Bouzouki Players

Group of Bouzouki players willing to share knowledge, tips, playing styles, tuning variations, builders, etc. Also, download performances, sessions, solos, etc.

Members: 53
Latest Activity: Jul 14

Discussion Forum

Show your zouk!!

Started by Toon van den Boogaard. Last reply by Dhomhnaill A. Lopez Jun 13. 12 Replies

It's been quiet on this forum, and since the lousy weather seems to continue for all eternity, I take it upon my to ask about the instruments you play (concentrated on the bouzouki of course, but not…Continue

Nyberg Bouzouki

Started by Liam Caulfield. Last reply by Liam Caulfield Mar 15, 2016. 8 Replies

Hello Everyone,I hope you are all enjoying 2016!  I wanted to know if anyone in this group owns or has played a Lawrence Nyberg bouzouki.  I've been looking to upgrade from the cheap Luna that I've…Continue

Upgrading My Bouzouki World

Started by Dhomhnaill A. Lopez. Last reply by Dhomhnaill A. Lopez May 26, 2015. 13 Replies

It's coming on two years since purchasing my present bouzouki (It was a gift from my wife, actually). As always happens, after time passes we all have a tendency to want "something better". Some of…Continue

The Blacksmith

Started by Eoin Murphy. Last reply by Liam Caulfield Feb 25, 2013. 3 Replies

Has anyone got a decent tab or tutorial for Donal Lunnys part for The Blacksmith?Continue

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Comment by Bill Troxler on March 27, 2015 at 13:14
Hi Liam,
Glad to hear that you are interested in Nikos' Instruments and VERY pleased to have been of some help to you. No matter what you decide, please post your decision here and let us know your thoughts about the instrument you select. That knowledge will benefit everyone. Best of luck to you in this important decision.

Comment by Liam Caulfield on March 27, 2015 at 12:39
Thank Bill, John & Danny!...lots of info!..I've been all over niko apollonio's website for the past 24 hours & I plan on contacting him soon. He sure does make some beautiful instruments & he's definitely worth talking to.
Thanks again!
Comment by Bill Troxler on March 26, 2015 at 19:03

Thanks, Danny for the advice and the heads-up about the speed traps.  Just might be worth the drive to visit Nik and see these sites.  I worked near Boston briefly and did a year of grad work at UMass out in the Western part of the State.  Beautiful out there.  Now I live on a small  island four miles off the coast of Virginia.  A very cool place to be.  And from our dock we can watch the rocket launches at NASA/Wallops Island.  

Comment by Dhomhnaill A. Lopez on March 26, 2015 at 18:30

Bill. If you're going up Rte 1 to Rockport, Maine, you might also enjoy stopping at Rockport, Massachusetts (also accessible from Rte 1), just north of Salem. Both Rockports have a sea side charm that warms the heart, although the Mass. Rockport is a little more "touristy" (is that a word???). Great Seafood!!! Some towns in Mass are "dry towns" (no alcohol sales: NO beer, NO wine NO hard stuff, but you might be able to BYOB into a restaurant). Might be reason for a cooler in the trunk. Also, if you're off the Interstate, some towns have ridiculous "speed traps" (45mph to a quick 15mph, with Deputy Barney Fife a-sittin' 'n a-waitin', pen in hand and to the paper before he even gets to your car!!!). Ye gotta love New England.

Comment by Bill Troxler on March 26, 2015 at 17:34

Danny, your description of Rockport, Maine has got me thinking about a drive up there to see Nik.  The place sounds charming!  Thanks for the wonderful description.


Comment by Bill Troxler on March 26, 2015 at 17:32

WOW, John, a double top of cedar and spruce.  Man, that instrument most have a stunning voice.

My zouk's soundboard is New England Red Spruce.  A very nice voice for the instrument.  My cittern made by Nik has a Western Red Cedar soundboard.  A more mellow tone but still with great clarity on the high end

Here's an image of my cittern built by Nik.    He calls it a "bell shape".  I told him it looked more like a coal shovel to me.  But he said he couldn't sell a coal shovel.   The shape provides very nice low tone voicing.  It's the shape he's used for some of  Gordon Bok's instruments and  some of Paul Stookey's too.  Unusual, but it works.


Comment by Dhomhnaill A. Lopez on March 26, 2015 at 16:57

John, For the MEDIA/ film strip thingie you need to retrieve the code from YouTube, Soundcloud, etc. I think you need to copy and paste it into the box, then hit OK. I have the way to do it written down somewhere but since I don't do it alot and for a while, I can't remember. It'll probably be quicker if Bill told you how to do it. OH BILLY-BOY,........????

Comment by Bill Troxler on March 26, 2015 at 16:48

Hi Liam,

Like John, I've had VERY good experiences with the K&K pickups.  Visit their website here:

I didn't know anything about them until Nik recommended K&K  to me.  Their engineering is really impressive.   Now three of my instruments have K&Ks.  That's because these pickups faithfully convey the honest acoustic sound.  None of that "frying egg" sound that so many under the saddle pick ups produce.

 John is also right about a preamp.  That can be a necessity depending upon the sound sytem you are working with.  The board used by my trio has nice preamps. So I dont have to use anything extra for my cittern or banjo or bouzouki.  But on boards without good preamps,  an outboard preamp would be essential.  I think the K&K preamp is about $100.  Check their website for details.

Also, like John, I got a shorter than usual scale on the neck.  Some bouzoukis have guitar length necks.  These can run as long a 27inches.  Well, man, do I have short, stubby fingers!  The scale on my zouk is about 23.5 inches.  That's a huge help getting some of those chords stretches.  Neither the volume nor the timbre was adversely affected by the shorter scale.  Quite honestly, Nik Apollonio is one heck of a genius builder.   There are MANY great luthiers at work these days.  Nic is definitely in the top tier of this demanding work.

Best of luck Liam.  It's always exciting to pursue a new instrument but scary too!


Comment by Dhomhnaill A. Lopez on March 26, 2015 at 16:45

JOHN!!!! Great to hear you're alive and well. I believe if you look above the Add a Comment (before adding a comment while composing it), you'll see the little film strip that highlights as "MEDIA" to add a clip from YouTube. Also, to the left of that you'll see an icon that looks like a picture. If you click on that you can retrieve a photo to post from your browser on your computer. I'm not sure how to refine it but I think I just did it. Maybe Bill could tell you better. Danny

Comment by Dhomhnaill A. Lopez on March 26, 2015 at 16:27

Wow, Bill!!! That is a nice looking instrument. Your quick and complete response was more than I expected,...much more. Ye got MY interests up.

Rockport, Maine is a quaint little "fairy-tale" village, least it was when, years ago, I taught an Intro to Video class at the Maine Film & Video Workshop. The harbour has an old working wooden sailing ship where we did an interview with a Squeezebox/Sea Chanty sailor. Beautiful place. Might be worth a long weekend trip, Liam,....alot of driving for you but, with spring finally here, just might be worth it to SEE & HEAR. Or on the practical end, email/call. Thanks again, Bill.

Cheers, guys.



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