i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

ie a bouzouki with a dreadnought style body.

for eg hathway makes a large body bouzouki, it sounds lovely,
and da faoite guitar bodied bouzoukis are loud enough for sessions.

with most bouzoukis, the only thing you hear when they are strummed in sessions is that top end crack crack crack. i dont even take my bouzouki to sessions, its a waste of time.

i’m contemplating converting a redundant dreadnought to bouzouki ( i’m aware of the string tension issue).

i think many bouzouki players would like to play bouzoukis with a more full bodied sound, although
i could be wrong here.

any thoughts?

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

Isn’t that what Andy Irvine has been known to play? Don’t quote me…

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

Ah, balm to the soul. Thanks for that.

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

Maybe there aren’t more because it sounds a lot like a guitar?

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

yup, that’ll be it. thanks!

Guitar-bodied bouzouki playing Norwegian music

Here’s a Norwegian tune played on a guitar-bodied zouk! I like the sound a lot.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCfSun1mBNo

Between flat-backed, round-backed, and guitar-bodied, you have a lot to choose between in terms of tone, IMHO.

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

Andy Irvine calls his a bouzar!

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

I tried one . Did not like it . Too much like a guitar to me
The difference, to my ears, came not from the shape of the body but in having a fixed bridge as opposed to a floating one .
If you want more bass get a cittern or Blarge ,ten strings is the way to go 🙂

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

Guitar bodied zouks have a sweet tone fro vocal accompaniment or solo playing. But I can’t see it working in a session - they lack the top-end bite (or clack clack as you put it) to cut through, I think it would just get lost in the mid-range mud.

BTW. If your thinking of converting a guitar, you will need (as an absolute minimum) to increase the size of the soundhole substantially to get it to sound anything like a bouzouki, otherwise it will just sound like a guitar. If you look closely at the Sobell Andy Irvine plays, you’ll realize the ONLY thing it has in common with a guitar is the body outline. The rib depth, soundhole size, thicknesses and bracing are all completely different.

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

I’ve always quite fancied one, especially since having to sell my fixed bridge Hullah last year. There is a very nice chap called Phil Williams who posts here who sells them at a very reasonable price: http://gazuki.co.uk/

Another alternative is get a bouzouki made to your specs (although this isn’t the cheapest option). Joe Foley made mine with a better bass response after I asked for it and I’m very, very happy with it, and it still has that full-on bouzouki sound I was after and doesn’t sound like a guitar.

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Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

I built one with a Washburn parlour guitar body, but with the rib depth reduced by about 20mm. The result was, well, something that sounding halfway between a guitar and a bouzouki. I called it a "gadzook".

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

correction: either "… something sounding …," or "… something that sounded …"

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

This is one of the few fretted stringed instruments I’ve seen that I have no desire to own. Neither fish nor fowl to me, but to each his own. A lot of the charm of the bouzouki for me is that it sounds really different from guitars.

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

Well, there are, but they are not used in sessions much for the tonal reasons listed above - there is much more response in the middle and particularly bass sections of the sound envelope so that, like a guitar, it is not so audible in a session situation when you try to play tunes on it.
You need that top-end response that is produced by the floating-bridge design. I’m unable to say whether the body shape is part of this.
Andy Irvine either plays alone, or in well-manged amplified or recording situations, where his playing can be balanced to be audible amongst the mush of the other instruments.

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

Is that what that guy Pat Broaders plays, the guy from Chicago who played in Bohola with Jimmy Keane? I saw him once playing a bouzouki-ish double stringed thing that looked like a guitar. Sounded pretty good to me, although it was a concert, and it was amplified, so I don’t know how it would sound in a session.

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

hmmm.
my bouzouki is fixed bridge, and it sounds like… a bouzouki!

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

Sofia Karlsson (I love Sofia!), the Swedish singer, plays one. Quite a nice sound. Mind you, some of her material sounds like there were Irish influences involved.

I think Andy Irvine called his a ‘bazzar’, i.e. bouzouki-guitar. He also uses a large bouzouki if he really wants to get the bass notes going. Didn’t Andy invent it?

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

"…the well-manged amplified…"
Obviously some people are already familiar with this situation.
I can only apologise and state that the proofreader has been sacked for laziness, and her post re-advertised.
Meanwhile the debate continues as to how to name these hybrid, these hybrid of a hybrid, instruments.
After all, the first Greek bouzoukis were a marriage between a satz-ut neck and the body of an Italian mandola, probably still less than 100 years ago. So evolution continues, not even a grand design, more a series of happy accidents.

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

The talk of Norwegian and Swedish music and bouzouki players, along with a re-listen of Norwegian Wood, makes me wonder if there’s a bouzouki being played in that song. Or, was that during the Beatle’s sitar phase?

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

Andy Irvine always complains that people think he’s playing a guitar when he plays his bazzar. But I think it sounds like a guitar

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

That’s a sitar, sara505sings. It’d be a bloody awful bouzouki. To be honest, it’s not great sitar …

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

The full instrumentation was:

Accoustic guitar
Bass guitar
Sitar
Tambourine, maracs, finger cymbals

Gearoge Harrison had been ‘playing’ sitar less than a year when they recorded Norwegian Wood.

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

"maracas"

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

thanks, eb.

Part of the reason I love the bouzouki is of its slithery/droney/dulcimer/sitar-ish flavor.

One good thing I can think of in terms of the bou-zar would be the ease in holding it. the zouk is a slippery devil when you try holding it your lap. Getting a strap made a huge difference.

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

Welcome

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

A friend of mine has a git-shaped bouzouki and it sounds too much like a 12-string guitar for my taste. I haven’t seen it for a few years and can’t recall if the bridge is fixed. I agree that the charm of the zouk comes from the high-frequency sparkle.

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

well i wonder,
sparkle and bass are as much a result of string type, age and gauge as anything else.

i really dont see much difference between the bz and 12string guitar other than the tuning and the number of courses.

eg surely any droney quality of the bz is merely down to the tuning (eg gdad) and the way its played, not the way its made.
what do i know………

Re: i cant help wondering why there arent more guizouki type bouzoukis

Hi I have a Williams gizouki for sale…. gbobrob@gmail.com 🙂

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