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7 string guitar?

jeepman (inactive) 04 Feb 01 - 02:11 PM
sophocleese 04 Feb 01 - 02:15 PM
jeepman (inactive) 04 Feb 01 - 02:32 PM
wysiwyg 04 Feb 01 - 02:36 PM
Mooh 04 Feb 01 - 03:42 PM
Rick Fielding 04 Feb 01 - 05:46 PM
bigchuck 04 Feb 01 - 06:25 PM
Dave the Gnome 04 Feb 01 - 07:21 PM
cowboypoet 04 Feb 01 - 08:12 PM
Steve Parkes 05 Feb 01 - 05:03 AM
English Jon 05 Feb 01 - 05:16 AM
Grab 05 Feb 01 - 09:36 AM
English Jon 05 Feb 01 - 09:44 AM
Wesley S 05 Feb 01 - 01:42 PM
Rick Fielding 05 Feb 01 - 04:01 PM
Jo King 05 Feb 01 - 05:28 PM
Jo King 05 Feb 01 - 05:36 PM
richardw 05 Feb 01 - 05:39 PM
ddw 05 Feb 01 - 10:22 PM
cowboypoet 06 Feb 01 - 12:00 AM
catspaw49 06 Feb 01 - 12:19 AM
Grab 06 Feb 01 - 07:39 AM
catspaw49 06 Feb 01 - 08:12 AM
English Jon 06 Feb 01 - 08:13 AM
Gray Rooster 06 Feb 01 - 11:23 AM
Rick Fielding 06 Feb 01 - 11:48 AM
Gray Rooster 06 Feb 01 - 11:59 AM
Grab 06 Feb 01 - 02:28 PM
Steve Parkes 08 Feb 01 - 05:17 AM
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Subject: 7 string guitar?
From: jeepman (inactive)
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 02:11 PM

While loafing around one of our music stores yesterday I came across a Takamine 7 string guitar. Anybody know about these things? I know 12 strings, but 7? Jeepman


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: sophocleese
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 02:15 PM

A Russian guitar? We had some guests from Siberia at my parent's place a few weeks ago. I brought my guitar along and the father played it in my regular tuning, which he called spanish style, and then retuned it for another song in russian style and said that he missed the seventh low string of the Russian guitar.


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: jeepman (inactive)
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 02:32 PM

Ah So!


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: wysiwyg
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 02:36 PM

Is it chorded or droned?

(First thought was, "Counting is SO important in music!")

~S~


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Mooh
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 03:42 PM

Hmmm...7's are very popular these days with the rock types into Korn and such like. I've played a couple and they're pretty cool. There has been an acoustic 7 for sale in the local shop and it would be better if it had a decent sound, but it's a rebuilt 6 and the body lacks the low end clarity needed for the low string.

There are a variety of ways of tuning these things, even when it's essentially standard tuning. One is to tune the low string to B with the higher 6 tuned at standard pitches, another is to make the 7th string a higher string and tune it to an interval above the high E, another is to tune the lowest 6 strings to standard tuning intervals but starting with A or B or thereabouts and pitch the high string wherever you like.

I thought about these things when I got my 6 string baritone with which I am really and truly in love. I'd seriously like a good 7 string but I've got an equally serious cash-flow problem at the moment.

Many jazz archtop players have been using 7's for decades and it's a wonder they're not seen more often in the altered tuning universe of folk music.

Various kit guitar suppliers will sell you electric 7 string component parts of quality, but acoustic flat-tops of equivalent value seem to be the domain of individual luthiers as of yet.

I humbly submit that if anyone would act as kind benefactor, I would gladly acquire a new acoustic (steel or nylon) 7 string and report back to Mudcatville about it later.

Experiencing GAS pains...Mooh.


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 05:46 PM

Some wondrous seven string players:

George Van Epps. The chord melody master played a custom Epiphone and then a production Gretsch. Believe he tuned the extra bass string down to A.

Bucky and John Pizzarelli. Think they may still use Gretsches.

Don't forget Lennie Breau. He used a high A string. Think his classical was custom made.

Too hard for me to contemplate. Six strings are confusing enough!


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: bigchuck
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 06:25 PM

Steve Kaufman, flatpicker extraordinaire has been known to use a 7 string Gallager on occasion.


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 07:21 PM

I never saw it, being born after the event like, but my dad used to play a 7 string in a 'gypsy band' when he was a lad in Poland. He generaly got arond playing different tunes on a standard 6 string, in later life, by re-tuning the sixth so I guess the extra string was physicaly above, musicaly below, the sixth.

He also mentions an 11 string! 7 string as above with 4 tuneable 'drones' - I would love to see the length of the finger barring that neck;-)

DtG


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: cowboypoet
Date: 04 Feb 01 - 08:12 PM

Rick, far be it from me to argue with an expert, but I think George van Eps tuned the seventh string to a C. whatever he tuned it to, he could make your heart leap or break with some of his phrasing. "Wondrous" is an apt word indeed.


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Steve Parkes
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 05:03 AM

Back in about 1969, a friend of mine was given a 7-string guitar, supposedly of Russiona origin. It was Spanish-style with steel strings, and conventionally tuned, but with a doubled first. I suppose you played widdly-widdly on the first and do bass on the other open strings.

Steve


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: English Jon
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 05:16 AM

I think Steve Vai had a seven string as well, one for rock fans though.

Jon


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Grab
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 09:36 AM

EJ, Steve Vai certainly had one, custom-made by Ibanez. Remember seeing an Ibanez 7-string in a guitar shop in Preston for a grand - eek!

Grab.


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: English Jon
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 09:44 AM

Theres a 13 string Ramirez in Bowes (pawnbrokers) in Cambridge. Looks fabulous. I think they want about 3500 quid for it. Haven't played it, obviously. But you can tell..

Didn't lutes have seven courses? Could that give us a clue as to tuning?

English Jon


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Wesley S
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 01:42 PM

I was reading about a singer songwriter that I like called Pierce Pettis. I know he plays an Ovation 7 string guitar but I don't know if it was made for him or if it was a production model. I think he tuned his low sting to B or C depending on the song.


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 04:01 PM

Hey Cowboypoet, argue away. I've been wrong enough times to keep me VERRRY humble!

I think I'll hunt down an old Van-Epps album and see what the low note was. You may be right.

Rick


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Jo King
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 05:28 PM

Rick, I know that at least one, if not both, Pizzarelli's play a 7-string Bennedetto. I saw this in AG or maybe in the Bennedetto book. I know little else of the Pizzarelli clan, they may play Gretsches as well. FYI

Take care, Jo.


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Jo King
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 05:36 PM

Oops I spelled Benedetto wrong.

Jo


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: richardw
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 05:39 PM

Don Ross uses a 7 string. He says it is based on a Brazilian guitar.

Richard Wright


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: ddw
Date: 05 Feb 01 - 10:22 PM

Didn't Spider John Koerner play a 7-string? If memory serves, he had a doubled G string because that's where he played most of his melodies.

And it seems to me there were some old bluesmen — Big Joe Williams? — who played 7-strings, mostly with doubled treble Es. Or was BJW playing a 9-string?

david


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: cowboypoet
Date: 06 Feb 01 - 12:00 AM

Yup, Spider John Played a 7-string National, with a doubled G, one an octave higher like on a 12-string. Easily one of the funkiest sounds I ever heard coming out of a guitar. I was pleased to see that "Blues, Rags, and Hollers" is out on CD (along with all the other KR&G albums). "Good Time Charlie" and "Creepy John" are two of my all-time favorites and I wore out the vinyl long ago.


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: catspaw49
Date: 06 Feb 01 - 12:19 AM

Mainly now in rock as Mooh said and mainly electric, but available from a ton of makers including Peavey, Schecter, Rich, Dean, Cort, Dillon, Epiphone, Ibanez, Jackson, Turser, Washburn..............and of course Ovation did have one in their line last year. They've also been built by everyone from National to Gretsch to Guild to Benedetto.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Grab
Date: 06 Feb 01 - 07:39 AM

Seen that one, Jon. Looks very interesting, but I doubt anyone's going to pay that much for it. I think they just keep it there as an "interesting item" and don't really want to sell it, hence the price tag! I've been here 2 years now, and it's not moved from its spot over that time.

Grab.


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: catspaw49
Date: 06 Feb 01 - 08:12 AM

Since they were brought up...............

Benedetto

Gretsch, Van Epps model

Spaw


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: English Jon
Date: 06 Feb 01 - 08:13 AM

Grab:

What gets me is how they'll hang a tatty old yamaha on the same hook, Ramirez back to the brickwork, and a dozen or so cheap guitars that could share a hook and any scratches wouldn't matter.

I don't suppose it will fetch 3,500 but then, they sold that fiddle they had in there for ages at 2500...

unbelievable.

Jon


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Gray Rooster
Date: 06 Feb 01 - 11:23 AM

Tom Gruning plays a Gretsch acoustic seven string. He's out of Austin, Texas and about to move to upstate NY as "the music department" at a university or college there (I'll try and find out the name of the school and post back). He's worked with Grammy Award winners and record label hotshots. Tom will be in Dallas, TX at the Son's of Hermann Hall on the 14th of April. Any 'Catter's that want a closer look and a close ear on a seven string master can catch him there and discover what the "fuss" is all about.


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 06 Feb 01 - 11:48 AM

Great stuff folks! Anyone come up with the "definitive tuning" on the bass string? Went back and listened to a cassette of van Epps. I hear that low A note, so he was tuned that low on at least three songs. Wonder if he tuned the bass to the particular song. Either way, seems like you'd have to re-learn just about everything.

Rick


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Gray Rooster
Date: 06 Feb 01 - 11:59 AM

To the best of my knowledge, there is no "right way" to tune the seventh string. I know several rockers that tune to a low A and keep it "legit" on the other 6. Some others "baritone it" and tune it all down starting with a low D. I saw low D (then legit on up)as "a standard" at Kerrville on two seven strings. And another down there tuned to a D9/6 or (depending on the day) a C9.

I might try something totally different, say an E6.


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Grab
Date: 06 Feb 01 - 02:28 PM

Jon,

Yeah, they're not much cop at Bowes. They don't seem to take any care of the stuff they get in (you'd've thought that if stuff's going to be on display, they'd at least polish and dust it occasionally!) and it's all wildly over-priced. Still, if they only shift a couple of wildly over-priced instruments a year, they won't be doing too bad, I guess.

Grab.


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Subject: RE: 7 string guitar?
From: Steve Parkes
Date: 08 Feb 01 - 05:17 AM

There's been an 8 string classical guitar for quite a while: have a butcher's at Paul Galbraith's Brahms guitar (A/C E A D G B E A) and The Pro Arte Guitar Trio, one of whom plays an 8-string.

Steve


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