Posted by Sassafrassa on Thursday, September 23, 2010
Hello, all! Not much to report this week, as I really haven't had a whole lot of "me" time to practice. I work two part-time jobs that leave very little time to myself during the day, and my evenings are spent getting ready for the next day's adventures. I do have much more "fiddle" time on the weekends and I cherish the hours spent trying to catch up from the lack of practice through the week. Last weekend, my step-grandson came to visit with his family, and while I loved every second, it did make it even harder to play.
I'm considering moving my banjo which is currently hung on the wall to another location and hang my fiddle in it's place. I use a String Swing on my 'jo and love the fact that I can just pick her up. Perhaps I'd do the same if my fiddle were hung in the same place. I hesitate just keeping her out of the case, but she would be high enough off the ground to avoid all the dogs and cats in the household. I've also considered having a "practice" fiddle that I can put in my car without too much trouble and carry it around with me. Would that be too weird? I've heard of portable fiddles, pocket fiddles, etc. Anyone know if it is worth the time and effort? If I get the job I'm hoping for, I'll have an office I can leave it in and play on my lunch hours.
Sorry to complain. It's still a great love affair with my fiddle, and I think that's why I'm so jealous of my time. Hopefully, one of my jobs will become a full-time position and I can stop this crazy commuting stuff. With just a single job, it should free up some practice time. Things are still progressing, just not as quickly as I know they would if I could devote some more time. Ah well. I'm lucky enough to have the work, so I feel blessed. :-)
Thursday, September 23, 2010 @1:40:00 PM
I actually take my fiddle to work every day. I play it at lunchtime, and occasionally before things start hopping in the morning.
If you take it with you, treat it like a child - don't leave it in the car; take it in with you where ever you go.
Thursday, September 23, 2010 @3:23:23 PM
If you have the bucks, you might want to look at the wiplstix. It's a quiet and very small fiddle that won't cause a ruckus if you catch some practice time during a coffee break. Yet it plays pretty much like a full size fiddle. There's some info on the forum about 'em, including a pretty funny story telling you the one thing you shouldn't do! I've tried one, and they're fun!
Thursday, September 23, 2010 @6:01:15 PM
I carry my fiddle in my Taxi all day long , and at the breaks ,all wild side of me gets loose, most of the listeners appreciate it.
I guess Im lucky having a profession like this.
maybe the portable fiddle is an answer to your prayers, or a silent fiddle, electric.
Thursday, September 23, 2010 @7:35:16 PM
i was thinking the same thing today myself. working a day job, teaching in the evening and adding other activities like the jam and clogging...oh yeah...and looking after everything to do with home...doesn't leave nearly enough time for fiddle practice. the nature of my day job doesn't allow me to practice there (and i can't go anywhere)...and i finish so late at night during the week that fiddle practice has been eluding me. i sure hope i'm able to get in the swing of things soon
Friday, September 24, 2010 @1:06:01 PM
Thanks for the ideas and encouragement! I like the idea of taking my instrument with me..but I'm not willing to risk my "good" fiddle. It's not horribly expensive, but it was a big chunk of change for me to pay for a beginner's instrument. So...I'll look into either a beater that I can carry around with me to practice and for camping, or into the Wiplestix. I checked his website, and its a fun little thing, isn't it!!
cheekee--I can so relate to the crazy schedule. Hopefully both our schedules will ease up so that we can get those licks in!!
Friday, September 24, 2010 @7:29:57 PM
A couple of years ago, I went to a fiddle workshop with Mike White. He was talking about how he learned " short bowing". Apparently, he used to be in a sales position over a wide geographic area. When on the Interstates....he would drive with his knees and practice along with tapes in the car's cassette ( gives you an idea of how long ago that was huh...lol ). He said in the summer.....with the window down....he had plenty of room for practicing long bowing, but during the winter months....he had to really keep that bow movement short :-D One day he was driving and fiddling away....when a sherriff's patrol car pulled up even with him.....the look on the sheriff's face said it all.....Mike pulled over to the side of the road with the officer behind him......Mike said that he thought of trying to stuff the fiddle back in the case....but....realized that would be too obvious.....so just laid it in the seat beside him. The officer motioned him to come back to the patrol car. Mike walked back....sweating the whole way.....and as he approached the car.....he heard the officer on the radio telling the whole county police force that he " had the durndest highway stop ever" and was asking " How do I write a ticket for THAT ".....He looked at Mike and said..." Get that fiddle and bring it back here to me "......Mike, by this time, was pretty scared of what might happen.....he went and got the fiddle & bow.... walked back to the patrol car.....where the officer said.....on the police radio......" Boys, you gotta hear this ".....looked at Mike and said......" Play'em a tune son ".....which Mike did......lolol......after he finished...the officer wrote him a ticket for driving without any hands....and told him....." That is mighty purty fiddling son....but.....don't ever let me see you drive like that in this county again !!! " Mike took off.....drove till he was sure he was in the next county.....put the wheel between his knees....and commenced to play !!!
He did say....that this was not the way to try .....nor was he suggesting that anyone do this.....we all had a good laugh...then proceeded to learn some tunes ;-)
So, no Sassafrass.....no fiddling while driving....but take that thing whereever you go.....play it when you have a moment....and worry not about what others may think !!!
Friday, September 24, 2010 @9:58:42 PM
i heard a story very much like that one just last month, but it involved a young musician, a banjo, very straight prairie roads, the highway patrol and....
...a big....FAT....TICKET. ha ha.
Saturday, September 25, 2010 @5:32:19 AM
harwilli55--I LOVE this story!! That's wonderful! I don't think that I could ever drive and play my fiddle as I drive a beetle. That is really an inspiration, though, of how much dedication he had to play. I'm going to have to Google "short bowing" as I'm too much of a newbie to know what that is. Thanks for the great story! I'm definitely going to keep my eye out for an inexpensive car fiddle. :)
cheekee--banjo in the car!! Wow. Can't even fathom how that fit!!! ;)
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