Thursday, June 01, 2006

The Rabbits Backbone

This is what a Rabbits Backbone would look like if you were crazy, or how it would look if a crazy person made an instrument out of kitchen and bathroom supplies. In the continuing saga of the chicken cooker and a fretless instrument the Rabbits Backbone was pulled from the great ether of the universe. Now in its fifteenth incarnation the Backbone stands out as perhaps my best of the single string series. Single string you say, but this instrument has twenty one strings? Well I don'’t really have and answer for that yet, and maybe I never will. I don'’t make the rules.

The Backbone was a direct result of my need to fill the gap that Metalore left behind after his destruction then subsequent reconstruction of a fire related matter. I still get all teary eyed whenever I think of Metalore, but the time has come to move on. The Rabbits Backbone is where I moved on to. (That sounds weird)

The design of the strings is quite similar to that of Metalore. The placement has been altered to make the instrument playability more flowing. This could be the Tao of the single string.

Some of the features that are unique to this piece of work include the arrangement of the four main strings. Strung side by each and tuned to A, D, C, and G. Each one of these now runs in unison over the guitar pick up, making each one easy to use with an Ebow and slide. There is also a contact mic mounted on top of the face plate just to the right of the pickup. Previous instruments only had one string as the main source for sound, anything else was run underneath or far off to the sides. Underneath the set of four strings are six sympathetic strings

The three short strings on the face of the cooker are tuned to D, A, D and are meant as accent strings. There are also three different sets of strings that run on the bar or neck, depending on what makes you feel more comfortable. The first three are tuned to A, C, D. The second set is tuned to A, D, and the third set is tuned to C, D, and G. These strings are great for plucking and filling in the quiet spaces. Having the contact mic where it is helps pick up the sound of these strings, but not enough to over power the top four strings.

Both the guitar pick up and the contact mic are attached to a switch. You can use them individually are in unison.

One last feature of the Rabbits Backbone is the input wires that are attached to a small speaker mounted underneath the guitar pick up. Any kind of sound device can be hooked up to these wires and the pick up will transfer your sound with some interesting effects.

View this clip on Vimeo

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