Going to the gym is so hard for me. And it’s not because I don’t like it. I actually do. I feel good, once I’m there. It’s getting there that’s the hard part. For many years now, I have hired a personal trainer. Not because I can’t figure out how to exercise but because I … More How practicing music is like exercising
For the past 5 weeks I’ve been taking an Irish music class with The Vermont School of Traditional Irish Music and learning a new tune each week. It’s been great as not only have I been adding tunes to my repertoire but I’ve been learning some valuable lessons about how to practice. Here are a … More Practice tips for the traditional Irish musician
Many, many years ago, when I first started learning tunes by ear, I diligently learned every note of an Irish tune from a CD I was listening to. I practiced it over and over, note for note and then brought it to my teacher at the time. I played it for her. She listened and … More Making Irish music, Irish
Though the bow doesn’t look like much, you simply can’t play the fiddle without it. The bow is the rhythm. The bow is what makes the fiddle sing. And bowing is probably the hardest thing to learn when it comes to playing the fiddle. Learning to a bow a tune can be tricky. Sometimes when … More Mastering the bow
I’m not sure if it’s because I started playing fiddle late in life or just that my brain can only fit so much information in it at any given time, but damn it takes me a long time to learn a tune. I find some tunes harder to learn than others, like Spike Island Lasses for example … More What makes certain tunes so hard to learn?
A few months ago I adopted Bloo, a rescue dog from a local shelter. And since we’ve been together I have to admit I have spent more time playing with him than I have been practicing my fiddle (look at that face, can you blame me?). Today though, I finally got back to it and … More What I learned from my dog about music
I recently adopted this rescue dog named Bloo. He’s only a year old and already knows how to sit, shake and come when he’s called. But like all rescue dogs, and dogs in general, it takes time to teach them to behave like you want them to so they can live a happy and healthy life.
by Katrina VanTyne Spring has finally arrived, according to the calendar at least. And though there is still a ton of snow on the ground here in Vermont, there is no better time like the present to do some spring cleaning on your instrument. Winter can wreak havoc on instruments so now is the time … More 4 Spring cleaning tips for fiddlers
by Katrina VanTyne I love watching the Olympics. It doesn’t matter who wins the gold, it always brings tears to my eyes when an athlete gets awarded their medal on the podium. Though I can’t claim to be anything close to an Olympic athlete (though I did mountain bike race in my youth), I can … More How practicing is like training for the olympics
If your New Year’s resolution includes taking better care of your health, one way to stick to it is to play more music. I’m no doctor, and I don’t play one on TV, but research shows there are health benefits to being a musician. And don’t worry, you don’t have to be a professional to reap … More 6 Ways playing music is good for your health