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A year has come and gone...

Sunday, August 15, 2010

I was just looking and saw that my last blog entry had been two months ago.  It is hard to believe that the time has already gone by so quickly.  I meant to get on last month after I got back from the music festival that I went to last month, but it seemed like life had a way of happening, and without having internet at home, it just seemed like I never had the chance to take the computer where I could get a connection.  So here is a little update of how my summer has been going.

Last month I went to a music festival a few hour north of where I live.  I have been going there on a regular basis for some time now.  Although this year was the first year that I went with my main focus being the fiddle.  Years prior I had taken my hammered dulicmer with me.  During my week up in Evart my one year mark for when I started playing the fiddle passed.  It is amazing the amount of improvement that I have seen in the past year, from trying to coax tunes like Twinkle Twinkle out of my instrument, to actually have some tunes under my belt that actually sound decent, and don't send everybody running in the opposite way.  I have actually had several neighbors in my building that have told me that my playing is sounding better, when I have my windows opened when I am playing I have had a couple of people tell me that they enjoy listening to what I am playing. 

I have also found myself being able to pick up more and more parts of tunes when I am playing them in a jam setting.  Of course at this point if I try to reproduce them at home, it doesn't sound good, but those fingers and ears are starting to make more and more of those connections.

Evart was a great experience for me this year, met a couple who come down from Canada for this festival, and during the week I had opportunities to sit in on the jams that they did and play along.  I haven't heard much of the Canadian music before this, but during that week I had the opportunity to expand my horizons on the musical front.  Also during Evart I was able to make a dear friend Judy Burns.  The first night that I sat in with the group that I jammed with for most of the week, I had sat next to her.  I was somewhat nervous, with the fact that what they where playing was pretty much new to me, and the level of their playing was well above my own.  But Judy and the rest of them made me feel welcomed.  In many ways by the end of the week I felt that my playing had grown by leaps and bounds.

It also seems like I might have started myself a new tradition for the Evart festival.  Last year I had gotten my first fiddle from there, the one that has started this wonderful obsession.  This year when I went up I had a little bit of money that I had set aside, with the purpose of taking a look at the used instruments and seeing if I might be able to find something that I liked at the right price.  On Saturday the last full day of the festival I noticed a fiddle at one of the vendor's booths that I had not noticed before.  The price was right, so I tried the fiddle and like how it sounded.  As one can guess, we know what followed, I ended up buying the fiddle.  When I got back to the campsite I took a look in the case to see what accessories where in there and found the price tag for when the previous owner had originally got it.  They had paid over $900 for it, which I had gotten it for considerably less.  There was also a bow in the case which this weekend someone pointed out to me has Tubbs stamped on it.  The bow in my opinion is nice and I do like how it plays, although I don't have much experience in judging the quality or worth.

This weekend was the Michigan Fiddlers convention down in Hillsdale which I attended for the first time.  I had a great weekend, and I was able to spend more time with Judy, who I had met up in Evart, and spend more time in being able to develop that friendship.  Saturday night I also participated in being part of the group that played the music for the square dance that they had that evening.  It was a great experience and something that I did not think that I would be doing at this point.  But I enjoyed the experience and had a lot of fun being able to particiapate in the dance in that way.

Unfortunately for me my summer is winding down, there are some more festivals that are taking place, but the need to have to work, and finances will keep me from being able to attend anymore of them this summer.  Although I will still have the jams that I will be attending not to far from home, and in November I will be heading out to Fiddle Hell to end this year with a big event.

4 comments

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Playing Since: 2009
Experience Level: Just Startin'

Interests:
[Jamming] [Socializing]

Occupation: CNA

Gender: Female
Age: 40

My Instruments:
German fiddle guarneri model from the 1950's ,fiddle (from China, Skylark suppose to be one of thier better student violins), newest addition Glaesel,hammered dulcimer, guitar

Favorite Bands/Musicians:
Tommy Jarrell, Clark Kessinger, Benny Thomasson, Doc Watson, Rick Thum, Gaelic Storm, Les Raber, Pete McMahan

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Created 7/20/2009
Last Visit 5/3/2014

I have always enjoyed creating music. Over the past 4 years I have been playing the hammered dulcimer, most of the tunes that I play are old timey fiddle tunes. I became interested in playing the fiddle about a year ago, and just recently was able to get my first fiddle.

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