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Fiddle Lessons: Left Hand Position

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I'm hoping that we've all been playing our
long notes.
Long notes, with the long bows on the A
that balance point change on the hair.
We're using our
left hand to just gently position the
neck of the fiddle to get those balance
points there.
We've got that touching at the ball of the
thumb and the ball of the palm.
Ready for action.
Okay, now we're going to go ahead bring
our left hand down on the string,
all of our fingers are going to come down.
We want the fingers to point down.
We want the tips of our fingers to come
down on the string,
just touching lightly, you don't have to
press them down very hard.
We just wanted them to come down, like
We're gonna not use the bow.
You can see that the fin, are lined up and
we got our elbow over so that our
pinky is not stretching or straining.
So, now we're just going to go ahead and
pick up all our fingers from the string
and we're gonna take our second and third
finger and put them down on the string
together so that they're tight together.
Not super tight but just touching.
Relax, and we still have the thumb and
the ball of the palm slightly touching.
We can slide this whole thing up and down
the neck a little bit.
You see that?
We're on the A string.
Okay, now we're gonna remove our third
finger slightly
so that we have all our fingers just
floating over the string,
but the only one that is actually touching
the string is the second finger.
This is going to be really important, we
wanna avoid having that stuff.
You don't want that.
We want these fingers to be available to
us for instant action.
You know, so they, they wanna be just
floating around there,
just ready to plunge down and hit those
notes whenever we need them to.
So, none of this.
[SOUND] That's why I like to start with
all of my fingers on the string.
[SOUND] Okay, but for right now, okay,
we're gonna take
second finger, leave it on, with these
other fingers just there.
Now, you see, I just took my hand away
from the neck, and I put it back.
Do that a couple of times.
That, what that gives you is a relaxation
We want to stay relaxed and you know, if
it feels like a strain.
If you like, strain and do this it's just
building that habit of keeping your
fingers there, but if we're straining.
It's not gonna help.
It's not gonna work.
So we just wanna go away and then come
And gradually our hands are gonna get used
to that position.
They're gonna be comfortable there.
But it's no good if you're just holding it
there and.
[SOUND] It's tenser and tenser.
So if it starts getting tense,
just bring the hand away and then keep
putting it back.
So then we've got that, and let's try a
We're gonna press down a little harder
with our second finger,
finger still pretty much over the string.
We're gonna take our bow, do a perfect
And then an up bow.
Just like that.
Playing a C-sharp right now on the A
Let's do it one more time.
First, bring your hand down, all fingers
on the strings,
lift everything up aga, except the second
Okay, all you beginning fiddlers.
We're going to start with Boil Them
Cabbage Down.
And we're going to start very simple.
We're going to use big bows.
We're going to keep that bow straight on
the string.
We're going to play it twice.
We'll play the first time with long bows,
one bow per note.
The second time we play it we're going to
lift the bow up, retakes it.
We start again with the down bow,
and play two bows per note.
So, basically we'll be moving the bow
twice as fast the second time.
Okay, here we go.
Boil Them Cabbage Down.
One, two, three, four.
We're going to do boiling cabbage down a
little faster here, but the same idea.
We're gonna start with the down bow, we're
gonna play one bow per note, and
then the second time we play it, we're
gonna make two bows per note.
So, just a little bit, little bit faster.
Boiling cabbage down.
One, two, three, four.