The world (or the string playing part of it) is divided into two halves, one which is passionate about their latest rosin and one which thinks rosin is a small something that sits in a pocket in your case, gets wiped on your bow every other day or so but has no further role in your musical life.
Years ago, I learnt the hard way that rosin can make a huge difference. I’d finished a big restoration on a client’s violin and we were both pleased with the sound. But 6 months later, he came back, his violin now sounding scratchy and thin.
Worried about what had gone wrong, I picked up my workshop bow and had a play. It sounded lovely.
But when we played the same violin with his bow, I immediately heard why he was worried. Inside his case was a cheap rosin, packaged in the same coloured wrapper as his old Hill rosin. Someone at a rehearsal must have accidentally swapped them. A quick clean of his bow hair and a new rosin, and my client was happy again.
When I went to the recent Viola Congress I was keen to find out more about the latest rosin sensation, Leatherwood Bespoke Rosin.
Handcrafted in Australia for violin, viola and cello, Leatherwood has two different start-up recipes per instrument, “Crisp” and “Supple”. And Leatherwood can make your own special blend, depending on how much attack, traction, clarity or texture you want.
We have sample rosins to help you decide what works best for you.
Leatherwood is starting to make quite a stir, gaining endorsements from world-famous fiddler Mark O’Connor, and a growing array of Classical soloists, and picking up some excellent reviews internationally. People keep saying it has solved playing issues they have been battling for years.
Mark O’Connor, fiddle player extraordinaire
Warning! It’s not cheap. But then, we can spend the same money, without thinking twice, on a new set of strings or even just one string. And the rosin will last much longer.
Think of it as a gift – to your favourite player or to yourself.