Posted by bj on Monday, August 16, 2010
Saturday I set up at an antiques market, something I do a couple times a month for extra income, and, as I'm in the habit of doing, I brought along my beater fiddle and in the times when I wasn't actually doing business I sat there fiddling around.
I do this for me. Never really considered much what's going on around me, though I'm peripherally aware enough to quote prices while I'm playing and stop playing long enough to grab the dough. In the days before the fiddle I had my nose in a book instead, or, if I lucked into having good neighbors there would be conversation.
My market neighbor, Doug, kept telling me to keep fiddling every time I put it down. Apparently it kept people around our stands, and everyone was smiling and happy. He said it was a nice volume too, people could carry on conversations while I was playing. And the market owners commented favorably on the fiddling, said it was a nice surprise.
This is the first time I brought my fiddle to Renninger's, which is on the outskirts of PA Dutch country, outside of Kutztown. Turns out the fiddling was a whole lot more of a hit than my stuff was this time. And I think I have to make up some business cards for my "fiddle business" since I ended up with a couple inquiries about my availability to play events and parties.
This morning I got a phone call. I've been hired to play for the Old Morlatton Village Festival in Douglassville PA on September 25th and 26th from 11-12PM and 1-3PM.
Funny how this is working. I didn't exactly seek out this new "business" at all. It found me. I'm getting paid to play this venue, and my deal with them is I can put the case out for tips, so it might end up a reasonably profitable day, but at least I'm guaranteed a decent enough minimum to make the trip worthwhile. It'll be interesting to see what happens.
Now I've gotta come up with "Colonial Era" garb. And I think I'll use the old coffin case for my fiddle that day. And a sign for the case . . . hmm. "Buy the Fiddler a Dram" maybe? Not exactly Plain Folk approved, but could get a smile or two, and maybe a tip or two. Other suggestions?
Monday, August 16, 2010 @7:27:54 AM
YES! Wow! That's very cool. Congratulations!
Monday, August 16, 2010 @11:37:18 AM
Yup - might as well start putting money away for that bus ticket to Nashville.... ;-)
Monday, August 16, 2010 @1:06:01 PM
Congratulations! What a great outcome!
Monday, August 16, 2010 @2:41:36 PM
What tunes are you going to play?
Humbled by this instrument Says:
Monday, August 16, 2010 @3:32:53 PM
Here's the tunes to play: OBS, Long Black Veil, Takin' Care of Business, and You Are So Beautiful. You're entirely welcome. I'm jealous. How's come no one asks me to fiddle around at the Old Morgan Village Fesival? Ha! I know why. It's that they don't like dogs and Helicore strings! It's a conspiracy! Uhmmmm...congratulations. One of these days you're gonna have to send autographs to those of us who knew you before you were so famous!
Monday, August 16, 2010 @4:18:09 PM
Very nice, BJ. If it's too hard to come up with colonial era female garb, you could always wear a tri-corn and go as a young male. Not that I'm trying to imply anything, but a woman can get away with doing that more readily than a man.
Monday, August 16, 2010 @8:01:11 PM
OTJ, Jane used to say you could make TENS of dollars fiddling. I'll actually be able to knock that up a decimal point. Though I doubt Nashville is the hotbed of the OT revival. ;-)
Re tunes I'll play-- over four hours, probably most that I know, if not ALL that I know.
Re garb, I'm a vintage clothing dealer. The only problem is sizing. People were SMALLER back then! But my employer did say that people who are not regular volunteers kinda make it up to SUGGEST colonial times, so there's a fair bit of leeway. A full length skirt with a blouse, straw hat and lace up boots is as elaborate as I need to get.
And Humbled? Nyah Nyah Nyah NYAHHH Nyah!
Tuesday, August 17, 2010 @3:01:22 AM
Sweet!!! Congrats bj. Sounds like fun. I love the audience that stops to listen to a few tunes and then continue on there way. You could get away with playing all the tunes you know over and over and no one would know. Have Fun!
Tuesday, August 17, 2010 @5:15:22 AM
Luckily that's now over 100 tunes. ;-)
Wednesday, August 18, 2010 @3:38:51 AM
Bravo bj !! You'll have to write about it afterwards !! The best things often happen unexpectedly don't they ?
Wednesday, August 18, 2010 @4:54:50 PM
Great story. Have fun!
Sunday, August 22, 2010 @11:24:24 AM
yeah, I liked this story also,btw, the business, happiness, will always find Us all, its kind of Universal Law, things that are hard to find will come to You, sooner or later.
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