Early Guitars and Vihuela

A network for historic guitars and vihuelas

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Comment by Valéry Sauvage on October 10, 2008 at 6:50
Hello Harry,
You may notice my "thumb under" technic even on the baroque lute... I'm not trying to have one historical technic for each instrument (I think it may be difficult, not to say impossible to master so many different technics...) I made mine during about 30 years, I don't think to change it now ;-) About strings spacing and length, I never find it a problem to switch from one instrument to another. The longer adaptation time is from any instrument to baroque lute (IMO the most difficult...) So when I want to play baroque, I have to play on this one AND ONLY THIS ONE for a few days (weeks) to be able to play something clean (I do not dare to say musical...)
All the best
Comment by Harry Jess on October 9, 2008 at 23:44
Hi, vAL, Nice to hear Mertz' Polacca again, one of my earliest favourites. I must find the scores and try it again. But I use ordinary classical guitar technique with rest strokes etc, while I noticed again your thumb-under lute/renaissance guitar technique also here. Mertz was so late that the "pinky" on the soundboard was abandoned by then, I suppose. But I guess that the Romantic guitar you were playing is narrower at the nut than modern classicals of 52mm. That's a bit tricky for me, therefore I ordered my vihuela to have the same distance between the centres of courses as between the strings of a modern classical. How do you cope with so many different string spacings? Do you need a long time to adapt? I'm deeply impressed by your playing so many different instruments with such an ease!

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