March 25, 2013 at 12:23 AMI find that an audience enjoys hearing about my fiddle, as much as I enjoy telling them about it. It's about 200 years old, so I like speculating that maybe the piece I'm about to play (if it's an old classic) is something that was played on the fiddle before I was even born!
People seemed equally curious about my 20th c. violin as well; as it was made in Montana, had some amber in the varnish, etc. I actually knew much more about it, because the maker was living.
From what century is your primary fiddle? (Remember, if it was made in 1950, it's a 20th-century violin, if it was made in 1789, it's an 18th century violin, etc.)
My other one is 1888.
6 years old.
It was made on my lucky year (19yo the 19th November)and it played in Montreal's Symphony as a substitute instrument for a player who has his instrument on repair. Well, I do hope all this is in its blood and will help me (am I too supersticious? Probably!)
Already has spots where the varnish is used because of my hands in playing position. Looks older (if that is a good thing for a violin!)
Wonderful instrument and a rocket with synthetic strings. Though, now, my G and D are Gut strings. Gut is not the optimal playing strings. But the sound...
My fingerboard is a little strange. It's way thinner than the fingerboards of most violins. I was in a symphony concert with 34 other violinists a few days ago and I couldn't see any other violins that had fingerboards as thin as mine. Does anyone else have a really thin fingerboard, or do I have a really unique violin?
I was showing my brother my violin last week, and I told him, jokingly, that I practiced so much that my fingerboard had worn down!
After Uncle Carl's brother died, his widow decided to find a good home for his fiddle. Aunt Bertha pointed her to me. So I got it in 1966, for $25. It was over 75 years old when I got it, she said. Further research on Lederer-Roth and the label put it in the range 1882 - 1885.
It sounded pretty good at first. Later I found out that you need to put on new Eudoxas every so often. :-)
It's well worn - the fingerboard should really be replaced. I definitely need to fit a new nut. The varnish is worn and was poorly patched, before it came to me.
But WOW... It sounds good for what was probably a Sears & Roebuck mail-order.
I also have a Rumanian 2002 workshop fiddle that was a good buy. It sounds fairly good, and is my backup instrument.
I have a Didier Nicolas violin from France, born around 1842 and its board was planed a year ago. It's been in my family since the summer of 1998.
Still, I've gotten used to it, and it still plays well. It will hold as-is for a while.
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