This kinda relates to the thread below, but I think it stands on its own: This last fiddle I sold is one of the best I've ever done. For example, I was concentrating on something else, swapping strings on a different fiddle, when The customer picked up the fiddle in question and played a test run on it with tryout strings I had changed to. The sound was so good it startled me, and it sorta took my breath away, and I said "Wow!". I listen to fiddles for a living, so it takes a bit to draw that kind of reaction from me. The customer is a really good player with a great bow hand.
A couple days later, I had business with the manager of a nearby distributor. I had told him about this fiddle, and he, being interested in old violins in general, asked me to bring it by, along with some other product I wanted to talk about. After looking it over, we took it to a couple of their setup luthiers who played fiddle a bit, and had them play on my fiddle, and neither of them got anything remarkable out of it. I don't play much any more, so I rarely demonstrate fiddles, but I can still pull a bow. I was a little bit shocked by how MUCH different the fiddle sounded in different hands, even though fiddlers aren't known for tone production (Kenny Baker and Johnny Gimble perhaps excepted). Later I mentioned this to the customer, and he summed it up with the above quote: "Yeah, it's got a great sound, if you know how to pull it." Lesson learned. Again.
You see this in all kinds of areas, but I'll compare it to golf, which to me is the sport that mirrors violin playing: it is the hardest and most sadistic to play, but when someone is good at it, it is amazing to watch.
A good player with 6 beater rental clubs can soundly whip a 15 handicapper with a full set of gold-plated Callaway's. Not saying that your instrument is a beater; simply highlighting that you can't buy the skill that shows through.
Thanks for your recent posts, I enjoy your insight. Do more as you have time.
No, sir, but I'm sure I would be if I knew him. Mtn View is cultural kin to Northwest AR, but separated by rough travel of the Boston Mountains. 1 hour as a crow flies, but 3-4 by car. They have awesome regular jams on their square weekly, wish we had that around here. NWA (ie, Walmart) has decided it needs to have a more progressive image and get rid of the Clampetts. Margeret Drysdale syndrome?
Traffic and trade around here actually trends north toward KC than east. Much more "cosmopolitan" than Branson and Booger County (sarcasm)...