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Irish Internet Radio and TV from Dublin, Ireland.

First of all, hi everyone. I'm a new traditional fiddle student, at 47 years of age. It seems my current mid-life crisis, could not afford a Ferarri so, I opted to buy and learn Irish Fiddle instead. I've been playing for about 6 or 7 months now and am soaking up everything I can about the instrument and the art. Recently, I was invited to play at a Hiberian Hall Dance and was privelidged to meet a professional fiddler by the name of Padraig Dolan. He was over here for the season (on an artist's visa) and has since returned to Ireland. Padraig took me under his wing, for the short time of our aquaintance and passed along both of these resources:

http://www.alan-ng.net/irish/learning/

http://comhaltas.ie/

Both have a great number of links to browse and while my current instructor is classical, they have been a great resource to me. I hope that one or both of these will be of some help to anyone.

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Replies to This Discussion

Wow..! Thank you very much, Stephen..!
Great thing you shared these links with us all...
I've read Alan's tips... and agree with him : the bow is key..!!! ;-)
Great initiative..! Thanks again..!
And best with the learning... Keep us informed on your progress, whenever you feel like it...!
wwm
I have a suggestion for learning Irish music. Learn to do Irish dance. Go to the Ceili'e. Once you understand the dance you can hear how the fiddle or whatever lifts and drives the dancers round the floor.

Tip number two. I learned this one long ago and it applies to most instrument playing. If you want to play accurately and quickly you must learn how to use the principal of Tension and Relaxation. Make a tight fist with your left hand. Really tight. Now relax it. You will notice that your fingers don't travel very far but stay close to your palm. when playing whistle, fiddle, guitar, etc, you press down on the string and then RELAX your finger and it will come up but will stay close to the string, in position and ready for the next note. The tendency, for beginners expecially, is to PULL the finger away which will eventually cause your playing to be slow and/or inaccurate.
That's all.
Just something I learned and has helped me.
PS. This might be something that everyone knows but is only new to me. (Being a granny in her mid 60's can be challenging with the new technology._ I have Windows XP on my PC. I found that if I download a CD into my Windows Media player, I can slow it down by clicking on Now Playing and then Enhancements. That helps a lot in figuring out how a tune is being played and even in learning a tune.
I don't know if any of you are aware of SHAR Violins. They have a website and I get all my stuff from them. I even got my fiddle from them. They are so willing to help you make your choice. When I wanted my new fiddle I didn't know what to get. I wanted a good general fiddle and I also wanted a Baroque violin. So they sent me both and I was to send back the one I did not want. When I got my bow they sent me several bows to try. I kept the one I liked best and sent the rest back.
I have called them with questions about the strings I am using and they are so helpful.
Also, their prices are the best I have seen.
Gianna Violins is a good place, too. They are a small luthier and instrument shop, with quality instruments, good prices, and in my experience are always willing to help. Above and beyond, even.

http://www.giannaviolins.com/index.html

(parts of their website are being updated)
Hi Sandy, also try:

http://www.thesession.org/index.php

It's a fantastic resource for basic melodies as it offers a midi download, as well as the sheet music of the tunes. 'Course you'll have to figure out the decorations, but it should give you the basics.
Wow! This is great! Thanks so much for sharing. I haven't beenable to stop reading. I had to tear myself away because I must take care of other responsibilities but I will be back.


Happy Fiddling!
Congratulations on having the courage to try your art in public! I also am an amateur fiddler who picked up my first fiddle several years ago. At 46 years old, I look forward to joining a group of Irish music enthusiasts in my area.
Hi Stephen and all,

I am a fiddle player/teacher teaching in Dublin 20 years. I have a number of publications with Waltons.ie I was asked to do when I was teaching there.(see profile) A number of my students are regularly online and have asked me do I teach online and are there any fiddle resource sites.

So I have decided to set a site for aspiring fiddlers 'irishfiddle.ie'. It will be live early Dec.'09. It will have links,embedded video, fiddle practice tips, blog, links, (traditional)gig listings etc etc. I was amazed there was not already a site for Irish fiddlers wanting to learn, so hopefully I can make an impression being the first. I will post a link here when it is launched and good luck with the practice !

Paul McNevin
looking forward to irishfiddle.ie
Let us know when its up Paul
As soon as its going I will let you know Barry

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