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  1. #1

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    anyone play one? damn Mike sounds good...


    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
  3. #2

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    Roughly the same instrument as the Greek Bouzouki

    zappa plays one here

  4. #3

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    I sold mine last week...just couldn't get used to the string tension.

  5. #4

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    I bought a Gold Tone mandocello a while ago. It doesn’t sound like a Gibson or a Weber, but I never had a particular, “classic” tone in mind when I got it.

    I occasionally enjoy playing an instrument with that deeper register, and this fits the bill.

  6. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by BFrench
    anyone play one? damn Mike sounds good...
    See my avatar.

  7. #6

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    There are a few mandocello tunes on the David Grisman/Martin Taylor albums "Tone Poems I and II". Taylor plays some nice vintage guitars, and Grisman uses vintage mando models.

  8. #7

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    Mark O’Connor with the 1914 Gibson he bought as a teenager (IIRC) by mowing lawns, delivering papers etc.

  9. #8

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    I had a nice old Gibson one on loan for a few years from the NY Mandolin Orchestra.
    Given that I already played cello and had flat picking skills, it was easy enough to jump in and read the orchestra parts. It is a great sound but there are some challenges as Rob mentions.
    The double course strings tuned at the unison makes for a fair amount of metal to press to get a note let alone chords, so good action is important. This high tension had a habit (I was told) of eventually pulling the bridge up on many a mandocello.

  10. #9

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    How could be bridge be "pulled up"? It's not like a flat-top guitar bridge, it's an archtop guitar style bridge, and all the pressure is directly downward. I can see the remote possibility of having the tailpiece pull loose or break, and of the neck bowing, but I don't see how there could be a problem with the bridge.

  11. #10

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    That does sound cool!

    <Reminds self that just because a virtuoso can play something and make it sound good, doesn't mean that you will be able to play said instrument decently in this lifetime. Cf dobro.>

  12. #11

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    How could be bridge be "pulled up"?
    Good catch, thanks. I meant collapsing the top like this:

    Gibson K-2 Mandocello Restoration

  13. #12

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    Yes, arched tops do sometimes collapse, guitars included. I'm not sure the tension is much higher per string, but there are 8 strings on a mando-family instrument, which does increase the total tension. Gibson seems to have been lazy and just made their entire family of mandos just like the mandolin, which is far smaller, without thinking the size differences through. There just wasn't nearly enough bracing in that mandocello top.