Category: mandola


Harrison Kennedy – Mandola-Blues

I have recently found a concert with Harrison Kennedy on the CBC Concerts on Demand site. Harrison Kennedy plays mandolin, guitar, banjo, harmonica and he sings.

During the 60s Harrison was a member of The Chairman of the Board and he was very successful:

In 1968 the Detroit POP GROUP “The Chairmen of the Board.” played all the top venues including JOHNNY CARSON’S TONIGHT SHOW, SOUL TRAIN and AMERICAN BANDSTAND and ENGLAND’S “TOP-OF-THE-POPS’, doing our hit, “Gimme Me Just A Little More Time.” C.O.T.B. had performances with B.B. KING, JAMES BROWN, SMOKEY ROBINSON, STEVIE WONDER, FUNKADELICS and more. C.O.T.B. also performed many times at NewYorks Famous HARLEM’S APOLLO THEATRE.

During the last years Harrison Kennedy has mainly sticked to the blues and he has recorde three CDs.

In the beginning Harrison used mainly the guitar or slide guitar to accompany himself, but recently he has discovered the mandolin, banjo and octave mandolin.

Here are some videos with Harrison Kennedy and his octave mandolin:

Harrison Kennedy – Tell the truth and shame the devil

Harrison Kennedy – Real Deal

Harrison Kennedy – Noonday Train

Playlist Harrison Kennedy

Additional Information

Wikipedia about Chairman of the Board:

Homepage Electro-Fi records:

Review “Voice Story” 2005:

Review “High Country Blues”:

Review “Shame the Devil” (2012):


The Nordic Sound: Pettersson & Fredriksson – Nyckelharpa &…

Pettersson & Fredriksson – nyckelharpa and mandola (octave mandolin) – a great duo with a great nordic sound.

Daniel Fredriksson was part of a project that I have just recently written about in this blog – the Magic Lute Project from the TFF Rudolstadt in 2009.

Daniel Fredriksson plays the nordic mandola, an instrument that was conceived in the 1980s by Ale Möller in cooperation with two luthiers:

The history of the nordic mandola is rather short – it was developed by swedish multi-musician Ale Möller and luthiers Christer Ådin and Anders Ekvall in the 80s.

The nordic mandola is a a 10-string, 5 chorus instrument. The lowest two strings are longer than the other strings and tuned down which can produce a real bassy sound. You will hear this in songs of the new album Sotali very well.

Most nordic mandolas have 5 choruses, with octaves on the C and G string.

But here’s the little peculiarity with this instrument. As Ale and Ådin/Ekvall developed the instrument, they found a need to be able to have different drones in the base. This led to the invention of something called “pin point capos”. The pin point capo is a little screw with a rubber packing on it which goes into holes drilled in the fretboard. This allows for shortening of single strings, and thus being able to change the base notes – without changing the tuning.  The base strings are usually elongated/theorbed so the lowest string goes down to A, and the second goes to F.

The nordic mandola is able to produce sounds from very low to very high, it gives a lot of possibilities – I think this is a great instrument as a solo instrument and as an instrument in a duo like Pettersson & Fredriksson. And the possibility to tune the lowest two strings to other notes very easily makes this a very flexible instrument.

Daniel Pettersson plays the nyckelharpa, another great nordic instrument with an incredible sound.

You can see Daniel Pettersson and Daniel Fredriksson and both instruments in the following video that was made in 2008:

Pettersson and Fredriksson

Another video from the same concert:

New album Sotali

This summer the duo released its third album, Sotali – a great album that is available on the following site:

You can listen to the complete Album for free! And if you like it you can buy it as a digital download or as a special unique custom digipack.

Pettersson & Fredriksson: Brand

In the following video you can see the making of Sotali in the studio:

UPSWEDENTV – Pettersson & Fredriksson

Another example from the new CD:

Pettersson & Fredriksson – Stjarnan

Playlist Pettersson & Fredriksson

Additional information

Blog by Daniel Fredriksson about the nordic mandola:

Buy the latest album Sotali or listen to the complete album (free streaming audio):


myspace Pettersson & Fredriksson :

youtube channel of Daniel Fredriksson:

youtube channel with more videos with Pettersson & Fredriksson:


Mandola Power – Swiss Folk-Metal-Band Eluveitie with their Song…

If you count the youtube views this video might be one of the most successful songs with a mandola (or ocatave mandolin). It has been viewed almost 4 million times – it’s for sure that there are many more metal fans than people who watch traditional or classical mandola videos.

Eluveitie – Omnos

Eluveitie – the name obviously should be taken as the name of Helvetia / Switzerland in the gallic language – was founded as a studio project in 2002 already by bandleader and octave mandolin (or mandola) player Chriegel Glanzmann. The CDs Spirit (2005) and Slania (2007) both were successful and made Eluveitie known to the folk metal fans in Europe and the USA. Today Eluveitie plays regularly concerts and important festivals.

Th latest CD “Evocation I – the arcane dominion” was a  completely acoutic recording. But in general Eluveitie prefers the powerful folk-metal sound with distorted guitars and heavy bass like in the following version of Omnos:

Eluveitie – Omnos (Early Metal Version)

The mandolin (or octave mandolin) can be seen in many of the available Eluveitie videos, but sometimes it is difficult to hear the sound of this instrument. The sound is based on the powerful guitar and the bass, hurdy gurdy, flutes, bagpipes and the octave mandolin are added.

Eluveitie is studying the history of the gallic tribes including the ancient gallic language. The lyrics for some of their songs has been writen by specialists for those ancient languages.

You can find the lyrics of the song Omnos with the following live version of the song:

Eluveitie – Omnos – first time LIVE @Salzhaus Winterthur Switzerland 10.04.09

Playlist Eluveitie

Additional information

Interview (in German) with the bandleader and mandola player Chriegel Glanzmann in the Neuen Züricher Zeitung (swiss newspaper):

Eluveitie website:

Eluveitie Myspace page:

Interesting blog about Eluveitie (englisch) with a lot of information and many pictures: