Thougths outside the box

Behind the brain-storms!

Instruments:Created by SDimis (c) 2001

The most common question I 've been asked by friends and followers of this blog is, how am I coming up, with different unique ideas in instrument designs.

The answer is much simpler than what someone may expect. Even though, my science background, has developed a rational way of thinking in my life, during design I tend to rather feel than think.

Lets take the Baglama for example:
For years now I was looking baglama designs, which were nothing more than a copy-cat of bouzouki designs in a much smaller scale. As if the baglamas could not have its own identity, as if the baglamas was the second, or third child in a family, and was obligated to borrow the oldest brother's clothes, bicycle, or toys. Always has been dressed as mikro-megalo (a young boy in old person's clothes)

Baglamas is the smallest, miniature instrument of the rebetiko era. The history of baglama, proves that, it is an instrument with character,a fighter, loud and militant, macho even in its own petite body.

Baglamas needed its own sharp design and unique identity, and I hope that's what I gave.

The rebetiko Guitar:
Always the second voice, always expected to be the proper one , without
many ornaments and garlands, so as to not draw attention away from the protagonist, the bouzouki.

Designing my rebetiko guitars, I borrowed decoration elements from bouzouki, tampoura and laouto.

My rebetiko guitars, can now stare straight into the eyes their competitor, the bouzouki.

The Tzouras:
The only instrument from the bouzouki family which, has its own unique design and shape.
But for me, tzouras is also the most "oriental"-middle eastern instrument of the bouzouki family.

Its tough, oriental, with a husky voice and it comes in different shapes and sizes (mpaglamobouzouko, tzouradompouzouko, tampourompouzouko, gonato etch.)
No, its not the Frankenstein monster ,of the baglama and the bouzouki, rather the fringe/marginal child of the family.

The gonato bowl proves to the other members of the family, that its physical abnormality in the abdomen area, is rather valuable asset than a drawback!

The Bouzouki:
I have to admit that the bouzouki, always had the greatest attention, in decoration, design and finish by the luthiers. To the point that the bouzouki ended up to resemble an over-decorated laterna (barrel organ) durring the era of middle 70s-80s.

In my designs, I tried to bring the bouzouki instrument back to its origin. Influenced by mandolins, tampourades and laouta, I payed greater attention to its shape and body lines, rather to its decoration.

After hours of design and research, I have come to the point to believe that, the most beautiful bouzoukia are the ones created during its hybrid years, long time before the second world war.

My pre-war trixordo bouzouki created by Giannis Tsoulogiannis, can highlight its beauty through its simplicity in decoration.
And I hope that, my hybrid "Politiko" bouzouki which is under construction by the hands of Tasos Theodorakis, will consolidate my personal opinion and attitude, in bouzouki design.


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