Mudcat Café message #676237 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #45631   Message #676237
Posted By: Sorcha
25-Mar-02 - 08:06 PM
Thread Name: Your most prized guitar
Subject: RE: Your most prized guitar
53, my most Prized Instrument is my fiddle, Maggie, (photo available here. She was my husband's Step-grandfather's fiddle.

After Lyle died (I never met him) some person came to Grandma Jessie's door and told her he would give her $45 for Lyles' fiddle. She said she didn't have it anymore. Several years after that, Mr. and I were married.

She found out that I played fiddle (and was trying to "fiddle" on a violin). We went to visit and Grama Jessies asked if I would be interested in Lyles fiddle if she could find it. She told me the story about the guy who wanted it for $45, and finally found it buried deep in a closet, and gave it to me.

The poor girl had a terrible crack from the treble f-hole to the lower bout purfling and a piece of 1/4" cotton clothesline tied from the sound-post to the inside of the tailpin. We were living in Evanston, WY then, only 85 miles from Salt Lake City, so I took it to InterMountain Music when we got home.

3 months later, I picked up my new baby. Had to do a lot of playing, hanging in front of speakers, etc. but I LOVE this girl!! She is very loud and brassy (can walk on 2 banjos) if necessary, but she can also be so sweet and soft with things like When You and I Were Young, Maggie or the dreaded Danny Boy........

She has geared tuning pegs (like a guitar or banjo) instead of friction pegs, and very rarely is far out of tune. (Lovely for stage gigs!) She is very red, and was probably very cheap originally--she is a factory made Lyon and Healy, probably 1920's--but I love her for Fiddling Stuff.

She does NOT like expensive strings and usually wears SuperSensitive Old Fiddler Red labels, but currently has Helicores. Not her favorite strings. Expensive "gut" are right out--I tried them and it was a No Go.She said "That is ViolinShit--NOT for ME!".

There are certain tunes she will not play--Tennessee Waltz is among them. Don't have a clue why she does not like them but she doesn't. She is Female and does not have to answer "Why" questions............

Probably my most Beautiful Instrument is my American Walnut McSpadden lap dulcimer, but she does not get near enough Play Time.