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Ashokan Farewell-Practice video
Record of my progress on tunes
Topic Rating: 0 Topic Rating: 0 Topic Rating: 0 Topic Rating: 0 Topic Rating: 0 Topic Rating: 0 (0 votes) 
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starise
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April 16, 2019 - 1:10 pm
Member Since: September 9, 2016
Forum Posts: 57
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So I've heard a child prodigy play this and beat the pants off of me....that's ok. I'm still only a beginner . My future goals are to

- play perfectly clean

-put the double stops in like Jay Unger does

-work on the vibrato

-improve intonation

-train fingers to play lower and use shifting more.

I can'r clearly see the bow angles because of my bad eye sight close up, so I tend to feel it more than see it. If anyone has suggestions on how to keep a straighter bow, like maybe use something as a guide point I'm all ears. I'm not blind but things are really fuzzy where the bow lays.

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GregW
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April 16, 2019 - 1:40 pm
Member Since: February 10, 2019
Forum Posts: 190
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Way to go!  Sounding like Ashokan for sure.  Im working through these items as well save vibrato..not even attempting that one yet.  I think the straight bow tends to be a recongizing the sound not being straight can make.  Also the big help is either using video or as Ive been told, use a mirror... but its weird trying to play and watching in a mirror.  Like the pat belly rub hair thing or something.. For me anyway..  I think just playing alot with a video and watching for the crooked bow and listening to how it sounds at that point may help if you havent done any of that yet.

Good job.

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MoonShadows
Stroudsburg, PA
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April 16, 2019 - 1:45 pm
Member Since: January 30, 2019
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@starise Wow! For someone who is a beginner, I think you did a great job; I kid you not! I also thought you did a good job of keeping your bow straight.

You might want to watch this Eddy Chen video for more tips. I have watched it a few times and found it helpful.

If you are having problems seeing where your bow lies, you might want to try this trick because it is more something you can visualize in your head rather than something you have to watch:

When bowing, imagine the violin is the center of a big clock and that the ends of the bow are the hands. When down bowing on the D string, imagine the frog is reaching out to the 3 on the clock, when upbowing, the tip reaching out to the 9. When bowing on the A string, the bow reaching out to the 4 O’clock and 10 O’clock positions. (You can figure out the other strings.) This image helps to keep the bow straight all the way through the stroke and not curve inward, or outward, at about the half way point. It forces to reach and push out with the wrist, instead of it pulling inward.

Jim

Fiddling for Older Folks

There are only two things keeping me from becoming a great fiddler...My right hand and my left hand. 

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MoonShadows
Stroudsburg, PA
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April 16, 2019 - 1:50 pm
Member Since: January 30, 2019
Forum Posts: 311
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GregW said
Way to go!  Sounding like Ashokan for sure.  Im working through these items as well save vibrato..not even attempting that one yet.  I think the straight bow tends to be a recongizing the sound not being straight can make.  Also the big help is either using video or as Ive been told, use a mirror... but its weird trying to play and watching in a mirror.  Like the pat belly rub hair thing or something.. For me anyway..  I think just playing alot with a video and watching for the crooked bow and listening to how it sounds at that point may help if you havent done any of that yet.

Good job.  

I agree with you @GregW when it comes to watching for a straight bow while sitting sideways to a mirror. I read this trick the other day. I haven't tried it, but I thought...hey, this might just work. I call it the Chalk Hack.

  • You will need some ordinary white or light coloured chalk.
  • Apply the chalk to the end of your fingerboard. Don’t worry, it will rub off when you don’t need it and is almost invisible to anyone else.
  • Look at the two pictures below. Both bows are placed at the tip on the D string.

bow-at-tip.jpg

  • The bow on the left is crooked, not straight as we say, not parallel to the bridge. The bow on the right is parallel to the bridge and the hair forms a perfect plus sign (+) with the string.
  • If you were to seesaw the bow on the right between the lower and upper strings, you would see that it would remain equidistant from the bridge on all strings.
  • As you look closely at the pictures, you will see a dark crescent shaped shadow between bow hair and the chalk marked edge of the fingerboard. This crescent shape can also be used as a frame of reference as you gaze through the bow hair and stick when you are playing.
  • After you have mastered how a parallel bow looks on the D string you will want to transfer that knowledge to your other strings. The angles will be similar but not exactly the same.
  • Your final step will be to use these methods of seeing as you are playing, initially with another person or video present to give you feedback as to what is straight and whether this method is working for you.
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Jim

Fiddling for Older Folks

There are only two things keeping me from becoming a great fiddler...My right hand and my left hand. 

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BillyG
Brora, North-east Scotland
April 17, 2019 - 2:45 am
Member Since: March 22, 2014
Forum Posts: 2876
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Well done and good progress there @starise thumbs-up

As regards your quest for "straighter bowing" - I think it has been said by others - I particularly like Jim's post regarding the chalk, above @MoonShadows 

Keep up the good work 🙂 

I seriously recommend not copying my mistakes. D'oh - guntohead.JPG

Please make your own, different mistakes, and help us all learn :-)

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starise
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April 17, 2019 - 8:31 am
Member Since: September 9, 2016
Forum Posts: 57
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Thanks guys for all of these helpful comments and for the kudos. I plan to keep working on it and record it again later.

I'm at work so I can't watch the video, I will watch it later at home. Thank you Moonshadows!

Greg, I liked your pat the belly, rub the head comment. Reminds me of playing the violin in general. I was watching a violin video last night. In the video they gave an example showing how the right hand can be affected by the left hand. In the 1st example the person played a challenging passage while not moving her left hand. In the 2nd example she played the same passage using both hands.

The 1st example was flawless. In the 2nd example there was a slight performance hit concerning the flow of the bow arm. She could still play it, but clearly the brain was trying to dictate instructions to multiple things at the same time and the video showed it. She could still play it well but her bow arm stiffened up a bit making some of her playing more shoulder instead of wrist arm movement.

Jim, I am impressed with your methods using chalk. I can see that part of my fingerboard but it's fuzzy. I might be able to get another pair of glasses for violin. My eyes don't focus very well that close, even with prescription glasses. They work fine on anything 18" or more away. Anything closer than that and it's fuzzy. I love the idea.Thanks for sharing it! I'll still be trying this out to see if it helps!

 

BillyG , thanks for listening and for your comments!

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