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Getting back into working with a bow, and looking for rosin recommendations

Discussion in 'Bows and Rosin [DB]' started by Persona87, Sep 15, 2020.


  1. Persona87

    Persona87

    Dec 4, 2012
    DFW, Texas
    I have an NS design electric upright with some old, dead Bel Cantos, and I'm thinking about getting some rosin. I haven't bowed in what feels like years, and I'd like to get a new, fresh cake to go along with my Vance method book. The thing is that there are so many different types of rosin, and honestly I don't know what the difference is. I've heard of Pop's, Carlsson's, Oak... and that's about it. I don't have enough experience to know what I like, so I don't know where I should start.

    My question is twofold - what are the actual differences in various kinds of rosin, and what would be a good place for me to start? For what it's worth, I live in North Texas, but I mostly play in my air-conditioned home (kept in the low 70s and around 50% humidity), and I plan on playing both classical and jazz.

    EDIT: Actually, I have a third question: do you think the differences in various rosins would actually be noticeable on a solid-body electric upright?
     
  2. Yes. There will be noticeable differences, due to the formulation of various rosins, and they will still grab the string and briefly melt in the same way.

    Nyman’s doesn’t get mentioned enough. Stay away from anything soft in your climate. It gets messy.
     
    16fuss likes this.
  3. Rosin’s inexpensive enough that you should be able to try a variety of types to see what works best for you. My question is have you ever played arco much on an acoustic double bass rather than an electric upright? If you have you probably already know that the feel, attack, and technique that will work on one may not translate to the other. Not saying it can’t be done, just a lot different experience. Eberhard Weber did some nice stuff playing arco on his Framus electric upright.
     
  4. 16fuss

    16fuss

    Apr 25, 2005
    Nymans or Carlsson is the right choice. Stickier (like pops or Kolstein soft) wil make a lot of unwanted noise through the pickup.
    Harder rosin wont get the string going on the solidbody. Especially with fullsize orchestrastrings on a short string length, this is a special thing.
     
    mjt0229 likes this.
  5. Persona87

    Persona87

    Dec 4, 2012
    DFW, Texas
    Carlsson’s is what I had before, so I guess I could just stick with what I know. The NS I have is the full length 42” scale version. I should have mentioned that in my first post.
     
  6. Persona87

    Persona87

    Dec 4, 2012
    DFW, Texas
    I’m an adult learner, so I don’t have a lot of experience. I owned an acoustic upright for a year or so, but when I moved into an apartment I had to sell it because of size/volume concerns and bought the EUB. I mostly played jazz, so I didn’t do as much bow work as I should have. So to answer your question: some, but not enough.
     
  7. mjt0229

    mjt0229 Supporting Member

    Aug 8, 2007
    Bellingham, WA
    I'd go with Carlsson's or Pops to start with. You can go down a rabbit hole if you want, but those are two very good choices with plenty of grab. Between the two I much prefer Carlsson's for being easier to apply in the right amount and for not turning into sticky goo, but plenty of great players do great things with Pops too, and it's usually cheaper.
     

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