Monthly Archives: May 2014

The Dave Matthews Band

One good thing about my lack of musical passion over the years is that I’ve never spent any energy on hating popular acts the way some people seem to need to do.  Justin Bieber?  Never heard one of his songs.  Brittney?  Same.  Going further back in time we can look at New Kids on the […]

Steinbacher’s Booth

Yesterday I decided to spend a little time listening to Beethoven, and while watching Arabella Steinbacher play his violin concerto I started to wonder about her instrument – it’s a 1716 Stradivarius called “Booth.”  I learned that, like many great players playing great instruments, Steinbacher has the Booth on loan.  I’ve written about The Stradivari […]

The Elements of Music: 3 of 7, Tempo

Allegro, andantino, allegretto – all are titles of songs by Dr. Suzuki from Book 1.  All are also tempo markers.  Of the elements of music I’ve written up to date, tempo is easily the most straightforward.  How fast or slow is the music?  Convention dictates the tempo be expressed with an Italian word.  Sometimes, composers […]

An Asterisk Is an Asterisk

Gavotte by Gossec is coming along.  It’s the “graduation piece” for Suzuki Book 1, and I’ve just started in on my third week with it.  I’ll probably get the rest of it next week.  It’s complicated and wonderful, with slurs a-plenty (four note slurs!) and circle-bows and grace notes and string crossings and intervals the […]

The Elements of Music: 2 of 7, Rhythm

Dirty Dancing is the first pop reference that came to mind when I tried to think of one concerning rhythm.  Remember when Patrick Swayze takes Jennifer Gray’s hand and puts it on his chest, “ka-KONG, ka-KONG?”    In order to teach her how to dance he has to teach her how to feel rhythm, or the […]

The Elements of Music: 1 of 7, Pitch

I might ask Teacher about a music theory book.  Most of my musical ambition has to do with playing songs for myself in my living room, but some of it has to do with expanding my horizons by learning about a discipline that, to date, I have not learned much about.  In reading for and […]

I Need More Rosin

“I need more rosin,” grumbling my way out of my practice room – AKA bedroom – yesterday.  Michael smiled.  I had a very busy couple of days and hadn’t gotten to the violin as much as I like since my lesson on Wednesday.  Even at this early stage in my playing it’s become an old […]