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What music instruments are you best at?
Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 (1 votes) 
Mark Duin
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June 6, 2013 - 1:12 am
Member Since: June 5, 2013
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There may be two, three, or may be tens of music instruments that you may play. Which is the only one you can best outstandingly better than the rest? I can play harmonica, piano, and guitar but I'm good at piano! I can play variety of songs and can compose music too.


My second question is, what makes you motivated to keep going and practicing with your instruments? There are sometimes when I can't compose any good music then I become likely to give up. I get frustrated very easily at things when they don't happen according to my wish. But then I say to myself, "you are failure way success". That sentence boosts me again to keep going and eventually I come up with a better composition.

Byron Bay Australia

June 6, 2013 - 6:03 am
Member Since: April 22, 2012
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You actually mean 'GOOD' at.

Darn..... None rofl


What keeps me motivated? I would very much like to be good at the fiddle.

Seen it all. Done it all. Can't remember most of dunno ..... What was I saying???? facepalm

Merritt Island, Fla
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June 6, 2013 - 1:20 pm
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"There may be two, three, or may be tens of music instruments that you may play. Which is the only one you can best outstandingly better than the rest?"

Out of the three (Violin, Piano, Guitar) I am learning, the Violin is my best one! Hands down so to speak.


"My second question is, what makes you motivated to keep going and practicing with your instruments?"

I like the challenge, the feeling of accomplishment, the earning potential once Im really good and being able to play nice with others.

"Please play some wrong notes, so that we know that you are human" - said to Jascha Heifetz.


June 6, 2013 - 2:31 pm
Member Since: May 4, 2012
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Guitar.  No doubt in my mind on that.  Violin wouldn't even be close, since I'm a ways from being "good" at it yet.  Violin/fiddle probably wouldn't rank higher than maybe 5th or so in terms of "good", even though it easily takes up at least half of my practice/playing time every day.  LOL  But that's fine, since I've only been playing violin for a little over a year. 

I play guitar (acoustic 6 and 12 string, and electric), electric bass guitar, keyboards, dulcimer, flute, autoharp, harp, oud, and some others that I would more say I play "at", sometimes.


What keeps me motivated?  I love being a musician and being able to play.  If you don't practise and learn, you can't play much or very well.  If you want to get good, you practice and play every day.  It is that simple.

Any instrument or music in general can be frustrating at first.  But the more you learn and the more experience you get, the more enjoyable it is to play.  Then the frustrations come less often and are less severe.  It is just who you are and what you do.

"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

Midwest, US

June 6, 2013 - 6:46 pm
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Let's see....

1) Bass Guitar & Trumpet.  That's only because I have over 20 years of experience with both and have been classically trained on that's a bit unfair.  Although, I fiddle everyday in hopes of being "good!" lol

2)  My motivation to keep playing and practicing comes from allowing my music to be an extension of myself, much like someone would take to journaling or writing in a diary.  I try to incorporate music into the many different aspects of my life such as physical therapy, inspiration from a good movie or book and stress relief.  I like to look at life as inspiration for music!

“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” ~Benjamin Franklin



Pullman,WA, USA

June 6, 2013 - 9:11 pm
Member Since: May 12, 2013
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i play guitar  blues harmonica, violin and dobro/lap steel.

I'm best at guitar; I have been playing for 44 years, including time in several gigging bands (mostly 1970s rock and pop) and a hobby band.(50-60s) and some jazzy trios. I'm probably an advanced intermediate fingerstyle guitarist. I'm currently working on the Mancini "Pink Guitar" collection and the Great American Songbook Solo Finger Style self-study master class arranged by Mark Hanson.

At the other end of the scale is the violin;  I've been playing since about April Fools Day 2013 (hopefully no commentary built into that) so am a rank novice.  I took two local lessons to make sure i was holding and bowing approximately right but have been travelling so much I haven't schedule another one yet.  I can play with decent intonation and even play in front of my bandmates in the hobby band;  Mostlly Tennessee waltz and minor-key blues jamming to House of the Rising Sun and St James Infirmary ala fiddlermans blues jammin' secrets.

Music is my response to job stress;  playing and learning new pieces and instruments fully occupies the brain, so it can't wander off to work worries. And, I just enjoy both the learning journey and then sharing the performance.

Engineer by day; musician by night (and at heart)

Main Guitar: Reverend PA-1 in Black

Violin:  NS Design Wav 5 Electric 5 string Violin (Schizophrenic instrument: doesn't know if its a violin or viola)


"Make every note beautiful", Ivan Galamian

“To play a wrong note is INSIGNIFICANT; To play without PASSION is INEXCUSABLE!” , Ludvig Van Beethovan

"It ain't rocket surgery"

June 6, 2013 - 10:36 pm
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I'm learning the mandolin, tin whistle, finger style guitar, and of course, the fiddle. I used to play brass instruments several lifetimes ago when I didn't have to worry about paying the bills.

My motivation comes from realizing that nothing brings me joy, relief, contentment, happiness (however you want to say it) like playing an instrument does. I know I can make good sounds eventually and I have days where just playing scales is wonderful (those rare days when my intonation is spot on). I'm essentially a beginning novice on these instruments, but view myself as a life long musician. I had just forgotten that for a good number of years.

So if I have an off day or whatever and nothing sounds good, I do my best to enjoy the sounds I can make. Life is short and it just gets shorter without music. The frustrations  and ill feelings at times are all part of the learning curve as I see it. Every frustration is just another step up on the staircase of mastery. Enjoy it, accept it, and move past least that's what I try to tell

Southern California

June 14, 2013 - 12:19 am
Member Since: May 13, 2013
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I play Guitar, Harp, Mandolin, and now Violin  (do you see a common thread... or is that string?)  I'm probably best at Guitar,  but I love trying unexpected types of music on the harp,  and I am absolutely loving the violin!

 What keeps me motivated is the joy I get from music!  I find the music soothing, and relaxing at times, and exhilarating at other times.  My job is very regimented, and by the numbers (market analyst) so music is a way to just be free and play. 

“Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent” 

Trondheim, Norway

June 14, 2013 - 10:12 am
Member Since: October 11, 2012
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I'm not good at any instruments, but the instrument I'm best at are definitly the violin. Whats keeping me motivated are the progress and the music I'm listening to. The violin makes me happy, so thats motivating me the most. 

'Armed with theory, practice becomes meaningful. Through practice, theory becomes fulfilled.' - Egon von Neindorff.

California, the place of my heart
June 14, 2013 - 12:45 pm
Member Since: January 11, 2012
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I have a Cello... and I can bow the open strings and play a note or two on the D -String... and Twinkle. :) ..(the Cello seems more forgiving with a newbie least to my ears...but he is a BEAST)

My motivation with violin come in different forms.  In the beginning it was hard to find the motivation, even though I really longed to play music and it was my second choice. Piano being the first. (no piano..sigh).

Now I am very very passionate about the violin.  My motivation comes from the time I have vested, my ever broadening awareness of the violin, the music, the different genres of music, and my love of the sound of the violin.

 I am wonderfully enchanted by the violin!

The friends here remain a constant source of motivation also.




Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato


June 16, 2013 - 1:34 pm
Member Since: July 6, 2011
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I had played quite a few instruments, good at NONE :P

A Chinese expression: there are a lot of knives hanging on me, none of them are sharp.

I guess I am best at my voice, I can sing (or hum) pretty much in tune and songs that I like, but I am not good at remembering lyrics (My dad used to call me queen of one line lyric because I usually could only remember one line, although I am good at remember the tune and my daughter hates it when I hum la la la or bla bla bla when I forgot the lyric) and I am very good at mixing songs -- I could pick a phrase from one song and put it in another song (without realizing that I am doing it) unless someone picks it up.

BTW, according to my daughter, voice is the only instrument that one could hear in his/her brain. 

June 17, 2013 - 8:55 pm
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I'm not outstanding on any instrument, but of all the instruments I play (guitar, fiddle, flute, fife, recorder and, now, tin whistle), I'm best at the guitar.


What motivates me to keep practicing? Hmmm. I'd say it's having something new. With the guitar, I've gone through spells when I didn't play very the extent that I lost my callouses. A few years ago, my husband gave me a new guitar and all of a sudden all I wanted to do was play it.

Then, a year and four months ago (who's counting?), he gave me my violin and ever since, I've been obsessed with playing it...probably because everything about it is new. I hope that feeling never wears off.

Also, having a goal is great motivation to practice and provides focus. The group projects that Fiddlerman organizes are a great example. They give me something specific to learn and practice, and, importantly, a deadline.

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

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

Rødvig Stevns, Danmark
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June 20, 2013 - 4:02 am
Member Since: April 30, 2013
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Mark Duin said
There may be two, three, or may be tens of music instruments that you may play. Which is the only one you can best outstandingly better than the rest? I can play harmonica, piano, and guitar but I'm good at piano! I can play variety of songs and can compose music too.


My second question is, what makes you motivated to keep going and practicing with your instruments? There are sometimes when I can't compose any good music then I become likely to give up. I get frustrated very easily at things when they don't happen according to my wish. But then I say to myself, "you are failure way success". That sentence boosts me again to keep going and eventually I come up with a better composition.

I do not understand the expression: "you are failure way success". I do not know what that is intended to mean ?


If I said to myself "you are failure way success" I would not know what I meant either. So I can determine neither what the author meant, nor what I would mean if I thought the same expression. I even cannot imagine myself thinking that sequence of words. "I am failure way success" as a self-reflection does not suggest any concrete defined meaning to me either.


"Which is the only one you can best oustandingly better than the rest ?"

I had lessons on one instrument for 8 years, another for 2 or 3 years, and another for 3 months. So far I have been practicing the viola for 2½-3 months (no formal lessons, but I learn from the Fiddlerman, RedDesertViolin, OnlinePianoTutor, ViolinOnline, University of North Carolina etc videos, thanks to them all, as well as studying two authoritative treatises (books) on viola pedagogy).


I want to erase the word "best" from the question, that should be some other word in the question (for my answer anyway).

The only one I might best  (sic, learn) outstandingly better (sic, more profoundly / longer)  than the rest is the viola. I stopped learning the other three in 1974, 1969, and 1969 respectively. I do not intend to ever leave or surrender or stop learning the viola, and it is small enough that it can conveniently come with me wherever I go, unlike the other three. If I live long enough I will have the viola for hopefully another 35 years.


In terms of motivation. I was self-motivated for the first two instruments. The third instrument was a compulsory free subject for all high school students where I went to school. It was not my first choice of four nominations (my first choice was violin I think, but I got put in the cello group, cello was at number four). The viola, now the fourth instrument I have taken up, is self-motivated, multi-faceted, partly emotional, partly self-improvement, partly aesthetic, and more besides. Some of the motivation is related to an ostensibly anti-competitive Einzalgänger violinist with whom I share much in common.

(Writing that last sentence, I want to explain that a viola is an acoustically crippled instrument that usually supports one or more violins while remaining in the background itself. Although the viola is acoustically imperfect I still prefer its sound/timbre, and it suits me "psychologically". The 8 year instrument also suits me psychologically, but they are built into buildings and cannot accompany me in terms of travel, and are sufficiently powerful that if pressed they can drown out any other instrument or any other combination of instruments - i.e. not "accompanists".)


June 20, 2013 - 8:23 am
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I play guitar and the viddle. The guitar is what I am most comfortable with, it ROCKs me.
I picked up the viddle because I have always wanted it, everytime I would here it in music I would get all sparkly inside.

What motivates me?? > I have a few tunes I have put together with the guitar and just have to have some viddle with it.
I thought about doing some collabs with viddle players but haven't found anyone to do so. So, I have to learn it and play with myself.
My only regret with this venture is > I haven't touched my guitar for about 5 months. Don't have time > the little time I have to practice goes to the viddle.


June 21, 2013 - 12:47 am
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What motivates me? For singing, I tend to sing when I'm stressed out, happy, upset, for fun, need to sing (to keep babies happy), sing my thoughts or sing what I want to say....(when I do this I make up songs) ....

I'm kind of like kindascratchy, when the instrument is new, I will be doing it for a while, then the heat wears off. I have done that with harmonica, guitar, flute, and erhu. In the past, what kept me going on some of the instruments was to take lessons.

I started to play violin about two years ago, I played like crazy everyday for a few months, then I hit the bottle neck and began to play on and off. Finally, I felt if I want to keep going and get better at it, I will have to take lessons. I have been taking lessons for about six months now. I agree with kindascratchy that having a goal keeps me going, and my goal is to keep up with my daughter and taking lessons is supporting my goal -- practice everyday so I could keep up with my daughter.  So, ever since I started taking lessons, I have been playing everyday (did I or did I not?) There are days that I don't feel like playing, too tired to play..., but I play, for children, or just some songs that I enjoy ...To be honest, playing songs for lessons could be a burden but sometimes I get to choose a songs that I like to play:))

King for a Day, Peasant for many

June 21, 2013 - 3:39 pm
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I'm curious if Youtube thru my computer and the Stereo with surroundsound qualify as a musical instrument, 'cause I can play them really well! facepalm


Without them, I probably wouldn't be half as good as I think I am now at playing the violin.

"If you practice with your hands you must practice all day. Practice with your mind and you can accomplish the same amount in minutes." Nathan Milstein

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