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Musician History - Who Wasn't A "Natural?"
What musicians, any genre or period, had to work extra hard to learn things that seem to come naturally to others? Technique, intonation, whatever.
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fiddlrgrrl
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February 15, 2016 - 10:20 am
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Suggestions please: For a little inspiration project, I want to read about musicians who overcame not having natural (or even average) ability in some area, or maybe had some physical limitations. For example, besides aging and arthritis, I've always had clumsy fingers and hands, and I think I'll never be able to play fast and still get good sound. And sight reading has always come slow for me even though I do a fair amount of it. I'd like to know how others succeeded in spite of problems. Old classical musicians, contemporary people, or maybe you. Thanks!

Fiddlrgrrl

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KindaScratchy
Massachusetts
February 16, 2016 - 8:02 pm
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This might not be exactly what you're asking for, but here's an article on big stars in the music industry and their performance anxiety:

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/S.....038;page=1

Hope that helps.

When the work's all done and the sun's settin' low,

I pull out my fiddle and I rosin up the bow.

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fiddlrgrrl
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February 17, 2016 - 12:56 am
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Yes, thanks. That was something I had not thought to include, which is funny because I have vehemently hated performing, especially music, since grade school when my parents would show me off whenever company came by, I can still hear my dad saying "play somethin' on the "pie-anna" honey." Just hated that and any other music performance too. In fact, oddly, playing in our local symphony is enjoyable for me, maybe because I'm not alone. I worry more then about my general klutziness, like fear knocking over a music stand or tripping when we enter and exit the stage. ūüôā

what prompted me to ask this question is I feel a little embarrassed for other players to see my music -- I make copies that I can mark up all I want -- I use colored pens to circle time signature changes, repeats, time changes, key changes, and I mark so many bowings and fingering/position changes in pencil. I really need the visual cues even after I'm very familiar with the music. I feel like I have to work terribly hard at these things, practice goes very slow for me for awhile. Sight reading has never been easy for me. I download recordings of all our concert music and that helps a lot. 

Fiddlrgrrl

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ElisaDalViolin
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February 17, 2016 - 6:31 pm
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fiddlrgrrl said

what prompted me to ask this question is I feel a little embarrassed for other players to see my music -- I make copies that I can mark up all I want -- I use colored pens to circle time signature changes, repeats, time changes, key changes, and I mark so many bowings and fingering/position changes in pencil. I really need the visual cues even after I'm very familiar with the music. I feel like I have to work terribly hard at these things, practice goes very slow for me for awhile. Sight reading has never been easy for me. I download recordings of all our concert music and that helps a lot. 

You shouldn't be embarrassed! Have you ever seen orchestra/music chamber sheet music? It often looks like that.¬†I do it too, I like to circle notes with coloured pencils it's easier for me to overcome certain passages. Sometimes I even draw or write little reminders¬†on them. I love to look back and see those all scribbled and coloured sheet music, they are¬†the traces/marks of your long journey ūüôā

I'm also not sure what are you exactly asking for but you can search violinist Adrian Anantawan. He was born without his right hand but that didn't stop him from becoming a profissional musician and uses his experience to help others. He's a big inspiration to all of us.

 
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fiddlrgrrl
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February 18, 2016 - 11:55 am
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Elisa that really made my morning! Especially after I got a nasty jab with a very dirty scissors at work yesterday, right in the tip of my left middle finger, it went clear down to the nail bed. It had a thick bandage all day yesterday because it kept bleeding if I bumped it. (I work in a floral shop.) My first thought was how unfair this is, our local symphony concert is less than a month away and I've been working more diligently than I ever, ever have on music and I've felt such progress, and now this. Well I discovered last night that I could seal the cut (and stop the pain!) with a few coats of new product by Nexcare, just called Skin Crack Care, and a single Steri-Strip wound closure has held it together through 2 hours of playing last night and again this morning! 

But back to the video - what an inspiration! I'd like to know more about his work with special needs kids! 

Also, it jogged my memory of an old MASH episode where Alan Alda had a soldier who was a concert pianist and lost his right hand in combat, and was angry and had lost all his will to do anything. He found him a piece of music, I don't remember the composer, written entirely for the left hand. And of course in the story, they all lived happily ever after. Do you remember seeing that? You might be too young. 

Fiddlrgrrl

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coolpinkone
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February 18, 2016 - 2:42 pm
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Good topics.

 

Great stuff... inspirational.

Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato

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ElisaDalViolin
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February 18, 2016 - 5:58 pm
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fiddlrgrrl said
Elisa that really made my morning! Especially after I got a nasty jab with a very dirty scissors at work yesterday, right in the tip of my left middle finger, it went clear down to the nail bed. It had a thick bandage all day yesterday because it kept bleeding if I bumped it. (I work in a floral shop.) My first thought was how unfair this is, our local symphony concert is less than a month away and I've been working more diligently than I ever, ever have on music and I've felt such progress, and now this. Well I discovered last night that I could seal the cut (and stop the pain!) with a few coats of new product by Nexcare, just called Skin Crack Care, and a single Steri-Strip wound closure has held it together through 2 hours of playing last night and again this morning! 

But back to the video - what an inspiration! I'd like to know more about his work with special needs kids! 

Also, it jogged my memory of an old MASH episode where Alan Alda had a soldier who was a concert pianist and lost his right hand in combat, and was angry and had lost all his will to do anything. He found him a piece of music, I don't remember the composer, written entirely for the left hand. And of course in the story, they all lived happily ever after. Do you remember seeing that? You might be too young. 

I'm glad I helped you ūüôā¬†There are some¬†videos in YT about his acessible music¬†project, where is presented a virtual music instrument software that allows persons with special needs to play music. It's fantastic!

I remember the show, if I'm not mistaken it was aired (or re-aired) here by a memory/oldies tv channel around 2000 but I didn't watch it. 

Wish you a fast recovery!

 
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FiJaPAW
Indianapolis, IN, USA
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April 9, 2016 - 7:28 pm
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Everyone has had to work hard to be where they are today. Even Mozart talked about the time he put in to improve on his craft. His father made him practice tons. Genius is a combination of talent and blood, sweat, tears. 

I am a violinist cycling around the world with my dog, Fiji, and my violin. http://www.FiJaPAW.com

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Jacques
San Diego
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April 15, 2016 - 2:43 am
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A lot of things come into perspective from all different circumstances. For example I consider myself a natural and yes I do work hard to get better[a natural](no pun intended). On social media I see musicians coax sounds with all sorts of technique such as right and even left hand styles. Those techniques come pseudo-natural to them because they spent hours practicing them. Everything takes time and being a natural or pseudo-natural in this sense is only entitled to conversations about different technique. My scale is different than most standard scales, but it comes natural to me. (Although I do mess up a lot) my tempo comes natural to me so that I can play 'the sound of music "making it up as I go"'' and conclude resolving melodies and harmonies. 

 

Now comes the big difference between natural and psuedo-natural I.E. Artistry versa Musicianship. I neither consider tracing nor reading music to be art - that is musicianship which is a craft, and requires technique (bowing and keys). 

 

Now a technique is a habit that used effectively every time. All of which takes practice in one way or the other. Although I do not schedule practice time to learn those techniques - I do practice for fun, and it may seem that it comes natural due to perception of time and events. It's all in perspective because if you watch a fiddle player / violinist and say, "wow he is a natural" you don't know how long it took the individual to learn such a thing. Additionally you only hear what he or she wants you to hear. Imagine the things that he or she really wants to play and the techniques required, but have not obtained. Behold, here is another fiddle player who can play those techniques and the cycle repeats.

The only question is is that person and artist or a musician? 

---

Which do you prefer (artistry or musicianship)?

Was Bach and artist or a musician? 

Personally, i know a few people who become agitated at artistry and who only respect known music. Maybe I am pretentious to my own natural gifts... Or maybe they are jealous? Here is a good read...

http://j2jenkins.com/2013/04/22/the-lost-art-of-improvising-music/

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Fiddlerman
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April 19, 2016 - 7:42 am
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True. Very little in life comes all by itself. Motivation and hard work will go a long way.

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

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