Around the turn of the 20th century there was no shortage of great bow-makers in Paris, but Lamy has always been a special name for me. I love the refinement of these bows and their extraordinary sound. They tend not to suit orchestral sluggers, but they have always been popular with players who value expression and nuance.
Georges Léon Lamy was the son of JA Lamy, and brother of Hippolye Camille Lamy. Unfortunately he was killed in the First World War and his promising career was cut short. However, there is very little difference in style between the 3 members of the family – they worked together closely, and Georges really followed his father’s model, derived in turn from Charles Claude Husson. The main characteristic of the Lamy style is elegance, as much in sound as in workmanship. The adjusters tend to be slightly wider than the sticks, the balance often more towards the middle of the bow, the heads narrow and artistic.
The condition of this bow is very good – there is very little wear to the stick, though the frog shows signs of a firm grip where it meets the underslide.
This is a very lively bow with an unusually fine quality of tone, clear yet luminous. In legato mode it remains completely smooth, needing little pressure to create a big sound – off the string it’s quick and crisp. An ideal bow for chamber music, or for any repertoire where you need to respond and react …
It’s hard to say much about a good Lamy – if you want a tank aerial, buy a Sartory, if you want a means to make beautiful music, buy a Lamy!
Dimensions: 74.6cm, 58.7 grams
Certificate: Bernard Millant Paris, 2006
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