Fiddle songs

Yaaaay, yesterday I’ve recorded my first two traditional Irish fiddle songs!! As I wrote down in my goals for this month I wanted to learn some fiddle songs. I’ve chosen six fiddle songs and the easiest ones I’ve already recorded. By the way I’ve added my first vibrato on a few notes… so excited!! And the other songs will soon follow too. :yahoo:

Here’s the first one: Southwind

My second fiddle song is Star of the County Down (Waltz)

I’ve had so much fun practicing these songs. Until now I had only played classical pieces and I really love it. But fiddle tunes could become my favorite, who knows. Well these fiddle tunes I’ve recorded are pretty slow, which made it easier to practice them in a short time.

Upcoming fiddle songs

The four other fiddle tunes I’ve chosen are faster so it will take me some time to practice them better. :whistle: But I will reach my goal and have them all ready by the end of the month. So, here’s what’s next on my list:

  • Old Joe Clark
  • Swallow Tail Jig
  • All the Rage
  • Star of the County Down (Reel)

I found them all in this fiddle collection for beginners. What I really liked about them it that they come with piano accompaniment. That makes it so much more fun to practice. This collection has 25 fiddle songs and I hope to be able to play them all soon!

Comment if you like to play fiddle tunes too. Which ones do you like most?

7 thoughts on “My first fiddle songs

  1. Ah these turned out pretty good! And congratulations for your first vibrato! Are you following any vibrato exercises?

    As for the fiddle tunes, I’m still wondering if i should buy it. I haven’t listened to all of them but Star of the county Down (Reel) immediately got me and is the main reason why I’m thinking about buying this. I’m excited that you have that one on your list too!

    1. Thanks! Glad you liked the videos. :-) For the moment I’m really very excited to practice fiddle tunes, they sound great and I get to work a bit more on my speed.
      For vibrato, I like the videos from professorV. He gives some real nice introductory exercises to get the motion and then how to move on from there. He has a series of 10 videos or so about vibrato. Here is one of them that I liked most so far:
      And you, do you have specific exercises for vibrato or tips?

      1. I saw quite some vibrato videos before I had a teacher and started practicing with her.
        I hadn’t seen professorV’s so far.
        Actually, I had intended to write that I’d watch them later but then ended up watching all of them.
        They are really cool.

        What I’m learning is arm vibrato and just from the motions itself I think arm vibrato is probably the harder one since it’s harder to get your arm to move without tiring very quickly. professorV also mentioned that the arm vibrato is more taxing and I fully agree. I also think it’s really hard to get your arm moving without also moving around your wrist.

        The very first exercise in the hand/wrist vibrato video where the hand is against the ribs is actually very similar to the first exercise I got from my teacher. Just for arm vibrato so it’s like this:
        Hand against the ribs and thumb on the other side (also against the edge of the violin). Then tap the heel of the hand against the ribs through moving your arm back and forth. The thumb has to stay in place and you hear the sound of your hand coming off from the violin and back against the rib.
        This exercise had two steps. One was the one I just described, the other was moving your hand into first position, keep it there for a moment, then back to the rib of the violin and tapping.

        After doing this for a bit the next step was also at the rib. But touching the string lightly and then doing the same. So you have to roll your finger. This was really hard to do at first but it’s getting better.

        And the exercise I’m often doing right now is finding something (I have a shelf) which has a good height for putting on your violin scroll and then try to vibrate. First without the thumb. And every time that is working out add the thumb and try to keep doing it. It’s similar to what professorV described about putting it against the wall. I just tried the wall thing but I’m a bit worried that my violin scroll will slide across the wall easier if I don’t pay attention and I’m a bit worried about damaging my scroll. So I think the method of lying it down somewhere is better and less risky.

        After watching the videos of course I got into the mood to practice vibrato. And since I’m practicing arm vibrato what I just tried was wrapping adhesive tape around my wrist so I can feel when I’m bending it. Since I can’t really see what’s happening there. I tried to attach it as loosely as possible but it’s probably not very good for my hand, it’s more an experiment. I wish I had some kind of wrist band or something XDD It helps though.

        At the moment I think I’m making very nice progress with my vibrato so I’m enjoying practicing it more than before. Since it’s always nicer if you sometimes produce a nice sound than just practicing hand motions with nothing to hear. xD

        I think another fun exercise to train your arm muscles to move is the sirens from I think it was theOnlineViolinAndPianoTutor (the name is something like this I always forget the exact one). Where you move your finger up and down as far as you can on the fingerboard and create a siren like sound.

        1. Glad you liked the videos. I really think professorV explains things very nicely, I love his classes. :-) I’m practicing wrist vibrato. Arm vibrato is a disaster for me. Later on I’ll try that. Would love to have the wrist vibrato first. Good luck to you!! And indeed your tip to protect the scroll is nice. I didn’t put the scroll against the wall either, although I’ve wanted try it with a sponge between the scroll and the wall.

          1. The wall thing (or desk thing for me) is a really good way to practice so I recommend it! It really helps you focus on the movement. So maybe you should try your idea with the sponge.
            I also want to be able to use all 3 kinds of vibrato in the future but I’m not going to work on another one till I can do arm vibrato. I also read sometimes that for higher positions you NEED to use wrist vibrato so I’d have to learn that anyway.

            1. Oh, didn’t know about the wrist vibrato in higher positions. Well actually, I don’t know much about vibrato yet :unsure: But one thing I do hear a lot is that it takes time and we just have to keep practicing patiently. Good luck with yours!!

    2. Two more fiddle songs have been recorded!!! :-)

      Star of the County Down Reel. It didn’t turn as good as I wanted it to be but I think for now this is the best I can do. In a couple of months, maybe I can do a better version ;-) Playing the violin is all about learning to be patient too it seems …

      Old Joe Clark

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