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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Day to day variations

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doryman - Posted - 09/28/2021:  08:59:59

I woke up this early morning, made myself a cup of coffee, grabbed my fiddle and played the tune, Quail is a Pretty Bird, better than I've ever played it before (admittedly that's a low bar). It was sweet with good intonation and I nailed the B part too, which typically gives me trouble. Other days, I'll wake up, get my coffee, grab my fiddle and, after a few minutes, I come to the only logical conclusion, which is that I must have had a stroke in the middle of the night. I can't get a song or a note right to save my life.

That's all. Just an observation.

Flat_the_3rd_n7th - Posted - 09/28/2021:  09:51:41


I've always held that violin is the "golf" of the musical world. Just sadistic, and you have to be a freak to do it well. You can look at most pros at their peak, and just a year later, they'll be hacks.

Same with violin. One day I have total command of every part of the bow, and look like Paganini (in my view, LOL). Two hours later, I can't play 'Happy Birthday' without bouncy bow.

BTW, is 'Quail is a Pretty Bird' the same tune as 'The Cuckoo'? (is a pretty bird, she warbles when she flies...)

doryman - Posted - 09/28/2021:  10:28:13


Originally posted by Flat_the_3rd_n7th

BTW, is 'Quail is a Pretty Bird' the same tune as 'The Cuckoo'? (is a pretty bird, she warbles when she flies...)

I don't think so.  Quail is Pretty Bird is John Hartford song, but I'm not sure if he wrote it, or is just known for it.

Some folks think it's the same song as the fiddle tune, Sandy Boys, but I think that there is a difference between the two. 

Mobob - Posted - 09/28/2021:  12:56:42

John Hartford got Quail is a Pretty Bird from Gene Goforth.

Old Scratch - Posted - 09/28/2021:  13:06:51

Sometimes everything'll be just clicking great - until I realize it, and say to myself, "Gee, everything's just clicking great!" - and then - well, you know .......

UsuallyPickin - Posted - 09/28/2021:  13:17:31

Well peeps... there are days when I feel like a musician and there are days when my instruments act like I am a total stranger. For some reason my fiddles are more prone to this than my plectrum / fretted instruments. I have asked several fiddlers over the years and they have all more or less said " there are just those days where my fiddle just won't talk to me" . So I quit worrying about it and on those days when I have to play and my instrument friends treat me like a stranger I stick to simple , well known tunes and techniques and hope for the best. Sometimes things come together other times I crash and burn. C'est la Vie. R/

Edited by - UsuallyPickin on 09/28/2021 13:18:52

stumpkicker - Posted - 09/28/2021:  15:20:46

As Darol Anger says in his online fiddle course. “Sometimes the fiddle just says “No!” sad

farmerjones - Posted - 09/28/2021:  19:37:48

Have y'all ever heard of 'fake it, until you make it?'

James Taylor said, suppose a guy wanted to play and sing, and what if he could?

Y'know, I don't beat myself up. What I do fiddle-wise for public consumption, is disgustingly rudimentary. 3 levels less than plant life.

If I can't play Woodchoppers, it's no big deal. I only play that kinda stuff in the basement.

Or, if the fiddle says no, back the truck up until it says yes. 

Edited by - farmerjones on 09/28/2021 19:53:10

farmerjones - Posted - 09/28/2021:  20:11:35

I don't approach my fiddle as an adversary. It's just wood. Some are better than others, but it's 97.657% operator. Oh yeah, the bow is more important than most think. The difference between playing for a half hour and being exhausted, and playing five hours and ready for six hours, is the bow.

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