Re: [MEDIEVAL AND RENAISSANCE MUSIC] frets and timeframe of the violone
- In a message dated 12/30/2004 6:46:27 PM Pacific Standard Time,
I've seen many pictures of viola da gambas in paintings, and found
that sometimes it is difficult to see any evidence of frets on their
necks. But I have always been told that they had them.
I suppose it depends on the era of the painting. Early Baroque painters
started doing heavy wet-on-wet blending in order to create "fuzzy" effects.
Vermeer was one of the first to exclusively make his paintings deliberately fuzzy
using a camera obscura as reference. Flemish Renaissance painters tended to
paint more clearly, such as Brueghel the Elder, Holbien the Younger, etc.
I really can't tell the difference either. The little time I have
spent in research leads me to believe that, although they first
appeared in the waning of the Renaiisance, they weren't widely used
until the Baroque period. And I think another violonist once told
me that the violone in D is purely a Baroque instrument. Someday,
when I have some spare time, I should study this.
You might want to shoot an E-mail off to Marco Salerno. He's been
recommended highly by several different early strings players as a very knowledgeable
luthier who is VERY well researched. I'm not sure if he's good with English,
as he lives in Italy, but it doesn't hurt to try. You can shoot him an E-mail
at _info@..._ (mailto:info@...) or just go to his
site: _http://www.marcosalerno.it/MS.html_ (http://www.marcosalerno.it/MS.html)
He makes both Baroque and Renaissance gambas of all sizes, as well as
earlier instruments such as vielles (treble and tenor sizes).
-Geoffrey, El Gaitero Vato
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