Monday, May 24, 2010

Dr Jivago

Dr Jivago
It was in the dawn when I saw this movie for the first time, at Globo´s channel when I was sixteen. I was impressed with the drama, a picture and music. Then, I remember to see it for many times, always at the dawn, till get it recorded in VHS. When I was in Japan in 1989, I rented the original American version and legend was in Japanese language. That is, this version allowed me to listen to original voice (since my copy was dubbed).
I recorded the original version as soon as “I had time” I watched the movie as was the first time.
When I came back to Brazil in 1998 the VHS tapes are not with me anymore (were damaged or moldy in 1994 or 1995). By DVD launching occurred I bought and finally I can see it at my time.
I have two DVD´s (one will be sealed and my store and other to any eventuality)…
I am Omar Sharif’s fan and especially Julie Christie (from her I have many DVD´s).
Dr Jivago is an epic movie based on Boris Pasternak´s homonymous romance. Issued in 1958, the masterpiece was considered as audacious challenger in time of Russia’s censorship and repression.
The drama will tell you poet doctor´s saga and shared by two loves. The background scenery will show you the Russia’s revolution (transition period from Russia Czarist to Bolshevik) soon after the first big world war. That is, devastated Russia full of social contrast, chaos, cleansing and on the verge of civil war.
Narrative is an anachronous made by Yevgraf character (Alec Guinness). He is a red army general who is looking for your half-brother´s niece Iuri Jivago interpreted by Omar Sharif. All Iuri´s Jivago life paths are shown on screen.
Jivago is an intellectual human doctor a guy divided by two women Tonya (Geraldine Chaplin), he got married with her who knows her since the childhood and Lara (Julie Christie) whose he strongly loves. Iuri and Lara will life an odyssey of meets and fail lead by destiny and especially an uncontrolled sense or a sorrow comprehension by each other. The movie is directed by David Lean and show a scene of intense poetic richness, unforgettable remarkable moments.
Awards: Oscar for best adapted screenplay, art director, pattern, soundtrack (Maurice Jarre), best movie, best director, supporting actor (Tom Courtenay) sound and issue.
In 2002 was done a movie re-issuing for TV in series HBO format. This version is real to book and can show us the following actor, actress:
Hans Matheson (Iuri Jivago), Keira Knightley(Lara) and Sam Neill(Victor Komarovsky) and Alexandra Maria Lara(Tonya).
This television version is really real and well produced. However, no doubt, the original one is my preference.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

RIP Ronnie James Dio

Ronnie James Dio passed away at 7:45am, very sad news...
We worked together in Japan, once...and I met him again in Brazil (Magica Tour).
I´m very sad!
RIP my friend
You´ll jam with Bonzo, Randy Rhoads, Hendrix and others...

Saturday, May 15, 2010

True or Fake?

True or Fake
The music & trade magazine has prepared several special stuffs that will teach you to recognize some characteristics and this will allow you to differentiate an original instrument from a false one.
The number of falsifying products from Asia is increasingly and warningly. In Brazil, some products are being expanded and causing serious damage to trade. Beyond this obvious loss to store that work with used, are main victim, mark credibility loss is inevitable. It´s impressing the increasing of falsified guitars from China. Icon as Gibson, Fender, PRS, Ibanez, Gretsch, Taylor and Epiphone are strongly suffering to this parallel industry. The falsified one violates the copyright and feed the illegal trade.
It´s important to distinguish the falsification copy or reply. Reply is a perfect re-production. Willing to have same original re-creation that will aggregate concepts and historic factors. That is, is an art of re-issue a design or referenced one in an absolute detail. This kind of cloning will not generate trade sharing, will re-create only a piece based on concept. However, the copy is produced in a large scale without original manufacturer authorization. This means that, it´s a typical example of intellectual patrimonial appropriation with no intention “to pass” it as original, it is referred to traditional companies in the trade that produced similar samples or inspired on the original one, however, utilized your own logotype.
Now, the falsification is a low cost re-production that will emanate a decisive intention to trick the consumer. Utilize the original logotype in an improper manner and suggest in the technical visual form that the piece is genuine. The falsifications are far to standard defined by copyright law, patent rules and trade mark domain. They don´t pay royalties and are produced without original manufacturer authorization. It means to fake Gibson´s guitars- samples made in China and are sold in the electronic trade by low cost.
The falsification breaks out into ethic and aesthetic, and shows a keen project that will prompt desire and consumption. But this is the choice for unwise people.
See the differences between technical specifications of an authentic Gibson Les Paul and one false produced in Asia.

Headstock details

Original – centralized logotype and declined slightly. The utilized mother of pearl in the logo inlaying has a yellowish color. Tensor shield cover has 2mm depth with two hold-down screw “bell” format. The headstock angle is sharp in 14 to 17 degree.
False – “far centre” logotype sharp displacement in 14 to 17 degree. The stuff used in logo inlaying is an artificial mother of pearl, clear opaque color. Tensor shield cover has 0.7 mm depth with three hold-down screw and format is different from original Gibson. Headstock angle is subtle less than 7 degrees.

Neck details
Original – back contour with no format definition. No salience scroll. Nut made by Corian, synthetic stuff that will blend to natural minerals and pure acrylic polymer. Flattering and stringcourse side finishing is subtle rounded.
False – back contour with format definition. Salient one, Nut made with rustic plastic finishing. Flattering and stringcourse side finishing is excessively rounded.

Body details
Original – pickups cavity are clear and allow top frontal maple visualization. Electrical cavity is symmetrical carved and clear inward. Electrical components are set-up over metallic cover.

False – pickups cavity are dirty and covered in black dye. Most part it´s not possible to see the top frontal depth. The copies are rude and use plastic film that imitate upper top wood vein. Electrical cavity has different format from original and electrical components are directly attached to the wood.

- original Gibson pickup. See bottom base pickup that shows Gibson´s logo. Bridges, headstocks and original hardware. Quality and electrical component supplied by brand´s companies. External lead cable from pickup is made by mesh and covered by stable plastic heat stuff.
False – pickup that has similar visual to original Gibson. However, the appearance is only in the visual matter. Bottom base from pickup is rude and has no Gibson logo. Bridges, headstocks and not original hardware. External lead cable is covered by a flexible plastic shielding.

Original – nitrocellulose lacquer, fine overlaying, moderate brightening.
False – bi-component lacquer, extremely dense and brighten.

– types and usual woods: mahogany, maple, indian rosewood, brazilian rosewood and ebony.
False- use the following woods: nato, asian maple, sen, basswood, grenadilhe and kiri.

Serial number
False re-production has serial number inserted as silkscreen. Original show recorded embossed numeration over the wood. However, pay attention; some original models use a silkscreen process (custom shop and Les Paul Classic models). The numeration and manufacturing lot of the false guitars are not supplied during the year, as well.

The Chinese falsifier suffered a hard stroke in recent attempt from China legal authorities. The Chinese Yu Hui “pseudo” Li Dan businesswoman and some of your family were condemned to three years prison for crime against direct trading and falsification improper of musical instruments. The own China started a campaign in constraint to illegal retail, investing in building a new positive image related to the world. The moment is right to a “recall” so that we can ask for a key to consumption into social, economic, cultural context.

The “fake business woman” Li Dan that is going to see the sun grown up square only for a while…
This stuff is from site and magazine:

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Find a new Stradivarius??? - text by Henry Ho

One more person asked me to evaluate a possible Stradivarius violin. 99,9% are counterfeit. I have already seen several instruments that are quite similar. Always similar history or commonplace: relative that caught from Italy, instrument that was kept with family by years and excited a “suspicious” interest of the son violin teacher, wife or nephew. The same tiresome talk… and repeating. That is, it´s improbable to be a genuine Stradivarius, it´s a counterfeit (99, 9% right). The label can not prove it. Can easily suffer adulteration. If I had to examine, I will be available, but it will cost expensive. In the affirmative case, the correct procedure is to send the possible Stradivarius to an international technical mastership (following international rule). The cost will be placed into owner account, however, it´s possible to negotiate and have an extremely positive report. In the negative case, only not. It´s very simple. People can´t understand or don´t have enough culture to understand it. Such procedure is an international standard. It´s not nice only professional thing. At last, a new Messias discovery, a Viotti, or a new Khevenhuller (Stradivarius violin names) is related to dollars full of zeros. It´s a serious thing and entirely foreseeable the counterfeit will also through decades and centuries to deceive whatever.
People fell offended when I tell what I need to. 99, 9% are counterfeit. And evaluation cost is expensive and technical mastership cost will be placed into owner account. They always follow me and ask for a service and also want to convince me that the Stradivarius is authentic (with a few history consistencies).
I should tell that the probability is good. History factor are favorable. My technical mastership is free and international technical mastership will be placed in my own account or be an international entities cost. The occasional owner could be a new millionaire.
People say that we need a new Stradivarius. If 99, 9% is against, find a genuine Stradivarius here is improbable 101 %. In time, even if an illustrious copy, such a Vuillaume the improbability will still be high.
Yo Yo Ma and Davidov cello, made in 1712. The same Yo Yo Ma, forgot the instrument inside the taxi in New York… he picked it up later on...

Monday, May 3, 2010

Bizarre Guitars

Bizarre Guitars - text by Henry Ho

In the beginning of 90´s, I went to work with vintage instruments in Tokyo, used and seldom. In this referred store, I knew a guy called Naofumi Yasuhara, an expert (true freak!) in this subject.
He was a quiet man and serious quite not available to teach. I felt induced not to have contact with him, at first. However, one nice day, the guy started to talk to me and then – I was learning about old instruments, seldom vintage and especially the bizarre.
Naofumi hated the bizarre world. But had a dreadful knowledge related to story and label. I didn´t know anything. Our store was always supplied by guitar from The United States. The stuff was got in events named “guitar show” and specialized stores. I was quite always fascinated to see and play that rough instruments with single building, exquisite / bizarre visual and fine timbre.
“Bizarre Guitars” are a part of a parallel universe. Maybe will not be music artifacts that enjoy appeal of the major guitarists. But the nobleness calls attention and also is a part of the strings story.
At the beginning of the electric guitar era, different labels equipments as Gibson, Fender, Gretsch, Epiphone, Rickenbaker were manufactured as effective cost instruments, whose origin were from "Yankeeland", Europe and Sun Flower Earth.
From Europe English labels as Vox and Watson were caught to America and sold for a low cost. Vox manufactured guitars in Italy (to escape for high tax from English treasury) in the same factory where were manufactured guitars whose labels as Eko, Goya and Elektra. Silverstone, for example, was one of the first pioneering labels to be expanded in America.
Manufactured in Japan by Teisco, these guitars were sold by Sears Store e by a low amount of 30 to 55 dollar (A Fender Stratocaster in that time cost about 240 dollars). That is, was considered formerly as an instrument of low cost, and nowadays they add a new concept: old, bizarre and seldom instruments. From others markets as Russia, Sweden, and England besides the bizarre, some instruments had hilarious appearance…
Teisco label is a binding reference in terms of bizarre guitars. The company that manufactured them, has arisen in 1946, is Aoi Onpa Kenkyujo. In 1952, they manufactured the first semi-solid electromagnetic pickup guitar and during all 50 decade, Teisco produced from American instruments a reduced cost copies. Let´s say, Gibson and Fender. Only semi-acoustic models had a different design, but influenced “slightly” by “American way of life”.
In the middle of 60´s, Teisco produced solid, bizarre design instruments. Were considered as foolish instruments by gringo, and these Japanese low cost guitars nibbled a subtle piece in the market. Because of cultural chauvinism from that era, however, in terms of market has not attained to. Nowadays, they are loved and brawled by compulsive collectors. Teisco guitars can be found in different several logotype and terminology. Here are some examples: Teisco, Teisco Del Rey, Kawai, Kingston, Kent, Heit, Kimberly and Silverstone.
I had the opportunity to play and later sell many Teisco guitars.
In Japanese market, the price can vary the average between 300 to 800 dollars, depending on model and the maintenance state.
In America, about 150 to 200 dollars, it´s possible to buy an old Teisco. The models the most disputed as Teisco “May Queen” of 1968 cost about 1500 dollars.
The first Teisco that arise “Del Rey” firebird model has respectively very strange rough ergonomic design. The price? Sold by 500 dollars with original case. To who may like Teisco or want to know it access:

I feel certain, that Teisco instruments can help you to re-define some market concepts. If that time, the low cost labels were parallel passing through to manufacturer as Fender, Gibson, Gretsch and Rickenbaker offering lower prices, and also a far visual concept from Strato / Les Paul standard. Making one a part, will never like Rickenbaker, I consider him bizarre in the opposite side. That is, rough and bad related to building. My friend Naofumi as well.
However, the bizarre universe isn´t restricted to only Teisco instruments or Vox. We made an interesting list. Some are familiar “brands”, but others not as many as.
That´s it, labels and sub labels that made instruments history for 50, 60 and starting of 70 decades.
Alamo, Kay, Valco, Harmony, Hagstrom, Guild, Stromberg, Mosrite, Baldwin, Larson, Supro, Gilchrist, Burns, Goya, Electra, Eko, Norma, Framus, Davoli, Galant, Egmond, Crucianelli, Levin, Marius, Zerosette, Orfeus, Hohner, Polverini, Dixon, Maya, Aristom, Dynacord, Welson, Gemelli, E-Ros, Excelsior, Melody, Wandre, Sekova, Crest, Univox, Bigsby, Ampeg Dan Armstrong, Maccaferri, Veleno, Kalamazoo, Danelectro, Dynelctron, Watson, Hofner, Airline, Fasan, Migma, Klira, Wilson, Harvey Thomas Guitars, Micro-Frets, Orpheum, Aelita, Amka, Watkins, Hoyer, Shiva, Mastro and Oahu.
And some Japanese as:
Guyatone, Kawai, Firstman, Galan, Hondo, Aria Pro, Tokai, Maya, Eros, Hitachi, Galama, Gaban, Navigator, Greco, Bunny, Thunder, Fresher, Joodee, Gibbon, Hisonus, Hosono, Westminster, Weldone, Sakura, Sakai, Stagg, Winston, Kasuga, Pro-Ceed, Fernandes, Rokugen, Alpha and Riverhead.
It´s not as many as labels, but the major seen before has through by our riddle in Japan. Were guitars that proposed the fragments rescue of guitars history.

Sound and Architecture
In terms of design, Americans can opt for pompous and colonial forms. The major manufacturer is proceeded from European East, that is, Anglo-Saxon side. From this, can explain some labels sumptuousness and over simplicity for others. No “mid-term”.
Japanese always copy Americans, but ransom came to Teisco and Navigator labels. Both changed the revolution of concepts and futurist citations, nowadays, are reverenced.
Italians that always flatter and consider themselves papa designer, don´t make any ostentation. Only some good ideas and no more.
But for Englishman, if you produce “ugly things” as Watson and Watkins guitars as said before my friend Naofumi “you will need improve more to call them bizarre or bad. And this: will be considered doubtable quality”.
Related to timbre, bizarre guitars will flirt better with classic rock, punk, blues and pop sound music. The bizarre guitars will be far from metal. Before someone ´s complaint, B.C. Rich, Kramer, Hamer, Jackson and others … only in 80´s. These are eighties arrogance we will see in the next stuff. Saying that 70´s and 80´s arrogance as Gibson as Fender also produced in this period “bizarre things”. Not even the big company seen before is immune to this. Who knows in the next future, I will be fully telling about it.
Backing to sound, it was rare to find a bizarre old guitar with good electrical parts. Pickups are noisy, low end and sound was fine thin. The components suggested a journey to retro time. The control knobs from an old Teisco, for example, are estimable pieces and found in any antique fair. Bridges, Peg heads and Shield always are a difference, exquisite visually and far common sense.
Bizarre or not
What is the real meaning of bizarre? The wisers says: noble, graceful, extravagant and strange.
Graceful and noble for some people strange and poor for others. The expert definition shows different taste and this we can´t discuss.
Imagine that you found a copy Gibson Les Paul guitar logotype Gibbon (that´s just it, isn´t that?) it´s bizarre, and a subliminal arrogance form.
Bizarre is that instrument that aggregate visual elements (future and retro), different technical supplies and sense that runs from sky to hell no more one second… that is, or you love or you hate…
If for some people a Japanese navigator Char model is considered bizarre, what can we say about 1916 Mozzani acoustic guitar / Lira Maccaferri? Or even Veleno guitar Traveler model one made for Mark Farner guitarist from Grand Funk?
This thing of bizarre has personal meaning. Do you remember the Hammer five arms guitar from Cheap Trick guitarist, Rick Nielsen ?
And the Foghat guitarist (Lonesone Dave Peveret) square guitar? Or Any Michael Angelo´s two necks or more guitar model?
For purists and traditional, the bizarre guitars are time loss or spent money. For that people who loves it, there is no more than disgusting and common a Fender Stratocaster and Gibson Les Paul. Who likes here are some links related to:

One day Naofumi said: “good equipment must be: a good Gibson Les Paul, a Fender Stratocaster, or Telecaster, an acoustic Martin guitar and a guitar Floyd Rose pickup. But if you feel bored…buy a bizarre guitar”.