Monday, May 21, 2012

Improving on the fiddle

I had my first violin lesson when I was about ten or eleven. I loved the violin. But I was really terrible at it. No one at home played any instruments, and I only ever practiced the day of, and maybe the day before, my lesson. My violin teacher once told me that I "looked right" playing it. Another later told me that maybe I should try the viola, because it was easier to hit the right notes... But what I always really wanted to do with it was to play the fiddle in a blues band. Or just sit around and jam in a Celtic Ceilidh (pronounced kaylee). It is a real pleasure to have my weekly fiddle classes with Cathy Clasper-Torch and five other students. It feels almost like a jam, aside from our extremely slow speed. This week we worked more on Soldier's Joy (earlier post about that here), trying to find a way to play it fast without being sloppy, and to drone on the D string or the E without sounding to labored. Haven't mastered either of those yet.

Here's my teacher playing Soldier's Joy for her class - learning purposes only!

For more of my posts on fiddle tunes: Giraffes and, well, fiddle songs about drugs,  Ashokan Fall, and House Sings Saint James Infirmary