Long story of the day.....
I took my fiddle in to my luthier friend today for it's annual check-up. When I walked in, buying another bow was the furthest thing from my mind. Not even on the back burner! But sometimes events take unexpected turns....
I had forgotten about a recent conversation with a mutual friend of the luthier about my current bow. It is a great bow, well-worth what I paid for it. Made by a talented maker, nice craftsmanship. But even when I bought it (over 10 years ago), I had some concerns that it might not be quite lively enough for reels, and I went back and forth for 2 weeks between it and another bow that was livelier but didn't bring out as much full, sweet tone. But I really can't afford to purchase another bow in the same price range, so I wasn't actively looking- just talking.
When he completed the routine check-up, the luthier pointed out the bow in a case on the table and mentioned that our friend had told him I was looking for an inexpensive but lively bow. OH! I remember that conversation now.
It's a Brazilian pernambuco bow with nickel fittings (my other bow has silver). As seems to be the case with other instruments he's helped me acquire, there is a complex backstory about where it came from, how he ended up with it and why it's available at such a great price. He mentions that highly respected classical player/teacher we both know tried it and pronounced it " the best cheap bows" he had every played". Of course, cheap is relative... ($360).
"Take some time, take it home, and think about it. We can make arrangements for you to make payments..." And oh yeah, a good sales pitch- especially when there's actually no comission to be made - " by the way, that teacher has a student who might interested in it...."
Yes, it does seem to be crisper and more responsive for bow trebles & quick string-crossings. Maybe it's pulling a little more volume out of my fiddle. It wouldn't hurt to have a decent second bow....i've played bows that do all that better- but it seems to have some characteristics my other bow lacks... Okay- I'm sold.
It was a major redirection in my thinking, but after test-driving some more at home, it looks like I've got one less empty spot for a bow in my case.
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