Well, some instruments were quite mysterious to me for a long time… Too bad for my open-mindedness. Violin is one of these! Either I always thought it was the symbol of elitism in music or it was just this annoying squeaky sounding instrument you hear in the Paris tube (or maybe in all the tubes all around the world)… Quite a contradiction isn’t it? But that was before I found out that you can do a lot of things with a violin! From the gypsy swing of Grapelli to the bop jazz of Ponty, via the recent featuring of Lili Haydn with Funkadelic, there are many examples of groovy violin music! Mea Culpa violin…
Well, every time such an obvious thing occurs to me… I have to browse, search and dig… And I got into this interesting how it’s made video… It’s not about traditional violins though but it’s about how electric violins are made… Very interesting documentary!
They defend quite an interesting (and maybe a little controversial) point of view in this documentary. Particularly about the fact that with amplification, a violin doesn’t rely anymore on the body shape to resonate sound (I’m pretty sure some of you won’t agree with that)… I think it’s fantastic!! This means that there are a lot of possibilities to look out, such as research on different shapes… And some violin manufacturers are already looking that way for several years now. Some of them tried variations around the traditional shape while others look in quite futuristic ways, reducing the body to its necessary parts!!
Some of the manufacturers went even further and they experimented new materials such as Plexiglas and diverse weird polymers… Ted Brewer, for example, claims that the material he uses for his futuristic shaped violins (GE resin) also delivers exceptional audio quality… In addition to the aesthetic point of view (tough I reckon traditional violins are nice objects)!
Exploring the possibilities doesn’t scare some creators… I like that!
Although I love guitars made of wood (yes, I can’t forget that I am a geektarist) I often look to more experimental stuff such as Ovation guitars, Dan Armstrong Plexiglas guitars, or even weirder … Sometimes, I even wish that guitars manufacturers could be as experimental as the futuristic violins makers!