Friday, November 9, 2007

Reverse Erhu Bowing

Ok I've another tip to share from one of the Erhu makers I met at the Shanghai Music Fair.

I call it the "Reverse Erhu Bowing". It has 3 functions: it removes noise, season new strings and relieves stress. Don't you just love 3 in 1s. You accomplish more by doing less.

This is what I could make out of the Erhu maker's whisperings amidst the cacophony around me in the fairgrounds: He told me that there are lots of ions unequally distributed in strings, especially new strings. By doing the reverse Erhu bowing, you warm up the strings and the ions in the strings starts to disperse evenly throughout the strings. As a result, some of the noise is gone and your new strings sound better.

Its better to do it without anyone around:

video

I've done it a few times but remains inconclusive whether it removes noise or speeds up the breaking in of strings.

But its a good stress reliever for me. Especially when there is an irritating wolf tone you can't get rid of, doing a few minutes of furious reverse Erhu bowing makes you feel satisfied and light headed.

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