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blues musicians playing odd instruments

GUEST,kolly brown 14 Feb 06 - 08:11 PM
Paul Burke 15 Feb 06 - 03:15 AM
Dave Hanson 15 Feb 06 - 04:03 AM
Ernest 15 Feb 06 - 04:48 AM
GUEST,Jack Campin 15 Feb 06 - 07:20 AM
The Fooles Troupe 15 Feb 06 - 07:26 AM
Bee-dubya-ell 15 Feb 06 - 08:59 AM
John P 15 Feb 06 - 09:13 AM
Paco Rabanne 15 Feb 06 - 09:26 AM
Roger the Skiffler 15 Feb 06 - 09:28 AM
Ernest 15 Feb 06 - 10:56 AM
Pied Piper 15 Feb 06 - 11:14 AM
Brian Hoskin 15 Feb 06 - 12:14 PM
GUEST,reggie miles 15 Feb 06 - 01:25 PM
Duane D. 15 Feb 06 - 03:29 PM
GUEST,Dulcimer42 15 Feb 06 - 05:30 PM
Kaleea 15 Feb 06 - 06:31 PM
The Fooles Troupe 15 Feb 06 - 07:55 PM
GUEST,Wesley S 15 Feb 06 - 08:09 PM
Scoville 15 Feb 06 - 09:56 PM
GUEST,reggie miles 16 Feb 06 - 01:37 AM
The Fooles Troupe 16 Feb 06 - 02:05 AM
GUEST,Art Thieme 16 Feb 06 - 06:28 PM
GUEST,Art Thieme 16 Feb 06 - 06:42 PM
GUEST,Art Thieme 16 Feb 06 - 06:48 PM
GUEST,Art Thieme 16 Feb 06 - 06:53 PM
The Fooles Troupe 16 Feb 06 - 06:55 PM
GUEST,Art Thieme 16 Feb 06 - 06:58 PM
The Fooles Troupe 16 Feb 06 - 07:02 PM
The Fooles Troupe 16 Feb 06 - 07:04 PM
Azizi 16 Feb 06 - 07:11 PM
John P 16 Feb 06 - 09:07 PM
Duke 16 Feb 06 - 10:14 PM
iancarterb 16 Feb 06 - 10:58 PM
GUEST,Ingrid Frances Stark 17 Feb 06 - 01:29 AM
GUEST,reggie miles 19 Feb 06 - 10:44 AM
GUEST,Art Thieme 19 Feb 06 - 01:14 PM
GUEST,reggie miles 19 Feb 06 - 01:45 PM
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Subject: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,kolly brown
Date: 14 Feb 06 - 08:11 PM

im trying to remember the name of a blues musician who played an instrument like a kids toy that you blow into, and theres a keyboard attatched. could anyone help me out?


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Paul Burke
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 03:15 AM

It is called a melodica. It is an abomination in the sight of the Lord.


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 04:03 AM

As bad as the ' Stylophone ' as played by Rolf 'feckin' Harris.

eric


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Ernest
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 04:48 AM

Don`t know which musician you are thinking of, but Washboard-Chaz Leary (www.washboardchaz.com) springs to mind... guess what he is plasying...
Regards
Ernest


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,Jack Campin
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 07:20 AM

In most kinds of music, melodicas sound fairly horrible as they only have one set of reeds (giving a dead, mechanical sound) and the keywork is so unresponsive you can't do much decoration of the melody.

They do work well in reggae, used for percussive chords.


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 07:26 AM

Saw a doco on TV about a London group of buskers - the guy with the small (about 32-48 bass) Piano Accordion had one stuck on the front, with the tube, so that he could play either it or the PA keyboard.

Finally found a second hand one - now looking for the tube.


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 08:59 AM

The melodica is only an abomination in the wrong hands. Granted, 99% of the melodicas in existence are in the wrong hands, but the other 1% can make it rock.

Young mandolin virtuoso Josh Pinkham had a melodica-playing friend with him at the Florida Folk Festival a couple of years ago. Josh's parents' also sell instruments at festivals and their sales booth was set up directly across from my own pottery booth. There was a continuous jam session at the Pinkham's booth attended by every hot-shot player at the festival, including Darol Anger and Mike Marshall. The melodica player played every tune and always fit right in. By the time the weekend was over I'd gained a new respect for the instrument.

That doesn't mean I'm gonna go out and buy one of the things or anything...


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: John P
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 09:13 AM

There are cheap-shit melodicas and then more expensive, better sounding, and more responsive ones. A friend got a nice one recently and I played on it some and it was cool enough that it made me want to get one. Lord help me . . . if this keeps up I'll be looking at ukeleles . . . .


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Paco Rabanne
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 09:26 AM

Billy Preston used to play one. I have a live album from 1973 with his band 'The God squad' where he plays it on 'will it go round in circles' and also on 'higher' Is this the bloke you mean?


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 09:28 AM

Ernest, what's odd about the washboard?? Washboard Sam is another.

RtS
(aka The Washboard of Mass Destruction)


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Ernest
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 10:56 AM

Roger I do like the washboard - just as many other instruments people think of as "odd". There are too many people who think every instrument outside guitar, bass, drums and keyboard odd - fortunately not here on the cat.
Best wishes
Ernest


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Pied Piper
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 11:14 AM

The Melodica is a great instrument in the hands of Augustus Pablo.
I play Blues on GHB, Bombard, Whistles and Recorders sometimes I get strange looks but what the Hell.

PP


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Brian Hoskin
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 12:14 PM

Paul Oscher, who used to play in Muddy Waters' band, plays melodica (as well as his more usual harmonica). There's a picture on his website or the melodica he used on Muddy Waters' 1971 album Live at Mr Kelly's.

Sounds to me like a clear case of genuine blues melodica playing!


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,reggie miles
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 01:25 PM

"blues musicians playing odd instruments"

Hey, I resemble that remark! I play a crazy kind of washboard/soundeffects gizmo. I call it my 1929 Maytag Custom Special Dixie Delta Deluxe Eldorado Rhythm Board (MCSDDDERB pronounced micksderb). I don't play it regularly much these days as I'm not involved with a suitable combo, but I still update it with as many weird or odd acoutrements as I can. It's very much a work in progress. I would say that it takes a special kind of combo to want to add such an unusual array of pre-cussion and sound effects to the mix.

I've played in a variety of combos that focus on blues music. It wasn't the variety of blues that you hear most electric "blues" bands playing today. The groups I've been involved with were all leaning heavily toward acoustic instrumentation. I guess you might term what we were doing as a form of jug band style blues though I don't think we fit neatly into the contemporary definition of that category either.

I also play the musical saw, another very unusual musical instrument, and not one that is widely accepted by any formal musical genre. I have, however, and sometimes still do, play blues with my saw. I've always thought that the spooky nature of the sound produced by the saw could easily lend itself to blues and ballads.

My fascination with these two instruments has left me in the position of being somewhat of a musical outsider in this neck o' th' woods. Primarily, I'm a guitarist, but I've even bent the rules some in this pursuit by managing to create my own resophonic guitar out of junk I found at garage sales. I play my square necked creation bottleneck style with a rather large slide, a frictionless marine propellershaft bearing, or as it's called, a cutless bearing.

As a result of all of this interest in odd instrumentation, I mostly gig alone. On those rare occasions when I am able to pick up some help for a show, I really enjoy having a friend join me on keyboards, piano, accordions, and yes, he's also a great melodica player. I don't think you can limit the blues by instrumentation, but Steve Martin used to joke about the difficulty of feeling blue while playing bluegrass style banjo. ;o)


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Duane D.
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 03:29 PM

Just remember to play the musical saw on the smooth side. If you play it on the side with the teeth, it plays sharp.

(Maybe that line will wake up Art Thieme, it used to be his line.)


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,Dulcimer42
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 05:30 PM

Can't recall who it was, but I saw someone playing tunes on a kids toy telephone. Cute, but not too musical.


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Kaleea
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 06:31 PM

Odd? What do you mean odd? These are all normal instruments to those familiar with Traditional Music. Odd would be a Sousaphone & Clarinet showing up at the Walnut Valley Music Festival-which has happened. We did the only intelligent thing & played Polkas.


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 07:55 PM

My Low-D Shaw is great for blues.


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,Wesley S
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 08:09 PM

I don't know who they were but one Sunday morning on the CBS Sunday Morning show I came across a jazz quartet playing the blues. The instrumentation was drums, bass, piano and french horn.


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Scoville
Date: 15 Feb 06 - 09:56 PM

Aack! My mother has that red Hohner Alto! She's had it for probably 35 years. It has an odd buzz in it, though.

I can't say I'd call it an abomination but it would definitely never occur to me to try to play blues on the thing.


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,reggie miles
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 01:37 AM

"If you play it on the side with the teeth, it plays sharp."

Duane,

I use that line too. I usually follow it by mentioning that conversely everything sounds a little flat on the other side. Wa, wa, wa! I thought perhaps I had heard them all until someone recently encouraged me to try to create a recording of my saw playing. They told me that I should make Saw-D. So, that's what I'm gonna do.


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 02:05 AM

reggie

that's a pretty Saw-D'd joke...


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 06:28 PM

Reggie,

Is that "Saw-D Arabia" ????? (You may have the pun!!---No charge!!!)

If you want to play in another key, you can play a C-saw! (see-saw)

For Celtic stuff--a jig-saw!

Voyeurs like keyhole saws...

To play "Flight Of The Bumblebee"--use a buzz saw...

To play a saw while you pick your guitar -- like you might with a harmonica--- "USE IRAQ !"


(a rack ;-)

I always but a protective short piece of duct tape over the saw's teeth where the instrument came in contact with my crotch while I was playing it! That made a vas deferens (vast difference) in my playing.

To get rosin off the instrument, I'd floss the teeth. But I quit doing that! I wanted to transcend dental medication !

If I repeat these puns too often in the threads for some of you, ---    TOUGH ! Live with it... Go to a psychiatrist---they prefer "coping saws"...

Art


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 06:42 PM

Blues harmonica player, Sonny Terry, made an entire LP album of Jew's Harp playing. (And, MARTIN, saying that is NOT anti-semantic no matter what you say!!! ;-)

The album was/is on Folkways Records-----now Smithsonian Folkways Records.

An extra bit of folkloristic information:

The Jew's Harp was first invented to be an I.U.D. for Catherine The Great ! It was during oral sex that it's qualities as a musical instrument were first ascertained !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (The rest is history ;-)

Just see what you're all missing having me out o' the folk scene now... ;-)

Love,

Art


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 06:48 PM

Bill Clinton was the one who discovered it!

And he used to play it with a rack around his neck while he played his sEx-----er, his sAx, I mean.

He'd used the rack with his Har-Monica Lewinsky !!

Art --- again


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 06:53 PM

If you don't have a sense of humor, it isn't funny...


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 06:55 PM

Good to see yer back Art...

oh, and yer front...


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 06:58 PM

Now, when it is released on Folk Legacy Records, www.folklegacy.com -- BUY MY NEW CD ...

Please.

Art


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 07:02 PM

Ah! now I understand your rising from the crypt... :-)


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 07:04 PM

... which explains your cryptic jokes...

BOOM! BOOM!


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Azizi
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 07:11 PM

ain't it great to be crazy.


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: John P
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 09:07 PM

Hey Reggie,
I used to love listening to you play on your souped-up washboard thing. I know the Strangers with Candy days are long gone for a variety of reasons, but you guys were a very entertaining act.

Besides the more normal piano, I've played blues on the cittern, oud, accordion, tenor guitar, and every time I pick up a melodica, that's what comes out.

John Peekstok


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: Duke
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 10:14 PM

Jessie "Lonecat" Fuller played what he called a fodella (I'm not sure of the spelling) It was an electric bass that he played with one foot while the other played a high hat symbol. At the same time he played an electric 12 string guitar and had a mouth holder for his mouth organ and kazoo. Now that is odd!


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: iancarterb
Date: 16 Feb 06 - 10:58 PM

I am told that all melodicas come from the factory a few Hertz flat, because it is expected that everyone will overblow it to and be right on concert. My informant also claims that it he can approach the sound of bandoneon on it, which would sure be a great blues instrument!


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,Ingrid Frances Stark
Date: 17 Feb 06 - 01:29 AM

Art,

You forgot the extra deep-framed jewelers saw, for those hard to reach notes...


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,reggie miles
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 10:44 AM

Art,

I've found that when flexing the razor sharp spring steel teeth of a handsaw betwixt my knees there's only one very important thing to remember... many body parts don't grow back! ;o)


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 01:14 PM

... stem cells!

Art


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Subject: RE: blues musicians playing odd instruments
From: GUEST,reggie miles
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 01:45 PM

LOL!

Reg


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