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Tips To TRANSFORM Your Fiddle Playing

Updated: Jun 6

If you are ready to take your fiddle playing to the next level, stay tuned for my tips that are sure to kick things up a notch!

1. Attend Jam Sessions

There are countless benefits to attending jam sessions, such as improving your ability to play with other musicians, practicing backing up, learning fiddle standards, practicing solos, etc. All of that said, putting yourself in this setting will undoubtedly improve your abilities on the fiddle. I'd encourage you to seek out local jam sessions, and attend regularly, so you are able to gain as much experience as possible. Even if you don't feel comfortable playing the first time, simply sitting in and observing how jam sessions operate can be a helpful learning experience. If you don't have any jam sessions in your area, start one yourself by reaching out to local musicians and getting everyone together for a weekly or monthly jam!

2. Attend Fiddle Camps/Workshops

Attending fiddle camps and fiddle workshops is a great way to learn several tunes in a short amount of time from professionals, thereby strengthening your ability to learn by ear. Being in these settings also allows you to play with other musicians all day long, allowing you to get comfortable with your role as a fiddle player - taking solos, backing up, playing melodies, etc. Oftentimes you will also be exposed to many styles of music at fiddle camps and workshops, which can expand your musical awareness - introducing you to styles and genres you might not have known about otherwise. Putting yourself into these "intensives" also allows you to see where other musicians are at level-wise, so you can be encouraged by how well you're doing, as well as inspired to continue to grow.

3. Perform For Others

Another way you can truly transform your playing is by performing for others. This is a great opportunity to showcase what you've been working hard on, and demonstrate how far you've come. Performing for others also gives you a specific purpose for practicing, therefore keeping you accountable when learning and memorizing tunes. Giving a recital doesn't have to be daunting, either. You can think of it as gathering a few friends or family members together for a nice get-together, and allowing them to show their support for your interests.

And there you have it! Those were some of my tips for transforming your fiddle playing. These tips are less instantaneous, and more long-term oriented. If you are in it for the long haul, though, involving people in your playing is truly the way to go. Speaking from years of firsthand experience, the more often you play with and for others, the faster you will grow as a confident and competent musician.

For more on this topic, watch the video below!

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