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Larry's Mandolin Ramblings

Listen as Larry shares the voices in his head...why are they always talking about music?

Larry blogs about mandolins, bandolims, choro, jazz, instruments tuned in fifths, cats that like music, and whatever else seems interesting at the moment. Will he spend his last cent on a new mandolin? What case fits a TG-50? How do you lower the pitch on a tight pandeiro?

Find out with me...

  1. MAS...a sickness for which there is no cure (Part II)

    When we last joined out hero he had turned his back on an exquisite tenor banjo, and was looking for a trade that would bring a new National RM-1 mandolin into the fold. What happened?

    MAS is nearly impossible to control...especially when a cool new instrument is involved. After finding the RM-1 I knew I was hooked. There's not many of these available, and it takes National about 6 months to deliver one once they are ordered.

    Unlike older vintage models, these mandolins ...
  2. Making a Mandolin De-Damping Machine

    Have you ever had a mandolin go to sleep on you, or wished the break-in process for a new mandolin (that still thinks it's a tree) could go a little faster? Did you ever get a vintage instrument that spent a few years in a closet, attic, or under a bed?

    The only solution for this is to play the heck out of the mandolin until it comes back to life. But what if you don't have the time, or are too impatient to wait for it to wake up? This is where the mystical and mysterious would of ...
  3. MAS...a sickness for which there is no cure

    In relationships I've always been a reliable, monogamous person. But when it comes to instruments I tend to fall hard, going along with the crush until I'm committed, then slowly becoming distant...eventually breaking up when the next interesting mando walks by.

    MAS...that's my disease. I've had my share of instruments that were "just right"...but now they are just memories. And of course, that's where I find myself today.

    Some case history:

  4. There's other instruments in Choro besides bandolim?

    So like many of you I love choro music. My fascination with this Brazilian style has led me to many wonderful discoveries, such as Mike and Ham and Will Patton.

    I was lucky enough to track down my own bandolim from a cafe member:

    And I've been studying the style and learning tunes on mandolin. It's been great.

    But recently I started getting interested ...
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