Screeching Gut E String
I'm seeking advice from those of yours frequently using gut e string.
Some weeks ago I ventured on discovery of a loaned baroque violin. While playing without chinrest and shoulder rest is getting somewhat easier each day (minimal improvement each day though ;-)) I am really annoyed about the sound quality of the e string. I can achieve an okay-ish sound from g through a (could be better, sure, but fine at this stage). But with the e, there is so much screeching, not even whistling like with an steel e. I'm wondering if it could be this little bit fraying around contact point? Or too little rosin? I've tried to change contact point towards the bridge and back, without any noticeable improvement (though, while playing, I'm not always fully concentrated on contact point, I have to admit).
Every advice is appreciated, thanks in advance! Anne
Plain gut has a much smaller radius for where your contact point needs to be. I'm sure you've experimented quite a bit, and your frustration has been felt by probably everyone who's tried gut strings for the first time, so don't fret!
Dear James, thanks a lot for your encouragement, now I know what to work at! Anne
A gut E will teach you more about bow and tone control than you would have thought possible!
You have to keep your bow absolutely straight on a gut E. You also need to watch your bow speed (usually they like a faster and lighter bow than what you will be used to).
For me it is funny to read about difficulties with gut E strings. I recently put a set of chordas* on my violin (influenced by this forum BTW) to find out how they would sound. And the only string of the four that I really like (actually love) is the E. I love its tone, singing and luminous (is this even a proper adjective for a sound?) and without the sharpness of steel Es (gold steel, aluminum steel etc., they all sound too sharp to match comfortably with their three mates).
Thanks for your insights, now I'm reassured that's my technique to work on and not bothering about a new string etc.
Thanks, Cotton for your advice.
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