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May 12, 2021 - 11:21:52 AM

Quincy

Belgium

98 posts since 1/16/2021

I just have this idea in my mind, I cannot get it out of my mind each time I relisten this song. MUST know how to play Vivaldi's Largo.
I was wondering, can you pick a classical song and still manage to sound folky?
I have no clue. Do some of you ever play classical stuff?
And if so, what do you sound like?

May 12, 2021 - 12:29:51 PM
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1803 posts since 12/11/2008

I play classical stuff all the time, and I just don't care that my style is far, far from what a classical player might consider "appropriate." If I like a tune, I'll get it under my fingers, no matter where it might hail from. It doesn't matter what key the tune was originally played in, either. I'll play it in a key that suits my fingers and ears. It doesn't matter to me that I might only be playing a fragment of that original classical tune. Putting it another way, it's the tune itself that counts. Not its provenance.

May 12, 2021 - 12:30:33 PM
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9101 posts since 3/19/2009

One of my dearly loved, Old Time fiddle jam members is Deb Shebish.. SHE can do it all......https://debshebishmusicblog.wordpress.com/
People who can cross over from classical to "folk" Effectively, are rare IMO..
Deb is one of those people... DANG, I miss jamming with her.

An aside:  Once, Deb, me and an amazing banjo player (Jude Odell), did some busking on Bloomington's sidewalks.. We called ourselves the "Make-My-Day Towing Company String Band"...
 

Edited by - TuneWeaver on 05/12/2021 12:35:12

May 12, 2021 - 1:42:58 PM
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2698 posts since 9/13/2009

Vivaldi was a Baroque composer, predates Classical period.

But what you are probably referring to is a generic terminology covering elite art music. Not merely the sound, but different ideals and goals (and process). One of which is being true to the composer intent; or "as written". 

Not sure what meant by "sound folksy"; or to what ears, or who decides? Nor how one would go about that.

To me, "folk" is not any particular sound, rather refers more an approach, attitude, and/or goals toward playing. Essentially, it has more a DIY, or make do attitude; strict "as written" is not important; often use what they've heard, a nice sounding tune, for music ideas, themes, melodies... as just a starting point. But individual players are free to do as they see fit... take what they want, leave the rest... including edits, adaptations, modifications, some to to accommodate limitations, complexities/simplifications, as well as certain aesthetics. 

Not sure that they are deliberately trying to make it "sound folksy", rather that the sound is just the result of their freedom, liberties and process.

With that, can take any piece of music, no matter the origin... and alter to with a more specific aesthetical and styling goal in mind. For example, taking Largo, and deciding you want it to sound like something along lines of Edn Hammons... or perhaps like John Dougherty... or perhaps something else that reflects your own aesthetics.

May 12, 2021 - 4:09:29 PM
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Snafu

USA

93 posts since 2/2/2014
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Quincy,

I am taking classical violin lessons (I’m on Doflein book three) and in my spare time I play Irish and Old time music for fun. You can do both but you need to keep the approaches separated. Your title makes it sound like you want to play classical but make it sound like folk music. I don’t think that is what you meant to suggest? You want to play some classical because you like it right?

Play what you like is my mantra. I’m working on the Rieding concerto in B minor op 35 and also pounding out fiddle tunes and waltzes. The goal is to make the Rieding sound like it is supposed to and make the fiddle tunes sound like they should. I disagree that learning one style prevents you from learning alternatives. Yeah, I won’t be playing my fiddle tunes on the Opry stage or my concerto in Carnegie hall but that was never the objective. I just like playing them. I play for my enjoyment.

May 12, 2021 - 4:18:51 PM
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1803 posts since 12/11/2008

Alaska -- It's okay to use the term "Classical" for music that did not originate during what is now known as the Classical period. It is a generic term that covers music that stylistically hails from Europe, and that is largely written down in what is called manuscript form. Take it from a guy who's loved the genre for over half a century and who toiled several years in a classical records store...

May 12, 2021 - 6:24:09 PM
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403 posts since 6/11/2019

Quincy,
 

here is a topic wherein the members here gave me a lot of good inputs for pieces to work on.

As far as how do I sound while playing them--I feel any violin/fiddle player should strive for the best tone they care to have.  I would never try to play Air on the G-string with a Georgia Shuffle.  I play classical as close as I can to the composer's intent--that's why they call it a 'recital'.

A good musician masters many genres.  I'm certainly not there, but that's what I'm shooting for.

Prost

May 13, 2021 - 4:47:31 AM
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12017 posts since 9/23/2009

There's lots of varying ideas on this. Probably, I'd say, if you start out playing folksy stuff, and then you pick up a classical piece...the folksy background will show, but I don't see how it would hurt it...might give it a new sound. And the other way around, if you start out classical, you pick up a folksy piece, the classical is gonna show through. But ultimately, you play what you love, what you feel compelled to play, however you feel like playing it. If you can go back to it in a few more years, you'll be amazed at the changes you put into it a few years later. I say play whatever you have a love for and just feel the need to play...that guarantees it'll be good.

May 13, 2021 - 5:27:56 AM
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Earworm

USA

200 posts since 1/30/2018

Some of those classical pieces were also taken from old folk tunes - they say there is nothing new in the world. It's hard to say if that's true - I wasn't there.

May 13, 2021 - 5:44:07 AM
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gapbob

USA

746 posts since 4/20/2008

As long as you’re playing what you hear, you can go back-and-forth. If you don’t hear some thing and you play it, you will tend to play it the way that you first learned. You can make it work both ways, you’ll never forget what you already know, you will be able to access anything you have already learned—you get to decide.

Edited by - gapbob on 05/13/2021 05:46:51

May 13, 2021 - 6:57:18 AM
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411 posts since 3/1/2020

Yes, one can certainly play both styles well. There are countless fiddlers who had a classical background. There are also fiddlers who have learned to play classical music. Vivaldi played regularly with O’Carolan and Thomas Jefferson played regularly with Patrick Henry.

If you don’t have a strong technical foundation, it can be difficult to progress in the classics style, but this can be remedied by proper instruction.

The idea that learning something different could harm your playing is ridiculous. Whether you can play a style well comes down to your attention to detail, the strength of your ear, and your willingness to persevere.

May 13, 2021 - 8:24:30 AM
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5577 posts since 7/1/2007

Does it hurt your own language when you learn another? Languages are neurologically a lot more complex than playing music. People in Belgium routinely Learn Flemish or French plus English, plus regional accents or dialects, and I had similar experience with music and language. Adding one skill doesn't damage your fundamental skills. Learning new languages didn't change my American Kansas accent one bit, although it takes work to lose an American accent when speaking those other languages; one mostly has to be aware and listen. It's easiest when you learn by listening, hardest when you learn from books. Come to think of it. Language or music, it's all impossible to learn them right without live examples. Recordings help with music; live conversation with native speakers with languages.

May 13, 2021 - 9:07:34 AM

DougD

USA

10095 posts since 12/2/2007

Rich, although I agree with your basic premise, I'm not so convinced about your duos. I don't think O'Carolan (who wasn't a fiddler anyway) ever left Ireland, and don't think Vivaldi ever visted there, although they were contemporaries. Jefferson and Patrick Henry, who both played the violin, did meet, but I'm not sure they did much playing together.

May 13, 2021 - 10:08:27 AM
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Quincy

Belgium

98 posts since 1/16/2021

quote:
Originally posted by KCFiddles

Does it hurt your own language when you learn another? Languages are neurologically a lot more complex than playing music. People in Belgium routinely Learn Flemish or French plus English, plus regional accents or dialects, and I had similar experience with music and language. Adding one skill doesn't damage your fundamental skills. Learning new languages didn't change my American Kansas accent one bit, although it takes work to lose an American accent when speaking those other languages; one mostly has to be aware and listen. It's easiest when you learn by listening, hardest when you learn from books. Come to think of it. Language or music, it's all impossible to learn them right without live examples. Recordings help with music; live conversation with native speakers with languages.


I love this comparison, as a Flemish Belgian I speak Dutch indeed and French, but also English and a bit of German. Learning other languages never hurts your native language, it's an enrichment. I know this for sure. I have been teaching my own language to not native speakers from Romania, Portugal and Spain for several years. My own language is a bit a hobbyhorse ;-) 

Edited by - Quincy on 05/13/2021 10:10:47

May 13, 2021 - 11:19:09 AM

411 posts since 3/1/2020

quote:
Originally posted by DougD

Rich, although I agree with your basic premise, I'm not so convinced about your duos. I don't think O'Carolan (who wasn't a fiddler anyway) ever left Ireland, and don't think Vivaldi ever visted there, although they were contemporaries. Jefferson and Patrick Henry, who both played the violin, did meet, but I'm not sure they did much playing together.


I was mistaken about Vivaldi. It was Geminiani who met and played with O'Carolan during his time in Ireland. Corelli and Vivaldi were, however, considerable sources of inspiration for O'Carolan. Geminiani wrote for O'Carolan on at least one occasion.

I was not mistaken about Thomas Jefferson and Patrick Henry, though. In their younger years (before they fell out with one another) they often played together. Jefferson had the more professional training and a greater technique, as he had spent a lot of time playing chamber music with the famous lawyer George Wythe and governor Fauquier and his ensemble (you might say he used the violin to open the door for his political career). Henry was not such an accomplished player as Jefferson, and he tended to play fiddle music that would have been popular at the time, as he did not have an Italian classical player to teach him as Jefferson did. Yet, despite the differing approaches and experiences, the two played together periodically after meeting in Williamsburg. 

May 13, 2021 - 12:31:22 PM
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1514 posts since 4/6/2014

imo, i think it's a bit late to start classical violin, (or any other orchestral instrument) after about 6 years old, Then you would need someone to asses your potential, finance your education, nurture your talent, (if you had no talent you wouldn't even pass the first hurdle), maybe find a suitable instrument and manage your career. if a potential classical violinist  fails at any of these stages they would probably still make an excellent pro fiddler or 2nd violin in an orchestra etc. A classical violinist would never engage in any occupation that might detract from their ability to play violin unless it was a last desperate resort. There would be too much vested interest in their playing abilities......

A fiddler on the other hand just enjoys playing , picks things up as they go along, and maybe gets some sort of remuneration if others enjoy it . Given another lifetime i think i would still choose to be a fiddler, marvel at classically trained Violinists,  and try to acquire (steal) some of their knowledge and technique.

May 13, 2021 - 1:54:56 PM
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5152 posts since 9/26/2008

Rich hit on a key concept that is being glossed over by the "one can play many styles" crowd. "it takes work to lose an American accent when speaking those other languages." The classically trained "accent" almost always shows through when it is the first language, making it clear to one listening for the nuances. The same can be said for all of the various different fiddle genres, though Scottish seems to lean more towards classical.
Your 'mastery' of any style depends a lot on the minutia, which agrees with the rest of the above quote "; one mostly has to be aware and listen."

May 13, 2021 - 2:01:26 PM
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12017 posts since 9/23/2009

ChickenMan beat me to it...yes, you can learn languages, but you will never lose your original accent. That's ok...but if you learn Russian and go to Russia, they will all hear that you're not from Russia...that's ok...but that's how it is. You start out as a folk musician, then decide to play Vivaldi...your past musical experience probably won't be any secret to anyone listening...but who cares? The only time you'd have to work yourself to death to change that is if you decided to join the Moscow Philharmonic and play professional orchestra stuff...if that ain't in your plans...who cares?

May 13, 2021 - 6:43:26 PM
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2276 posts since 8/23/2008

I play a few classical pieces and it is my desire to sound like the 'Gypsy' plays them, because I don't have any training what so ever to sound like how Anne Sophie Mutter plays them.

May 13, 2021 - 9:41:30 PM
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1803 posts since 12/11/2008

Buck, Peg -- you're playin' my tune! Stop worrying about the minutiae. If a melody socks you in the jaw, pick up your fiddle and play it. Gingerly, of course, because your chin has been socked and it's now a bit sore.

May 13, 2021 - 10:53:19 PM
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Quincy

Belgium

98 posts since 1/16/2021

Maybe some can make a very special sound while playing folksy tunes, even though classically trained.

I love how this lady plays Am I born to die:

youtube.com/watch?v=7Z_KEUMWD2g


If there is a grey in between, I think she belongs to it and that's where I want to belong, too.

May 13, 2021 - 10:57:23 PM
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Quincy

Belgium

98 posts since 1/16/2021

I think that is just beyond beautiful the way she plays this tune.

May 14, 2021 - 4:21:10 AM

12017 posts since 9/23/2009

I agree, Anja...she does a beautiful job playing it.

May 14, 2021 - 4:39:25 AM
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5152 posts since 9/26/2008

quote:
Originally posted by buckhenry

I play a few classical pieces and it is my desire to sound like the 'Gypsy' plays them, because I don't have any training what so ever to sound like how Anne Sophie Mutter plays them.


She is my favorite by a long shot. 

May 14, 2021 - 5:54:02 AM
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DougD

USA

10095 posts since 12/2/2007

Everyone has different responses to music, which is a lucky thing really.
I much prefer this version of "Am I Born to Die" by Doc Watson and his father-in-law Gaither Carlton (which I guess I've been listening to for almost 50 years now): youtu.be/9we5tGOQs5s
To me it has deep meaning and a long traditiion. In comparison the young lady's version is just a bunch of pretty notes.
"Each to his own" said the old lady as she kissed the cow.

May 14, 2021 - 5:58:02 AM

Quincy

Belgium

98 posts since 1/16/2021

quote:
Originally posted by DougD

Everyone has different responses to music, which is a lucky thing really.
I much prefer this version of "Am I Born to Die" by Doc Watson and his father-in-law Gaither Carlton (which I guess I've been listening to for almost 50 years now): youtu.be/9we5tGOQs5s
To me it has deep meaning and a long traditiion. In comparison the young lady's version is just a bunch of pretty notes.
"Each to his own" said the old lady as she kissed the cow.


This video I have in my favorites too! ;-)

I love to sing this song too , but not going to show haha.

Edited by - Quincy on 05/14/2021 05:58:44

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