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Comparison of different method books?
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Advanced member
December 26, 2018 - 1:32 am
Member Since: January 23, 2012
Forum Posts: 73
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i must have searched wrong, I can’t believe “method books” only finds 2 results. 

What method series do you like for child beginners, adult beginners, and beginners who can read music like from piano or other instrument training?

I’m most familiar with Essential Elements that’s used in our public schools. Piano methods like Faber, Bastien and Alfred have lots more teacher resources than I’m aware of for violin. 



December 26, 2018 - 8:02 am
Member Since: July 13, 2017
Forum Posts: 198
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@fiddlrgrrl I'm not sure where they fit in the groups mentioned, but when I started in 1996 my teacher started me with "Alfred Strictlly Strings", "KJOS All for Strings" and "Suzuki" books 1 and 2. As an early brass player I was able to read music already, so the focus was learning how to control the bow and intonation. 

Later lessons focused on Wohlfahrt and Mazas etudes and scales. I'm still using numerous etudes for practice. I've recently discovered some etudes by Samie that exercise numerous technical issues while still sounding musical. Here's the imslp link to one of these.,_Op.32_(Samie,_Auguste)

Bob in Lone Oak, Texas

Boca Raton, Florida

December 26, 2018 - 8:17 am
Member Since: July 8, 2018
Forum Posts: 552
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Hi @fiddlrgrrl,

I just started to learn to play piano (in addition to my 9 month-long violin addiction) and am using Nancy and Randall Faber's beginner book for adults so I have some idea what you mean by 'piano method'. For those who don't know it (or Alfred's or similar) there's an accompanying app with both the music to the lesson pieces and a short (and excellent) video tutorial for each learning unit. In Faber's expanded version, there are actually 4 books that move forward in parallel. One of them is exclusively music theory... so a lot more useful theory than the tidbits filleted into "Elements" or Suzuki for violin, for eg..

Beth Blackerby's online subscription method is about as close as I've seen in the violin world (with even more tutorials than Faber and downloadable sheet music.)
I'm lucky enough to live in a place where violin teachers abound but I've heard tons of good feedback on Beth. Some of the others on this forum were recently considering subscribing to violinlab so I hope they'll have more info for you.

Otherwise, I'm using the Suzuki books with my teacher (obviously adapted to an adult.) I didn't get the books with the CD supplements but I often check out the
renditions of the little pieces I'm working on. 

But in the end, even the famous Suzuki method is only a 'method' if that's how the teacher teaches it. 

It would probably help others to provide more answers if you could tell us about the context you'd like to apply a method in... specifically for someone learning on their own or with a teacher?


December 28, 2018 - 5:56 pm
Member Since: December 23, 2017
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I am currently just about through the second book of the Muller Rusch String Method.  I am a little rusty at converting Roman numerals but it appears to have a copy right date of 1962.  Still in print.

I read on line that the major difference between school String methods is how advance the player becomes before the introduction of the “pinky finger” as a means of fretting a note.  

Speaking about learning new things, I just read the Mark Twain essay on learning to ride a bicycle.  This was the kind with the huge front wheel.  At least we don’t have to keep applying “Pond’s extract” when learning the violin!

Research is what I’m doing when I don’t know what I’m doing.  —Werner von Braun

I consider any plane that I design a success if it rises high enough to crash.  —RA Heinlein

Fort Lauderdale
January 2, 2019 - 4:47 pm
Member Since: September 26, 2010
Forum Posts: 14138

fiddlrgrrl said
i must have searched wrong, I can’t believe “method books” only finds 2 results...... 

.......Essential Elements that’s used in our public schools. Piano methods like Faber, Bastien and Alfred have lots more teacher resources than I’m aware of for violin.   

Methods, Etudes, Studies, are just some of the words you can search for.

I like Essential Elements for beginners.

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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