I am a working musician. I perform live and teach both guitar and drums. I have two main projects. The first is an 80s rock function band called Iron Tyger. The second is a folk/sea shanty duo called The Captain’s Beard. I perform 7 or 8 times a month between both projects and teach in the week. I also write my own music which I intend to start releasing online this year.
My first instrument was guitar which I started 8 years ago. Since then I have dabbled in piano and taken up the drums which I’ve learnt to a professional standard. I was self taught for the first year and a half but then I had private guitar lessons for about a year or so. I then went on to do a degree in guitar and BIMM (Brighton Institute of Modern Music). I have never done grades except for theory (grade 5) but my theory knowledge is up to grade 8 standard. I have never played the violin before however I had about 3 viola lessons when I was around 10. Basically I’m a complete beginner.
As a musician already I have developed many transferable skills that will aid me in my progression on the instrument.
- A good ear: This will hopefully shorten the time taken to get accurate intonation as I’ll be able to correct myself quicker than a complete novice.
- Finger dexterity: I have built up muscle memory, callouses on my fingers, strengthened my nervous system connections so hopefully this will mean faster development of the left hand.
- Musical knowledge: I have good knowledge of harmonic and rhythmic theory so I won’t need to be taught how to understand what is on the stave in front of me.
- Knowledge of how to practise: I know the merits of regular practise intervals, revising correct technique and playing things slowly.
The Difficulties of the violin:
The violin is a simple and yet very intricate instrument. It has the following primary difficulties and it bodes well to know and understand them to overcome the obstacles of learning.
- Fretless instrument: Accurate intonation is a very difficult skill to acquire.
- Intricacies of the bow: There are so many variables in the bow such as how to hold it, angle, tilt, pressure, speed of the stroke and so on.
- Stringed instrument: String instruments require a great deal of control in the fretting hand as every variable affects the articulation of the note.