what it means to build musical instruments....

For me, shaping material is one of the most beautiful activities. Working a block of wood so that it becomes something. Something beautiful, something useful.

Planing so that the chips fly, sanding, filing, rasping - dust sticks to my sweaty skin, little hairs stand up when I stroke the smooth maple surface. The making itself, an act full of emotions and feelings.

Brachial combined with gentleness - the deformation caused by the application of force is completed by gently brushing the oil into the structure.

And then metal - have you ever smelled metal? Smelling iron filings, freshly sawn, a fragrance for me. Brass - one of the most beautiful alloys, not only visually. A versatile material that I love because of its wonderful properties. Milling, cutting, bending, driving, forging, turning and drilling - what else is possible? Let's try casting.

Yes, I love wood and metal and the workmanship. Building musical instruments is doubly good: you build something, something that has its own voice, a sound, a timbre, a life of its own.

The construction, the building itself, is exciting. But I know of no more exciting moment than stringing the instrument for the first time. My hands tremble, even though I am sure that the instrument can hold the tension of the strings. But how will it sound? Do the frets fit, how does it feel in the hand? What was it like the very first time?

I can justifiably say that all the instruments presented here are made with the feelings described above. I am sure I can hear it when they are played, I can feel it when I play them.

New challenges await - what will follow in the next few years? Certainly a lot of joy, fun and many a failure from which one learns, but hopefully no one will notice.

And now a few words about SCHAMAY, because we work as a team. SCHAupp and MAYer - the names of two people whose approaches could not be more different, or is that not the case at all? But if that is the case - then it is precisely this partnership and friendship that is the genius. A perfect duo in the planning phase and in the choice of materials - well-rehearsed in building and probably also in making music.

In expectation of many more years of joint work, the work of the last few years are presented here. Alex MAYer, October 2018

schamay, hand-crafted custom stringed music instruments