Lilting Fiddle

Learning to Play Fiddle as an Adult

Progress Report: Three Months of Fiddle

Posted on April 12, 2019

Today marks the third month of learning to play violin. I wish I could say this was as successful as my first two months, but, as I wrote before, I’ve had more trouble sticking to daily practice. A lot of this is due to simply being exhausted when coming home from work… so hopefully, as things shift, I’ll have more energy to put back into practice again. 

So, as to not concentrate on the bad, I do want to talk about what I made progress on. Since last month, I have practiced up to exercise #117, which is The Banana Boat Song. Song #118 seems a bit difficult to tackle, so for now, I’ve skipped it and moved to the series of technical exercises that start with #119.

These are mostly variation of scales and practices, which are all good for daily revisiting (even if I don’t get anything else done). There’s a whole page of short scales and tunes, so I think I’m going to focus on these on the tired days, if nothing else. Maybe by the time I’ve got some scale practice in, I’ll feel more up to playing something more.

I did start practicing the slur technique this month. Also, I removed one of the tapes from my fingerboard, and really, haven’t had much trouble with that. Still not quite ready to remove the other tape, though!

I also wonder if it’s time to weave something new into my practice. I know that Jim at Fiddling for Older Folks has good things to say about the FiddleHed online lessons. I signed up for a trial account there last month, but something came up that weekend, and I wasn’t really able to explore the lessons or site as much as I’d have liked. I got an email from FiddleHed yesterday that offered a pretty sweet discount for trying my first month (I assume since I haven’t acted on the account in a while), and I think I might just take up that offer.

I’ve heard good things about the site, and a full month access to all of the tutorials would allow me to get a better feel for where I stand in my own progress vs. what the site offers to see if it provides value. Plus, to add a little something different in my practice might spark excitement. I really love my instruction book, but even I know I need to change things up from time to time. So this might just be the perfect thing to lead into a new month of practice!

I’ll keep you posted!

Leave Your Thoughts!

Archived Comments

Jim Guinn - Friday, April 12, 2019

I hear you loud and clear. I feel the same way as I am half way through my 3rd month. I'm glad you decided to do scales on days when a regular practice can't be done. I haven't recorded anything in a few weeks. I've learned a few more tunes, but not good enough to record just yet. I really am doing a lot of scale work. Fiddlehed has a lot of scale practices and recommendations. I don't think you can go wrong trying Fiddlehed for a month. That's how I started, and then I went on for the full year subscription. Also, check out the Facebook group I posted about in my forum.
I find it nice to hear so many others experience the same things we are experiencing.
Fiddle on...or scratch on...whatever today brings!

Aywren - Friday, April 12, 2019

Yep, still stumbling along. They say the start is always the hardest. I just know that if I give in at this point, it'll be harder to pick it back up again. And I'm still pulled in by the allure of the instrument!

Sometimes I can make a pretty sound, even if briefly, and that's encouraging! :D

Thanks for the group suggestion! I'm involved in another Adult Learner group on Facebook, but I sent in a join for this as well. Can never have too much inspiration - and I do find inspiration reading and seeing other adults learning and asking questions!

Breanne Wilkins - Wednesday, April 24, 2019

I played the violin for seven years and can say that daily practice is indeed a struggle! but it is definitely worth it in the end! Kudos to all of you as you are learning to play this beautiful and fun instrument though!

Aywren - Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Thank you so much for stopping to leave your encouragement, Breanne! It's much appreciated! :)