Re: Bowed percussion
Posted by Orch on 12/5/2022, 2:17 am, in reply to "Bowed percussion"
You want a German bass bow. German is the type, not a brand. Bass bows that are shaped like larger cello or violin bows are “French”. The German bow has more of a gap between the stick and the hair - designed to be played palm up, similar to traditional grip. Try to get a step above the Glasser fiberglass The other thing you need is rosin. Don’t use violin/cello rosin. It won’t provide enough friction. Bass rosin is what you need, but get some that is hard, not Pops. Pops is great for bass strings, but the rosin is tacky and will actually melt into a puddle if left out of the case. |
Bowing is a balance of speed and pressure. Too much pressure and the bow will catch and skip instead of a smooth tone. Too little pressure and it will just glide along the surface giving you a friction sound of rosin on metal “ffffffffffffffff”. A little speed can generate the energy necessary to start the bar (or cymbal, gong, crotale, whatever) vibrating. Once it’s going then you can think about saving bow on longer note values.
Rosin the bow with 4-5 light swipes in the same direction. A bass player playing an hour a day will apply more rosin every couple days. If you’re using it for like a dozen vibe notes, every week or two will do.