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Old 13-11-2017, 07:41   #16
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

i am fixing up an older student model flute to take with me - i don't want to risk my Haynes and a guitar that my wife found in the trash, that i have repaired.
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Old 13-11-2017, 07:51   #17
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

Electronic instruments are superior when it comes to rehearsing without disturbing your surroundings, you always can use headphones.

So a keyboard or electric guitar with a plug-in mini VOX headphones amp are your crew's and neighbors best friend. You can play and hear loud what you are doing and no one else gets bothered. Best for beginners anyway, and kids like the sound too.
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Old 13-11-2017, 07:57   #18
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

We have two Ovation guitars in cases. They've held up well in six years aboard.
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Old 13-11-2017, 08:14   #19
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

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Originally Posted by martinworswick View Post
How about bagpipes.......
You know why the guy playing the bagpipes is always walking as he plays?

He is trying to get away from the noise!

Seriously, as a favor to others on your boat and anchorage and slip neighbors, bring an electronic instrument that can be used with headphones. Not everybody within earshot is going to appreciate your efforts at trying to learn the trumpet or saxophone.
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Old 13-11-2017, 08:30   #20
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

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I'm also a trumpet player, but again......who wants to listen to a solo trumpet in an anchorage, essentially practicing for 1-2 hours?

Yeah... maybe a sax or a clarinet, instead...

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Old 13-11-2017, 08:34   #21
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

Squeeze box ?
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Old 13-11-2017, 08:39   #22
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

Beat box. You need only your mouth...
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Old 13-11-2017, 09:31   #23
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

Bob -
Harmonicas would be a good choice. You'll need more than one if you want to make music with anyone else. You can blow Camptown Races and Shenandoah on any major key harp easily enuff but if you want to play blues with the guitar boys at anchor or at the marina bar, you'll be playing cross harp, mostly drawing & not blowing. When your guitar player states the key he's playing in, you will use a harp on the 3rd. Ex: The band is playing Sweet Home Chicago in the key of E, you will want to use a G harp to get the blues licks.


I suggest something like the Silver Creek 7 Pack that will give you the opportunity to sit in with about any key in a blues jam:
Silver Creek 7 Pack of Blues Style Harmonicas | Musician's Friend


Were I you, I wouldn't be so hasty in eliminating your primary instrument from consideration. Keyboards are inexpensive & pretty durable these days and the sound qualities of small battery powered amps have improved greatly in recent years. Instruments are tools. Just pick the best ones for your intended application.

Good luck. I'll look forward to jamming with you if our paths cross!

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Old 13-11-2017, 09:49   #24
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

Irish penny whistle.
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Old 13-11-2017, 09:56   #25
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

I went with a Hofner. Not a harmonica, but a Hofner travel, electric guitar, with a small battery powered Crate amp, headphones and a small Zoom processor.
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Old 13-11-2017, 09:59   #26
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

The humidity of onboard environment worried me also but I found an Ovation guitar with a plastic body, polyurethane neck with aluminum fret board. The top is spruce but after one year it seems impervious to the humidity
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Old 13-11-2017, 10:03   #27
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

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How about bagpipes.......
Oh I could just imagine hearing the pipes play in an anchorage out in the islands. ...I'd travel a few miles for sure,not sure which,closer if they were good & definitely farther away if not!
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Old 13-11-2017, 10:07   #28
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

Blackbird makes a really nice carbon fiber ukulele that would be awesome.



If strings are not your thing... a second vote for a concertina... but the reeds in concertinas may be susceptible to humidity issues over time. There are 3 distinct fingering/key layouts so do your homework prior to purchase about which one might be best for you. English, Anglo and several duet systems. Info here: Fingering Charts for Concertinas

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Old 13-11-2017, 10:14   #29
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

I have found that on a 27ft boat there are surprisingly few places with enough space to swing a violin bow without snagging some rigging or hitting a fixture. A heavy mute helps protect the neighbours' ears if I'm sharing an anchorage.
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Old 13-11-2017, 10:33   #30
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Re: Choose musical instrument for cruising

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They hold ok in sand (decent number of flukes), but aren't much good in any other bottom. Hard to attach the rode as well.
I roared when I read this! Lots of movies have poked fun at the bagpipes (EX: Longest Day). My brother in law plays them fairly well (and yes, wears a kilt). And with our family being Scotch/Irish (with German), the bagpipes and accordion are favorite family instruments. But to play either means a good portion of the population will cross the street to avoid those haunting sounds (right up there with the pan flute). But in some circles you will be bigger than the Beatles! LOL
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