Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Mando string blues


'A GIFT OF LOV' my ass
  So I ordered some Yankee Mando strings online a few weeks ago, paid up the ass for them, and of course they never arrived.  Had to play a Halloween open mic, so I went to the same shitty music store in Seogwipo where I bought my crappy Segovia mandolin a few years back.  The guy was not there.  His store was  open, mind you, but the guy was gone.  I sat there a few minutes, waiting.  Then I called the number on the door.  "I'm eating, I'll be back in 45 minutes," was the reply.  His music store, full of instruments, was open.  Lights on, no one home.  Korea.
  I went back later and he first puffed out his cheeks and then sucked in air in rapid succession when I asked him if he had any mando strings.  Then he dug through an old box of strings and to his surprise and mine, he found an old set of strings.  Magnifique.
  When I later started to restring the mando, I was dismayed but entirely unsurprised to discover that the two A-strings were only perhaps 2 cm longer than the distance to the hole in the peg-head.  In other words, too fucking short.  Who in the fuck makes mandolin strings that are too short to fit on a...mandolin?  I had to buy some needle-nosed pliers and fashion the ends of the strings into little hooks, then wish them through the holes.  Fucking misery.
  Then best part was when I lightly tugged the new strings up away from the fretboard to stretch them, as you do after re-stringing an instrument, and both A-strings popped, forcing me to go right back to the store and do it all again.  I laughed and did happy backflips all the way there.  At least I didn't break my G-string.
  The second-best part was when I went to the open mic sound check but then didn't return for the actual open mic.  Musicians.

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