Violin to Burn

Questions, answers, tips & tricks for newbies and veterans alike

Violin to Burn

Postby BlaiseBlaze » Thu Apr 27, 2006 7:46 pm

Hello to Burn Land! I will attend my first Man 2006. I'm an improvising violinist who will bring an acoustic/electric violin with battery amp. Can usually find something to say in any musical style, with a splash of gypsy passion! Plan to stay with Earth Guardians with a 5 year veteran. Not sure if just wandering around looking for people to play with is cool, or if I should contact groups or venues. Any performers out there with advice - toss them on my blaze!
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Postby theCryptofishist » Fri Apr 28, 2006 10:29 am

YOu might want to pm rian jackson--she doesn't come around here very often anymore, but she's a violist. She only takes a junk viola out with here. Dry air ect is very hard on instruments.
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No humidity!

Postby Token » Fri Apr 28, 2006 10:02 pm

The lack of humidity will generally destroy most wood instruments. This holds true for drums, guitars and sadly, violins.

If at all possible, you may want to consider an electric violin made out of durable plastics for the playa. It will not suffer from the lack of humidity and extreme temperature changes.
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Violin Playa proof

Postby BlaiseBlaze » Sat May 06, 2006 8:01 am

Thanks for the tips. As the proprietor of the Electric Violin Shop, I am working on my options for a Playa-proof electric violin, probably an acoustic/electric. A nice red (!) battery operated amp, with effects, is already on hand!
Questions
1 - how fast do dust storms come up? I could bring an acryllic e-violin, but it has touch sensitive buttons, LED's and electronics. Or is there dust in the air constantly?
2 - do the venues have PA systems, or are most acoustic? how do they preserve their PA boards?
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Postby AntiM » Sat May 06, 2006 9:13 am

Dust storms come up instantly, and yeah, there's dust all over even if it settle sout of the air for a bit. Find the treads on cameras and electronics, those tips may work. They do make extra-large zipper bags, perhaps one of those would help if you stashed your instrument in it. Humidity is not a problem!

Venues? We have venues? You'll have to ask the djs and/or sound camps about preserving their equipment; I'm a Hushvillian which allows no amplified music, so I'm generally clueless first hand about that.

General rule of thumb: if you can't stand to lose it or have it ruined, don't bring it to the playa. Even my wedding ring stays home.
Some sunshine, some dust, a little paint and a tutu. Yeah.
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Postby Rockdad » Sat May 06, 2006 9:22 am

1.) Common snense and care needed out there for electronics but everything is out there and mostly survives, Camera's, video-cams. laptops, displays and tons of PA systems, I would not bring anything that I could not live without in my case I bring a very suitable and useful digital camera not my best one.

2.) Last year dust storm's at midnight sunday opening and on monday had few bad ones. I do not remember anymore bad ones after that. But dust is part of Playa life it will get into places that have never been dusty before it is very fine and sticks like a high tech coating. So be prepared to stow stuff if it gets bad in some sort of container.
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Postby Ugly Dougly » Sat May 06, 2006 9:30 am

The playa heat can only improve a viola. Burning one makes it sound even better. ;)
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Postby DVD Burner » Sat May 06, 2006 9:52 am

Barcus Berry's have done well on the playa.
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Postby Rian Jackson » Sat May 06, 2006 10:07 am

Heya.

I've brought a fiddle out there a few years running. Granted, it's my free fiddle - there's no way in hell my baby, my precious, my sweet hand-made Fairfax viola will journey out there.

The first year I snapped two bridges, probably due to massive temp fluxuations fucking with the string tension. Something slips, the bridge slams into the face, and kee-rack! Bring superglue and extra bridges.

That same year I got some funky grease spots (wha?) on the bow. Now, I'm pretty careful, but I can only imagine with all the lotioning and sunscreening that happens something got on it. Bring anything you need to alter your bow hair, as it's going through dry/wet trauma. Rosin, lava soap, what have you. Bring it. I think you can do an alcohol cleanse for the grease situation, but you'll want to look it up before hand.

The next year the bow broke. Granted, I buy cheap ass bows to bring out there because my good one, once again, is worth more than that week to me. But I opened my case and it had snapped near the tip. No playing at all for me that year. Buy an extra.

IME, the dust will require a major clean out of the instrument and the case. You'll probably never get it all out of the interior unless you have some specialised f-hole vac. (Yeah fishie, put it in things that sound dirty but aren't.) You should expect that going in. Nothing on an instrument like that - that has so many porous surfaces - will be the same.

That's ok if you're ready for it. Bringing my crap fiddle has been really rewarding, even last year when I didn't bring it out so much (but nothing broke!) That chunk of wood has brought about some pretty amazing interactions.

You'll want to think carefully about what you do with it. The main thing is to keep it in shade when you aren't using it, and keep it humidified. You have a dampit, right? If not, get one. Or make something similar. Aridity is a major danger out there. Mine hasn't cracked... so far. But that doesn't mean it won't, and a crack is difficult to fix without losing sound quality. And expensive, to boot.

Those things sound obvious, but I think they're why I've escaped without major damage to the fiddle. Shade is good. Shade is very good. Otherwise, think about how it will cook in that case? Yeah.

I'm a violist and don't actually want anyone to hear me, so I like to wander out on the playa. People find me. Folks have invited me for jams, too, as I've walked around. I'm sure if you actively seek them you'll find 'em for sure.

I hope you find an acceptable risk level for bringing your instrument. Now there will be two of us and we can conquer the world!

Hope that helps. If I missed anything, someone PM me.

Cheers

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Postby Rockdad » Sat May 06, 2006 10:37 am

Beautiful...Thanks for the picture another reason to be hyped about Burning Man
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Postby Ugly Dougly » Sat May 06, 2006 8:10 pm

A handmade viola? Just when things couldn't get worse...
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