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How to Groove on Strings

Posted by Tracy Silverman on Sep 25, 2018 11:28:00 AM

We invited legendary electric violinist Tracy Silverman to tell us about what inspired him to create his groundbreaking new books on Strum Bowing. Simply put: There was no defined pedagogy for learning the rhythmic bowing required for non-classical styles, such as jazz, rock and others. Because of this, the violin and other bowed string instruments have essential taken their place as melodic instruments, with little to no role in providing rhythm to an ensemble. Tracy Silverman’s books are destined to greatly broaden the role of stringed instruments in music making across genres, by enabling classical players to expand their repertoire of techniques. This fascinating article shines a light on how this situation has come about, and how the new pedagogy will enable any player to develop the tools needed to become a Total Violinist.

 

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Topics: Violin, Revolution Strings, Pedagogy, Alternative Strings, Improvisation

The Total Violinist

Posted by Val Jaskiewicz on Aug 3, 2018 11:03:22 AM

Most of us violinists (as well as violists, cellists and bassists) are our most comfortable in an orchestra setting. Of course, the music is fantastic, and usually very challenging to learn and play. But learn and play we do, after woodshedding our parts carefully at home. Our teachers have been able to impart their technical and musical know-how to allow us to learn difficult pieces on our own. We take those skills, now finely honed, to the concert hall, where we deeply breathe in the joy of a beautiful performance, in amazing rhythm with our colleagues. If we’re lucky, our family and friends in the audience will enjoy our performance as much as we do.

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Topics: Music Careers, motivation, Pedagogy, Self-Improvement, Blog, Folk, Jazz, Classical, Violin, Viola, Cello, Alternative Strings, Bass

Your Musical Mental Map

Posted by Guest Blogger on Nov 8, 2017 10:29:59 AM

Learning to play an instrument is about hand positioning, technique, practice, and hard work. This careful training leads to muscle memory and tonal recognition. Mastery in playing an instrument requires additional skills well beyond even these.  Dr. Melissa Gerber Knecht, our guest blogger, is Professor of Music at Hillsdale College. Dr. Gerber has studied the development of pattern recognition in the human brain and the critical role this plays in achieving mastery of the instrument. Her recent book, Developing Your Musical Mental Map, is based on this research, and provides a useful guide for teachers and students seeking to achieve breakthrough improvement.

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Topics: Pedagogy, Teaching, books, Music Theory

String Teachers: Business as Usual . . . or a Breakthrough Year?

Posted by Val Jaskiewicz on Oct 18, 2017 11:08:22 AM

It’s time for a new school year, an opportunity for a fresh start in your studio. A new crop of students is arriving, and many of your students are returning. And each student is different, with different strengths and weaknesses, different commitment levels, and different motivations. You’ve got lots of students to teach, and they need to cover a lot of ground quickly. Fortunately, you have your method books, your supplements, and especially your own experience and good sense, and that has always served you well. For most of your students.

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Topics: Teaching, Teaching Aids, String Community, Method Books, books, Violin, Viola, Cello, Bass, Pedagogy

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