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Topic: Up is down - Bowstroke 1 or 2 ?

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  1. #1

    Up is down - Bowstroke 1 or 2 ?

    GPO's bowtrokes are called 1 & 2, it's never clearly pointed out, which direction each one goes!

    I suppose nr.1 is up, and nr.2 down, because in a orhestra-performance I always see strings going up->down.

    But please shed some light into this, thanks.
    There must be many user's out there not being sure about this.

  2. #2

    Re: Up is down - Bowstroke 1 or 2 ?

    I'm JUST learning violin, so I could be wrong with this. However, I've noticed that I almost always start with a down bow. I've noticed this with other players as well, so I would assume that 1 is down, and 2 is up.

  3. #3

    Re: Up is down - Bowstroke 1 or 2 ?

    ok thanks so far.
    Let's see what someone else says

  4. #4

    Re: Up is down - Bowstroke 1 or 2 ?

    Also, usually the up bow will be slightly louder than a down bow. I'm not sure if that's carried over into the computer, but it might help sort them out.

  5. #5

    Re: Up is down - Bowstroke 1 or 2 ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael135 View Post
    Also, usually the up bow will be slightly louder than a down bow. I'm not sure if that's carried over into the computer, but it might help sort them out.
    I don't play a stringed instrument but, I think the above quote is incorrect,

    down bows are more aggressive sounding and usually a tad louder because the hand holding the bow has significantly more leverage against the string when it begins the downstroke.

    A down bow is easily distinguished from an up bow, but only if you are intimately familiar with the sound of the two. It is easy to pick out which is which, provided the A/B test between the two is sincere and genuine.

    Dan

  6. #6

    Re: Up is down - Bowstroke 1 or 2 ?

    Right now Im reading The Guide to Midi Orchestration (4th edition) which is really powerful 600 page book, I recommend to everyone, including even some "work" from Garry Garritan.
    It told me String upstrokes are lighter (making it quieter) because the bow is closer to the tip, thus transports less power from the player, compared to the opposite downstroke is heavier, thus louder, because it's transporting more energy because it's closer to the handle. So I started asking myself about GPO stroke direction

    Edit: Well It's now clear Bow Stroke 1 is Up bow, Stroke 2 is downstroke. Stroke 1 is located on D# and Stroke 2 on E. I have this handy GPO reference and somehow I just managed to miss the left-handed keyswitches for strings. "Down on E" vice-versa, it's probably true for all patches.

    Greetings, I'll probably upload the track that got me interested in bow-strokes, it's agressive string stroking, but somehow it sounds flat.

  7. #7

    Re: Up is down - Bowstroke 1 or 2 ?

    Quote Originally Posted by DPDAN View Post
    I don't play a stringed instrument but, I think the above quote is incorrect,

    down bows are more aggressive sounding and usually a tad louder because the hand holding the bow has significantly more leverage against the string when it begins the downstroke.

    A down bow is easily distinguished from an up bow, but only if you are intimately familiar with the sound of the two. It is easy to pick out which is which, provided the A/B test between the two is sincere and genuine.

    Dan
    Then I must just be a sloppy violinist who needs to work on bowing skills....

  8. #8

    Re: Up is down - Bowstroke 1 or 2 ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael135 View Post
    Then I must just be a sloppy violinist who needs to work on bowing skills....
    A really good string player - of course - is able to play both directions even, so maybe you're on the right way.

    For me my sloppy question has been solved

  9. #9

    Re: Up is down - Bowstroke 1 or 2 ?

    Right.
    There seems to be some misinformation going around regarding up and down bowstrokes on string instruments.

    1. A good player will make no difference, when necessary, between an up and a down bow.

    2. Up bow (starting with your arm furthest from the instrument, the point of the bow first touching the string), can be used for a few effects/reasons.

    1. a very soft attack that gains in strength (crescendo)
    2. the next note requires a strong accent or a marked diminuendo, so you would start with an up bow to get the bow in the right position to do a down bow accent
    3. a punta d'arco effect (a very light sound)


    3. Down bow (starting with the arm closest to the string, the frog of the bow hitting the string first), can be used for multiple effects/reasons.

    1. a loud attack that diminishes
    2. the next note requires a softer attack or a marked crescendo, start with a down bow to place the arm in the right position for the subsequent up bow
    3. al tallone effect (a strong accented repeated down bow)


    most of the time, regardless of what the composer indicates as bowing, the string players will re-bow the music.

    I have spent exhausting hours playing up - down - up - down bows, practicing to get a perfectly even tone on each. Sadly, I'm just not that good. But playing in a piano quartet sure gives you a new perspective on string writing.

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