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Thread: William Place, jr. Mandolin Method

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    I recently gave the 3 volume set of the William Place, jr. Mandolin Method to another member of the mandolin orchestra I play with. Has anybody else used it? It was published by Belwin Mills and I got my copies originally from the publisher, Belwin Mills. I think the Place Method is out of print. I bought after reading in Mandolin World News that Marilyn Mair endorsed Place's method. Place played a Bacon & Day mandolin.
    David Herman

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    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by (domradave @ Sep. 13 2005, 10:43)
    Place played a Bacon & Day mandolin.
    I have all threee volumes of the method but I don't think it is any better than others like Pettine or Bickford. A lot of these methods use and adpt violin etudes and the like. it is good to work with any one of them IMHO.

    BTW Place played Gibsons before Bacons (pre-bacon & Day). I have a 1921 Bacon Artist mandolin signed and dated by him. Gibson had featured him in catalogs in the teens:
    Quote Originally Posted by
    No names of stars appear on the page--at least no names that might be familiar today. A handful of instruments, including an ES-125 electric and some Kalamazoo models, were shipped to Wm. Place Mus. Co. That would be William Place Jr., who had in fact been a star mandolinist in the first quarter of the century. Gibson's Catalog K of 1918 devoted an entire page to "The Country's Idol of Mandolin Virtuosity."
    from Walter Carter



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    I have Place's too. I do prefer Bickford or Pettine.

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    You mean this one?
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    Hmmm...
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    Here's Wm. Place's Loar.. Darryl calls it "one of the most perfect Loars in existence"





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    Sho'nuff. I've always liked that odd quote: "The method I really like." Almost seems like ol' Jos is hedging his bets.

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    I've now amassed a collection of about 120 old mandolin methods and what I really like is how 90% of them state:
    "The most consice and comprehensive method ever written"

    I also love comparing them.... I've now found 7 methods by completely different publishers... all with the exact same photographs.... so much for copyright. Then there's the Washburn Mandolin Method by Arling Shafer (c 1895) which in the introduction states " In presenting this improved BANJO method to the public....... BANJO??

    However one I really like is the 1900 Singers complete mandolin method....... It covers some important things not mentioned in others.. like How to practice,How much to practice, caring for the instrument etc etc etc and the REAL importance of the left hand techneque.....

    One day I'll get around to putting all these methods on the web and perhaps starting a discussion thread on mandolin methods (if one does not already exist)
    Best wishes to all
    Ian

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    That's very cool, Ian. Do you happen to have Turner's method be Howard J. Ellis (reputed to be the first English mandolin method)? My motivation here is wholly selfish; my copy is missing the last page.

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    Turner's method be Howard J. Ellis

    Hi Eugene
    I'm sure I have got..........Turners "High School" Studies for Mandoline by Herbert (not Howard) J Ellis... I'm sure I also have a couple of copies of "Ellis's Thorough School for Mandoline" by H J Ellis and printed by J Alvery Turner
    ... are any of these the ones you are referring to??

    I'll get back to you once I've time to search through my bundle
    regards,
    Ian

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    Quote Originally Posted by (Eugene @ Sep. 18 2005, 17:29)
    Do you happen to have Turner's method be Howard J. Ellis (reputed to be the first English mandolin method)? #My motivation here is wholly selfish; my copy is missing the last page.
    Eugene:
    I have Ellis' Thorough School for the Mandoline published by Turner in London. BTW the author's name is Herbert J. Ellis.

    This is a large-format book measuring approx. 10" X 14". I would be glad to scan or photocopy any pages you are missing.

    I have a large collection of methods also. Not sure if they number 120 as yet -- I haven't actually counted them, tho I have been intending to compile a list one of these days.

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    It looks like Ian and my postings crossed...

    According to Sparks:It was the Thorough School for the Mandolin that was the "first tutor written by an Englishman" first published in 1888.

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    You're all right on Ellis's first name. #"Howard" was a typo (I have no idea why "Howard" crept into my fingers while typing that). #Nope, the "High School" studies were yet a different publication.

    I know what info Sparks offers on the "Thorough School," but Paul got his fact bits a little crossed on this issue. #It was "Turner's" method that was published in 1888 and the "Thorough School" didn't hit print until 1892. #Bone, writing a little closer in time to the fact, can offer a bit of evidence to that end. #My "Thorough School" is a complete original edition. #My "Turner's" is a xerographic copy and missing only the very last page (the second half of a polka). #I'll give a full citation if I think of it when I get home.




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    I have used Place as well but like several others who have posted here, I prefer either Bickford or Pettine. These both have more detailed description of technique (among other things) especially regarding tremolo and duo style etc.

    By the way, I have several old methods as well. One of my favorites (for strangeness rather than usefulness) is Septimus Winner's Method for the Spanish Mandolin. Winner authored methods for guitar, banjo. piano, flute, clarinet, accordian etc. They are all rather similar.

    So, I have wondered if "Spanish" was a reference to the famous Spanish Students or if it was simply left on the cover mistakenly after he plundered his own Spanish guitar method.

    Also, I have a copy of Ellis' Thorough School for the Guitar. Not the best method I have seen from the era. Beats the heck out of "Billy Snow's Banjo and Cornet Instructor" though.

    Yes, that is, unfortunately, an apt description of its contents. The only copy that I have ever seen is at the American Antiquarian Society. (!) Researching American music often turns up some rather strange items...




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    Quote Originally Posted by (JimD @ Sep. 19 2005, 18:47)
    One of my favorites (for strangeness rather than usefulness) is Septimus Winner's Method for the Spanish Mandolin. … So, I have wondered if "Spanish" was a reference to the famous Spanish Students.
    My Winner book is dated 1884 which would put it right after the the coming to American of the Spanish students, so it may be quite possible that this is what the "Spanish" refers to.

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    I bought a copy of Carl Fischer's New and Revised Edition of Celebrated Tutors: Manodlin, mostly because of its very early date of 1890, assuming it would be an original printing. Unfortunately for me, the page on holding the instrument and plectrum featured photos of a dapper fellow in a ca. 1930-40s suit and holding an f-holed archtop mandolin.

    The cover of the Ellis-authored method that is giving me some small consternation is too text-heavy to transcribe. The relevant bits (plus a little more to demonstrate the prolific output of Ellis's very basic material) are Turner's Mandoline Tutor "by Herbert J. Ellis author of 'Ellis's Thorough School for the Banjo' 'Practical Guitar School' 'Turner's Guitar Journal' Ellis's Banjo Albums' etc." The page I'm missing is the second half of "The Elmira Polka." My original copy of the "Thorough School" features some lovely ads for other Turner publications, including an image of the cover of Turner's Mandoline Tutor. These two are the only Turner publications I have for mandolin. I'd love to see some others (Ellis's "High School" and anything by Hucke, e.g.).

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    Quote Originally Posted by (Eugene @ Sep. 19 2005, 22:13)
    #These two are the only Turner publications I have for mandolin. #I'd love to see some others (Ellis's "High School" and anything by Hucke, e.g.).
    I have Turner's Champion Mandoline Tutor by George H. Hucke (only about 19 pages.

    I also have a nice Turner folio (which I have to locate) which I got from eBay seller Summernight (Michelle) some time ago. She seemed to have a number of coipies for a reasonable price. It is the equal to the D'Alton yellow book and has a few more Persichini pieces, if I remember correctly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by
    JimD: I have used Place as well but like several others who have posted here, I prefer either Bickford or Pettine. These both have more detailed description of technique (among other things) especially regarding tremolo and duo style etc.
    One of the things I don't like about Pettine -- and granted, it's a minor irritation, and probably only to me, alone -- is his use of reversed symbols for pick direction (vs. bowing indicators). It causes me no certain end of frustration when trying to sight-read at/near tempo.

    -Allen.



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    Quote Originally Posted by (jgarber @ Sep. 19 2005, 22:33)
    I also have a nice Turner folio (which I have to locate) which I got from eBay seller Summernight (Michelle) some time ago. She seemed to have a number of coipies for a reasonable price. It is the equal to the D'Alton yellow book and has a few more Persichini pieces, if I remember correctly.
    Oh yeah, I bought that one too...but the works represneted in there (all unaccompanied solos) generally are WAY more advanced than those of D'Alton's wee volume. #One virtuosic piece includes brisk 17-uplets, for God's sake! #Only the Palumbo works and maybe the Bickford piece and Haydn arrangement really come close in D'Alton's book.




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    Pardon the commercial announcement, but I have some copies of rare method books and etudes for sale in the classified. Ad# 15600. These include Bickford 3 and the near-impossible to obtain, book 4.

    ...and now, back to our regularly scheduled tromba marina discussion group

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    I like the Wm. Place book a lot. I have worked through Book I, and have Book II, but haven't moved much into it. What I have liked about Book I are the pieces--both for solo mandolin, and duets, which I have played w. my teacher.

    I have the Bickford books (I and II) and see that they are more thorough; but for pieces to play, I have really enjoyed those in the first instruction book by Place.
    Nick Royal

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    Quote Originally Posted by (mando Nick @ Sep. 23 2005, 14:44)
    I like the Wm. Place book a lot. I have worked through Book I, and have Book II, but haven't moved much into it. What I have liked about Book I are the pieces--both for solo mandolin, and duets, which I have played w. my teacher. #

    I have the Bickford books (I and II) and see that they are more thorough; but for pieces to play, I have really enjoyed those in the first instruction book by Place.
    Nick Royal
    My teacher prefers Place for the same reason, although she does refer to Pettine and Bickford occasionally, as well. #I have a copy of Pettines Duo style that I hope, someday, to be advanced enough to attempt to tackle.



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    I just had a brief moment to re-look at the Place Methods. The third book has some interesting pieces of some difficulty and interest. All of these methods, however -- Pettine, Bickford, Munier, Calace, and the like -- include many pieces that are relevant to the technique being taught.

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    Howdy,

    Among those of you who have acquired various old mandolin methods, does anyone have a copy (scan/photocopy) of the Bickford method book for mandocello? I found a rather old, brief thread in the CoMando archives that Richard Walz may have reproduced it several years ago.

    Any assistance appreciated.

    Thanks,
    David
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    Quote Originally Posted by (zupfcello @ Oct. 08 2005, 17:54)
    does anyone have a copy (scan/photocopy) of the Bickford method book for mandocello?
    I am also interested in acquiring a copy of this method book, if it's available!

    -Allen.



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