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Learning Vibrato
Does this look right?
Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 (1 votes) 
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Jim Dunleavy
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August 17, 2015 - 1:31 pm
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I hope this is the right place to post this. I'm basically looking for critique/feedback on how my developing vibrato movements are looking. I've watched just about every YouTube video in existence, but it was Pierre's 'Vibrato for Dummies' that I found most helpful.

I started with arm vibrato and then moved on to wrist vibrato, with the results as demonstrated below.

feature=youtu.be

I still have a lot of work to do to get my speed up, but I'm doing that by using a metronome for my daily practice and gradually increasing the speed. I find this very, very difficult, and tense up a lot, including getting an aching neck from trying to hold the violin when my left hand is in the 'vibrato' position.

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Uzi
Georgia
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August 17, 2015 - 2:38 pm
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That's the ticket Jim.  Just keep it up until it's natural.  

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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Jim Dunleavy
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August 17, 2015 - 2:41 pm
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Thanks Uzi! smile

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1stimestar
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August 18, 2015 - 2:35 am
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You've got it!  Now play us a song please!  I've not even given it a serious attempt yet

 

Opportunity is often missed because it wears suspenders and looks like hard work.

 

Alaska, the Madness; Bloggity Stories of the North Country

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Jim Dunleavy
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August 18, 2015 - 3:09 am
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1stimestar said

You've got it!  Now play us a song please!  I've not even given it a serious attempt yet

Thanks - I wish I could use vibrato in an actual tune! Unfortunately at the moment I have to concentrate solely on the vibrato and if I try to do anything clever it all goes to pot. http://fiddlerman.com/wp-content/forum-smileys/sf-laugh.gif

I suppose at some point it will start to feel natural, but it certainly doesn't seem like it at the moment. http://fiddlerman.com/wp-content/forum-smileys/fainting-1344.gif

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damfino
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August 18, 2015 - 8:21 am
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Good job 🙂 That's the awesome part of this learning experience, is when something feels impossible and like you're never going to get it down, and then all of a sudden it just clicks and you can 🙂 

~ I'm not torturing cats... I'm learning to play violin! ~

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1stimestar
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August 18, 2015 - 3:21 pm
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That's ok.  We'll wait.  Keep it up!

 

Opportunity is often missed because it wears suspenders and looks like hard work.

 

Alaska, the Madness; Bloggity Stories of the North Country

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
August 18, 2015 - 5:33 pm
Member Since: September 26, 2010
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You are definitely on the right track. 🙂
Keep it up and you'll be vibrating naturally in no time.
The exaggerated practice vibrato that you are doing now is perfect to enable natural vibrato motions to just come by themselves later. When you later minimize the vibrato, it will be faster and more comfortable.
IMAO, just keep doing exactly what you are doing.
Thanks for the video!
Also, another badge for the critique corner video. 🙂

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

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Jim Dunleavy
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August 19, 2015 - 4:12 am
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Thanks Pierre - it's good to know I'm on the right track. smile

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AnnyJ
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August 19, 2015 - 2:24 pm
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Jim, your wrist looks really loose and flexible! Good going, I couldn't move mine like that if my life depended on it. How did you get there, if I may ask?

It's easy to play any musical instrument: all you have to do is touch the right key at the right time and the instrument will play itself. Johann S.Bach

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Jim Dunleavy
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August 19, 2015 - 3:34 pm
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AnnyJ said

Jim, your wrist looks really loose and flexible! Good going, I couldn't move mine like that if my life depended on it. How did you get there, if I may ask?

I was struggling for months, then I watched Pierre's 'Vibrato for Dummies' video - you'll find it on this site somewhere. That video got it to click for me - I started with slow arm vibrato, with the metronome for several weeks, then gradually morphed it into wrist vibrato, and I've been doing that slowly, with the metronome (starting from 60), one cycle per beat, then 2, then 3 for about 2 or 3 months now. I found this Suzuki thing called 'Italian vibrato' where you use a mnemonic to time your movements to the metronome. The words are Cheese (one beat), Pizza (2 beats), Italy (a kind of triplet beat), Pepperoni (2 full vibs per beat) etc.

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coolpinkone
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August 20, 2015 - 2:04 pm
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Good Job...

I am not having any break throughs with Vibrato.  I always thought I was having bits.. but it's limited finger vibrations.

I can see you are on your way. BRAVO!

Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato

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Jim Dunleavy
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August 20, 2015 - 3:27 pm
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Thanks Toni. I think the penny dropped for me when I started doing slow arm vibrato and allowing my finger end joint to flex and relax (well, kind of relax). I'm sure you'll get there.

I spent my first six months thinking I was practising a nice vibrato movement - then I got a mirror for the kitchen (my practice room), and realised I was just waggling my wrist back and forwards. So I had to start from scratch again. facepalm

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AnnyJ
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August 20, 2015 - 5:54 pm
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Thank you Jim, I watched that video and tried to the movements, no luck there, the first finger works ok, but not the other ones, especially the 4th one,lol maybe I'm lacking some sort of joint. I'm glad you're getting there though! Keep it up. clap

@coolpinkone keep trying, you'll get it! Someday it'll just click and there it is.smile

It's easy to play any musical instrument: all you have to do is touch the right key at the right time and the instrument will play itself. Johann S.Bach

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Fiddlerman
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August 20, 2015 - 10:56 pm
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Any, make sure your elbow is enough under the violin enough and use the left side of your fingers (looking at your fingertips when holding the violin up and pressing down the fingers on the fingerboard). The elbow far enough under will give you more reach and a better angle. The left side of the finger will help the fingers bend in the right direction. 🙂
Good luck!!!

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

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coolpinkone
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August 24, 2015 - 4:36 pm
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@AnnyJ .. thanks for the confidence.. I keep saying "any day now .. any day now.."

Honestly I talk more about vibrato than I practice.... I've got something going but for me the amount of tension in my left hand is going to keep me from Vibrato for a while still...  Honestly..it has become an urban myth for me.   I must learn before Dec 21. 🙂

Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato

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Fiddlerman
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August 25, 2015 - 8:23 am
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I believe in you Toni. 🙂
Sometimes things like that come when you are not expecting it.

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

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Ripton
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October 29, 2015 - 7:49 pm
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My biggest challenge are my dry hands. I never seem to be able to get my fingers to stick to the strings without white knuckling the fingerboard and then I rip the viola right out from under my chin.... Would rosin on my fingers help? 

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micra
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October 30, 2015 - 1:52 am
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I can concur regarding the neck ache.  Wasn't sure why all of a sudden after playing for a year suddenly I was getting a neck ache.  I came to the conclusion that it coincided with a week of particularly focused 'metronome' vibrato practice.  I have learned to, when I start to feel discomfort in any area, relax that area.  Even if you have to stop and shake it out, kind of like a 'reset'.  Anytime I start to tense up, I know to do that, because if I don't, pain will surely follow!  Anyway, you can't vibrato if you're tense.  The hardest part for me was figuring out the motion.  Once you do that, it's just a matter of practice relax practice breathe practice.

One thing my teacher did early on to help me visualize the motion was she took a pen and put a dot on the tip of my third finger.  When in position on a note, the dot is on the string, you can't see it.  The arm vibrato motion as you move to the bottom part of the vibrato will reveal the dot.  The tip of your finger is kind of rolling off and on the note, and you can see it by the dot appearing and disappearing.  If that makes any sense.  

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coolpinkone
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November 3, 2015 - 4:49 pm
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@micra 

Oh goodness.. this tip with the dot sounds really like a good plan. Thank you for sharing that.

I havent' worked on Vibrato, because I tried so much and I am still tense.. WAY less that ever... and sometimes a little fingery/ wristy thing happens.

I am going to see about this dotted finger exercise. Thank you!~ 

Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato

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