If you are a beginner fiddle player just working out how to play the fiddle, it can seem difficult to know how to begin. So below are my top 3 tips for a beginner irish fiddle player.
If you are just starting out, and looking help on how to play the fiddle, including how to hold the fiddle correctly, and how to hold the bow, take a look at my page How to Play the Fiddle (part 1).
3 tips for a complete beginner fiddle player
Beginner fiddlers are often told the fiddle is a difficult instrument to learn. Many people who would like to learn how to play the fiddle worry that the first stages will be especially difficult. They think that it will take a long time for them to be able to play in a way that sounds pleasing – and even longer to be able to play fiddle tunes!
But this isn’t true!
With the right approach, even total beginners to playing the fiddle can make a nice sound, and be playing simple tunes after a handful of lessons. But there are some tips that will really help you to make progress at the beginning.
Tip 1 – Focus on bowing
When it comes to playing the fiddle, your right hand, your bowing hand is as important than your left. Maybe even more important!
Most people starting out think that the left hand, that holds the fingers down and makes the different notes, is what is going to be difficult in learning to play the violin or fiddle. But it is the bowing hand that is responsible for a good tone and also for so much of the rhythm that is involved in playing.
So just as much of your practice should concentrate on your bowing technique as playing different notes with your left hand.
A good teacher will show you how to hold you bow properly, ways to improve your tone with your bowing, and different bowing exercises to improve your bowing technique.
Tip 2 – For a beginner on the fiddle, the basics matter!
If you get some of the basics right – how to hold the fiddle, how to use the bow, playing in time – right from the start, your playing will improve so much more quickly. Beginners sometimes rush ahead, but form bad habits that will make it more difficult to continue improving as they’d like.
In addition, if you get the basics for how to play fiddle right
Again, a good teacher will make sure you have good technique from the start.
Tip 3 – Find what you want to play on the fiddle!
Working towards playing in the style that you would like to play is really good motivation. Talk to your teacher about what sort of music you would eventually like to play, and they should be able to find simpler versions of the same style, or at least music that will let you work towards your goal.
I find it is really important for beginner fiddle players to feel like they are headed in the right direction.
BONUS TIP: Once you’ve worked out what you want to learn, head over to my free fiddle lesson videos – I’ll be adding more over the coming months. I can help set you on the right path! I’ve even got a whole FREE online fiddle course where you lots more tips including advice for beginner fiddle players.