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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Cajun Fiddle by Don Rich


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Poetinwood - Posted - 07/14/2010:  06:30:10


I'm having trouble with the first six double stops in Cajun Fiddle so I went on You Tube to watch Don Rich, the author, play it. It's obvious he isn't playing the same sheet music I am and I had a hell of a time finding this one from Mel Bay in Top Fiddle Solos. My version is in key of A: be,bf,bg,ea,ec,ed.
Any suggestions? And please don't say just learn it by ear. I can't.

coelhoe - Posted - 07/14/2010:  06:43:42


If you look at this other clip, scroll up to 2:15 and there is video of Don playing the tune. You can clearly see all of the fingering.

youtube.com/watch?v=Ajg0gDkea1o

wooliver - Posted - 07/14/2010:  07:28:34


Hadn't seen that one coelhoe, that's a good'un.

This little gal also does a bang up job on Lonesome Fiddle Blues.
youtube.com/watch?v=2nEjLrb8q6E

Califiddler - Posted - 07/14/2010:  07:47:02


IIRC, Don is tuned a half-step flat for that tune. He plays in A position, but it comes out in Ab. Try tuning your fiddle Gb Db Ab Eb, then playing the sheet music as if you were tuned standard, and see if it sounds like what Don is playing.

It should be pretty simple, lots of open-string drones.

Buck's band tuned a half-step flat quite often.

fiddleplayer2 - Posted - 07/14/2010:  07:48:29


I just worked up that tune over the weekend very simple and a fun song to play. Check out this little cutie playing Cajun Fiddle.I watched her and worked it out.

youtube.com/watch?v=OZRjoqq84og

FT

wooliver - Posted - 07/14/2010:  09:10:32


Yesir! ! That little gal has it!
And you can really see that little gals fingers too!

I forgot i did this. Different key.

youtube.com/watch?v=xYpDIW7qS1s

stick130 - Posted - 07/14/2010:  10:00:16


quote:
Originally posted by Poetinwood

I'm having trouble with the first six double stops in Cajun Fiddle so I went on You Tube to watch Don Rich, the author, play it. It's obvious he isn't playing the same sheet music I am and I had a hell of a time finding this one from Mel Bay in Top Fiddle Solos. My version is in key of A: be,bf,bg,ea,ec,ed.
Any suggestions? And please don't say just learn it by ear. I can't.

stick130 - Posted - 07/14/2010:  10:00:54


quote:
Originally posted by Poetinwood

I'm having trouble with the first six double stops in Cajun Fiddle so I went on You Tube to watch Don Rich, the author, play it. It's obvious he isn't playing the same sheet music I am and I had a hell of a time finding this one from Mel Bay in Top Fiddle Solos. My version is in key of A: be,bf,bg,ea,ec,ed.
Any suggestions? And please don't say just learn it by ear. I can't.

Poetinwood - Posted - 07/14/2010:  12:44:05


quote:
Originally posted by Califiddler

IIRC, Don is tuned a half-step flat for that tune. He plays in A position, but it comes out in Ab. Try tuning your fiddle Gb Db Ab Eb, then playing the sheet music as if you were tuned standard, and see if it sounds like what Don is playing.

It should be pretty simple, lots of open-string drones.

Buck's band tuned a half-step flat quite often.


it's not the sound that's getting me, it's the fingering. Don is playing the fifth note of the first measure with his pinkie on the lower note of the chord. In my book in the key of A, the fifth note is a b&e with the b on the A string.
You guys have better eyes than I do if you can see the fingering in those nice videos.
I appreciate all the help though, I think I'll mess around in finale with it.

coelhoe - Posted - 07/14/2010:  14:11:48


Don's playing in Ab on the first clip but he is tuned up to standard on the second. I can't figure why a fiddle would tune a half step flat. It doesn't matter to the steel player or the bass player or the lead guitar. Weird.

BC - Posted - 07/14/2010:  14:33:23


[quote][Check out this little cutie playing Cajun Fiddle.I watched her and worked it out.
/quote]

Oh My Gosh! She is definitely on the "Prodigy" side of the Bell Curve. She must have started practicing before she was born.
It was comical watching her looking up, down, left and right and never missing a note. I hate her! LOL Not really, she was amazing!

tarheel - Posted - 07/14/2010:  15:51:14


NEVER EVER FOLLOW A KID OR A DOG ACT haha but to get back to a real musician ---Don Rich ! what a sideman!!

Mike_Fontenot - Posted - 07/14/2010:  16:52:59


I've always liked the sound of Cajun fiddle, and a year or so ago I finally figured out that the most common sound that people identify with Cajun fiddle is actually very simple to produce: it's mostly just the Nashville shuffle, modified with the fiddle version of a "hammer-on". It's not really like a guitar hammer-on: it just involves taking the melody note of the beginning of each measure, and playing a full step below that note, for SNE1, with a slur into the melody note on SNE2. And likewise for the second half of each measure. Also, a harmonious-sounding drone is usually used...dissonant drones aren't considered OK, like they sometimes are in OT...and that limits the keys, and chords, that work well.

Of course, a seasoned Cajun fiddler doesn't ONLY do this...sometimes (simple or complicated) slides replace the hammer-on's, and some sawstrokes and "pairs of two-slurs" are mixed in for variety, together with some percussive off-string staccato sawstrokes.

And a seasoned Cajun fiddler might very well dismiss a fiddler's version that has too much of the Nashville hammer-on's as being "cliche' Cajun". But nevertherless, I think THAT'S the sound that most listeners would instantly identify as "Cajun".


Edited by - Mike_Fontenot on 07/15/2010 11:46:08

shrinkingviolet3 - Posted - 07/14/2010:  22:39:47


I absolutley love Cajun Fiddle. It was so nice to see YouTube videos on it!

falcanary - Posted - 07/17/2010:  17:12:27


quote:
Originally posted by Mike_Fontenot



And a seasoned Cajun fiddler might very well dismiss a fiddler's version that has too much of the Nashville hammer-on's as being "cliche' Cajun". But nevertherless, I think THAT'S the sound that most listeners would instantly identify as "Cajun".



'
Mike, you're dead on. Of course, with a name like Fontenot, you must be from down here in Louisiana. I hate this song mainly because it's not a Cajun song and that there's much better real Cajun songs out there. Noone down here plays this tune because it's so cliche'. Being a Cajun fiddler myself, I try to promote the real thing instead of the fake stuff. Having said that, i like your analysis of the playing style compared to Nashville.

fiddleplayer2 - Posted - 07/18/2010:  07:35:45


Poetinwood. Download VLC Player and Install, It's FREE! it has a great slowdown feature and an easy to use user interface.

That's how I work out a lot of the songs I'm learning. you have more time to watch the fingerings and the player doesn't change the pitch or key.

videolan.org/vlc/

FT

dsreiner - Posted - 07/18/2010:  10:00:12


I put a quick version of this on my music page at fiddlehangout.com/myhangout/mu...sp?id=385 the way I learned it. But La Vals du Bambocheur is more authentic :-)

Mike_Fontenot - Posted - 07/18/2010:  12:41:44


quote:
Originally posted by falcanary
Of course, with a name like Fontenot, you must be from down here in Louisiana.



All of my paternal ancestors grew up in South Louisiana, but my family moved to Texas when I was very young (and I've lived in Colorado ever since college years). So, regrettably, there's not much Cajun left in me, except for my name, and my love of Cajun music and Cajun cooking! I didn't even get the benefit of growing up bi-lingual (and now, I'm a long-suffering, and under-performing, French student)...I think my great grandfather was the last one to (mostly) speak (Cajun) French. But I used to spend a lot of my summers there, when I was a kid, and I loved (and still love) the Cajun culture.

And Re: Dave's post, that was a great rendition of both those tunes. I'm a BIG Dewey Balfa fan. I've also spent a lot of time with Al Berard's DVD, and learned a lot from it, but I've got a LONG way to go!


Edited by - Mike_Fontenot on 07/18/2010 12:45:40

dsreiner - Posted - 07/18/2010:  13:34:42


Thanks, Mike! Dewey was one of the true greats!

fiddlepogo - Posted - 07/18/2010:  18:38:39


quote:
Originally posted by coelhoe

Don's playing in Ab on the first clip but he is tuned up to standard on the second. I can't figure why a fiddle would tune a half step flat. It doesn't matter to the steel player or the bass player or the lead guitar. Weird.



Unless the lead guitar player is doing lots of bends.
1/2 step down = slacker strings = easier bends.
The longer scale length of most Fender guitars would be particularly
suited to downtuning.

It seems to have been fairly common in blues-
Jimmy Rogers, Muddy Waters' sideman tuned down,
and so did Stevie Ray Vaughan.

I tune down on acoustic guitar now because my voice has dropped over the years-
Tuning down a half step allows me to hit the high notes in tunes without straining, but still play the songs on guitar with the same chords and fingerings that I've been using for decades. I imagine that some professionals that have been playing for decades have the same problem and have used the same solution.

Another possible reason for downtuning is if a piano is mixed in with guitars in a band-
E major is a great guitar key, but a horrible piano key (or so I've heard)
and Eb is a terrible guitar key, but a great piano key.
If the guitar tunes down, both are happy since they have the fingerings they want.

Probably also reduces string breakage.


Edited by - fiddlepogo on 07/18/2010 18:40:51



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