did a search for bouzouki & was supprised when nothing came up so thought i'd start it off.

If there are any bouzouki or GDAD octave mandolin players out there it would be great to start a thread.


Plays Oakwood Bouzouki 

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Cheers Phil. Link was incorrectly done. You can also just press the Group tab which should bring you straight to the groups. Groups

Hi Brian.

I'be a Joe Foley,  tune it  GDad for Trad and GDAE for  Americana,  been on the back burner of late as I've been messing around on the mandolin and saw mill banjo,

CBOM is  Cittern, Bouzouki & Octave Mandola.. AKA  mandolins on steroids

Hi everyone! So pleased to see this thread has taken a life of its own. Great idea to have a proper group for the zouk players. I'm off to join!

Hi Brian, I play a Foley, GDAD. Great instrumenet!

Hi Ketil, very jealous!! I think Foley makes exceptional instruments although my love affair with my Oakwood shows no sign of slowing down! Have you joined the bouzouki group on the site yet? Some great contributions from other members & well worth a read.
Did you get your Foley made for you & if so what was the waiting time? Really tempted but have to weigh it up against marital harmony!

I got my bouzouki while on holidays in 1991. I rang up Joe and asked if by any chance he had a bouzouki for sale. He had two! Just went out to Rathfarnham and got a very nice instrument for 550 punt. These days there´s a waitinglist for about a year.

And yes, I just joined the bouzouki group!

Hi Brian (and everybody else), I play a GDADA Cittern. I concentrate more on tunes rather than accompaniment.                                   

I played Bouzouki for a few years in GDAD until I realised that If I wanted to continue tunes with this tuning, I thought to make it easier for myself, I would have to get a Cittern and tune it GDADA, the extra A makes tunes considerably easier, bringing my hand back down into first position for most tunes.   Of course GDAE, has a similar effect for ease of tuneplaying but It's just not so open when it comes to the occasional chord. 

I tune my banjo GDAD also,  after a long while playing this way, I'm considering reverting to GDAE for a while, my banjo has a very long scale. I love the sound of sliding up to the higher notes of tunes on GDAD but it's a lot of work and I'm lazy.


Hi All, I have a Lawrence Nyberg Octave mando which my band mates always refer to as a bouzouki which distinguishes it from another bandmates cittern and my regular mandolin.  I tune it is standard tuning GDAe

and us it mainly for melody although occasionally for counterpoint type backup.

I should really experiment with alternate tunings, but I never really gave them a serious try on the guitar or fiddle either.

With so many instruments (I have a tenor banjo too) it's enough to learn tunes and parts for the groups I play in in standard tuning.

I do like playing swing chords behind tunes or getting a funky bassline and old R& B groove going as backup. Since I play a lot for dancers this makes them move in very different ways and just gives the tunes a new twist.



Just discovered this great site tonight
I have a Thomas Buchanan {Scottish} mandola tuned GDAD which I use for tunes only ~ using the 4th & 7th positions for the higher notes {which works most of the time!}
I use an old Gibson Blue Ridge guitar {c. 1969} tuned DADGBD {double drop D} for accompaniment

I forgot to add, The Citterns I have are Jimmy moon, Sobell and a Davy stewart. 

The Davy Stewart is my favourite out of these three,  it just seems to be a better instrument for sessions, maybe it's partly the shorter scale of 21", giving a slacker sound from GDADA..


I have an octave mando as well that people call a bouzouki.  It's a Phil Crump; the same model that Michael Holmes has.  I play GDAD even though someone early on insisted I use ADAD.  Once I knew what I was doing, I converted to GDAD because with ADAD  - I needed a capo all the time.  GDAD is definitely the way to go.

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