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A good discussion on the use of the metronome you may enjoy.


https://www.stetina.com/lessons/metronome.html?utm_source=Listrak&utm_medium=Email&utm_term=http%3a%2f%2fwww.stetina.com%2flessons%2fmetronome.html&utm_campaign=Standard+M44+newsletter&utm_content=2012-03-17
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1 Responses
Posted: March 18, 2012


What brand of strings do you reccomend?
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5 Responses
Posted: March 19, 2012


I would really like to get the sheet music for this, and see Beth make a tutorial for this like she did for Sad Romance! I just cant get this outta my head
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9 Responses
Posted: March 19, 2012


I am 45 yr old who had wish to play violin but never managed any time except a month back. Though teaching kids is a big business here, but I found out that nobody agreed to teach me, when, they learned that I want to learn violin just to play it.

But eventually I got one teacher who, himself, is also learning how to teach violin (he is an well established and an exceptional cello teacher in the area of NJ where I live).  So we both are good here (kind of teaching each other), except that, I shall need additional help for my techniques...hope that here, in violin lab, I shall get some.

For now my question is...I , so far , failed to figure out how I shall follow the instruction where it says "keep your 1, 2 finger down on D string and play A string"...my fingers need to be cut into two third to do that. I tried my best by bringing my left elbow as maximum as I can etc. etc. Sometimes it happens (mostly with only finger 1 down) but most of the time the finger on D string also touches A sting. I managed to sprain my left elbow, left shoulder but with no luck...can anybody please help with any advice. Please note I am just one month old in my violin quest......

Pretty please…and many thanks in advance…

 

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5 Responses
Posted: March 18, 2012

Ray


Have you ever noticed small specks of dust seemingly dance in the air?  I just came back from the symphony and heard the principal concertmaster for the L.A. Philharmonics play Mozart on a 1667 Strad.  The notes hung and danced on the air.  I will be hearing and feeling those notes for some time.

Ray

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6 Responses
Posted: March 18, 2012

Jen McColley
Hi everyone,
I have some good news and some bad news that I would like to share with you.  I've only posted a couple times here, and I've only been playing for 6 months on an old violin that was found in the back of my grandfather's closet after he passed away.  No one in the family knew why he had it or where it came from.  About 2 years ago I took it to a local luthier for a new bridge and soundpost.  Anyway, lately I've been feeling like the sound was just "off" somehow, and of course I was blaming myself for it, thinking I was just doing something wrong.  Or maybe it was the strings.  The G string in particular sounded weird to me, even when it was in tune.  So I took it in today to a more reputable luthier, and boy did he have a lot to say!  For starters, there is a crack on the back from the soundpost.  He said not only is the soundpost in the wrong spot, but it's a viola soundpost!  He said that most definitely created the crack.  He said I shouldn't even be playing it like that.  He also said the bridge was horrible (which my teacher also told me), and pointed out how the G string was sunk way into the bridge.  I was simultaneously thrilled and sad.  Thrilled because it wasn't just me!  But of course, sad and mad that the prior luthier messed it up so badly.  He told me it's a German made violin, Glaesel is the name, and it is about 100 years old.  He said it would be worth around $5000 if not for the soundpost issue.  Can you believe that?  I don't know if I have any recourse with the original luthier, but I can certainly use word of mouth and trash them to pieces!  So I played on a couple of new violins while I was there, and could NOT believe the difference.  I almost cried.  I was close to giving up recently because I was so discouraged by the sound.  I decided not to have it fixed at this time (he said it would be at least $1500 to fix) and I ended up buying a new one.  It's a Snow, and I absolutely love it.  I also bought a new carbon fiber bow, which I also love.   So I am happy as a clam today, and driving the kids crazy with my practicing. 

I have a question for you.  Don't you think my teacher should have noticed the problems with the violin?  She did point out the crappy bridge, and said that was why I was having such trouble crossing strings.  But she has played it before, shouldn't she have noticed the G string issue?  I just find it strange that someone who has been playing the violin for 30 years and is in the local symphony wouldn't pick right up on that.  Or at least tell me to go get it fixed right away because it sounds awful!  It did cross my mind that maybe she was being nice and didn't want to say anything negative?  I get the sense from her that she is more hesitant with me than she would be with a child giving negative feed back.  I mean, don't get me wrong, she's a great teacher (not as great as Beth!) and we get along really well.  

Anyway, soon I am going to get up the courage to post a video of myself.  I have been absolutely obsessed with this site since I found it a week ago, I am just loving reading all the back posts, and watching peoples videos.  It was actually someone's post that got me thinking that it might be the violin and not me.  Someone talked about their violin being too loud, and one of the possible answers had to do with the soundpost being too high or something of that nature. 

So thanks to this site, I have a renewed passion for the violin and a brand new shiny instrument to play on!

Happy St Patrick's day everyone!

Jen
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5 Responses
Posted: March 17, 2012


I have this piece of music on my ipod, itunes etc. and it always stops me in my tracks when it plays. Spiegel im Spiegel by Arvo Part. It is so stunning and haunting. I have the cello version by Sally Maer and Sally Whitwell - the cello version is extra spooky. I found this violin version played by Anne Akiki Meyers. Which version do you prefer, violin or cello?
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17 Responses
Posted: March 9, 2012

KarenJ

Here's a vote for sometimes starting over at the beginning.  I'm at one of those frustration points where I don't think I'm making any progress.  My intonation is really off due to concentrating on e flat and b flat.  It drags down my whole hand frame when I try to go back to the "simple" scales.  So I went back and watched some of the first videos.  It's amazing what you see differently from the first time you watch it.  Some of the words that didn't stand out as much the first time have more meaning the second time.  Probably because, in my case, I can only focus on a little at a time.  I must now be ready for the other part of that instruction.  Even the Suzuki songs that I thought were incredibly difficult seemed easier(though I may not still play that well.)  I may just go back and finish book 1. Those minuets were the devil to me.  I think I can do them now.  I'm so grateful for these videos. 

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6 Responses
Posted: March 16, 2012

Jim Gross
I thought this was going to be easy.  first, my grandson says that camera will never do. Buy new camera.  Grandson says, sound won't do.  Buy a mic.  Now I'm horrified at my progress.  Well, we got to start somewhere.  So, this is the start.  Hopefully, some progress will be made before the workshop in July.  I'm having fun even if it doesn't look like it.  I started in the first week of January, so this is where I'm at at two and a half months.
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18 Responses
Posted: March 15, 2012

Vicky
I'd like to share some recent observations about my progress over the past 6-8 months using Beth's lessons:

As an older adult with no history of playing an instrument, my brain had no frame of reference to use to organize new muscle actions.  Cognitive confusion was rampant, and without smooth cognitive functioning, there is no hope of getting the muscles sorted out.

My brain loves Beth's mini lessons showing how a particular skill is executed.  Actually, my brain catches on very quickly once I can watch the mechanics and hear Beth's explanation of the sequence of movements and what to listen for. 

I had a horrible, horrible left hand Death Grip.  People said inane things like "just relax".  It was so frustrating;  if I could "just relax", I wouldn't have been using a Death Grip. I do  know they were trying to be helpful though.

Beth's video explanation of why Death Grip's develop provided the explanation of what muscles needed to activate and what muscles needed to be quieted.  That was so helpful. Now I understood why "just relax" wasn't at all accurate.  I had a plan and specific exercises.

In addition, about 6 months ago, I started doing Yoga  4-6 times a week.  I use  a very simple routine in the morning,  gentle stretching is a great way to start the day.  But the biggest reward has been training my mind and body to notice the sensation of being really relaxed.  This has transferred to my violin playing.

Knowing what muscles to activate, which muscles to quiet, and targeted exercises to mindfully practice these skills are making a huge difference in my playing.   I find myself surreptitiously doing knuckle and finger independence exercises all the time at work or when waiting at a traffic light. 

Thank you, Beth!
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1 Responses
Posted: March 17, 2012

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