"Ceol Binn Muineál Fada" and "Ceol Binn Sean-Aimsire".

"Ceol Binn Muineál Fada".




"Ceol Binn Muineál Fada" (meaning "Sweet Long Neck Music" and pronounced "Kayol bin may-nol far-da") is an 630mm scale length Irish Bouzouki. The instrument illustrated has Lawson's Cypress back, sides, neck, braces, linings and blocks from the "Magical Musical Tree" that grew in my front garden and the head-plates, bindings, fingerboard, arm-rest, soundport, bridge, nut, saddle, end-graft, heel cap and neck strap pin are Cocobolo. Tuners are Gotoh mandolin.


Here's two tunes - "Daithi's Wold/ Nina's Jig" - played on "Ceol Binn Muineál Fada". The first is a waltz of mine that kept reminding me of something until I realised it's a variant of Andy Cutting's brilliant "Flatworld" so for now I've named it "Daithi's World". The second tune is a jig written by Nial Vallely called "Nina's Jig" and references the great jazz singer Nina Simone. I got this tune from Ed Boyd and from Cillian Vallely's fabulous "The Raven's Rock" CD. "Ceol Binn Muineál Fada" is used for backing and melody with some doubling up from the Road Trip mandolin "Ceol Binn Taistealaí".


"Ceol Binn Sean-Aimsire".





"Ceol Binn Sean-Aimsire" is a five string fretless banjo-bouzouki, a banjo neck on a bouzouki body. These instruments go back to the 1890's when it was called a "mandoline-banjo" or "banjo-lute". In 1996 the American builder Edward Dick started making his own version that he called a "banjola" - a banjo/mandola hybrid using a larger body and scale length than the originals and a pinned bridge rather than floating bridge with tailpiece. Goldtone followed his lead and also call their instruments. "banjolas". I wanted my instrument to be called "Sweet Old Timey Music" and Gaelic being a very descriptive language properly this is "Ceol aoibhinn de chuid na sean-aimsire" - "Sweet music from out of the old time" - but this wouldn't fit on the label so it was "adapted" to "Ceol Binn Sean-Aimsire" (pronounced "Kayol bin shan am-shy-ear").


The instrument illustrated has a 630mm scale length with a Western Red Cedar top; American Black Walnut back, sides, neck and linings; East Indian Rosewood bindings; Macassar Ebony fingerboard with frailing scoop, bridge, nut, saddle and armrest; Anjan end graft, heelcap, headplates, porthole and black/ white/ black purflings. Tuners are Gotoh banjo tuners with Ebony buttons and it has a brass mandolin tailpiece. The fifth string nut is a short piece of EVO fretwire with a banjo spike as string guide and there is also a capo spike and fret for the 5th string at the 7th fret. Here's me playing "Pretty Saro/Long Steel Rail" based on Martin Simpson's arrangement in fCFBbC tuning