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  #1  
Old 01-19-2023, 03:28 AM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Default A Good Kind Of Blue......

In just a few hours I'll be giving a private lesson to a gentleman I met last year at John Monteleone's shop. He'll be bringing a few guitars along as well, although I'm not sure we'll use them for the lesson.

I'll make sure to take some videos even though I already know they're all way to big for me......but I'll deal with it!

D'Aquisto Centura


The Monteleone Rocket Convertible


The Benedetto La Cremona Azzurra


The Mark Lacey Virtuoso



<whew>.......

HE
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Last edited by Howard Emerson; 01-19-2023 at 04:12 AM.
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Old 01-19-2023, 07:04 AM
Richard Mott Richard Mott is offline
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Howard, thatís gonna be quite a lesson and not just for the person coming. What a line-up! For beauty, pedigree, and influence, the Blue Centura is in a class of its own. As they say, photos or it didnít happen! Enjoy every minute. óRichard
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Old 01-19-2023, 07:58 AM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard Mott View Post
Howard, thatís gonna be quite a lesson and not just for the person coming. What a line-up! For beauty, pedigree, and influence, the Blue Centura is in a class of its own. As they say, photos or it didnít happen! Enjoy every minute. óRichard
Hi Richard,
Yes, I'll make sure to have video & pictures taken!

HE
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Old 01-19-2023, 01:05 PM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Default Photographic proof.......

Moi with The Blue Centura, Mark Lacey's Virtuoso and the Gibson Super 400.....A different lineup than I was expecting, and with some other unexpected twists & turns.....such is life, eh?



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Old 01-19-2023, 08:58 PM
Richard Mott Richard Mott is offline
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Howard, twists and turns come with life but any road that ends with the Blue Centura on your lap is fine road indeed! Well done.
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Old 01-21-2023, 10:46 PM
gregc gregc is offline
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Lucky man to be in the room with those classics. History there.
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Old 01-22-2023, 04:39 AM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Originally Posted by Richard Mott View Post
Howard, twists and turns come with life but any road that ends with the Blue Centura on your lap is fine road indeed! Well done.
Richard,
There was a totally unexpected turn of events, that while I wish they could have been avoided, turned out better than okay on other levels.

Confusing, yes, but here's the skinny: The guitars had been in the hands of some players who use the Robert Fripp tuning. It's tuned in 5th, starting with a C .060 up to a .010 high G....010, 013, 019W top 3 strings sound horrible in standard tuning, and to make matters worse I play in open D or open G, so they sounded worser....

The neck on the Lacey had a back bow with the truss rod totally loosened, so it will need serious treatment, but despite the buzzing it was still the most resonant of the 3 instruments, while the Gibson Super 400 was a typically overbuilt Gibson.

The biggest surprise/letdown was how overbuilt the D'Aquisto was. The top was incredibly thick.

I am certain they'd all benefit from having medium gauge string sets (and that's an absolute certified certainty now), but I had a limited amount of time to deal with them.

Now......they were strung like this, in part, because of a gentleman from Milan, Italy named Fabio Mittino. I have to assume that he saw a posting of mine on Facebook, because I got a friend request from him, which I immediately accepted, and by Friday morning I arrange for Fabio and his performing partner Bert Lams to visit John Monteleone in his shop, a 4 hour drive from Philadelphia, PA!

I stayed home to some home demolition, plus I really thought that with their limited time that less would be more, and I knew John would be over the moon hearing Fabio play. I'd sent John the YouTube video of Fabio playing a 1920's L-5 in a church, doing Recuerdos de la Alhambra, and he was blown away, especially because he's been a fan of plectrum style playing a la Al Valenti for decades.....I can't wait to hear his reaction.....

Here's Fabio for those who aren't aware of his prodigious abilities:



More to follow when I have some pictures & video......

HE
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Old 01-22-2023, 08:46 AM
gregc gregc is offline
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Wow. That is very cool. I love the room and the natural verb too. Thatís right up Johnís alley. I can see it.
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Old 01-22-2023, 09:34 AM
Bluemonk Bluemonk is offline
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Of all the YouTube videos of the Blue Guitars, those featuring Fabio Mittino and (the subject of your other post) Michael Chapdelaine have struck me the most (which is not to say yours aren't great as well).

Which basically speaks for the versatility of the acoustic archtop guitar, a concept that Jimmy D'Aquisto strongly promoted.
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Old 01-22-2023, 10:51 AM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Originally Posted by Bluemonk View Post
Of all the YouTube videos of the Blue Guitars, those featuring Fabio Mittino and (the subject of your other post) Michael Chapdelaine have struck me the most (which is not to say yours aren't great as well).

Which basically speaks for the versatility of the acoustic archtop guitar, a concept that Jimmy D'Aquisto strongly promoted.
I have not been able to find any video with Fabio and any of the Blue Guitars, so if you have a link I'd love to check them out. If they were taken while strung with the Fripp tuning setup, it will speak for itself, because I sure could NOT extract any tone from those strings in my preferred tunings.

I can't imagine anyone making any of the guitars sound richer than Michael Chapdelaine does, with each and every different Blue guitar he picks up.

I'm not qualified to carry Fabio, or Michael's guitar cases. I'm way past fortunate to be at all involved with these instruments.

They're in a totally different class of player.

At least when I played for Michael Watt's camcorder at John's shop the Rocket Convertible had a 'familiar' setup, so I got a semi-decent performance despite my typical nervous state.

Thank you in any case.

HE
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Old 01-22-2023, 11:16 AM
Bluemonk Bluemonk is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Howard Emerson View Post
I have not been able to find any video with Fabio and any of the Blue Guitars, so if you have a link I'd love to check them out. If they were taken while strung with the Fripp tuning setup, it will speak for itself, because I sure could NOT extract any tone from those strings in my preferred tunings.
Fabio's performances are on Instagram. Here's one.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CnkYo-rIwWh/
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Old 01-22-2023, 12:29 PM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Fabio's performances are on Instagram. Here's one.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CnkYo-rIwWh/
Thank you for solving that mystery! I rarely go on Instagram, and I sense that a Google search won't necessarily reveal that sort of thing, but I was searching Youtube where all the other Blue stuff is......

HE
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Old 01-22-2023, 12:48 PM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Originally Posted by Bluemonk View Post
Fabio's performances are on Instagram. Here's one.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CnkYo-rIwWh/
And now that I've listened to it.......<sigh>......

That's a perfect example of a recording that does nothing positive in terms of the tonality of a guitar, plain and simple.

Of course it says nothing about the players. They're monsters in their field. And ultimately it says nothing about the guitars, for my ears, because I heard Michael demonstrating what their potential is when played a certain way.

I guess I'm not as broad minded as I hoped.

Thanks again for pointing out the link!

HE
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Old 01-23-2023, 08:34 AM
Bluemonk Bluemonk is offline
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And now that I listen to it myself, I agree. The sound is severely lacking. I think the recording quality on the Instagram videos is to blame.

I was thinking of Fabio's YouTube recordings on his Mirabella when I praised his tone.
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Old 01-23-2023, 11:44 AM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Originally Posted by Bluemonk View Post
And now that I listen to it myself, I agree. The sound is severely lacking. I think the recording quality on the Instagram videos is to blame.

I was thinking of Fabio's YouTube recordings on his Mirabella when I praised his tone.
What first struck me was that deep thud that kept occurring, but nothing to do with the guitars or players. Like the floor was really microphonic and something was banging against it?

I agree that the recording at Cris' is far superior, tuning issues aside. Fabio told me that John's photographer took some video at the shop, so hopefully I'll get to see that, and some pictures at some point.

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