Hubby and I have purchased violins, tuning mechanisms, books, cases, and have signed up for fiddle classes. After three lessons, we can safely state that fiddling is great!
A real joy to listen to!
A coordinated effort of ear, memory, hand, arm, fingers, shoulder and foot tamping.
So far, we have learned the following:
1. Tune your instrument every time you play.
2. Keep your instrument in a case, carefully stored in the perfect temperature.
3. If you leave your fiddle in the car overnight, or play it when it is too drafty, the instrument will go out of tune!
4. Forget nails. Keep them trimmed, because if you don't, you can't use your fingers to make notes.
5. Fiddling is more forgiving in style than violin playing.
6. You can join a fiddling group and just keep the rhythm if you don't know the tune.
7. There are many ways to play, to hold the bow, to STYLE!
8. Fiddling has long roots, in Europe, in Appalachia, in camps.
9. Have fiddle, and improvise. That's how new tunes are created.
10. You learn to play mostly by ear; listen and repeat.
Our wonderful teacher is Port Orford's own Diane Cassel, who taught in our school district for years before retiring.
Her daughter, Hanneke Cassel is a famous fiddle player. If you hear her just once, you want to go and learn to play the fiddle!