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Does anyone if Chance McCoy play viola as well as violin?
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iBud
Honolulu, HI
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October 13, 2014 - 4:08 pm
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Aloha everyone,

I was able to download Chance McCoy's debut album free from his website and was attempting to transcribe Yew Piney Mountain when I ran into an issue, for violin at least.  In the 7th full measure, he goes down to E flat 3, the E flat below middle C, and 4 semitones below what is possible to play on the G string of a violin.  Now, if he were playing a viola, that would make sense, but I though he only played violin.  I'm going to complete my transcription and transpose it to a different key for violin, but that got me thinking about what instrument(s) he play(s).

He's also part of the Old Crow Medicine Show, which is on YouTube.  He's a fantastic fiddler, and I'll probably never be able to play Yew Piney Mountain as fast as he does, but I love to listen to it.  I've attached the tune for your listening pleasure, but you can download the whole album for free at his website (and no, I'm not associated with him, but was shocked that he actually wants to give his music away for free).

 

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Uzi
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October 13, 2014 - 4:40 pm
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 If that's him in the picture on the video, he's holding a 5 string. 

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort. ~Herm Albright

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iBud
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October 13, 2014 - 5:11 pm
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Uzi said
 If that's him in the picture on the video, he's holding a 5 string. 

Aloha @Uzi.

Of course you're correct on that one.  hats_off  The one possibility I didn't consider!  D'oh! bunny-headbangActually, I didn't even look at the album cover - I just assumed he was playing a 4-string fiddle. I was starting to wonder how he got into the upper register with a viola, but a 5-string explains everything.  I can still probably transpose it up a third and still be able to play it on a violin (after about 5-10 more years, that is).  He's really flying on the fingerboard on that one.  I guess my next investment will be a 5-string fiddle, then. cool

I learn something new every day.  Thanks again, @Uzi, for pointing out the obvious.  BTW, how did you like the tune?

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Uzi
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October 13, 2014 - 8:56 pm
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@ibud, I liked it very much.  He's a top notch fiddler.  You know, he gives online skype lessons on bluegrass and old time fiddling. You might want to check it out.

...And if you're thinking about gettng a 5 string check this out:

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort. ~Herm Albright

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iBud
Honolulu, HI
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October 14, 2014 - 12:38 pm
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Aloha again @Uzi,

The thought of purchasing a 5-string was a little tongue-in-cheek.  I may, sometime in the future, get one, but I'm going to stick to what I have for now.  That being said, I've ordered a Rosewood tailpiece that should match my tuning pegs and chin rest (although they may also be changed later, for ones that are carved or a different design, respectively).

Don't tell @Fiddlerman, but I also ordered one of those finger tape sets - I know he thinks we should learn intonation on our own, but while I've gotten close, it's off just a bit and it's driving me up the wall.  I know of several violinists that have used that type of thing for up to a year or so.  Actually, the one interval that gives me problems is the minor third.  It's as iffy ins and 2nd fingers don't get along and they don't want to be next to each other. :D  I'm getting more used to that as well, but sometimes really miss the note (G natural on E string, for example).  Actually, now that I think about it, it's normally the 1st finger that doesn't want to line up right next to the 2nd finger - I'm not sure why that is, but I'll get it eventually.  

I saw the link for Skype lessons, but I'm really in no rush to become "performance ready" myself, so I'll take it easy and learn at my own pace for now.  While I'm an absolute beginner at the violin, I'm not a beginner with music and music theory, so I have a good foundation, albeit on the piano.  There are a bit of differences between sheet music for the piano and violin, but I'll hang out here and ask questions when needed.  

Thanks again for your responses.

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Uzi
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October 14, 2014 - 1:41 pm
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@iBud.  Interestingly, I had/have the same problem with the minor third, but not on the E string or the G string.  I only had the problem on the D and A strings.  I've pretty much overcome it now by playing scales, over and over and over, such as the C scale, until my second finger finally surrendered and went where it was supposed to go.  It was hard to overcome and it makes no sense intellectually, but that's because it's simple an issue of muscle memory and the only way to overcome it is to keep doing it until the fingers eventually cooperate, without the conscious brain (or eyes) becoming involved in the process.  I've never used tape, simply because the target you are aiming for is so small that the tape is wider than the target by probably 10 to 20 cents either side of it.  The eyes won't help with that, you have to learn to see with ears -- IMHO.  I never look at my left hand when playing, if I'm looking at the violin at all, I'm looking at the contact point where the bow crosses the strings.  

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort. ~Herm Albright

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iBud
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October 14, 2014 - 3:15 pm
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Aloha again @Uzi,

I went round and round with myself over the finger guide thing, but finally decided that I needed to get some muscle memory for the intervals.  I don't know that I'll use it for that long a period, but it really drives me up the wall when I'm just that little bit off.  Sometimes, it seems I never nail the position in certain spots.  That's where I'm glad, in a way, that I learned the piano first - you never have issues with where to strike the keys, unless you're not looking at the keyboard that is.

One thing I haven't done is really practice the minor scales, not that I practice the major scales all that much.  I should do much more of that.  It will really help to mentally know the intervals when reading sheet music - I'll know better where the fingers have to be.

I starting trying to watch the contact point of the bow, in an attempt to improve my bowing, but at times that also goes out the window.  I'm getting better, although my bow still slides around somewhat.  

I also took the opportunity to order a new tailpiece with black/gold fine tuners, and I think it will look pretty nice once they get here.  It's being shipped from the US mainland, eBay says it should get here as early as tomorrow, so it should be here this week sometime.  I should be pretty set by then.

BTW, I was able to transpose what I have for Yew Piney Mountain up to B minor.  Take a look at what I have and let me know if you think a different key would be better.  Also, is there any notation for the different positions, such as 1st position as opposed to 3rd position?  I haven't found anything on that, but wasn't sure if it existed and I was looking in the wrong spot.  I don't have the double stops yet, as I was more concerned about the melody and seeing if I can play it at all.  If you have any suggestions for notation, please also let me know.

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
October 16, 2014 - 8:13 am
Member Since: September 26, 2010
Forum Posts: 11694

iBud said
......... Don't tell @Fiddlerman, but I also ordered one of those finger tape sets - I know he thinks we should learn intonation on our own, but while I've gotten close, it's off just a bit and it's driving me up the wall.  I know of several violinists that have used that type of thing for up to a year or so.  Actually, the one interval that gives me problems is the minor third.  It's as iffy ins and 2nd fingers don't get along and they don't want to be next to each other. :D  I'm getting more used to that as well, but sometimes really miss the note (G natural on E string, for example).  Actually, now that I think about it, it's normally the 1st finger that doesn't want to line up right next to the 2nd finger - I'm not sure why that is, but I'll get it eventually........

LOL - Too late, I saw this post. b-slap

Anyway, I'm honestly not sure what is the best concerning fingering tapes. It's my thought that one can begin by using them (particularly when at first one doesn not recognize intervals) and take them off after getting used to finger patterns.

Because of the fact that I didn't use them I was a bit against them at first but I've spoken to a lot of teachers who feel they are extremely valuable and do not hinder the advancement of the student providing they are eventually taken off. I don't teach beginners live so I don't have much first hand experience with tapes. dunno

Completely off topic. Sorry dazed

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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iBud
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October 17, 2014 - 1:30 am
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Aloha @Fiddlerman,

Being that you're the admin of this site, I kind of figured that you may have seen that post. D'oh!   :D  I'm getting better at hitting the right spots, but I thought to give my wife a bit of rest from the rest of the times - when I don't quite get it right.

Actually, I get a bit frustrated when I screw up and if I'm trying to play, say, Ashokan Farewell with a background track, it really throws me off.  I get a little bit irritated with myself because I feel that I should know where that sweet spot for each note is, but for whatever reason I fail to hit it.

It's different from the piano, where you can easily tell every key location.  I think it's also due to my short exposure to the violin.  I'm very experienced with the piano, so it's much easier to play something.  On the violin, it's much more complicated, at least for me, having to get both arms/hands working both independently and in concert with each other with actions completely unlike that of the piano.  Still, when I can play something seemingly well enough for my wife to hear, I feel good about that little bit of ability.  I don't know if I will ever be able to play like some of my musical idols, but within the journey lies the fun, right?

To be honest, I haven't worked on Thaxted yet, but I would like to thank you again for this website.  It's easy to get discouraged at one's (lack of) progress, but with these projects, we (for me, eventually) get to virtually play with each other.  I have to try your intonation game as well.  Thanks for offering so much to those like me, complete beginners.  

Oh, and once my new tailpiece gets in and I get in installed, I'll be sure to upload more pics.  

violin-1267

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
October 17, 2014 - 5:49 pm
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We're going to wrap that project up this month and I'll start mixing next so that we can get on a 2014 Christmast project. :)

You are very welcome, and I did figure that you knew that I would see that post. LOL
I really don't judge. You are probably be doing exactly what is right for yourself. Hope to have you on the project, but if you don't make it, there is always the Xmas project.thumbs-up

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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