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unusual hurdy gurdy (de Occitane) ??

Mr Red 04 Apr 15 - 11:14 AM
Monique 04 Apr 15 - 04:02 PM
GUEST,Blandiver (Astray) 05 Apr 15 - 04:37 AM
Mr Red 05 Apr 15 - 04:38 AM
GUEST,Blandiver (Astray) 05 Apr 15 - 05:12 AM
Richard Mellish 05 Apr 15 - 06:20 AM
GUEST,Blandiver (Astray) 05 Apr 15 - 06:43 AM
Monique 05 Apr 15 - 03:02 PM
GUEST,ripov 05 Apr 15 - 05:15 PM
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Subject: unusual hurdy gurdy (de Occitane) ??
From: Mr Red
Date: 04 Apr 15 - 11:14 AM

Prunella Scales & Timothy West, boating on the Canal du Midi.

on 4oD here, about 1/2 way through

They meet two musicians who sing for them in the Occitan language.
The instrument they are playing is a two-man, three string hurdy gurdy. has the shape of a ukulele with a wide neck with keys sticking out. Played with the wheel & sound hole facing away from the players, (resting on their laps).

I had never heard of an oganistrum till I whent looking.

Amazingly there is a website for Spain &/or the UK for the instrument, but not France (Occitania).


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Subject: RE: unusual hurdy gurdy (de Occitane) ??
From: Monique
Date: 04 Apr 15 - 04:02 PM

Here you are!


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Subject: RE: unusual hurdy gurdy (de Occitane) ??
From: GUEST,Blandiver (Astray)
Date: 05 Apr 15 - 04:37 AM

A bit of information here:

http://www.organistrum.com/organistrum_uk.htm

(Though I think we may ignore the Biblical references...)

Beware of Monique's link above unless you're fond of big-breasted Russian women looking for marriage...

The name is also likely applied to giegenwerk type instruments, also bowed with a wheel but, unlike the monophonic hurdy-gurdy, using one string per note, like this beast:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oRIF_undL8Q


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Subject: RE: unusual hurdy gurdy (de Occitane) ??
From: Mr Red
Date: 05 Apr 15 - 04:38 AM

quasiment!

He certainly researched the organistrum, but it doesn't say much about it. And what it does say appears to relate to a couple of papers in Spanish, which decir .

It is very much an unusual Hurdy Gurdy, though maybe it progentitor.


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Subject: RE: unusual hurdy gurdy (de Occitane) ??
From: GUEST,Blandiver (Astray)
Date: 05 Apr 15 - 05:12 AM

The hurdy-gurdy story begins with the organistrum, though not much is known about its use in liturgical music of the time, although many commentators suggested a relation to organum. In early music circles, some controversy existed at one point over the mechanism, as one historical source illustrates a series of broad turning tangents in which all three strings were stropped in parallel. I remember a discussion with Dr Mary Remnant 30 years ago in which she dismissed this as being 'unmusical' (i.e. the idea of parallel 5ths and 8ves with no drone), and her reconstruction favoured the two drones & melody string played by pulling keys you're more likely to see in reconstructions these days. This is implied by the famous example at Santiago de Compostella (which can also be found in the Cast Courts in the V&A).

Here's what WIKI has to say:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organistrum


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Subject: RE: unusual hurdy gurdy (de Occitane) ??
From: Richard Mellish
Date: 05 Apr 15 - 06:20 AM

It's a shame that most of the video in Blandiver's 05 Apr 15 - 04:37 AM link is so badly out of focus. It's very hard to see what the keys actually do to cause the strings to sound.


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Subject: RE: unusual hurdy gurdy (de Occitane) ??
From: GUEST,Blandiver (Astray)
Date: 05 Apr 15 - 06:43 AM

It's a pretty complex mechanism here, but basically when a key is depressed it lowers a string onto to the wheel to sound. One string per note, unlike the hurdy-gurdy. There are other examples of this idea which goes back to the geigenwerk or Viola Organista, supposedly invented by Da Vinci. Here's a one being played with aplomb!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sv3py3Ap8_Y

I especially like the Marais!

The wheel harp is also work a look:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zUk8rLGxb48


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Subject: RE: unusual hurdy gurdy (de Occitane) ??
From: Monique
Date: 05 Apr 15 - 03:02 PM

Blandiver, no big-breasted Russian women show up on my computer at the link I gave. No handsome young men either!


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Subject: RE: unusual hurdy gurdy (de Occitane) ??
From: GUEST,ripov
Date: 05 Apr 15 - 05:15 PM

I don't suppose we'll ever find an original users manual to give the tuning, but perhaps the size (or at least string length) was to enable them to sound in unison with the choir, or at least with the tenor?


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