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It is my pleasure to join this forum. My name is Jim and I live in North East PA. I am 62 years old and am a retired school teacher of 27 years and now running my own home business "MoonShadows Farm" for the past 13 years. We sell jams, salsas, bbq sauces, etc.
I am brand spanking new to the fiddle, except for years of listening to this magnificent instrument. The violin has always been my favorite instrument to listen to whether it be classical or a good bluegrass tune. My limited musical experience goes back to about one year of piano lessons when I was a teenager.
I always dreamed of playing the fiddle, (My preference is country and bluegrass.), but figured I was too old to take it up and learn, however recently I started Googling and read of other "senior citizens" learning the fiddle and their enjoyment with it and happiness that they finally made the move. So, yesterday, the first thought I had when I woke up was, "What the heck am I waiting for?"
I have been looking at fiddles for a while and had a few on my "wish list" from various places, but was reluctant to purchase since I know nothing. But, when I found Fiddlerman, I was so impressed by what I read and the videos I watched, that I knew my first fiddle would be purchased right here. Yesterday, I purchased the Fiddlerman Concert Violin Outfit.
I can't wait for it to arrive! My plan is to follow the lessons provided on this website to get started and at some point get a teacher locally even if just for a lesson here and there.
I like forums and belong to two gardening forums (my green house and vegetables is another passion), so I look forward to becoming an active member here. I'm sure I will be asking for a lot of advice, and who knows, maybe some day I will be able to give some advice to someone who is where I am now.
Welcome Jim @MoonShadows
Since you're into growing things, I guess nobody has to remind you that patience is a great virtue when picking up a new instrument, especially the violin 🙂
If the teacher in you is looking for a method book to accompany the Fiddlerman teaching videos, you'll find several suggestions elsewhere on the forum. Somewhere, Fiddlerman mentioned that he likes "Essential Elements for beginners". There's nothing in there that you can't pick up elsewhere on the web but it has the mega advantage of putting it all in a logical, digestible learning progression.
So much for unsolicited advice
Glad to have you on board and enjoy that lovely new violin when it arrives.
Thanks cid and bocaholly. Patience was never one of my virtues, but you are right; Growing plants certainly has helped me develop much more patience, and from everything I have been reading, I already know learning the violin will take a lot of patience, and I am determined.
Hello and welcome to this forum you are gonna start a great new journey with your new violin. This forum is really helpful with kind people. I’m playing for 1 year now and I still enjoy every moment I play, even if it’s still difficult. Lots of fun with your new violin 🎻
Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about dancing in the rain!!
Welcome. If you are looking for brutally honest feedback on your salsa and bbq sauce, I am willing... Welcome to the violin/fiddle. I started when I was a kid and took a lot of time off, so am relearning. There is a wealth of knowledge here. I have improved my playing a lot since I joined. The violin/fiddle has always been my favorite instrument to listen to as well. I look forward to hearing about your progress.
@bocaholly @MoonShadows I used Essential Elements before I found an instructor. A benefit is, you can register online and play the pieces with the online version. It is great. If I recall, this was the one that you could actually have the online music slowed down until you can go full speed. I did another book with online registration, too. Both are very helpful.
Why does my violin have so many wrong notes? 🎻 😱
Welcome Jim from PA, from Jim from North Central Jersey...
I am another 'late' starter, picking up my first violin about 18 months ago at the age of 60 (A Fiddlerman Master, good choice using Fiddlerman). It is great to record yourself playing and say when listening to it, I DID THAT and it almost is a recognizable tune 🙂 !
Essential Strings, as others have suggested. I used it prior to finding a teacher and he used it for a couple of months at first.
Have fun, relax and understand you WILL make mistakes (I saw Pearlman a few months ago, THREE squeaking bows in a row, he just kept on going)...
To play a wrong note is insignificant; To play without passion is inexcusable. - Ludwig van Beethoven
My journey began on Aug 3 2017
Welcome Jim-from-PA @MoonShadows !
Similar age, similar fiddle journey here. In fact, apart from an old 1980's Chinese fiddle which I happened to have, but never played - the FM Concert was my first choice. It's a great beginner-to-early-intermediate-player instrument.
I warn you though, new fiddle friend, it is a slippery slope - somewhat over 4 years now, and I own 5 of the devil's own instrument !!!! 🙂 It's like they breed when you're not looking..... Collective term for fiddles ? A fecundity of fiddles, perhaps....
Seriously - I'm sure you'll enjoy both your instrument and the forum, welcome !
I seriously recommend not copying my mistakes. D'oh -
Please make your own, different mistakes, and help us all learn :-)
O M G @BillyG you crack me up!!
One guarantee I can give you.. if you stay with it, work hard at it, practice as often as you can, you will never regret playing violin. And your violin will return to you far more than you give it... in enjoyment, pleasure, fulfillment and happiness.
I don’t know what I would do if I didn’t have my violin. She is truly the love of my life!
This forum is so helpful too! Everyone here wants to see you succeed with violin! You have a whole community of support here.
I would also advise to find a violin teacher if you can possibly manage it. As you begin violin you may find it somewhat uncomfortable at first. Some people even experience some pain for a little while. And there is a temptation to try and avoid the discomfort by using some incorrect positions, postures or techniques. So the advantage of a teacher, especially when beginning violin, is your teacher can spot any incorrect ways to play and correct them immediately before they become a bad habit, or even result in injury, which would prolong your initial learning and become prohibitive. Some players even stop altogether because of injury as a result of incorrect posture or position and that is a trajety. So even with books or videos, those learning tools should be considered suplimentery to lessons in my opinion.
Have an awesome time with violin! And as I always say... Keep Playing!
- Pete -
Wow, so many warm welcomes and good advice. Thank you all. I think I am going to like it here. My Fiddlerman Concert Violin is scheduled to arrive on Monday, February 3rd. I'm like a kid at Christmas.
Right now, I am looking at online lessons, but a teacher is part of my plan, just not sure in which capacity.
Do any of you have experience with the book: Old-Time Fiddle for the Complete Ignoramus! (https://nativeground.com/product/old-time-fiddle-for-the-complete-ignoramus/) I picked it up for $22 while I figure out some online sources, which I am sure after I get started will lead me to finding a living-breathing teacher.
Also, any feedback you might be able to give me about the following online courses if you have any experience.
1. ArtistsWorks Fiddle lessons with Darol Anger. (https://artistworks.com/fiddle-lessons-darol-anger)
2. The Brainjo Method of Learning the Old Time Fiddle. (https://oldtimefiddle.net/). This method looks really good. Watch a couple of the videos on the homepage to see the theory.
I imagine there must be a section on here somewhere to ask for reviews about these 3 sources and/or there might already be reviews. I will search, but I figured I'd ask here.
Hope you are all keeping warm with this brutal cold.
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