bodhran question

bodhran question

Hey Everybody,

i have a 5 month old, waltons, double skin layer, tunable bodhran. It’s a great instrument, but i have what could be a dumb question.

the bottom skin layer always bubbles up when it gets moist, even a sweaty hand will cause it to bubble. Is this normal? it does not effect the sound, but it is a pain in the neck.

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Great instrument ?

Soak it in petrol,put it on really hot turf fire,

Problem solved.

Posted .

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Take it back to the shop and get a refund.

Posted by .

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Boy, Francie. Are you lucky that Llig’s not around. He’d have loved to shovel on some of his “bodhrans are rubbish” patter.

In short, a Waltons bodhran is not a “great” bodhran. It’s a barely adequate one, inasmuch as a skin stretched over a hoop can ever be “great”. You get well made drums and badly made ones. If you must play one, play one made by a person, not a corporation. Don’t buy a double skinned one - it’s totally unnecessary.

Some smartarses on here will try to tell you there’s no place for a bodhran, period. They’re wrong.

It sounds like the one you have is a pile of pants. Return it if you can. If not, I expect it didn’t cost the earth ;)

m.d.

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Whoever sold it to you saw you coming. What a great way to offload a consignment of rubbish - sell it to people who don’t know what they are looking for and have nobody to advise them. There are plenty of good instruments out there. Go to a reputable seller and get a decent, deep-toned instrument that will add a special something to a tune.

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So what is a good bodhran, where do you buy one and whats the price?

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A good bodhran is one that’s well built, and built by a human being. You can get ones with thick skins with a narrow tonal range or thin skins with a broader tonal range. To find one that’s right for you you need to talk to people at sessions and festivals and find out what you like in a drum. Prices vary - you can pay a helluva lot for those by certain makers, but they ain’t worth the price for what they are. Seamus O’Kane is the one guy I would recommend. Not the most expensive, but the best in my view.

Remember that they’re not melody instruments and need to be played with great consideration. You can never have too many melody instruments in a sesh, but you can easily have too many bodhrans.

m.d.

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totally agree about seamus o’kane’s bodhrans ……. great bodhrans …!
marin

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“A good bodhran is one that’s well built, and built by a human being”

They use second-hand car factory robots over in Germany.

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They make second-hand cars now?

Posted by .

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The robots gam, not the cars.

Unless they actually make bodhran production line robots…

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Francie, you’re in Texas and this fellow has his store there in Colorado called “Whistle and Drum”. They are a very good online retailer. I have one of their Hedwitschak Lite drums myself.

My Mom gave me a Waltons bodhran similar to yours years ago, but I started playing with a fellow that had a Kane, and the difference was just night and day. It’s the quality of the skin itself that will knock your socks off. The tone of a well made drum is unbelievable compared to a Waltons

These Hedwitschak drums are intro level in price, but they are really nice drums. If you can’t afford a Kane drum, take a look at these over at Whistle and Drum. The skin on mine is very nice and it just gets better as time goes by. If you can afford a Kane, get one. If not, at around $200 USD these are very nice drums.

http://www.whistleanddrum.com/hedwitschak-light-line-bodhrans-1

happy goat whacking

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Ok maybe i don’t have such a “great instrument”, but thats not the point. Has anybody encountered bubbling on the bottom skin?

Anyway, not everybody can afford the “high-end”, “legit” instruments; especially someone who got it for a starter bodhran. For my needs, my waltons tuneable drum does fine.

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It’s the nature of skin, it does that in reaction to moisture. And don’t let the usual bodhran banter put you off. The skin you should most be concerned about is thickening your own, especially if you want to be a bodhran banger, but not so thick as you lose touch of common courtesy. The recommendations given are sound, but most folk appreciate the need for a start and a starter instrument, or one on a budget…

$200 for any drum isn’t bad. Just look at what snares are going for…

I forgot to mention, in general Walton’s hasn’t a great name where any kind of instrument is concerned. They headed up bringing in all those Afghan camel p*ss cured unplayable uilleann pipes, and the flutes ~ YUCK! Wall hangings for pubs at best… But to be fair, I’ve not yet seen or had in hand one of their bodhrans. No, I take it back, I have, the ones with advertisement on the skins, like for Guinness, including wee tambourine sized ones. They were cheap in all respects…

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You could always try their ‘bodhran conditioning cream’… 😏

Remembering other models, including those Celtic knotwork ones, but ~ never anything ‘double skinned’…

Get yourself a cheap travel hairdryer and an extension cord. That will make folks take notice at a session ~ WHIRRRRRR!…

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I have a Brendan White double skin that never bubbles. If the tension is too loose, the two skins do not work well together. A key to your drum may be tightening it and avoiding getting moisture on the inner skin. I saw one Bodhran player who wore a leathe glove on the hand that touched the skin in the back - he thought the glove gave a better tone and kept his sweat off the skin. I have never tried it myself. I really like my Bodhran and you can get them from Brendan at http://www.bodhran.nl/site/index/bodhrans.

Brendan makes an excellent drum at a reasonable price. The double skin Bodhrans can have a wonderful bass. Despite my fondness for my current drum, I just ordered a Seamus O’Kane drum - his drums are the standard by which all others seem to be compared from what I have read here and on other boards.

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My mother always told me that if you don’t have anything good to say, don’t say anything. That’s all I have to say…

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Do not soak it in Petrol!
Put the petrol in the car so you can get to the session.
You should liberally apply a thickening agent to the skins. This way the bodhran won’t sag when you carry the drinks over to the melody players.

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Call me Mister Picky if you like, Francie, but you’ve started a thread because you have a problem with your drum. How can you then say “For my needs, my waltons tuneable drum does fine.”? It clearly doesn’t do fine if one of the skins is slackening. I’m not one of the session.org bodhran haters - quite the opposite. It sounds like yours is just a bad ’un. If you don’t want to splash big bucks, try another Waltons single skinner by all means. Just please don’t say “my drum’s not working” and then get defensive when guys like me say it’s maybe not the best drum in existence.

I assume you’ve tried tightening up a bit? If so, and it’s still “bubbling”, then one of the skins has slipped, stretched, or slackened, and your drum’s basically fecked. Double skin drums are, as I’ve said, totally unnecessary anyway.

Good luck
m.d.

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Nice one irishrhythm… I knew someone that used a leather bow glove, as for archery…

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You need a thicker skin

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Boom! Boom!

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soz 🙂

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And now for our singing duck ~

Where’s a cigar smoking smilie when you need one?

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I once shot a bodhran in my pajamas.
How it got in my pajamas I will never know.

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Haven’t been around in a while. I see nothing has changed. There’s something at once disturbing and comforting about that.

When will you mustard-boarders just up and admit that you love thumpers and strummers? Why else would such threads have more posts per capita than any other kind?

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[*When will you mustard-boarders just up and admit that you love thumpers and strummers? Why else would such threads have more posts per capita than any other kind?*]

Interesting observation, sir. When llig (Micheal Gill) used to post here, it was always assumed that he hated bodhrans. But, when pressed, said he didn’t dislike the sound or the skill of the masters - he just hated them in sessions, full stop (or words to that effect).

I’m boring and neutral on this subject - if a bodhran (in a session, or not) is well-played, I like it. If it’s played badly, I hate it.

Can’t say I’ve ever heard a Walton - but it appears the reputation precedes the sound.

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I’ve never played a double skin bodhran, but I can’t imagine how the issue couldn’t affect the sound. Can you remove the inner skin(insert joke-" just remove both of them and it’ll sound great)?
Seriously, if it “sounds ok” with the people you play with, don’t be so worried about the skin hand and work on mastering the tipper.
Top end style offers change in tone with minimal skin hand movement.
And take the positive advise from the folks here who play this stuff all the time. Practice, know your place at the table and look to upgrade when you can. My O Kane gets me a seat anywhere I go. And a compliment or two if I keep the pints under control.

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@ Worldfiddler: I was being a bit caustic there. My sentiments are more along yours, actually.

As for llig, has he bowed out of the mustard board indefinately? Was he permanently banned? I enjoyed some of his input, as disagreeable as I found his demeanor.

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The other night, a friend playing bodhran sitting next to a guy playing a midget djembe was offended when someone called for a reel, and I said, “Oh, good, our thumpy friends will like that.” I thought I was being nice, after all, I didn’t call them “our thumpy enemies” or anything like that…
(Llig has decided to take a break from the Mustard Board, it is purported to be a permanent break, but time will tell.)

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A couple of years ago I was having a drink at a bar in Ireland, listening to a session, and otherwise minding my own business. The leader, a whistle player, spotted my fiddle case, waved me over and asked me to sit and play between him and the bodhran player. I did so and soon discovered the reason for the invitation. I’ve never heard such atrocious bodhran “playing”; the leader was being deafened by the racket and needed an acoustic barrier between him and the bodhran. I had looked as if I might fit the bill.
Five minutes later it was evident that the strategy wasn’t working, the leader was clearly getting more incensed, and the ringing in my ears was rapidly persuading me that my sympathies were 100% with him. The leader finally lost his patience, leaned across me and literally kicked the bodhran out of its owner’s hands, requesting him to kindly leave the establishment forthwith (or words to that effect written down on this piece of paper, m’lud).
A collective sigh of relief from the others, a quick drink, the session proceeded as it was intended, and I enjoyed it.

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I wonder why it’s so hard to say “Hey, could you play that thing a little quieter, I’m having trouble hearing the melody?”

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AlBrown, if everyone had mothers like yours, the internet would be a better place! 🙂