Curious about the 10-string guitars

Topics archived from Public Space and its subforums after a long period of inactivity, or redundant for some other reason. This section is read-only.
Forum rules
Topics archived from Public Space and its subforums after a long period of inactivity, or redundant for some other reason. This section is read-only.
User avatar
Den
Posts: 1442
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2007 3:59 pm
Location: East of Toronto, Ontario, Canada (plenty of raccoons, skunks, coyotes, foxes and beavers)

Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by Den » Wed Nov 21, 2007 2:24 am

I've always wanted to know, what are the extra four strings on the 10-string guitars? Are they all bass strings? How are they tuned?
:guitare: :bye:

Azalais

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by Azalais » Wed Nov 21, 2007 3:09 am

Here is some info from Wikipedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/10-string_guitar
and if you try the forum search function I'm sure you will find more. We have several 10-string players on the forum.

User avatar
Den
Posts: 1442
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2007 3:59 pm
Location: East of Toronto, Ontario, Canada (plenty of raccoons, skunks, coyotes, foxes and beavers)

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by Den » Wed Nov 21, 2007 3:38 am

Thank you Azalais.

User avatar
Jouni Stenroos
Posts: 885
Joined: Fri Feb 16, 2007 6:18 am
Location: Espoo, Finland

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by Jouni Stenroos » Wed Nov 21, 2007 10:33 am

It must be noted that the WIkipedia article is only promoting the Yepes modern tuning. Facts are straight, but the importance of the balanced resonances is a personal opinion of the writer. Many 10-string players prefer more bass range over the resonances. However, it's true that the overall sound of Yepes tuning is good, and the guitar is more useful when playing 6-string material. It's a good choice if you play only 10-string guitar.

-Jouni
Learn Finnish, part 1:
ice-cream cornet: jäätelötötterö

John O

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by John O » Wed Nov 21, 2007 5:42 pm

Do you ever have to fret notes on the lower 4 strings? I know how hard that can be on my 7-string guitar--I can't imagine how awkward it would be on a 10 string instrument!

pacfan

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by pacfan » Wed Nov 21, 2007 5:50 pm

After listening to Yepes Fugue 1000(1), my dream - just a dream - has been to redo my Fugue, after 20 years, with a 10-string guitar someday. Though he played it very slowly, suprisingly, he was able to make it the best Fugue performance I've heard, a piece which is usually performed much faster by almost all other guitarists.

If you want an excellent 10-string guitar recording, get yourself an all-Rodrigo solo album of Narciso Yepes. I think this is the album that truly deserves a Grammy. Actually, because certain flaws in his playing, I was never a real fan of Yepes. But when I listened to this album, I was really impressed by his performance, which was made late in his carreer, where he finally perfected his technique. His performance of Invocation y Danza is simply the best both technically and musically. I just keep on listening to this album over and over. Simply splendid.

User avatar
Jouni Stenroos
Posts: 885
Joined: Fri Feb 16, 2007 6:18 am
Location: Espoo, Finland

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by Jouni Stenroos » Wed Nov 21, 2007 7:34 pm

Death Fugue wrote:Do you ever have to fret notes on the lower 4 strings? I know how hard that can be on my 7-string guitar--I can't imagine how awkward it would be on a 10 string instrument!
I fret 7th quite often, and occasionally 8th. For example, the low basses below drop-D in BWV 998 Allegro are all played on 7th.

-Jouni
Learn Finnish, part 1:
ice-cream cornet: jäätelötötterö

User avatar
Jouni Stenroos
Posts: 885
Joined: Fri Feb 16, 2007 6:18 am
Location: Espoo, Finland

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by Jouni Stenroos » Wed Nov 21, 2007 7:40 pm

pacfan wrote:After listening to Yepes Fugue 1000(1), my dream - just a dream - has been to redo my Fugue, after 20 years, with a 10-string guitar someday. Though he played it very slowly, suprisingly, he was able to make it the best Fugue performance I've heard, a piece which is usually performed much faster by almost all other guitarists.
My definitive favourite Bach recording on any number of strings is Stephan Schmidt's. I have the Yepes double CD, too but I'm not too impressed on it. It has good things, and was definitely a remarkable achievement at the time it was recorded, but there are some aspects in his playing I don't care about much.

-Jouni
Learn Finnish, part 1:
ice-cream cornet: jäätelötötterö

pacfan

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by pacfan » Wed Nov 21, 2007 8:12 pm

jounis wrote:
pacfan wrote:After listening to Yepes Fugue 1000(1), my dream - just a dream - has been to redo my Fugue, after 20 years, with a 10-string guitar someday. Though he played it very slowly, suprisingly, he was able to make it the best Fugue performance I've heard, a piece which is usually performed much faster by almost all other guitarists.
My definitive favourite Bach recording on any number of strings is Stephan Schmidt's. I have the Yepes double CD, too but I'm not too impressed on it. It has good things, and was definitely a remarkable achievement at the time it was recorded, but there are some aspects in his playing I don't care about much.

-Jouni
Have you heard his all-Rodrigo solo piece album recorded sometime in the late 80's? If you haven't, try it and I'll guarantee you won't regret it. In that performance, he has gotten rid of almost all his earlier 'deficiency' like careless rhythm, very quick but uneven free-stroke scale and inadequate sustain of some notes. In that album, he played the Invocation y Danza, an extremely difficult piece, superbly, better even technically than John Williams, Yamashita and Barrueco. The work is a pure art. I wish he'd recorded his Chaconne during that time when I think he was at his peak as an artist.

User avatar
Den
Posts: 1442
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2007 3:59 pm
Location: East of Toronto, Ontario, Canada (plenty of raccoons, skunks, coyotes, foxes and beavers)

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by Den » Thu Nov 22, 2007 3:19 am

Death Fugue wrote:Do you ever have to fret notes on the lower 4 strings? I know how hard that can be on my 7-string guitar--I can't imagine how awkward it would be on a 10 string instrument!
Actually, I saw this guy once on Youtube (I forgot his name) playing jazz on his 10-string guitar and he was using his middle finger a lot (the longer one) to fret the bass strings; it looks like he was flipping the bird at us all the time :oops: . He was funny to watch!

User avatar
pogmoor
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 9473
Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2004 10:55 am
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by pogmoor » Thu Nov 22, 2007 12:19 pm

I've currently got a Burguet 10-string on loan from someone who is a 10-string expert (and active on the 10-string message board, which anyone can join and is an active source of debate about the instrument). The current tuning on this guitar is f'#, c'#, a, e, B, F#, E, D, C, B (ie conventional guitar tuning raised 2 semitones with extra bass strings tuned in a diatonic scale - and these might be retuned according to key). I believe, though, that 10-string players use a variety of tunings.

The reason I've got this is that I'm doing some transcribing work, including making 10-string arrangements; I've played it a bit, but I have to admit I find it hard going coping with the extra basses - I guess I'm getting a bit old to adapt :( I'm told what you need to do is put aside the six string for a few months and just concentrate on the 10-string - but as I'm actively involved in playing the 6-string I find it hard to do this.

The 10-string is wonderfully resonant and, given my particular interests, I enjoy trying to play lute pieces on it. If you search on YouTube, there's quite a few 10-string videos, including a very impressive one of a UK guitarist recording a modern composer, Ohana, for Naxos (even more impressive when the word is that he is playing a borrowed [Ramirez] guitar and had only been playing 10-string for a short time).
Eric from GuitarLoot
Renaissance and Baroque freak; classical guitars by Lester Backshall (2008), Ramirez (Guitarra del Tiempo 2017),
Yamaha (SLG 130NW silent classical guitar 2014).

User avatar
Perfecto De Castro
Concert performers
Posts: 440
Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2004 2:08 am
Location: Azusa, CA, USA

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by Perfecto De Castro » Fri Nov 23, 2007 9:08 am

Here is my tuning:

Image

I usually fret until the 8th string...still haven't found a piece that needs fretting on the 9th and 10th but I suppose I can figure out an excuse to do so.
"Brother, your fingers are your tools but your instrument is your heart"

User avatar
Den
Posts: 1442
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2007 3:59 pm
Location: East of Toronto, Ontario, Canada (plenty of raccoons, skunks, coyotes, foxes and beavers)

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by Den » Fri Nov 23, 2007 2:39 pm

Perf_De_Castro wrote:Here is my tuning:

Image

I usually fret until the 8th string...still haven't found a piece that needs fretting on the 9th and 10th but I suppose I can figure out an excuse to do so.
Wow! That's confusing. Why don't you place the 9th string between strings 4 and 5, and the 10th string between strings 5 and 6? This way, the tuning will all go in one direction. :? :cry:

User avatar
Perfecto De Castro
Concert performers
Posts: 440
Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2004 2:08 am
Location: Azusa, CA, USA

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by Perfecto De Castro » Sat Nov 24, 2007 1:55 am

Den wrote: Wow! That's confusing. Why don't you place the 9th string between strings 4 and 5, and the 10th string between strings 5 and 6? This way, the tuning will all go in one direction. :? :cry:
What you propose is even more confusing and will mess up standard guitar left hand fingerings (chords and scales).

Strings 7 and 8 are an octave lower than strings 4 & 5. This facilitates easier octave displacement fingering-wise. Having the low D also allows me to play standard and dropped D pieces in succession without pausing to retune. My concert programs flow better because of this.

Strings 9 and 10 are available as open bass notes to help ease left hand fingering in certain pieces. These strings may vary up or down a half-step depending on what I should need for a particular piece.

I chose to keep the 5th interval for strings 9 and 10 (c-F) as I feel that is more useful than a step-wise interval (ex. G-F)I can usually get a step-wise bass voice movement by fretting one of the lower strings. This helps control the extra resonances.
"Brother, your fingers are your tools but your instrument is your heart"

Erik Mann

Re: Curious about the 10-string guitars

Post by Erik Mann » Fri Dec 21, 2007 4:42 am

7-10 string guitars were very common among 19th century virtuoso guitarists. Check out earlyromanticguitar.com, and look under the section "multi-bass". Gary Southwell makes an interesting reproduction of a Schertzer guitar like Mertz played. It has a standard neck for 6 strings, and a 2nd sort of neck for 4 "floating" (non-fretted) basses. I've played an original, and b/c the 4 extra basses slant away from the the first 6, it helps to orient the right hand better for me. Try searching for "Southwell guitars" and look for the Schertzer copy. It's a pretty amazing instrument.

Carulli actually even wrote a method for the "decachord", a 10-string guitar.

Return to “Archives of Public Space and its subforums”