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About mrmojo

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  1. Look for amps which are used to amplify acoustic instruments. They are made by Trace, Peavey, Fender, SWR, Crate and many others. If its a sound close to acoustic you are looking for, you don't want to use electric guitar amps. Always play through an acoustic preamp (made by Fishman, Baggs and others) --Joel
  2. Emmylou Harris' version of "Sweet Old World" from "Wrecking Ball". Written by Lucinda Williams about her brother's suicide. This song just breaks my heart. --Joel
  3. It think its a matter of how the instrument is taught. (Saxophones and trumpets are one-note-at-a-time animals too) One key is the ability to sing what you play (or play what you sing)Another is to break-up arpeggios into speech-like patterns. People tend to practice arpeggios in this form: do-mi-so-do-mi-so and then back down again. No music in the world sounds like that! The idea is to remember where arpeggios are on the instrument and how they sound played with rhythm accompaniment. Its much better is to break them up, use chromatic approach notes, repetition, different interval jumps etc. Basic arpeggio studies always fall in exact subdivisions of the beat, but speech is not like that. We use pauses for dramatic effect, and group words together. Transcribing is really important for the improviser. Solos or melodic variations can be written down or just memorized. If you can compose 5 variations on a melody and interchange the parts at will, then you have the beginnings of improvisation. After a while it becomes an act of inspiration. If you want to play jazz, you need to listen to the music and learn about it. Jazz blues are a good place to begin. Aebersold's recording of Lennie Niehaus playing solos to "Blues in All Keys" is a good place to start. I would take that material and rewrite it to simplify. To play jazz well, you should learn to analyze solos-especially transcriptions you've done. It beconmes a matter of "What's that nice sound? Oh, he's outlining an A minor chord there or she's going to the b7th and then to the 9th of the scale". When you find something you like, write some exercises and use the device within a progression. There is a misconception that good improvisers receive only mysterious inspiration which allows them to improvise well. There is inspiration, but it is based on a lot of study of how chords move in songs, and the ability to describe using the language of theory. Also its important to know where the notes are on your instrument without thinking about it, and to know how to spell various scales and intervals you will be playing. This is a lot of hard work, but it its also the work of music composition, and I don't know if thats really a priority in teaching classical violin. All these exercises gain you flexibility, and that's valuable in playing any music. Like anything in music it requires sustained effort (and probably a good teacher) to do well. There are some frustrations involved, but at its best you get to spontaneously create music with like-minded musicians. There is no thinking of the exercises you practiced, just the thrill of interaction.
  4. The Cooledit demo is free and will slow music down while retaining the pitch. It is fully functional for that purpose.
  5. Of course! I think the most important issue is: "what does it mean to you?" If playing the violin means a lot to you, you'll be motivated and find ways to grow--at any age.
  6. The Barbera is a very good pickup-and the solid bridge (the one without cutouts) can be placed on *any* instrument and the sound will be the same. I've tested this with mine. A $500 Barbera and a cheap violin will make you an instrument w/ state of the art electric violin sound. Of course the ones selling for $2,854.31 are prettier. Not better though! My regular violin with a Baggs works in almost all situations, unless its really loud. I prefer its "acoustic" tone thru the pickup better than any solid-body electric violin tone. An "acoustic" preamp (Baggs, Fishman etc.)is an absolute necessity--Joel
  7. Thanks everyone (and espec. Shantinik-- that's great-thanks for the link.) Just curious-everyone has mentioned trios playing this music. Just looking for music for myself and a piano playing friend. Do people tend to play these sonatas and leave out the 3rd part? Or is music for piano and violin played on different recordings than people have mentioned here? ---Joel
  8. This is only my opinion, but I do have a lot of experience in this area. Those violins have Ashworth pickups. Solid violins do not change the sound of pickups much. Bolt a neck onto a piece of wood and string it up using an Ashworth. You will have the same sound for thousands of dollars less. The manufacturer will tell you this is not true (of course). Acoustic violins with pickups are another story though. I like the sound of Baggs and Barbera pickups best. Mount one on any structurally sound violin and you are in business. Check my article: --thanks, Joel
  9. Hi everyone- This follows my previous thread. We've established :^) that Handel, Corelli, and Mozart have written violin/piano sonatas which are suitable for *intermediate* violinists. I'd like to buy recordings which feature this music for each composer. (Especially interested in Corelli.) My guess is that the "easier to play" music would not be featured alone on a CD, but I hope so. It would be much more convenient! At this point I'm looking to collect the music on CD, not necessarily the best versions ever recorded. Later for that... Also looking for the sheet music, if there are collections you could recommend. I don't know. Maybe I should start with the sheet music? thanks --Its great to have such an online resource, Joel Glassman
  10. Thanks for the suggestions! Its a new step in music for me, and kind of exciting. I'll ask for CD recommendations in another thread.---Joel Glassman
  11. Thanks for your messages. I have the Bach Cello transpositions and have played through some of them. Great to study, but they are solo works (unfortunately there are no violin recordings of them, only cello recordings played in the original key.) The Kreisler music is great too, but it is generally beyond by ability. Though I play fancy :^) fiddle music, its not necessary for the classical pieces to be virtuosic. I'm hoping to find intermediate level vio/piano duets(sonatas?) similar in sound to some of the composers I listed. Will check out the Suzuki books. Many of the books I've found are "great themes arranged for violin/piano". Definitely looking for actual compositions "as originally written" instead. thanks, Joel [This message has been edited by mrmojo (edited 02-20-2002).]
  12. Friends— I’m a player of what might be called virtuoso fiddle music- mostly “competition-style fiddle tunes”, Irish music, bluegrass and swing. Dance music basically :^) Can anyone suggest classical violin music for violin and piano? I’m looking for something rhythmic, flexible and w/melodic development, with a piano part which is not too complex. (Not too familiar with classical music, but grew-up with recordings by Mozart, Corelli, Telemann, Hayden, Albinoni etc.) The Bach solo violin music is a bit beyond me at this point, but I’m comfortable with 3rd position, and mostly like music in 2 or 4 --less interested in waltzes or 6/8 time. It would be ideal to locate both recordings and sheet music. Possibly a commercial collection with CD or a CD of one composers works with a book of the same. Thanks—this will be interesting! ----Joel Glassman
  13. I use the Rolls and recommend it. The soundmix requires tweaking and takes some getting used to. I like to use an ear bud in my left ear only. The Rolls does not feature phantom power, (and condenser mics generally require it.) Make sure you use a directional mic with the Rolls. An omni-directional mic will send a lot of stage and audience noise to your ears. Very distracting! Check my article on amplifying violins: --Joel
  14. I also find singing really helps my playing sound more fluid and melodic. I push a tonal whisper or "sigh" thru my vocal chords. It is very quiet, but the connection between the mind and body (voice) is made. My thing is mostly improv. and there is a big difference between my playing with and without doing this. I have a sign on my music stand which says "SING!"