Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 27

Thread: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

  1. #1

    Default Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    I have a 2010 Eastman MD515-CV. I bought it new in early 2011 for $1,100. I played it a bit for a couple weeks, but as a 35+ year electric rock n roller, I took it as a novelty and it's been in its case most of the time since.

    The rock n roll world not being what it once was, plus the fact that I'm getting older, leaves little room for guitar players like me anymore, and I'm ok with that. I was going through my room full of gear and found my mandolin, unzipped the case and it was actually still playably in tune. So I jammed out for a half hour, which turned into an hour and then I got a glass of wine and it turned into 2 hours. That was 3 weeks ago, and I've been playing what little I know every day and trying to learn more.

    I'm finding the mandolin to be really cool, and fitting for me now. For such a small-box instrument, it sure has a loud voice. No need for electricity, it's small and lightweight, and man there's some really pretty music you can make on these little instruments.

    Anyway, I feel like I'm embarking on a new journey with a musical background that is jump starting me into a new phase of music in my life. I don't know too much yet - Bill Monroe is a great legend and the Dillards (the Andy Griffith show), stuff I see on YouTube, but that's all I know. I'd like to play Bluegrass and Celtic, but open to anything really.

    What do you all think about the quality level of the mandolin model I have? (Not offended by honest comments.)

    Any comments appreciated.

    Thanks!
    2010 Eastman MD515-CS.

  2. The following members say thank you to Jetson for this post:

    Woyvel 

  3. #2
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    61

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Hi Elroy,

    I think you've got a great mandolin to start your journey on! I began in earnest myself in November and started with an MD505 and thought it was great. Considering that one of the go to all solid wood mandolins recommended here for beginners is the Eastman MD305 you're ahead of the game!

    Enjoy!

    Rob
    2020 Sawchyn Beavertail
    1950's Stradolin

  4. The following members say thank you to robw95 for this post:

    Jetson 

  5. #3
    not a donut Kevin Winn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    448

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    My first was an Eastman MD 315, and you'll find a lot of us on the Cafe who have a similar background (decades of guitar, bass, etc. prior to mandolin). Eastmans are great instruments to get started, but they have been known to be Gateway Drugs to MAS. Getting a good setup (or doing it yourself with the help of Rob Meldrum's free Setup Guide), is essential.

    Highly recommend heading over to MandoLessons.com. There's a ton of material for those starting out, all free (subscriptions available and also recommended), and there's a great Newbies group here, too.

    Welcome to the fold!
    "Keep your hat on, we may end up miles from here..." - Kurt Vonnegut

  6. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Kevin Winn For This Useful Post:

    JetsonJRG 

  7. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    High Peak - UK
    Posts
    2,856

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Welcom to the forum!

    Don’t worry about the Eastman, it’s probably a much better instrument than most people here started on and should serve you well into your addiction.

  8. The following members say thank you to Ray(T) for this post:

    Jetson 

  9. #5
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Central Illinois
    Posts
    3,282

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    I started my journey of MAS with an Eastman but as my playing improved I went through several mandolins and have ended up with Ellis and Girouard models ! Journey complete !
    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 !

  10. The following members say thank you to yankees1 for this post:

    Jetson 

  11. #6
    Registered User Frankdolin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    near Boston, MA
    Posts
    384

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Welcome Jetson! It doesn't matter what you play or how you play it, as long as your play'n it's all good.

  12. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Frankdolin For This Useful Post:


  13. #7
    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Sugar Grove,PA
    Posts
    2,914
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Welcome, No man that's a great instrument to start on-I started out on one that was barely playable! You being from a guitar back ground-you know-learn your chords, keys, scales, etc.

  14. The following members say thank you to William Smith for this post:

    Jetson 

  15. #8

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    I had one of the rogue 50.00 one's for years never played it, about 6 months ago I got and Eastman MD515 I love it play's great with the setup from the Mandolin Store. I just got an Eastman E8D Awesome Acoustic Guitar.

  16. The following members say thank you to tooloud for this post:

    Jetson 

  17. #9

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Gateway Drug to MAS, well said Kevin.

  18. The following members say thank you to JRG for this post:

    Jetson 

  19. #10

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Thanks for the replies everyone! If Eastman is a great brand to start with, then I guess I got lucky. I know ALL the things about Gibson, Fender and Martin guitars, owning several of each currently and many others over 35 years. I could write books. But mandolins? I got nothing. I bought my Eastman 515 because I wanted to be in the quality realm without jacking my credit card at the time. Anyway, I'm just excited because I've been been bored with guitars and where rock has gone for so long, but the music is still in my soul. And to pull this little gem out of my music room after 10 years and start enjoying it is a really refreshing thing.

    Man, there's so much you can do from strumming any rhythm, to single-note runs, to chopping (I don't know chopping much yet), etc. Seems as wide open of a territory as rock n roll has been.

    What kinds of music do you all like to play? What styles do you like and who are some of your influences?
    2010 Eastman MD515-CS.

  20. #11
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Westchester, NY
    Posts
    27,407

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    You can even play rock on a mandolin! And it doesn't have to be the three or four that everyone knows that was recorded with a mandolin. Play anything you like and find your way. It's a big mandolin world. And welcome to the Cafe.
    Jim

    My Stream on Soundcloud
    Facebook
    19th Century Tunes
    Playing lately:
    2018 Campanella A-5 -- 2007 Brentrup A4C -- 1915 Frank Merwin Ashley violin -- Huss & Dalton DS -- 1923 Gibson A2 black snakehead -- '83 Flatiron A5-2 -- 1939 Gibson L-00 -- 1936 Epiphone Deluxe -- 1928 Gibson L-5 -- ca. 1890s Fairbanks Senator Banjo -- ca. 1923 Vega Style M tenor banjo -- ca. 1920 Weymann Style 25 Mandolin-Banjo -- National RM-1

  21. The following members say thank you to Jim Garber for this post:

    Jetson 

  22. #12
    My Florida is scooped pheffernan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Fort Lauderdale, FL
    Posts
    3,102

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jetson View Post
    I know ALL the things about Gibson, Fender and Martin guitars, owning several of each currently and many others over 35 years. I could write books. But mandolins? I got nothing.
    One axiom often shared here is that you should expect to pay twice as much for a carved archtop mandolin as you would for a flattop acoustic guitar. So a $1000 archtop mandolin should be roughly comparable in quality to a $500 flattop acoustic guitar.

    One experience often shared here is paring down a guitar collection in order to upgrade a ďneededĒ mandolin. Ask me about my old Guild D55, or the Silverangel A5 that replaced it.
    1924 Gibson A Snakehead
    2005 National RM-1
    2007 Hester A5
    2009 Passernig A5
    2015 Black A2-z
    2010 Black GBOM
    2017 Poe Scout
    2011 Passernig F5
    2018 Vessel TM5

  23. The following members say thank you to pheffernan for this post:

    Jetson 

  24. #13
    Orrig Onion HonketyHank's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Beaverton, OR, USA
    Posts
    1,470

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Welcome, Jetson! Glad to have you on board.
    New to mando? Click this link -->Newbies to join us at the Newbies Social Group.

    Just send an email to rob.meldrum@gmail.com with "mandolin setup" in the subject line and he will email you a copy of his ebook for free (free to all mandolincafe members).

    My website and blog: honketyhank.com

  25. The following members say thank you to HonketyHank for this post:

    Jetson 

  26. #14

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Already thinking about ditching a Martin D-18 I don't play. LOL!
    2010 Eastman MD515-CS.

  27. The following members say thank you to Jetson for this post:


  28. #15
    Registered User Steve 2E's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2019
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    196

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jetson View Post
    Already thinking about ditching a Martin D-18 I don't play. LOL!
    I ditched an HD28-V with no regrets when I decided to get more seriously into mandolin.
    I have a D-15 that I donít think Iíll ever part ways with because of sentimental reasons, but
    Iíd like to get a shorter scale 000 or the like in the future. However, for now itís all about mandolin!

  29. The following members say thank you to Steve 2E for this post:

    Jetson 

  30. #16

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Today I learned the obligatory(?) "Battle Of Evermore", and I have to say I'm feelin' darn proud of myself because I grew up hearing that song, and if someone had told me 40 years ago that one day I'd be playing it on a mandolin, I'd have said "yeah, rrrrright". Being a guitar player puts me at a great advantage, because I already know melody and what chords and scales sound like. It's surprising how complex that song always sounded, yet how easy it actually is to play.

    Single note runs will be a lot harder. But we'll get there.
    2010 Eastman MD515-CS.

  31. #17
    Registered User Randi Gormley's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    3,138

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    welcome to the mandolin and to the cafe! we do have some strings (if you want to do a search) of tips for guitarists moving to mandolin from people who have made the jump -- including how important a setup is to a mandolin, that string and pick choices actually do change the sound you get, that you learn better technique by thinking of it not as a "little guitar" upsidedown but as a separate instrument with its own quirks and needs and that good guitar technique is often terrible mandolin technique. the music part you already have. I'll also add that not everybody uses the mandolin the same way, and if you ask for advice, it helps to know where the responder is coming from. I've been playing mandolin for probably 25 years and I only know 4 chords -- two-finger chords, that is, i don't play anything more complex unless it's written into the (classical) music score, and it's never been a drawback to me. I also use a relatively slim, tiny, jazz pick with a decided point -- because that's the best setup for the music I mostly play (ITM, which for mandolin is single-line melody in most cases). A bluegrasser will tell you that you need to learn chords and chops and use a fat, rounded pick because that's best for them. Knowing how to do everything is great, but there's no problem if you gravitate to a specific type of music and concentrate on what works for that. It's all good!
    --------------------------------
    1920 Lyon & Healy bowlback
    1923 Gibson A-1 snakehead
    1952 Strad-o-lin
    1983 Giannini ABSM1 bandolim
    2009 Giannini GBSM3 bandolim
    2011 Eastman MD305

  32. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Randi Gormley For This Useful Post:

    JetsonWoyvel 

  33. #18

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Thank you Randi! I will look for those threads.

    (I tried replying with a bunch of info, but my response disappeared when I clicked "Post Quick Reply". From now on I'll remember to copy my text before I click the button.)
    2010 Eastman MD515-CS.

  34. #19
    Moderator JEStanek's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Pottstown, Pennsylvania, United States
    Posts
    13,930
    Blog Entries
    2

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Hey! Welcome to the Cafe. The Eastman is a fine instrument. For many people it is enough. Certainly for lots of folks who even play for actual money. Have fun experimenting with picks and string combinations and play what makes you happy.

    Jamie
    There are two things to aim at in life: first, to get what you want; and, after that, to enjoy it. Only the wisest of mankind achieve the second. Logan Pearsall Smith, 1865 - 1946

    + Give Blood, Save a Life +

  35. The following members say thank you to JEStanek for this post:

    Jetson 

  36. #20
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2020
    Location
    LeRoy, NY
    Posts
    31

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Jetson, I'm similar to you, aging rock guitarist. I had some shoulder problems in the past few years and thought the mandolin might be a little easier on them. I bought a Mitchell mandolin for $59 the day before stores closed on a whim and haven't stopped since. I upgraded a couple weeks ago to an Eastman MD415-GT. I'm trying to learn some bluegrass and old-time, but I keep going back to what I know best. That has me figuring out chord-melodies of a lot of songs by the likes of The Eagles, Tom Petty, Grateful Dead and Springsteen, etc. A couple of good books for rockers-turned-mando-players I've gotten are "The First 50 Songs You Should Learn On Mandolin" which contains a lot of classic rock stuff, and "The Beatles for Solo Mandolin".

  37. The following members say thank you to Woyvel for this post:

    Jetson 

  38. #21

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Thanks for the reply Woyvel!

    The guitar will always be my (our?) first love then, of course - so many great experiences in Rock n Roll over the years. Did you just run out of inspiration in the sense like you've heard it all - been there/done that? I think that's my case. I'll never abandon the guitar, it's in my DNA, but it's time for something new and interesting because I don't play them much anymore, yet music is still in my soul.

    I was going through my room full of gear, thinking of maybe selling some stuff, and found my (now) 10-yr old Eastman mandolin. I've played it lots of times before, but mostly just messing around. I was thinking about selling it, so I pulled it out of the case, began checking it out, and found myself a couple of hours into a fascination with it. Within a couple of days I was learning new things and realized I was having some new-found fun and inspiration that I hadn't had on guitar in a long time. There's something rather mystical about mandolin sounds it seems, no matter what you play on it - Bluegrass (various types too), Celtic, Rock, India sounds, etc. - it's much more versatile than I had previously thought, and like the electric guitar it can sit in the background or it can punch through for solos. That was a nice revelation for me.

    I think what's cool for me is that within a week or so I'm already playing it fairly well and having fun. There are so many great players in the mandolin realm, and there's so much music to discover, that it's hard not to be inspired. It's like being a kid in a candy store - all of a sudden (in my case) it's like, "which flavor would you like to start with? I don't know - they all look so good!" LOL! It's just a lot of fun and I feel like I a stumbled onto a way to take my musical ventures in a whole new direction.

    Cheers!
    2010 Eastman MD515-CS.

  39. #22
    not a donut Kevin Winn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    448

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    My journey has been very similar, and I think there are many on here who would say the same. Long time spent in the guitar/bass world, running low on inspiration, finding something that clicks with a mandolin, then rediscovering the joy of the musical learning process.

    Something I think I've mentioned before is the realization that when I first learned to play guitar, there were none of the things that make it so easy now; no internet, no smart phones, etc. Just me and my guitar and my stereo turntable and that Zeppelin/Who/Clapton album that was driving me to get better and figure stuff out. And I don't have a clear recollection of that learning process. Only that I just kept at it.

    This time (45-ish years later), I am much more aware of the process itself, and learning a new instrument (even with the tools I already have) is challenging in ways that are all good things for me. Which is to say that it has expanded into the realm of Life Lessons. But there are many parallels. I'm about four years into it, and it seems like every time I hit a plateau, there is something that comes along (either intentional, like taking a Peghead course, or accidental, like hearing Sam Bush for the first time) to bounce me out of it. That part of the journey closely mimics the steps taken in my guitar/bass process.

    My main thing is to keep patient, which is nothing new. Only this time, it's much more conscious. And I'm better about taking the time to appreciate where I am at each moment. I chalk that up to being more aware in general, which is one of the benefits of being older and a little less intense about life.
    "Keep your hat on, we may end up miles from here..." - Kurt Vonnegut

  40. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Kevin Winn For This Useful Post:


  41. #23

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Winn View Post
    My journey has been very similar, and I think there are many on here who would say the same. Long time spent in the guitar/bass world, running low on inspiration, finding something that clicks with a mandolin, then rediscovering the joy of the musical learning process.

    Something I think I've mentioned before is the realization that when I first learned to play guitar, there were none of the things that make it so easy now; no internet, no smart phones, etc. Just me and my guitar and my stereo turntable and that Zeppelin/Who/Clapton album that was driving me to get better and figure stuff out. And I don't have a clear recollection of that learning process. Only that I just kept at it.

    This time (45-ish years later), I am much more aware of the process itself, and learning a new instrument (even with the tools I already have) is challenging in ways that are all good things for me. Which is to say that it has expanded into the realm of Life Lessons. But there are many parallels. I'm about four years into it, and it seems like every time I hit a plateau, there is something that comes along (either intentional, like taking a Peghead course, or accidental, like hearing Sam Bush for the first time) to bounce me out of it. That part of the journey closely mimics the steps taken in my guitar/bass process.

    My main thing is to keep patient, which is nothing new. Only this time, it's much more conscious. And I'm better about taking the time to appreciate where I am at each moment. I chalk that up to being more aware in general, which is one of the benefits of being older and a little less intense about life.
    Do I know you from somewhere?? Nail on the head for me. You remember - we had to tune our guitars to the speed of the record and flip the needle all summer long until we learned how to play Frampton's "Do You Feel Like We Do"?

    I tried the violin a long time ago. But that was a farce. I need frets. The great thing about the guitar and Rock n Roll is that it's so vast. But these days it seems so irrelevant, and not the same fun it once was. The great thing about the mandolin is, it's also so vast, and I'm old enough to never run into boredom. It doesn't weigh 9 lbs., and you can make music anywhere with it because it's so portable - no amplifier, no effects boxes, etc. I've played acoustic guitar at State campgrounds in the past at night when everyone's got a fire going, and gotten a few cheers - always nice when other people like to hear you play. I bet a mandolin would get the same kind of attention if not more. We'll see next time I go camping.
    2010 Eastman MD515-CS.

  42. The following members say thank you to Jetson for this post:


  43. #24
    The Amateur Mandolinist Mark Gunter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Palmer, Texas
    Posts
    3,674

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Similar path here (but more of a blues guitarist). If you haven’t seen this already, check it out. Sam Bush plays a medley, Sailin’ Shoes with a Claptonesque Crossroads.

    https://youtu.be/XEne36YxyKI
    Technique, theory and fun, fun, fun. I love playing, studying and sharing MUSIC.
    "Life is short. Play hard." - AlanN
    ------------------------
    HEY! The Cafe has Social Groups, check 'em out. I'm in these groups:
    Newbies Social Group | The Song-A-Week Social
    The Woodshed Study Group | Collings Mandolins | MandoCymru
    - Advice For Mandolin Beginners
    - YouTube Stuff

  44. The following members say thank you to Mark Gunter for this post:


  45. #25

    Default Re: Hello All. I'm new here, first post. Loving the mandolin.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Gunter View Post
    Similar path here (but more of a blues guitarist). If you havenít seen this already, check it out. Sam Bush plays a medley, Sailiní Shoes with a Claptonesque Crossroads.

    https://youtu.be/XEne36YxyKI
    Hi Mark! That's a cool link. While I was there I watched this one too, a full band jam with Sam:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eryxQ4DOnyI
    2010 Eastman MD515-CS.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •