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Help - violin or fiddle?

GUEST,Al 28 Jul 02 - 12:12 PM
NicoleC 28 Jul 02 - 01:03 PM
Malcolm Douglas 28 Jul 02 - 02:29 PM
katlaughing 28 Jul 02 - 02:39 PM
Sorcha 28 Jul 02 - 03:52 PM
Sorcha 28 Jul 02 - 04:24 PM
John O'L 28 Jul 02 - 07:54 PM
death by whisky 28 Jul 02 - 09:53 PM
English Jon 29 Jul 02 - 06:32 AM
NicoleC 29 Jul 02 - 11:19 AM
The Nfkfiddler 30 Jul 02 - 07:36 AM
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Subject: RE: Help - violin or fiddle?
From: GUEST,Al
Date: 28 Jul 02 - 12:12 PM

Full agreement on getting a good bow and a practice buddy, preferably one a little more accomplished than you are. Also setup of instrument is very important. Al


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Subject: RE: Help - violin or fiddle?
From: NicoleC
Date: 28 Jul 02 - 01:03 PM

Kat,

No, my wrist is fine... one of the few things I never seemed to have trouble with :) Rather, I can't get any dexerity or enough force to press the string down (which ain't much), unless the ball of left index finger (on the palm) is exerting some pressure on the side of the neck. It has nothing to do with holding the fiddle up either; I have no idea where it comes from; my hand just doesn't seem to work otherwise. My teacher is ignoring it as a personal quirk, but I'm worried about how it might affect me down the road and I'd like to break the habit.

I'm the biggest performance chicken in the world. When I was 5, I used to fake illness the day of a piano recital so I wouldn't have to go. I get major performnace anxiety playing in front of my teacher, who has heard much, much worse (some of it from me). I'll probably NEVER play fiddle in front of an audience ;)


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Subject: RE: Help - violin or fiddle?
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 28 Jul 02 - 02:29 PM

I don't think you need to worry about it unduly; all your hand is doing is falling into a natural position. Mine does exactly the same; I don't know how common that is -never really thought about it- but I'd think very common indeed among players in traditional as opposed to orchestral styles. If you want to play the "classical" repertoire, or play easily in high positions, you'll perhaps have to develop that unnatural hand position in which the hand doesn't touch the neck in that way, but it can put a lot of strain on the wrist. There is more than one way of getting vibrato, and I manage well enough with the same sort of hold you're using; in any case, you usually don't need much vibrato for traditional music. Over-use of it (as also in singing) identifies the classically-trained musician who just can't shake the habit, so to speak.


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Subject: RE: Help - violin or fiddle?
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Jul 02 - 02:39 PM

LOL..shake that habit indeed!*bg*

I wouldn't worry about it, either, as Malcolm says. Even we classically trained, at least in my case, use our left forefinger that way. You need the stability to slide up and down the neck and also, I am not sure how one would press down hard enough to get a note without some kind of grip like that. Even in the upper positions, that "nook" seems to be a good guide an stabilising force for the fingers.

Now that my curiosity is up, I shall have to watch a few PBS concerts and see what the rest of them do! (Vvvvviiiibbbrrraaattttoooo is not all it's cracked up to be, either, unless you are playing classical and then it's used mostly to sustain a note or two.:-)

No knee-knocking to worry about if you won't play fer an audience, so you have it made, Nicole! Just have fun and enjoy!

katsmiling


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Subject: RE: Help - violin or fiddle?
From: Sorcha
Date: 28 Jul 02 - 03:52 PM

If you will go to Google Image Search and ask for violinist you'll get lots of pics of "proper" hand positions. Then go back and ask for fiddler and look at the difference. I am classically trained and the inside/base of my index knuckle is nearly always glued to the neck--keeps my intonation right and gives me an anchor. The only time I use the "extreme arched left hand" is if I am going to shift into a higher position, do a long slide (like up to the ocatve harmonic), or if the song has a lot of 4th fingerings.

I tend to agree about classicists not sounding like fiddlers--took me about 6-8 years to overcome my classical training and I still do a LOT of things that "fiddlers" don't do--staccato, spitzacatto, bouncing, etc.


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Subject: RE: Help - violin or fiddle?
From: Sorcha
Date: 28 Jul 02 - 04:24 PM

Oh yea--somewhere around here I have some videos of me. I could dig them out and see if they would be any help to learners. Been a long time since I watched them so I just don't remember what is on them.


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Subject: RE: Help - violin or fiddle?
From: John O'L
Date: 28 Jul 02 - 07:54 PM

On the little label in the soundbox of my instrument the manufacturers refer to it as a violin, so I guess that's what it is.
But I don't care what it is, I call it a fiddle.

BTW, I see there is considerable thread creep already, not that I criticize, I have picked up some brilliantly useful info and I haven't even finished it yet.
Where was I? Oh yeah, on my brand label it says the fiddle was "Made in Canton, China". On my daughter's it says "Made in The Republic of China". Does this mean mine pre-dates the revolution, and if so, is that good or bad? Does anybody know? They are both Skylarks.


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Subject: RE: Help - violin or fiddle?
From: death by whisky
Date: 28 Jul 02 - 09:53 PM

Dear Laura.My classical training (grade three),helped me find the notes on a non fretted instrument.i ts all part and parcel of that big gift of music.


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Subject: RE: Help - violin or fiddle?
From: English Jon
Date: 29 Jul 02 - 06:32 AM

Classical training will help a lot with bowing technique, which will be usefull once he gets on to flashy stuff. Short answer, is get him a fiddle teacher with some sort of classical background. It's better to learn proper technique at the beginning, otherwise you just have to take a year out further down the line to re-learn the instrument from scratch.

Cheers, EJ


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Subject: RE: Help - violin or fiddle?
From: NicoleC
Date: 29 Jul 02 - 11:19 AM

LOL! Manyh thanks for the input. Most players I've seen don't hold the neck that way, but it's nice to hear I'm not the only one by a long shot :)


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Subject: RE: Help - violin or fiddle?
From: The Nfkfiddler
Date: 30 Jul 02 - 07:36 AM

I was taught to play a VIOLIN at school and nobody noted that my marks for anything folky where considerably higher than the classics. Forty years later I picked it up again as a FIDDLE. I do believe that a more flexible teacher at an early age may have keep my instrument out of the cupboard all those years.


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