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  Topic Review (Newest First)
07-16-2010 01:22 PM
ebethmom Some of my violin students had a Master Class with a fantastic fiddle player a few years ago. He talked about some of the differences between playing as a classically trained violinist and playing as a fiddler. Here are a few of his fiddle tips:

- Playing fiddle, the bow stays on the string almost all of the time. Fiddlers keep the a low bowhair tension. They don't need the tension for off-the-string technique, and the low tension spreads the horsehair flat for more sound.

- Vibrato is used as an ornament in fiddle playing.

- Playing ballads, the bow stroke is absolutely even and smooth.

I agree that listening is the biggest step. Find a fiddler who has the sound you want, and listen like crazy! If you can find a live performance, even better. Take your binoculars and check out every aspect of their technique.

I do think it's hard to go from classically trained technique to fiddle. Even though I know the techniques, I haven't practiced them enough to get the sound. 'Knowledge is not skill. Knowledge times 10,000 is a skill.' One of my favorite quotes from Dr. Suzuki.
07-16-2010 12:00 PM
Vojerleda Welcome I know I'm still here, since i subscribed to this thread. I've got no hints on moving from fiddling from classical violin, but if you can't find a teacher, I'd get a bunch of recordings of bluegrass and folk fiddling and just see what I could copy. You might have more luck like that.
I spent the greater part of last orchestra season as a temp with our local symphony, and really enjoyed playing. It was a little stressful for me, since I also had to miss one performance due to gallbladder surgery, but you do what you can, right? I like working on the temp basis, even though I kept being asked back; I like the ability to say no, even though I never did until I literally couldn't play any more.
which reminds me- I need reeds, like yesterday.

Welcome, SaoirseC!
07-15-2010 03:07 PM
SaoirseC woah, this thread is a little old! I have a 2month old now, so I don't get to play much at all, but I've played violin on and off for 13 years now. I have been trying to get into fiddle, but am having a hard time making the transition (it would be awesome if I could find a fiddler locally to help me along, but no luck yet). ultimately, i'd like to learn cello or 5 string viola/violin. I love the viola, it's just such a shame that violists so seldom get cool parts in an orchestra (but I won't have the opportunity to play in an orchestra for some time anyway). Oh yeah, and I was taught in the school program (yay for the arts in schools!!) I also have a 3 yo and 6 yo. My 6 yo son has a rented violin (i offered different instruments, this is the one he chose), I plan to enroll him in classes soon (we just moved and things are starting to settle down again). Any tips would be cool!
10-31-2009 01:36 PM
StoriesInTheSoil Hey, cool tribe! My DP plays music (mostly piano and guitar but he loves drums and really everything else too.) I mostly just dabble- I played violin forever but I can't remember how anymore as much as I'd like to. I love playing guitar but I feel like I haven't played much since getting pregnant so that's over 2 years. I'm trying to learn to sing- it's going marginally well.

Anyway, Hello Musical Parents!!!!
10-26-2009 11:06 PM
Mama Shifra I read in the October issue of Time Out New York Kids about an opera singer from the Metropolitan Opera, Heidi Grant Murphy, who just released a CD Lullabies and Nightsongs. I found her story about raising 4 children while having an Opera career facinating.
10-24-2009 07:44 PM
lillacfaerie Yeah, where is everyone! I'm an opera singer, I sing and teach voice and piano to help make ends meet. I'm finding it increasingly difficult to learn music with a baby in the house! I usually put in the Ergo and practice with her on my back. In fact, I had a staging rehearsal for an opera last week and I wore her during the rehearsal. I hope the director wasn't too miffed. Anyway, I'm glad there's a musician parent troup here on MDC!
10-19-2009 05:43 PM
Vojerleda Hey music everyone out gigging right now??

I'm an oboist, was a teacher, but now staying home with my daughters. I also sing, so I'm singing in a local chorale and playing sub in the orchestra. I'm also trying to make my own reeds, and that's pretty slow-going. I need help with that.. I also help out with local music projects as needed.
07-04-2009 12:33 AM
Katsmamajama I dabble!

I've been playing viola (violinists, feel free to insert your viola joke here!) since I was 9, with small breaks in between. I'm feeling a little lost at the moment, I had played in a pit orchestra for Army Community Theatre last fall for their production of "Oliver!" and I was hoping to start in this season with their performances that needed strings, but one of the shows that I think could use strings, happens to run over my due date. Yes, the theatre is one highway exit away from the hospital where my midwife is located, but that doesn't mean I feel like hauling my large, pregnant self out of the pit in labor! There's some shows after that I'm not sure about, but even then, I don't think slinging my newborn in the pit is really efficient, and I'm pretty twitchy about leaving my baby with anyone. Oh well, maybe next season.

I'm attempting to self-teach myself guitar-- my husband thought I'd need a hobby, and bought me an electric guitar. I'm still working on that.

I tried to teach my daughter to play violin, but she decided that playing a string instrument "was just way too hard" and decided to go brass-- she's turning into an amazing trumpet player, but I'm helpless when it comes to tutoring her on anything other than pitch and what's on her sheet music! Eep! Oh well, I love her anyway.

I'm really hoping that this child is happier with my playing than DD was. I had stopped playing for a couple years, because every time I tried to play, she'd cry!
06-08-2009 12:10 PM
lurable Viva la Musica!

I'm glad I found this thread as I was going to start a new one!

I teach private voice and piano at my home studio. I trained in opera, piano and clarinet although I play other intruments as well (my mom was an opera singer/band teacher/music teacher). I am learning violin and guitar at the moment and I also play sax, trumpet and oboe. DP is a musician and plays guitar.
05-05-2009 10:22 PM
Cascia I play the flute. I used to play it in college and in my old church's choir. Although, it's been a while since I've picked it up. I would love to find a city band, church choir or community orchestra to join but there just isn't anything like that out here. If you want to join a band you have to sign up for a music class at one of the local colleges. I don't know if I want to do that.
03-15-2009 11:20 PM
Krisis Music was my life as a kid. I sang with my mom all the time as a toddler/young kid, and really want to start singing in a choir or SOMETHING soon. I want to take voice lessons just for fun. I also play the piano, guitar and harmonica except I haven't touched any of them since DS was born. It's killing me! I hope to start up with guitar again next month... and someday we'll own a piano again!
03-15-2009 07:20 PM
ebethmom Hi Fireweed! I miss my practice time, too. We played a really hard program last night. LOTS of notes! Symphonic Metamorphosis was on the program.

I've taken breaks from teaching before. I was surprised to find that I didn't miss it at all. When I am teaching, I love it. But I would rather spend more time with my own kids.

I've also taken breaks from performing. I felt like someone had reached inside me and ripped out a chunk of my soul! When we can afford it (if my dh gets any kind of raise) then I'll cut back some on teaching.

My recital went pretty well. There were some things that didn't go like I had practiced. I am glad that I worked up a program.
03-15-2009 12:23 PM
fireweed Another violist here (hi ebethmom! How did your recital go?)
I play professionally, in the local symphony. I play chamber music too, whenever I get the opportunity. I also teach but I'm finding that to be a bit too much, and will either quit that or totally cut back on my students next year. I've done far too little practicing since my daughter was born a year ago- i have been totally coasting- but I really need to do some honest to goodness woodshedding soon.

veggiemomma- yes, another vote for checking out Crooked Still- their bluegrass cellist is amazing

robyn- I'd take my instrument in to a dealer for an appraisal
02-01-2009 05:21 PM
yogal bump
hello i'm getting my first real ukulele blisters today!
12-14-2008 02:18 PM
425lisamarie Oh wow I'm glad to see this thread here! I never knew there was a fine arts forum!

I just purchased a new Jupiter flute so I am :.

My intentions are to find a saxophone teacher, but I cannot afford to buy another instrument. I was thinking of renting a used one for now. Renting or even renting to own is kind of throwing away money to me but I guess renting a used one for a while wouldn't be bad?
11-02-2008 09:35 PM
hippymomma69 Does anyone know how to figure out how much an instrument was worth? A while ago I found a link that you could type in the maker/year of your instrument and get and approximate amount but I didn't bookmark the link and now I can't find it!

11-01-2008 01:24 AM
veggiemomma Thanks for the link!

I'll check into it after NaNoWriMo
10-31-2008 07:08 PM
hippymomma69 Hey there! Just checking in!

Bluegrass cello - how cool! there is a band that has a bluegrass cello player in it...I'll try to remember who it is - there is a bunch of videos of them on youtube...

There is a cello player who sometimes comes to our local session....pretty cool to hear celtic cello....

good to hear that you can restart an instument later with more success - I started DD on violin but I think she needs some more time to mature - she just turned 5....

welcome all and let's keep talking music!

eta: Crooked Still is the name of the band - here's a link!
10-27-2008 01:40 AM
ebethmom Hi all! I play viola professionally, and teach Suzuki method violin and viola. I started playing violin when I was 7 and switched to viola a year later. I love what I do, although lately I've been wishing that I could teach less and perform more. Maybe someday we can afford for me to do that!

I just finished a concert week with one orchestra. We're in the middle of a 2 year search for a Music Director. I really liked this conductor! His musical intent was always clear. Next week, my other orchestra starts rehearsing for La Boheme. We're doing a semi-staged version with the orchestra onstage.

I'm getting ready to play a solo recital in 3 weeks. I've been looking at my calendar thinking "I really thought I'd have more practice time!" I don't know where I got that silly idea! I did get two great weeks of vacation, watching the palm trees sway while I practiced.

My son just started playing violin this Fall. We had actually tried about 1 1/2 years earlier, but it didn't click the first time around. Now he's having some success and is excited to learn. We homeschool, so violin is part of our school day.
10-25-2008 08:57 PM
veggiemomma Hello all!

I have always been musical, thanks to my parents, who first trained me to sing by shape notes before I even started school. My elementary music teacher was really confused by shape notes, hehe.

I play some piano and played clarinet for ten years, but don't pick it up much anymore. I used to play orchestral cello (fairly seriously for about 5 years), but am busy trying to workout playing bluegrass on the cello. I recently took up the fiddle, but am still a BEGINNER. My FIL has been playing banjo for 30 years and my BIL plays a little guitar. My husband plays mandolin, so of course, they nominated me for the fiddle.

I really want to learn to play the washboard, but I think my 4 yo is better at it than me!
10-19-2008 05:34 PM
hippymomma69 Welcome all - did everyone make the move with us? It took me going into my email to find it LOL

Anyway, welcome everyone - anyone else want to start a question for the other musicians here?

10-18-2008 02:31 AM
MusicianDad My little one always practiced with me LOL

Music is such a staple of life in our house, that if it's not on the radio or tv, someone is either playing an insturment or singing.
10-17-2008 05:24 PM
annettemarie I just moved a performing arts and a photography tribe to fine arts, and I should probably bump you over there too. We're making an effort to follow the FYT guidelines and limit this forum to tribes not hosted in other areas of MDC.
10-16-2008 11:45 PM
hippymomma69 Just checking back in everyone!

So my DD (5) has been home for the jewish holidays (she goes to a jewish preschool). My fiddle teacher comes to my house for lessons and this week DD came down and listened to the lesson for a bit. She was only minimally disruptive and it seemed to rekindle her interest in fiddle.

Her brother (2) also came down while I was practicing this week and insisted on trying out every instrument, including using the picks and so on. He has alot more fine motor control than his sister so it was funny to see him strumming the mando!

But both kids HATE it when I sing (which is not often) - what is that all about? Is my voice THAT bad? LOL

Anyway I hope that one or both of them will be interested in learning an instrument someday....

So how DO you make time for practicing without the little ones all over you?

I usually wait until they are in bed or I make DH "watch" them for an hour. He's usually willing because if I'm in a REALLY bad mood I can go down, practice, then come back up totally a new woman and HAPPY. But I really can't practice during the day when it's just me with them....

others' stories?

10-12-2008 02:44 PM
cfiddlinmama Hello fellow musicians! I'm Clara. I've been playing the fiddle since I was 5. I come from a very musical family. We all played an instrument. We had a family band and traveled around performing. We also did the fiddle contest circuit in CA. It was lots of fun. I took lessons for 7 years.

When I was 12 my family picked up and moved across the country from CA to NH. Our music kind of fell by the wayside. We did some playing but we just didn't have the contacts on the East Coast. I'll spare you the long life story.
Currently, I teach lessons. My brother is phenomenal on the guitar and we played some gigs together which was awesome. We aren't living in the same state right now, but I would really like for us to start performing together again.

I'm also a self-taught guitar player and I used to play the mandolin but it's been awhile. My kids appear to be very musically inclined. We have a lot of fun singing. I play bluegrass, swing, oldtime American music, celtic etc.

Music is my life. I live and breathe music. I'm glad that you all are here. It's been hard for me to make my music a priority with my kids being small. It's so hard getting interrupted 500x in a practice session. I guess ya'll will understand that. Thanks for starting this Robyn!
10-10-2008 11:45 PM
Originally Posted by 425lisamarie View Post
I do, and thanks for the tip. I am looking at flutes right now as mine happen to be in the ONE box the movers couldn't locate

I do feel like I need a teacher because I prefer being formally trained. Boy I'm glad to see this thread it's motivating
Good luck with all of that!
10-10-2008 11:21 PM
Originally Posted by mommymonkey View Post
Do you remember your flute fingerings? Sax and flute have similiar fingerings. You should start with a good teacher to get the right embouchure. The local ms or hs band director could also point you in the right direction.
I do, and thanks for the tip. I am looking at flutes right now as mine happen to be in the ONE box the movers couldn't locate

I do feel like I need a teacher because I prefer being formally trained. Boy I'm glad to see this thread it's motivating
10-10-2008 10:32 PM
lolar2 I'm a grad student in musicology. My bachelor's degree is in vocal performance but I only do a little singing nowadays.
10-10-2008 09:50 PM
Originally Posted by 425lisamarie View Post
I'm gonna subscribe here, because music was my life as a child, through college and until I met DH

Not sure why but somehow I kinda dropped out.

I sing, and play piano, and played flute from I think 6 or 7 years old.

How do I start with the sax? I've been wanting to for a really long time and I don't see whynot. With my kids 2.5 and 4.5 now, I want them to have the opportunity to be involved in music. Should I just go to my music store and rent one and sign up for lessons? I NEED to get an instrument in my hands again. My flute got damaged moving too and I'm thinking of replacing it also
Do you remember your flute fingerings? Sax and flute have similiar fingerings. You should start with a good teacher to get the right embouchure. The local ms or hs band director could also point you in the right direction.
10-10-2008 07:57 PM
425lisamarie Thanks! I pretty much lost all contact with music teachers since moving to the other side of Wa years ago....

I think I'll swing in to the music shop this weekend and seew ho they have for lessons
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