Danelectro baby sitar

Danelectro baby sitar

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When the Coral electric sitar appeared init was not outlandish to think Indian classical textures might become as common as Appalachian or African sounds and rhythms in pop and rock. Nor was it lost on New York session man Vinnie Bell, who suddenly faced an uptick in requests for quasi-raga guitar parts. Bell whose exploits as a technical wiz and session ace are well-documented elsewhere was crafty, and with the help of Danelectro who sold guitars under the Coral brand he developed the first electric sitar.

Still, Dano saw promise in the concept and released a simpler streamlined version, sans sympathetic strings.

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That Danelectro sitar lives again as the Baby Sitar. Jerry Jones built gorgeous versions of the original Coral. More recently Italia added a Coral-influenced model to their Modena line. But neither was or is inexpensive—especially relative to the limited use most will have for the instrument. The new Baby Sitar, however, achieves affordability via the same design simplicity that put the original within reach.

The manner in which the strings vibrate over the bridge creates the buzzing sitar sound, not unlike a real sitar or tamboura.

Danelectro Baby Sitar – get those Paint It Black tones!

Enterprising tinkerers already know that the Gotoh unit can be purchased as an aftermarket item for around bucks and fitted with relative ease to most Danelectro guitar reissues. But a replacement tailpiece is also required to complete the conversion.

danelectro baby sitar

The Baby Sitar has a few other design advantages over a conversion, depending on your perspective. The pickup is situated a little closer to the bridge than it would be on a conversion—which provides more trebly, sitar-like attack. Pros: Killer authentic electric sitar tones. Surprising versatility. Super light and compact. Buzz bridge will infuriate intonation obsessives. Danelectro Baby Sitar danelectro.

Other design quirks are less advantageous. Lacking waist contours, it will slip off your leg if you try to hold it in a typical seated playing position. Ghosts in the Machine Intonation obsessives will struggle with the lack of intonation that the buzz bridge can cause.

Me… I like the way the slightly out-of-kilter intonation mixes with the sitar-like tonality to create ghostly, odd harmonic overtones. For all its idiosyncrasies, the Baby Sitar is very well put together.

The fretwork is flawless; the neck is dead straight and feels great. Even details like the glue-on binding which was often sloppy on the early Danelectro reissues are without flaw. But the less-immediate way that individual notes rise and decay are the essence of the Baby Sitar sound.

If you have the rhythmic precision of Skunk Baxter or Steve Howe, you can play a pretty ripping lead on the Baby Sitar. Lazy, languid lead lines sound fantastic—particularly with a little delay and reverb to enhance the droning qualities of the instrument. The same goes for folky, arpeggiated chord melodies. The Baby Sitar excels at doubling guitar parts in this context.

One of the coolest ways to extract more sitar-like exoticism from the Baby Sitar is to use alternate tunings heavy on fifths, octaves, and doubles.

But there are work-arounds.

danelectro baby sitar

I used E-A-E-A-A-E for many of my sessions and found a lot of room for melodic invention amid all the droning, swirling goodness.An electric sitar is a kind of electric guitar designed to mimic the sound of the sitara traditional musical instrument of India. Depending on the manufacturer and model, these instruments bear varying degrees of resemblance to the traditional sitar.

Most resemble the electric guitar in the style of the body and headstockthough some have a body shaped to resemble that of the sitar such as a model made by Danelectro. The instrument was developed in the late s by session guitarist Vinnie Bell in partnership with Danelectro. The twangy sitar-like tone comes from a flat bridge adding the necessary buzz to the guitar strings. In addition to the six playing strings, most electric sitars have sympathetic stringstypically located on the left side of the instrument though some do not have these.

These strings have their own pickups typically lipstick pickups are used for both sets of stringsand are usually tuned with a harp wrench a difficult process. A unique type of bridgea "buzz bridge", developed by Vinnie Bell, helps give the instrument its distinctive sound. Some electric sitars have drone strings in lieu of sympathetic strings.

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A few models, such as the Jerry Jones "Baby" sitar, lack both sympathetic and drone strings, while still retaining the distinctive buzz bridge. The "sympathetic" strings on most electric sitars do not resonate strongly enough to match the effect of an acoustic sitar. There are resonant chambers in the solid-body instruments that have Masonite tops, however it is not enough to excite the 13 strings into true sympathy.

The strings are tensioned over two rosewood bridges with fret material as saddles so the sound is more like an autoharp than a sitar. Versions of the electric sitar were also developed mainly in India. These are smaller sized sitars that look like a sitar. These sitars are tuned the same way as the original classical sitar would be tuned. Because the tone quality and playing technique differ significantly from that of the sitar, it is typically used in rock, jazz, and fusion styles.

Although George Harrison is generally credited with introducing the sitar into popular music, he is not known to have played a bona fide electric version on any recording. On his award-winning instrumental rendition of the Joe South tune " Games People Play " saxophonist King Curtis teamed with guitarist Duane Allman on the electric sitar he also played slide guitar. This can be found on the Duane Allman album An Anthology.With its familiar six-string configuration and fret maple neck, and tuned like a standard guitar, you'll be able to translate your playing skills without a steep learning curve.

Featuring a Gotoh sitar bridge and a single-coil lipstick pickup, the Baby Sitar delivers the enchanting sitar sound in an electric instrument that's ready to record and perform. Whether you only use it for one song, or the basis for an entire project, you definitely need to check out the Danelectro Baby Sitar.

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Please check the fields highlighted in red. Yes, that's correct Do not update. Brand New New Brand New items are sold by an authorized dealer or original builder and include all original packaging.Danelectro has announced a new version of its vintage Baby Sitar model.

And since it is electric, you can plug it in to your effects to get some truly far out sounds. Originally launched inthe Baby Sitar was a way to simulate easily a full sized sitar and it was a lot easier for guitarists to play.

danelectro baby sitar

At first glance, it looked a bit like a green bedpan to me, but apart from the colour, it should do the job of faking a sitar sound well. A simple electric setup, really, so that you can turn your focus to different tunings or other far-out experimental stuff. The hardware includes vintage style, smooth-geared, chrome machine heads and a precision-cut aluminium nut. Your email address will not be published. For a better experience on Gearnews, we recommend JavaScript to be enabled. Approximate reading time: 2 Minutes.

Danelectro Baby Sitar – get those Paint It Black tones!

Danelectro Baby Sitar. Freebie alert: Baby Audio is giving away its Baby Comeback delay! Danelectro 64XT: Vintage offset looks with modern playability? Leave a Reply Cancel reply Your email address will not be published. If you continue surfing the site, you agree to the use of cookies.Read the current issue of VG. Legend has it that during a break in the filming of Help! Soon after, he began taking lessons from sitar virtuoso Ravi Shankar. Thus was born another new pop sound to go along with chimey Rickenbacker strings and tambourine backbeats: the subcontinental buzz of sitar and tabla.

As they did with the electric guitar, the Beatles perhaps would have spawned a worldwide sitar craze if not for one little problem: the sitar is quite difficult to play, let alone master.

Despite producing similar sounds, the two instruments were really completely different. The Coral Sitar was strung, tuned, and picked just like a standard electric guitar, making it much easier to play than a real sitar. The Coral Sitar achieved its sound primarily thanks to a bridge that was essentially a flat bar over which the strings vibrated and subsequently contacted at different points, resulting in harmonic overtones and musical buzzing very similar to the tones produced by the traditional Indian sitar.

But even with an additional pickup under them, the drone strings on the Coral produced a sound sometimes difficult to amplify. The single lipstick pickup, located immediately in front of the buzz bridge, delivers clear tones. We liked playing it on an amp with plenty of headroom and a touch of reverb, but a little bit of grit adds interesting texture, especially when working over some old standby Jimmy Page riffs. We also explored alternate tunings and fingerpicking.

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Who knew? The Baby Sitar may not necessarily be mind-altering, but it can open up a whole new perspective on guitar tones and creativity. This article originally appeared in VG October issue. All copyrights are by the author and Vintage Guitar magazine. Unauthorized replication or use is strictly prohibited. Current Issue Read Now!

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danelectro baby sitar

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