying putting the miles on it!

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    2018 Girouard Concert oval A
    2015 JP "Whitechapel" tenor banjo
    1969 Martin 00-18




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  35. #20
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    My Randy Wood, F 5 made in 1993, period.

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  37. #21

    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    Quote Originally Posted by Jill McAuley View Post
    I only have one mandolin so that's the one that gets played all the time - my Girouard Concert oval A. I'm enjoying putting the miles on it!

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    What a stunning piece! Good grief.

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  39. #22
    I really look like that soliver's Avatar
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    I have 2 awesome instruments. My most frequently used and go-to is my Silverangel Econo A. When I play out, I am either at an acoustic BG or Gospel Jam that requires the SA's volume, or in the Praise Band at church which requires both volume and the on board K&K.

    The Jacobson has a very different tone and is quieter than the SA, but I play it a lot at home or in my office at work it has a lovely strumming bell like tone that is beautiful, but doesn't suite either of the above venues well, but is still lovely to play... yes, I take a mandolin with me to work everyday and try to steal away a little playing time.

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    Last edited by soliver; Dec-18-2019 at 12:29am.
    aka: Spencer
    Silverangel Econo A #429
    Jacobson Nautilus Oval Hole Prototype

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    Check them out here

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  41. #23
    not a donut Kevin Winn's Avatar
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    When playing out, if it's an all-acoustic jam/event, I'll take the Kimble A. If I am playing a gig or need to amplify, I'll take the F5S, as I have a K&K pickup in that one and a Fishman Loudbox 100 amp.

    At home, I try to be equitable. I play one for a week, then the other for a week. Don't want either feeling left out, and I love them both like my children...

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  42. #24

    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    On a personal note, I am glad to see a good number of oval holes making appearances here . . . it's nice to know that I'm not the only one who doesn't put some sort of F-5 at the top of their list.

  43. #25
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    Default Re: Of your favorite instruments that qualify for this site...

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeZito View Post
    On a personal note, I am glad to see a good number of oval holes making appearances here . . . it's nice to know that I'm not the only one who doesn't put some sort of F-5 at the top of their list.
    I love oval hole mandolins ! Other than a chop which I prefer on a F or A 5 ! I have a Girouard oval that is spectacular and a Girouard F4 on order !
    My two favorite pastimes are drinking wine and playing the mandolin but most of my friends would rather hear me drink wine! Adapted from quote by Mark Twain------supposedly !

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