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Author Topic: LV-03 for that Gypsy Jazz (Maccaferri)  (Read 272 times)
Casey86
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« on: February 22, 2018, 04:26:52 AM »

I was fortunate to play an awesome trio acoustic (no amps) concert today with two long time friends of mine. Don Ogilvie, an expert on gypsy style guitar and Gerry Green on clarinet. I have played with Gerry since 1974 and Don since 1972, I was 17 heh heh.

I should add when I play with these guys I'm on upright bass. I'm just a beginning guitarist  

Don plays a 1974 guitar made specifically for him by our friend Michael Dunn. Wood for the guitar was fetched out of the Fraser River. It is a copy of the Maccaferri D hole, without the sound chamber. Michael Dunn is a great luthier and Django style guitarist. We play together with Don in a band called Djangoesque. That tells you what the style is! Don ran a band in the '70s called 'Hot Club' long before gypsy jazz was trendy and cool.

Michael taught guitar making at the local college and many of his students went to work at Larrivee in Vancouver. Michael had his own shop and some of his apprentices went on to Larrivee too. When Larrivee left, some ex-employees opened up Legend guitars. He is mostly retired from guitar construction but plays a lot of gigs. He sometimes shows up with his guitar in the sidecar of his Russian motorcycle.

During the concert I was watching Don play and thinking about gypsy jazz guitars. I feel that a great guitarist will make any guitar sound like the style he is trying to hit. Perhaps the Maccaferri copy really adds to the look and feel of gypsy jazz. Michael often wears a beret and ascot tie when he plays Django style.

Don's guitar sounds a lot like my LV-03. Clear and ringing. A dreadnought with a lot of bass is not the target sound. Is there a Larrivee that would be perfect for gypsy jazz? I think the LV-03 would be great for it, if you have the chops.  I have to admit playing 'Manoir de Mes Reves' at home on guitar. I have the Djangoesque charts to play with of course! Don's Maccaferri copy sounds wonderful and he plays it like an expert.

Thoughts on the LV-03 for gypsy jazz guitar? It seems like a good fit to me. Is there a Larrivee more suited?

Here is an example of one of Michael's gypsy guitars:
http://www.djangobooks.com/Item/michael-dunn-mystery-pacific-2
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2002 LV-03
2016 D40re
Queequeg
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« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2018, 12:48:35 PM »

While I have never owned a gypsy jazz-style guitar, I've been listening and enjoying that music for decades.
I had the opportunity to see Stephane Grappeli a couple of times many years ago.
I recognize two distinctly different kinds of gypsy jazz guitars.
The "grande bouche", a large D hole used primarily for rhythm and the  "petit bouche" (small mouth) or "Oval Hole" associated with lead playing.
I certainly agree with you that "a great guitarist will make any guitar sound like the style he is trying to hit" but I believe these Maccaferri type guitars are built for volume and attack as opposed to sustain.
I like the sustain on Larrivee guitars, but we know how to control that- extending it through a bit of vibrato with the left hand or cutting it short by damping the string.
If it sounds good to you on your LV-03, go for it.
There's no right or wrong in these matters, IMHO.

BTW- a new movie, "Django" recently released. Good music and a good storyline too.
movie trailer
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Casey86
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« Reply #2 on: February 22, 2018, 03:32:09 PM »

While I never got to see the fantastic Stephane Grappelli, I did jam with his guitarist Diz Disley. We used to play an after theatre gig at the Arts Club Vancouver. We would start at 12:30 or 1:00 depending on the theatre show and go to 4:00 am. I recall one night walking my upright into a mailbox after the gig. Poor thing.

Diz was playing at the Orpheum with Stephane and came by to see Don at the Arts Club,  and sat in with us.  Don with his brothers Ken & Brian also had a band called The Westside Feetwarmers, they were a back up band before  Stephane Grappelli came on.

I like those petite bouche guitars. Michael often shows up with a version of those he created.

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2002 LV-03
2016 D40re
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