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To give you some background I'm a 21 year old with very little musical background and am considering learning to play the violin. For me, it is not a question of if I want to play because I do very badly and have since I was little. To me, there is no more beautiful instrument than the violin; just hearing the sound gives me chills. The only issue is while I can find the money to afford a violin and supplies, I definitely cannot afford any lessons on top of that and I tend to move frequently so it would be unrealistic to be constantly searching for a teacher.
Unfortunately my hopes of learning the violin were dashed when I began researching self-teaching online and found the vast majority of information saying it is absolutely impossible to learn the violin without a formal teacher and if one attempts to do so he/she will badly injure themselves and never be able to play a single song. A few days ago I was diagnosed with depression and realized I need to find something that I can do for the simple reason that I enjoy doing it. I realize it won't be sunshine and daisies as for some reason it seems I have become solely infatuated with one of the most difficult instruments to teach yourself (why oh why doesn't the piano make my heart sing like the violin?!). However, I am not one to give up on things easily and am not afraid of failure. I guess what I am asking is am I being completely unrealistic in entertaining the idea even if I can't get formal instruction if I only ever plan to play for myself and my own enjoyment?
Sorry for the novel!
Quite a few people on this forum are self-taught. I don't recall seeing a lot of heinous injuries happening and a lot definitely do learn to play songs. Some have had little or no previous musical background.
I'd say you should give it a shot. You'll never know until you try.
"This young wine may have a lot of tannins now, but in 5 or 10 years it is going to be spectacular, despite the fact that right now it tastes like crude oil. You know this is how it is supposed to taste at this stage of development." ~ Itzhak Perlman
If hearing the violin played by those that can make it sing sends chills through ya > then my thoughts are yes, you can do it without an instructor by hanging out on sites like this. Sounds like you gots the passion for it > I feel that having the passion to play is most important. I, like you, have always wanted to play the violin\fiddle > so I finally started. This site has been very helpful so far. And it is very active with information and vids on playing.> ROCKs!!!
Thank you so much everyone! I know (as countless of my friends and sites have told me rather belligerently) that I will probably pick up bad habits teaching myself which is why I stayed away for so long. But for me the reality is I can't get a teacher so it's either self taught or no violin at all (probably in my lifetime) and quite honestly I don't care if I develop bad habits as long I am having fun and (eventually) like the sound. After finding this site and all of these encouraging people I decided to go for it! You all have no idea how much hope you've given me and because of some events in my life hope is very hard to come by. Thank you all so much.
Most of us are self taught or have a few hourly lessons from time to time when we can manage. It is a great instrument. most here do not play because our goal is to be a world class performer. We play because we love the sound, the feel, the skill it takes to be a decent player. There are so many different playing styles and there is absolutely no limit to the genre of music you can play to.
It is addicting. Its a great addiction to have. You start spending time with it and it becomes part of your life. You say you have depression and I am sorry to hear that. One thing about the violin is it doesn't matter to it. It can take you to places you never knew existed. Its the friend who never says no. You don't have to be happy when you start your play or practice, but for some reason, your spirits get lifted and world concerns do melt away while you are. You don't have to be a great player to have a great time. You just need to invest even a few minutes a day into your growth with it.
progress can be extremely slow, but when you do reach a plateau or conquer part of a piece you are working on, the feeling is exhilarating.
oh, by the way, most here are at beginner level or just beyond. I am at about 9 months in my playing, almost 10.. and I can already spell VOILIN
"I find your lack of Fiddle, disturbing" - Darth Vader
Welcome to the Forum!
Just so you know, you are not alone! Just because you dont have a private teacher in person doesnt mean you dont have a wonderful support group here. We all help each other in anyways we can. You are not alone.
If I can help in anyway, lemme know. Pfish.
"Please play some wrong notes, so that we know that you are human" - said to Jascha Heifetz.
The support group here does ROCK!! > I have had two lessons > it was on the guitar > If one wants to learn > one will > Its all about > How much ya want it. > Theory is imperative > With me I just gots to know what it is I am doing. The internet is SWEET cause you can learn all ya want , if ya really want to learn it. > To have an instructor is always A+++++ but it ya can't > doesn't mean you can't. Music is a wonderful thing for the soul. > I, because I can not attend Jullliard, am self taught. Although I would LOVE to enroll. To be in that musical environment would be SWEET!! > But I a gonna hang here for now.
I'm also one of these folks who most likely won't get a teacher. If you really want to learn, you'll learn somehow. Whether its all by yourself, by a book or by other folks on the internet. You couldn't get any other support group then this Fiddlerman gang. You don't need lessons, it's just something that's nice to have if you can afford it. If not, you can learn by yourself. A cheap well-cared violin is better then a expensive one that's neglected and bearly played. Well, that's at least what I want to believe lol
'Armed with theory, practice becomes meaningful. Through practice, theory becomes fulfilled.' - Egon von Neindorff.
I too am not expecting to have many (if any) lesson, purely because I can't afford it, but I found this site when I started to learn, which was barely a month ago, and have found everyone to be really helpful
My biggest problem with musical instruments is a give up too easily, but there is something about the violin which just speaks to me, so I know how you feel when you say it gives you chills.
Like I said, I've only been playing a month and I have already improved by bowing and fingering from when I started, I can play the G Major scale reasonably, and am starting the D major scale. I can't wait to be able to play even a simple piece like Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
As the Home page for this Fiddlerman site says, "I will teach you to play the violin for free". He's not kidding, either. If you watch all his very-beginner videos over and over, you will learn the correct way to play right from the beginning, assuming you follow his advice. There is nothing natural about playing the violin--everything you do from holding the box to holding the violin to placing your left hand fingers is all new for your body to learn how to do. It takes time, and there will always be periods where you wonder what you got yourself into, especially if learning on your own without live lessons. We all feel like giving up now and then. The first 6 months are traditionally when beginners quit. So if you stick with it and keep doing that daily practice, even if "only" 10 minutes/day, then you will progress. (I would suggest if you can find more time to try to do more than 10 minutes a day.) And if you are already playing a G scale halfway in tune, then you are more than ready to learn one of the simple tunes such as the Twinkle you mention. You know all the notes since it's readily played in the G scale. If you can play the G scale in the two full octaves then you have a choice of learning Twinkle two different places--either starting on the low G on the bottom G string or on the middle G on the D string. In fact you should learn it both places as it will enhance your playing and learning. If you need more help starting out on Twinkle than what you can find on your own, email me and I'll help you out. email@example.com And when you master the D scale you can then play Twinkle in that key!
So don't give up no matter how bad a given practice day might seem, just keep at it and you will make progress.