Featured, Fiddle History »

[Feb 2011 | One Comment | ]
Benny Thomasson and the Texas Fiddling Tradition: Part One

by Michael Mendelson Reprinted from: JEMF Quarterly Volume 10, Part 3 (Autumn 1974) #35 In June, 1922, two men, one in full cowboy regalia, the other in Civil War uniform, came into the Victor Talking Machine recording studios in New York City seeking an audition.  Probably, as the story goes, just to get rid of [...]

Featured, Tunes »

[Feb 2011 | 2 Comments | ]
High Level Hornpipe

by Stacy Phillips In conjunction with Tim Woodbridge’s article, I present a transcription of the piece “High Level Hornpipe” mostly from the playing of the legendary Howard “Howdy” Forrester conflated with a bit (including those nasty Db notes) from Western style contest fiddler Jeff Guernsey.  Sections 3 and 4 are the ones that Woodbridge credits to Sid Plamador. The [...]

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[Dec 2010 | Comments Off | ]
The Cuckoo’s Nest

by Edward Berbaum Cuckoos Nest.mp3 DiggShareShare with StumblersTweet

Featured, Lessons »

[Dec 2010 | 4 Comments | ]
Never Too Late: Part Two

By Lois Siegel Recap: Celtic Slow Jam, Glebe Community Centre: The group sat in a circle and took turns selecting a tune. The person who chose the tune would start it at the speed he desired.  I tried to follow the music. They were playing much faster than I could ever imagine playing. It was [...]

Featured, Lessons »

[Dec 2010 | 2 Comments | ]
Technology Can Help You Fiddle

By Carolyn Osborne In the good ol’ days, when people put their furniture outside on a Saturday night and had house dances (Appalachia) or bals de mason (Cajun), youngsters learned fiddle tunes by listening and watching older fiddle players.  After a few years of being around a fiddle player, a kid might openly borrow or [...]

Featured, Fiddle History »

[Dec 2010 | One Comment | ]
Musings on the Evolution of Jazz Violin: Part Five Capturing the Imagination

by Anthony Barnett It must be pretty obvious where my original, and some of my later, allegiances lie so I shall not dwell too much on them except to say that in searching for players who truly capture the imagination I do not seek a new Stuff Smith— or Eddie South—or Venuti or Grappelli or [...]

Featured, Tunes »

[Oct 2010 | Comments Off | ]
Fidel Cruz

by Paul Anastasio Fidel Cruz was a good friend of Juan Reynoso and a fine musician. Juan wrote this beautiful waltz in his memory. Juan generally played this with a quarter note at M.M. 106. Feel free to play it at whatever speed you like. A few big slides would not be too schmaltzy for [...]

Featured, Lessons »

[Oct 2010 | 14 Comments | ]
Never Too Late: Part One

By Lois Siegel Photo by Victor Turco Squeak, Squeak…. Squeak, Squeak…. Screech That was me at age 50 when I finally had time to engage in the formidable challenge of learning to play the violin. I had started “playing” the piano at eight in Omaha, Nebraska.  My teacher, Mr. Johnson, tall and lanky, looked a [...]

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[Oct 2010 | 6 Comments | ]
Weaning Yourself Off of Printed Music

by Carolyn Osborne The problem with relying on printed music for fiddle tunes is that the music doesn’t really represent how the tune is actually played.  Most fiddle tunes were/are played at dances, and if you play Bill Cheatham the exact same way for the ten minutes it takes to get through a set, then [...]

Featured, Fiddle History »

[Oct 2010 | Comments Off | ]
“Where Did You Come From, Where Did You Go?” The Split Personality of Cotton-Eyed Joe” (Part III)

by Howard Marshall Continued from the previous issue of Fiddle Sessions    The printed music {of Cotton Eyed Joe} appears in numerous fiddle tune books. Christeson has an unusual version in his Old-Time Fiddler’s Repertory, with several phrases reminiscent to the 1940s western swing song.[vi]  Ira Ford included a version in his classic 1940 book substantially [...]