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Who knows about bass-maker Dodd?

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by Paul Warburton, Aug 23, 2004.

  1. My friend Erik Turkman just hung out at the Grand Tetons Festival. He mentioned glorious basses including: 2 Magginis. 2 Testores, a Hatchez, and a Dodd.
    I looked in my Elgar books and couldn't find him. I'm assuming he was English.
  2. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    Paul, the Elgar Book is a bit limited and a bit in-accurate as well. The large D'Salo Bass is actually a Fendt from what I have been told and I believe that.

    There are 3 makers named 'Dodd' in the Henley book and one named 'Dodds'. I have another book from about 1896 and there are 6 or 7 named 'Dodd' there. Fasten your seat belts.......

    Edward Dodd b.1705, died 1810 made only Bows.
    His sons, James(and James II/son) and Thomas only made Bows as well.
    His third son Thomas made Bows and Instruments, But had help.
    He Employed both B.Fendt And Lott Sr.
    Sons of Thomas, Edward II and Thomas II were trained by Fendt according to my C.Stainer book from 1896.

    Edward Dodds (with 'S' on the end) from 1817 but not related at all is noted to have made lower quality instruments. Many dealers of the past have removed the 'S' at the end to imply it was made by Edward "Dodd".

    So......... Having a Bass actually Made by or Labeled Dodd can be Dodd, Dodds, Fendt or Lott or even another un-named shop person. Only an expert of the English Craft makers can tell which hand actually made it if possible at all.

    Hey....., do I get paid for this ancient history stuff or

    Hey Two Magginis? This is hard to believe. G.P or A./P.S. Maggini(not related)?
  3. anonymous0726

    anonymous0726 Guest

    Nov 4, 2001
    Dude was old! Or maybe folks were just so accustomed to seeing him hunched over his bench that they didn't notice when he went?
  4. azflyman


    Apr 24, 2004
    Astoria, OR
    Damn, you beat me to it.

  5. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    Ok,..... Fixed. died 1810 at 105 years old. I'm reading several pages from 2 different books to create a Family tree for you. Sorry about the "Bionoc" Bow maker !!

    Now........ what else do you guys have to say.....

    "It's lonely at the top" , so they say.......
  6. [/QUOTE]Hey Two Magginis? This is hard to believe. G.P or A./P.S. Maggini(not related)?[/QUOTE]

    I should have addressed the inquiry directly to you Ken...I knew you'd be the one.
    I can't tell you about the Maggini's that Erik Turkman saw at The Teton Festival. Erik just made his first post here on TBDB concerning his Bryant bass under basses. PM or just ask him with a post. Erik? Are you there?
  7. RE Dodd:

    The Dodd bass was originally thought to be a Lott, but it was later reclassified as a Dodd. The maker is still uncertain, but it is of that English style, period, and sound. If Dodd and Lott both worked in the same shop at the same time, that could explain some similarities. John Betts was running a shop that many fine English bass makers of the period passed through, and his own basses are thunderous.

    RE: Magginis

    That's what they were supposed to be. There were so many good basses there that I didn't have enough time to inspect each one carefully. The one Maggini I did get a close look at seemed like the real thing, double purfling and all (G.P. Maggini).

    The bassists at Grand Teton Music Festival are all top players, including members of the National, Detroit, Buffalo, Houston, and other major orchestras. (There were also some great bassists there, like John Moore of Pittsburgh and Jon Deak of New York, who, like me, were just hanging out.) As a result, the basses there tend to be fine pedigree instruments, a real treat for bass lovers to behold.
  8. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    As far as big Names like Maggini, Gasparo, Testore etc., There are more Basses claiming to be by these and other makers than was ever made by them. There may be a few 'Real' Magginis in the world but I'll bet you 10-20 people claim to have them.

    There are many Basses made buy less famous makers in those styles that will never find it's Daddy!! No one want's to call thier Bass a Bimbi when the can get away with naming it Gabrielli. Just because it is from the same region and period does not mean it was made by the best or most famous guy in town.
  9. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    Actually is was Fendt and Panormo that worked for Betts. There is no mention of Lott having ever worked for Betts.
  10. Ken

    Do you have a list or know of one which indicates all of the erroneous attributations in the Elgar books? It would be interesting to know who actually made some of those basses. I know for example that those that came from the Paris Conservatory Museum have all been subsequently re-identified based on my recent trip there.

  11. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    No Sorry....... I don't have a list.

    The Gasparo from Dragonetti and the Busan with the raised added carvings on the Back are real as well as many other Basses in the book. I have those two in another Book From Venice by Stefano Pio.

    The rest, I don't really know. I was not aware that ALL of the pics came from one source. I believe Elgar travelled and took many pics around Europe.

    I have the second edition from 1965. I got them (3 Books) in 1966.
  12. Ken

    I think you might have misunderstood me. As far as I know the pictures came from all over. Some basses were in museums, some were privately owned, some were in shops, some belonged to Elgar himself (although the only one I know of for sure that he owned is the 1847 Tarr). A few, like the real old Gasparo small violone and I believe one of the Italian basses are from the Paris Museum and were attributed to other people as of late. I have the Filo reprints, although I first read the original edition at the University Library when I was starting out. I realy like those books but mainly for sentimental reasons because they remind me of the excitement of learning about the bass for the first time. I realize that some of the information contained in them is inaccurate but a lot of it is realy interesting and usefull.

  13. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    Ok, I see how I could have read somthing different into your comment about the museum there.

    I just want to say that my first reading of these books was a real Eye opener as well. I even learned how to play Vibrato on the open string from book I or II. Book III is the pictures.
    I, 'Introduction to the Double Bass'
    II, 'More about the Double Bass'
    III, 'Looking at the Double Bass'

    Even today, with all we have seen and learned, the true Identity of a give instrument is not always easy. Many Instruments are composites as well. One Gagliano Violin I saw recently was by Allesandro with a Scroll by Nicolo and a replaced top by yet another Gagliano all still before 1800. This is the opinion of two authorities.
    Basses, although bigger are not necessarly stronger. "The bigger they are, the harder they fall" truly applies here. Many replaced parts can be found on Basses from heads, tops, backs, ribs etc. as the life and usage of a Bass continues.

    I applaud Raymond Elgar on the first book of its kind and actually the only one if you consider the broad knowledge covered and schools of making as he truly was 'our' Bass Officianato Pioneer.
  14. It's really amazing to me that we have so many instruments left that are intact, at least partially for some. I've mentioned this before, but still, you think about how these instruments were treated, due mainly to it's size is really something.....Being tossed on top of carriages in all manner of weather, with and without cases.
    And of course you hear the stories that really stand out like Glenn Moore's Klotz being schlepped across the Gobi Desert on a camels back! Of course that bass is a bass of many parts.
    Oh, and yes, the Elgar books are prized possessions for me!
  15. Paul

    You said it. Back in the day before good padded covers these instruments must have been terribly abused. It's interesting that some of the best sounding basses are the most beat up - probably because they were played the most. These are also probably the ones that have been the most messed with in terms of replacing of things since they were in the trenches so to speak their whole lives. For instance a good Itallian bass from the 1600's could have originally been a violone with 5 or 6 strings, then converted to a double bass with 3-strings, then having the body cut down and converted to 4-strings, and then finally to 5-strings. All possibly requiring a different neck. Scrolls didn't used to get saved like they do today since basses were not considered "fine instruements" until last century. Not to mention replacing of bass bars, whole tops in some cases and so on.

  16. Laurence U.

    Laurence U.

    Oct 25, 2003
    About Dodd
    Son of well-known English bow maker John Dodd, Thomas Dodd initially worked as a brewer before turning first to bow making and then to violin making. Having established himself as an independent maker in St Martin’s Lane in 1809, he employed Bernard Simon Fendt I and John F. Lott. Advertising himself as a maker of “perfect copies of Stradivari, Amati, Stainer etc.”, Dodd also insisted that he was the only maker who knew the long-lost secret of the Cremonese varnish.
  17. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    Speaking of Elgar, If anyone has a set to sell I'm willing to pay.
  18. Z, did you check with Barrie Kolstein? He did have them for sale.
    I would never sell mine...too many great memories!
  19. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    Last time i talked to him he was out.
  20. Damon Rondeau

    Damon Rondeau Journeyman Clam Artist Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2002
    Winnipeg, baby
    Those Elgar texts are in the 2003-2005 Dick Tools luthiery catalogue. 54 euros a pop. Ouch.

    Dick Tools is a German tool vendor, you can find 'em on the web easy enough. They have an online store, but the musical equipment stuff isn't online. The good news is, if you request a hardcopy catalogue and tell them you're a luthier (the question is on their online form), they will send you (with the utmost of Teutonic dispatch, I must say...) two of the most beautiful catalogues you have ever seen. Total tool porn. Complete luthier chub works.

    And I have made no wise-*ss remarks about "Dick Tools". I'll leave that to my colleagues, who never let me down.