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Learn To Play Fiddle Music By EAR!
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Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 (4 votes) 
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ELCBK
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March 11, 2022 - 9:48 pm
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Probably already posted this video somewhere, but the subject is ALWAYS worth bringing up for people interested in learning Fiddle Tunes! 

Folk/Fiddle Music has traditionally been handed down through the Centuries by watching and HEARING someone or a group of people play it.

Liz Faiella helps with "5 Tips For Learning Fiddle Tunes by Ear".

 

 

I started this thread a while back:

Learn a Tune From a Music Video Thread

 

 

This is a skill ANYONE can learn - you already have some (or you wouldn't be able to play the violin at all).  You just need to practice using it MORE. 

Start training your ears, NOW! 

- Emily

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ABitRusty
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March 11, 2022 - 11:03 pm
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One method that my teacher will use in the group class is to only teach the call part of say the 'A' section of tune.    She will then play the tune and have us only play that part when it comes around.  

Then she will play the response part and have us get that down... then will play the tune through and we only play the response part...

Then will follow same method for the 'B' part.

this works well for AABB type tunes.  

 

It gets easier as you build your earball muscles.  of course we are talking about 16 bars of music with repeated phrases.  but its amazing how difficult it seemed at first.  getting a bit easier though.  use to be like this...

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JohnG
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March 11, 2022 - 11:36 pm
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Looks interesting, I'm a-gonna try it!

The old curmudgeon!

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ABitRusty
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March 11, 2022 - 11:58 pm
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of course it helps alot if someone plays it for you at a speed more like this...

 

as opposed to this...

 

really just a chance to share one of my favorite old time tunes.  😄

 

not to be confused with this... B part different.

or is it?? 

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ELCBK
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March 12, 2022 - 9:00 pm
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Great tips - Thanx!

Couple years ago I would've said, "yeah they're different, they have different names" - but I've since learned my lesson about names.  "Black-eyed Susie" is a little different than "Ducks on The Millpond", though.  Suppose this could just be considered a variation with the different B part notes. 

It is so much nicer learning from a slow version, if you can find one, because you can get a lot of distortion by artificially slowing down the speed too much in the video settings. 

 

I hope everyone will start to make an active effort to listen. 

Ear training can help make learning sharps & flats easier, because our ears help us recognize and judge the distance of how much higher or lower your next note needs to be - from the previous one. 

Learn to listen well, there should be no fear of playing ANY note - string to string, flats or sharps.   

It can be frustrating when starting out, but it becomes easier and easier, the more it's tried (just like everything else). 

Ear training can help with memorizing tunes! 

Trained ears for music, is like having your neighbors help you build a fence - more help is better!

 

 

Ears are good for more than listening! 😁

Loved the "Gera" caracal video - watched some of the others (fun), seems Gera only hates that guy - certainly loves the little girl in the family!  

Madmartigan (not the GIF) acts like "Gera" when Bugsy makes a trip to the Vet without him. (lol)   

- Emily

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ABitRusty
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March 13, 2022 - 12:20 am
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@elcbk said..."Black-eyed Susie" is a little different than "Ducks on The Millpond", though.  Suppose this could just be considered a variation with the different B part notes. 

my thoughts too.  If you search youll find them both listed and i havent found anything yet that ties one to the other.  probably Bill taught Sue and Sue taught Randy and Randy got the B part a little different either accidental or on purpose and called it one or the other.  again either on purpose or couldnt remmeber the name.  Thats me throwing a wild assumption out because i havent asked anyone or found an interwebs that lists anything.

 

Learning one by ear helps the memory for sure.   especially listening to it over and over again.  and things that whoever is teaching says when teaching helps.. like. the A part starts with an A arpeggio...then you walk down the scale.   litlle clues that for whatever hang around in the brain.  Or things like start with a fat 1 ( first finger covering 2 strings ) onthe D and A string.  Or things like...this one starts just like that other tune.   

sheet music is a big help too.  I think a mix of both is good.  Opens up a lot more to you.  outside of fiddle tunes i think its alot to ask to expect someone to listen to say a performance of a bach piece and get all that committed to memory like it was intended.  I know people do..which is even more impressive.

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LinDee
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March 13, 2022 - 12:39 am
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Thanks ELBCK - I appreciated the share of the video.  Learning to pay by ear is one of the things I feel will be most challenging to me, so I appreciate the advice in the video 

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LinDee

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ELCBK
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March 13, 2022 - 6:14 am
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@LinDee -

I was hoping you'd see that! 

Any questions, ask!  

I was inspired by this Video Series - and I decided I wanted to be able to sit down with anyone, just like this, learn what they liked to play & jam with others. 

Here's the 1st in the Series of "Sligo Style" - the others are linked, if you wish to watch.

 

 

Sligo Style - 4 Part Series Playlist

There's more like this in threads on the forum, if you are interested.

https://i.pinimg.com/originals/18/21/9d/18219d74b9516c673a11effee5a9c8e1.png

 

...I gave 'learning by ear' a try and it soon paid off, as this was the only way I could learn some music I loved that wasn't published.  By the time my 1st year rolled around, I was learning tunes very quickly.  😊

- Emily

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ELCBK
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March 13, 2022 - 11:34 am
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@ABitRusty -

 

Learning one by ear helps the memory for sure. especially listening to it over and over again. and things that whoever is teaching says when teaching helps.. like. the A part starts with an A arpeggio...then you walk down the scale. litlle clues that for whatever hang around in the brain. Or things like start with a fat 1 (first finger covering 2 strings) on the D and A string. Or things like...this one starts just like that other tune.

sheet music is a big help too. I think a mix of both is good. Opens up a lot more to you. outside of fiddle tunes i think its alot to ask to expect someone to listen to say a performance of a bach piece and get all that committed to memory like it was intended. I know people do..which is even more impressive. 

 

I'm sure I'd have trouble memorizing pieces if I relied on sheet music for anything more than a reference.

I find myself running into trouble, even now, if I play along too much with a video or CD.  Think maybe I cue off the backing or something & zone out - like I'm playing on automatic! 😳 

- Emily

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ABitRusty
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March 13, 2022 - 2:50 pm
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@elcbk said "...Think maybe I cue off the backing or something & zone out - like I'm playing on automatic"

I dont know..everyone is different.  I certainly agree with learning by ear as much as possibel.  I think what you said about cue off backing and zone out is exactly a skill needed when playing music with ohers.  I dont mean  zoning out as in not being in the moment..  But being able to not have to think about what youre doing and listening to everyone else along with yourself.  Being able to adjust i guess.  Its something i know that alot if not most that read this dont have an interests in.  And Its something im working on.  You are correct in that if you get a say..performance piece thats commercially recorded sorta in your head it can sometimes get in the way.  

But the part about learning by ear applies.  Listen to whats going on and adjusts.

As you said sheet music is a reference for this stuff.   A map of the notes.  Ill use it to remember what a tune was that was taught that i hadnt heard before.  Ill also always try and record it in the class or session setting and also search for different versions online.  

Nothing wrong or right about what helps any individual.  Sorta got off your topic I know and bottom line that youre trying to make is important I feel is..you have to listen to folk/traditional music to get it.  The feel is difficult to notate out. 

If anyone reads this that hasnt went to a session before and plans on it.  TAKE a recording device and use it after asking if its ok.   Use that to play along with later and as is the topic..learn the tunes from it if possible.  Thats the source youll be playing with.   If you dont plan on that.. find something you like and listen to that.  

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ELCBK
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March 14, 2022 - 8:42 am
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@ABitRusty -

You aren't getting off topic - LOVE your suggestions! 

Especially this one: 

If anyone reads this that hasnt went to a session before and plans on it. TAKE a recording device and use it after asking if its ok. Use that to play along with later and as is the topic..learn the tunes from it if possible. Thats the source youll be playing with. If you dont plan on that.. find something you like and listen to that.

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ELCBK
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April 23, 2022 - 11:26 pm
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More 'by ear' stuff - TUNING!

...might've posted this somewhere else, but still good to bring up. 

Here's a great tutorial for "Advance Tuning for Violin & Other String Instruments" by Lora Staples (Red Dessert Violin)! 

 

 

I'm still feeling a little overwhelmed with cross-tuning, down-tuning, upside down tuning (lol) and now banjo tunings!  So, I threw the clip-on tuner aside for the laptop & my new favorite YouTube Channel - Rockstar Rant's "Tuners" - for EVERYTHING STRINGS!

47 Tuning Videos - Rockstar Rant

 

https://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Ma6J8YnGAiA/VkvP79vsVvI/AAAAAAAABbw/B-DyEBVmtGM/w1200-h630-p-k-no-nu/one-man-band7.jpg

...well, almost everything strings. 

OH RATS!  Just saw VIOLA D & A are off by an OCTAVE (Rockstar Rant)! 

If anyone finds anything else wrong, please let us all know!

- Emily 

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