July 13, 2016 at 3:12 pm #16630
I’m going to mixed instrument bluegrass jam camp. Only know a handful of tunes (Will the Circle…, I’ll Fly Away, Angeline the Baker, Boil em.., The Girl I Left Behind Me). If I don’t have time to learn tunes ahead of time should I practice chromatic scales so if tunes there have flats and sharps I can find them more quickly? What is the most important thing to do to prep for this camp as a Suzuki 1 level student who plays pretty well by ear? Bow patterns?July 15, 2016 at 4:03 pm #16743
That’s a great question and I’m curious to see responses. With the Wernick (Dr Banjo) jam classes I usually attend and play banjo or dobro, I was thinking of trying one with the fiddle in Flagstaff in September. Class requirements is G, C, D and A chords. How would that apply to fiddle?July 17, 2016 at 10:18 pm #16818
Same requirements. I’m a graduate of Wernick also! If you know the notes on the chord and all the inversions you can choose two of the three or four chord notes to play as a doubkestop, or choose one note to create a riff around.July 21, 2016 at 12:33 am #16973
What do you mean by all the inversions? I’m pretty new to this fiddle thing. Lol. I understand chord shapes and notes for the most part. Just not sure how to apply that to the fiddle.July 24, 2016 at 6:26 am #17161
Are inversions just the same three notes but with a higher starting chord note (C for C only higher string)?July 25, 2016 at 9:16 pm #17270
Hi all! In answer to the first question, my suggestion would be practice major and minor scales, particularly G, D, A and E. Then practice chords in each scale in sequences of I, IV, V, I. So for example, in Key of G that sequences would be G chord, C chord, D chord, and back to G chord. Then it would also be useful to practice the same sequence in arpeggios, which are simply the same chords, broken down into single notes. So for an example, in the Key of G, the arpeggio on a I chord, or G chord would be as follows: G, B, D, G, which you could play in two easy octaves from the bottom open G to the top G (e2).
When you practice chord sequences, you can play around with ‘inversions’ as mentioned above. An example of Key of G, I chord, G chord, the standard G chord could be G (open), G (d3) played together. It could be G (d3) and B (g2 or a1), and it could also be B (a1) and G (a2). For reference e2 is a low 2.
Finally, knowing the scale of the key gives you an idea of finger pattern relationships, high and low fingers, etc, so if you are riffing, you’ll stay within the key’s finger pattern. If it doesn’t sound right, move to the next note. This only gets easier following your ear and doing it. Having a basic idea of the sequence to expect in the I, IV, V I pattern of chord progressions in typical songs will allow you to jump into a group playing situation a little easier.
I’m sure your questions would be appropriate, even at the camp, as they are the burning questions that drive us to attend camps like this!
You might enjoy this video I ran across on youtube last night. Its Richard Greene demonstrating a rhythmic, chordal, bowing style he invented called ‘The Chop’, that burns up a jam session.July 25, 2016 at 9:19 pm #17271
Practicing the chords and inversions at the same time I practice the scales, and practicing the chords in the 1,4,5 order is the tip my brain needed to hear. Thank you!