In 1969,a young jazz guitarist by the name of Emmett Chapman discovered an exciting new way of playing guitar.This technique involved having the player use both hands simultaneously on the neck of the guitar.The player could execute scales,chords,independant lines,bass and guitar lines at the same time.The hands were aligned
parallel to the frets.Emmett used this technique on his modified 9 string guitar and was often seen around the L.A. club circuit playing with jazz guitarist Barney Kessel during 1970. That same year Emmett built his first bodiless version of an instrument that would allow for maximum execution of his two handed playing style. He called this instrument "The Electric Stick". A modified version went into production in 1974 and was renamed "The Stick".
El Amor es Eterno:Stick & Flute MP3
The Chapman Stick® is more than just a vehicle for a certain technique.It is a paintbrush for the musical soul. Not only does it give the musician a unique voice, but the artistc freedom which it bestows on it's purveyors is as unique as the instrument itself. Imagine having the ability to play bass and guitar on one instrument! Sure, a keyboard allows you a certain level gratification in this area,but it lacks the character of the strings' abilities to bend,trill,and slur. Not since the invention of the saxaphone has a musical intrument caused so many musicians to boldly go...
At first glance, the Stick® would appear to be a rather futuristic version of a guitar. Indeed,the big screen's adaptation of Frank Herbert's "Dune" featured a young Patrick Stewart playing a baliset. A mythical instrument which was a Stick® with a couple extra scenic treatments (The music heard in the movie was Emmett Chapman himself).There are 10 and 12 string versions as well as an 8 string StickBass® and the latest addition,the NS Stick.The latter being a colaborative effort between Emmet and
Ned Steinberger ,inventor of the Steinberger Bass.
The standard tunnings are as follows:
1st D above mid. C
2nd A down a 4th
3rd E down a 4th
4th B down a 4th
5th F# down a 4th
6th C below low bass E
7th G up a 5th
8th D up a 5th
9th A up a 5th
10th E up a 5th (same as 3rd)
The pickup is split in stereo allowing for the bass and melody strings to be processed separately.The instrument is worn upright and horizontal while being held in place by a neck strap and belt hook.This system provides an exceptionaly well balanced and fatigue free playing position and allows the hands to fall naturaly on the instruments neck.
Older Sticks were made of Ironwood. A very dense wood with exceptional preserverance to the lb. forces created by the strings.Polycarbonate was also used. Most Sticks® sold today are made from a variety of woods such as teak,tarara, and the beautiful purpleheart.Sticks® made of carbon graphite are also in continuing production runs.