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edited August 2005 in Gypsy Jazz 101 Posts: 9
Thought I'd introduce myself: I'm a guitarist and dobro/lap steel/pedal steel player whose been recently re-enamered with Django style playing. The recent interest came about after attending the mandolin symposium this summer with my son, and listening to all the great gypsy style playing. Currently, my son and I are working on a set of gypsy jazz tunes for our repertoire and I'm addicted.

I'm currently playing GJ on my tricone. Don't know if anyone else is using a tricone to play but would love to hear about it if so. I'm looking forward to learning a lot and I'm having a great time transcribing GJ solos.

It seems that GJ has the best of all worlds. I like playing fast licks ala Bluegrass, but I've never been a big Bluegrass fan (at Grey Fox recently I spent the whole time jamming and virtually none listening to the bands. )
I also love jazz, but never really considered playing it myself. GJ seems to me a great combination of the two, plus I love listening to it. Plus it works well for guitar and mandolin which works well for my son and myself.

Comments

  • mitch251mitch251 marylandNew
    Posts: 70
    Hi Bill
    Check out Oscar Aleman he was an Argentine cat who swung his fanny off
    on a Tricone.
    Best Tom
  • Actually Tom, I've been listening to him all day.

    My major issue is getting the tricone's action down far enough to make it viable. I'm taking it to Mandolin Brothers this weekend for a set up.
  • bbwood_98bbwood_98 Brooklyn, NyProdigy Vladimir music! Les Effes. . Its the best!
    Posts: 431
    Hi bill,
    Sounds great- Are you a local? NY (brooklyn) . . . if so . . . . perhaps we ought to play.
    Cheers,
    Ben
    Ps. PM response please.
  • drollingdrolling New
    Posts: 153
    Welcome to the forum, Bill. I've recently been trying to play GJ on a tricone, too. A Regal RC-51 that I bought on-line from the same place I got my 'D' hole & oval hole selmac clones. I was sucked in by the looks of the guitar and the specs intrigued me, too. Bone nut, nickle plating (instead of the chrome that's more commonly used on contemporary brass bodied resos) and a radiused fingerboard (rather than the flat board found on some guitars built for slide). I tweaked it as much as possible to improve tone and playability, but even with lowered action, the string tension was too high and no matter how much I played with the 'mushrooom' braces and re-positioned the cones, I couldn't get nearly the projection & volume I get from my GJ guitars.

    So I traded it in for a Parker Fly, of all things. Needless to say, I'm not using the Fly to play Django's music.

    I agree with you about the kind of chops it takes to play this music right. I come from a telecaster pickin/western swing style background, but my chicken pickin technique hasn't helped much with this style at all. In fact, I'm having a heck of a time "un-learning" my old tricks and have been working with Michael's Gypsy Picking book & CD, trying to get the rest stroke down and familiarizing myself with new arpeggios, scales, etc..

    Are you using regular phosphor bronze strings, or the silver coated strings that most of us use for this style?

    Michael Dunn, a west coast builder of selmac guitars, also plays GJ style on a tricone with his Vancouver based band- The Hot Club of Mars.
  • Well, my tricone is gone.

    I went up to Mandolin Brothers with the idea of having them work on it to get it into suitable shape and of course I started playing all the guitars including a Dunn and a number of other jazz guitars and archtops. I ended up trading the tricone for an Eastman Uptown Archtop. Man, it is fantastic. I don't know what I've been missing not playing an archtop all these years. This guitar sounds fantastic, looks fantastic and plays fantastic.
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