Recently I have listened to some videos with Don Julin on electric mandola and electric mandolin, and I have compiled a Don Julin playlist.
Don Julin is the author of Mandolin for Dummies / Mandolin Exercises for Dummies, and he has a online instruction website “Mandolins heal the World” where he teaches how to play the mandolin. It’s interesting that he is also trying to teach the mandolin like a language:
My philosophy is that music is a language and should be learned as a language. If we take a look at how we learn to speak, we may find some interesting parallels. The way a young child learns to speak is by hearing adults and siblings make sounds. At first the child simply imitates the sounds of the vowels and consonants and eventually forms words. After a while the child can string words together to begin communicating with others. It is at that time that we introduce the child to the printed page. I am simply suggesting that we approach music the same way. As in any language, you can further your study to include theory, history, and the evolution of this language, but in the long run what most folks really want is to be able to join the musical conversation.
Dave Apollon was one of the most successful mandolin players in the 1930s. He produced many shows, and luckily some of his performances were also filmed and survived until today. So it is now possible to watch this great mandolin player. I have compiled some recent resources with films and music by Dave Apollon.
Dave Apollon – The Wishing Stone
Short film in good quality
7 Short Films
Compilation of 7 short films – poor image quality, but the sound is good.
Some time ago I have been asked if I can recommend any mandolin duets. So I started to make some research and look for videos and sheet music for two mandolins.
Duets for two mandolins are not so frequently found as duets for mandolin and guitar. Sheet music for two mandolins is more difficult to find.
The most important artists playing music for two mandolins today are probably Caterina Lichtenberg and Mike Marshall. Carlo Aonzo has played together with Brian Oberlin on some occasions. Mike Marshall has played together with Chris Thiele and with the bandolim players Hamilton de Holanda or Danilo Brito. All Bluegrass mandolin players are used to play melody and chords – so they do occasionally play as a mandolin duo.
Pieces for a melody instrument with accompaniment can be played as a mandolin duet if the second mandolin plays the chords or improvises a second part. In my playlist you can find several examples of this.
Classical Mandolin Duets – A List of the BDZ
On the website of the BDZ (Bund Deutscher Zupfmuskier, association of mandolin orchestras in Germany) you can find several lists of sheet music for mandolin and guitar, including a list for mandolin duet.
In my playlist of mandolin duets I have collected classical mandolin duets but also mandolin duets with bluegrass, folk or choro. Let yourself be inspired to find interesting music for two mandolins.
Duo Galante – Musik für Mandoline – Playlist
Caterina Lichtenberg and Silke Lisko have recorded an album with music for two mandolins some time ago. This album includes classical mandolin duets from the 18th century and duets from the romantic period (Calace, Munier). The complete album is available at youtube.
You can find many mandolin duets in the old mandolin methods from around 1900. The method by Cristofaro includes so called Recreations for teacher and student. Some great sounding duets can be found in the method by Janvier Pietrapertosa. You can check the free mandolin methods on my website MandoIsland – Mandolin method – MandoIsland.
Florentino Calvo is one of the leading mandolinists from France. He has studied mandolin and guitar at the concervatory of music and dance in Argenteuil with Mario Monti and in the masterclass of Alberto Ponce.
Florentino Calvo is especially interested in contemporary music. Together with the trio Polycordes (mandolin, harp and guitar) he has premiered and recorded many contemporary compositions.
But Florentino Calvo has also recorded several albums with the most important works for the mandoline of the 17th century and the Romantic age for mandolin solo or mandolin with piano, harpsichord or guitar.
Florentino Calvo is also the conductor of several orchestras like the Ensemble MG21.
I have found several live videos with Florentino Calvo and playlists of some of the albums.
Playlist Florentino Calvo
Beethoven Sonatine, recordings with the Trio Polycordes, Florentino Calvo as conductor
Complete albums at youtube
Gabriele Leone: Six sonates pour la mandoline et basse, Livre I (2015)
From Prag to Vienna
Florentino Calvo, Mandoline and Aline Zylberajch, Piano