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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Anybody ever played Golden Fiddle Waltz, by Randy Howard?

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groundhogpeggy - Posted - 02/25/2021:  14:08:37

My gosh, it's just the most beautiful thing I've ever heard. I joined up Bluegrassdaddy several years ago...can't remember how many years but it was back when we still had chickens and goats, so maybe 8 years or so ago. Anyway, I was pretty new at the fiddle...just having gotten ahold of an instrument of my own in 2009 and just getting started I struggled through the lessons on BGDaddy back then and almost had a shaky, pitchy, terrible grip on GFW, enough to be ready to start practicing it for years so i could hopefully one day really play it...then a buncha unexpected bad stuff happened, to make a long story short, we ended up selling the goats and chickens to get through the awful things...then my daughter did the opera that I had to help her with...anyhow the years went by and GFW fell out of my brain.

Well here lately I've been looking at the lessons again. This thing is HARD...yet, it's grabbed ahold of me and I just can't let it go. everything else in my music has stopped...GFW is taking over...I'm terrified of the's just way too hard...I don't have the fiddling's tough...but...I can't let it go. I'm afraid of my disappointment when I make it sound pitchy and screechy and horrible, and when that's the best I can do, is just to learn it enough to ruin it. Yet, I know that, but I can't let it go...I don't usually have a ton of time for practicing, but I've got a fiddle on standby...and when the chicken's frying or whatever's going on is happening...I'm picking up that fiddle and trying to get it note, one side, one double stop, one busted finger at a time...Hoping I can tell by the end of March if I'm ever gonna be able to play it, or if I can just learn it enough to destroy its beauty.

So...I'm stuck between a fiddle and a hard place...I can't do anything but try this...wondering if anybody else has ever played it? Or tried to?

DougBrock - Posted - 02/25/2021:  14:27:18

Beautiful! Thanks for sharing. (The “...daughter did the opera that I had to help her with...” sounds like a story worth hearing, lol.)

ChickenMan - Posted - 02/25/2021:  18:19:27

There's a YouTube movie of the opera, it's pretty cool.

groundhogpeggy - Posted - 02/26/2021:  06:34:30

Thanks, ChickenMan. I might try to find that and link's on daughter's youtube channel and I can never remember the name of it or how to find

Anyway, yeah, the other time I tried GFW, I just didn't have enough fiddling experience for a thing like that, probably still don't at this point. Although I did find a couple of youtubes of KIDS playing it, kids that couldn't have started playing yet or maybe not even born yet at the time I was've had less experience than I they're just GOOD. But anyway, kinda stings to watch them glide through it, it's amazing...I'm will I ever get to the kid level on the fiddle...? Lol...they are really good.

But at the point when I was getting through it my daughter came down with an illness...we had a hard time thinking to go as extreme as her make a long story short, we sold our chickens and goats to get to a Chinese herbalist and it all seemed to go well with him. She got much better and the specialists MDs released her from their celebrate, I told her let's do the opera. She had bugged me in previous years to help her do the sound track so she could perform her own opera...had majored in that in college, and just like her mom and dad, got a perfectly useless college degree for a life of low pay, meaningless No "opera-tunity" anywhere near us. So I said..."Hey, you're the doggone opera and I'll do all I can to help." Well that took TWO years...some times, for a musical piece that went on for about 30 seconds, it took me 10 hours of work on my recording Way over my head, but we pulled off a very amateurish opera, just ourselves.

Here's her opera... I'm all about Golden Fiddle Waltz. If I learn it, it will be a minor miracle...because it's way over my

RichJ - Posted - 02/26/2021:  09:53:35

Hey Peggy - Sometimes a tough tune has to be done in stages. By that I mean worked on for a day or 2 then put aside for a week or two. That's how I tackled "Bee's Wing Hornpipe". Talk about a finger buster and in Bb no less. Finally got so I could play it at around 60 bpm but took me over a year get there. I've heard of others doing this also. Dunno' exactly how it works, sorta' like making spaghetti put all the ingredients together, cook it, then wait a few days to let the flavor improve??

groundhogpeggy - Posted - 02/26/2021:  10:22:32

...or possibly like making saurkraut???? I can't spell it, but the longer it sits and ferments, the better it gets. Unless you just let it Which is what happened the other time i tried GFW.

But I have to fumble through this thing several times a day because the way it goes together gets confusing and it's hard to put it all together ... like if I skip several hours in a's gone from my mind...and I have to struggle through the lesson again.

But yeah, if ...big IF, if I ever can play it...ain't gonna be for a long, long time.

pete_fiddle - Posted - 02/26/2021:  12:09:53

That is one big beautiful project, i reckon i would need a couple of years or more.... at least on that one to get anything near close. And that's after 30 years of playing fiddle and 40 odd years of messing with guitar. Still would be a worthy (and informative) ambition. Some folk just burn bright when they are young. Seems to me like he was one of them.

groundhogpeggy - Posted - 02/26/2021:  12:26:26

Yes, I'm not sure I'll ever come close to doing it justice. I mean, I'm fairly sure that I won't be able to. Gotta try though. Because when I hear Randy Howard play it on youtube, I know everything's alright in the universe...whatever else is going on...ultimately, everything in alright in this universe and beyond. And when I fumble through GFW, myself, I know something is terribly wrong in my wish I could stop trying...but now I'm in the grip of GFW. I don't have a lot of hope that I'll ever be able to play it though.

pete_fiddle - Posted - 02/26/2021:  12:51:40

Just got to keep on trying...What else is there to do in the musical universe ? i find that if i attempt something that is beyond anything i could do, other stuff seems easier in comparison.

groundhogpeggy - Posted - 02/26/2021:  13:51:22

Yes, that's what my husband keeps reminding me of... if i struggle and can't play it...think how easy other stuff will be??? That's one thing...right now though...I am hopelessly obsessed with the tune and can't leave it alone...yet, at the same time, I feel like I'm pretty much trashing a beautiful fiddle waltz that I should just leave alone.

RichJ - Posted - 02/26/2021:  15:03:37

Didn't someone say a true musician is NEVER satisfied with the way they play?

groundhogpeggy - Posted - 02/26/2021:  20:06:24

Yeah, well...yeah, that too.

Well on a high note, so to speak, once when I played GFW tonight it almost sounded good...but that was followed by several yuckie attempts It's tough and tiring to play it too, at least when you're me, that's how it is. Don't know about how it is for anybody else.

fiddlerjoebob - Posted - 02/27/2021:  08:19:54

I have been watching this video for years. Does that count?

boxbow - Posted - 02/27/2021:  09:21:57

Yikes! That'd take forever just to get crammed into my head! Just stripping it down to the barest melody would take time. I don't think I could put Humpty back together again afterwards.

groundhogpeggy - Posted - 03/01/2021:  08:26:21

Thinking about putting a guitar track on one of these days soon, when I can get enough time to concentrate on that, and then go ahead and record (try to, I shoulda said…lol) part 1 of GFWaltz. Not sure I’m ready, and when that red light goes on the recording box, you know it kinda throws your heart at your feet and besides trying to play, you gotta pick yourself up and hold yourself together…lol. But something about making a recording drives me to move forward and not become stagnant. Though my arm is swollen and sore…but I think it’s from trying to close an umbrella…lol…the weirdest things get this thing all worked up again. Anyway … I might try it in a few days if I get a long afternoon to devote to the effort.

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