11 Ways to Play Sweetly

Fiddler, Liz Carroll
Fiddler Liz Carroll
Photo: Knuff Photography

In my last blog post, How do I learn to play sweetly, I wrote about my struggles in learning to grasp that sweet fiddle sound that so many of my peers and heroes possess. I got some wonderful advice from those very same peers and figured I would share them so you too could benefit from their knowledge. Below are 11 ways to learn to play sweetly.

  1. Just play it. We spend so much time in our head over-thinking things. We need to learn to just play the darn tune and not to over think it. Trust your fingers will know where to go and just play.
  2. Let the fiddle sing. After you’ve learned a tune just let your instrument sing it.
  3. Envision the dance. Envisions dancers dancing to your music.
  4. Listen to yourself. You’d be surprised to hear what you actually sound like.
  5. Let that one note sing. Even if you can only play one note, try to make it beautiful.
  6. Acknowledge and embrace the gift of music.
  7. Play with people you’re comfortable with.  This allows you to loosen up knowing that you don’t have to carry the tune.
  8. Let your passion shine through. Enjoy the joy of playing. If you’re enjoying it most likely the people listening will too.
  9. Play simple tunes simply. Play quietly, slowly and simply.
  10. Relax and enjoy it.
  11. Keep playing. Let’s face it, if it were easy everyone would be doing it. So don’t give up. Keep playing and enjoy it.

4 thoughts on “11 Ways to Play Sweetly

  1. I intend to buy a fiddle, soon. This all pretty much applies to everything else I currently play! I recommend this post to anyone starting out on any instrument!

    Also, I would say to anyone playing in front of people you don’t know, don’t be embarrassed or shy. Just play for yourself; what you like and what you know… If you are comfortable, you will likely sound good to your listeners.

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