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What am I playing on?  How long have you got?

For my double bass work, I use a 3 string bass, labeled Leopold Widhalm (Nuremberg 1720) and

a 4 string processional bass, probably from the Iberian peninsula.  


Roger Dawson made me copies of two instruments he had restored: a low bass viol in G by the Busch family of  Nuremberg (circa 1640) and the very large 17th century bass violin in the Royal collection bequeathed to Prince Albert by Dragonetti.


Mark Caudle made me a small bass violin, a copy of a Brothers Amati instrumen, currently strung in Banchieri's bass violin tuning.


I  play a 7 string bass viol (after Bertrand) by Robert Foster and a 6 string bass (after the small Bertrand in the Brussels museum) by René Slotboom.  Then there's the large medieval fiddel and... Did I hear

you yawn?


At the moment I'm learning to play Kantele, the national instrument of Finland.  The top picture is of diatonic 37 string instrument, below it a 39 string chromatic kantele.






A. Copy of a viol by Bertrand      

B. Bass viol in G after Busch (c.1640)  

C. Leopold Widhalm 3 string bass  

D. A processional bass, probably Spanish.

Here an Egyptian oud - though I  usually play (kind of), a Kuwaiti oud in traditional 5 course tuning.  It's been a great experience learning micro-tonal scales.

What's this?  it's a Nyckelharpa!  It's the national instrument of Sweden, 4 bowed strings tuned a bit like a viola & 12 'sympathetic' strings.  They usually have more keys than this but I cut them down a bit - too many high notes at the top for me.


Medieval fiddle. No originals survive but you can see them depicted in illuminated bibles and ancient church statuary.  Jerome of Moravia (died after 1271) tells us the tuning.


In 2012 a Henk Klop chamber organ made the journey from Salzburg Cathedral to my garage in Walthamstow .   I believe it's the only one of it's type in Britain. ( See full description and photograph)

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