My 12 twelve steps of tune.

My 12 twelve steps of tune.

I am stuck.

Here is a brief outline of my stuckness.

1 - Nice music - whats that drum called? - I could join in.

2 - Goodness - everyone hates me cos I play drum.

3 - Right, lets really learn Bodhran.

4 - Ok, I get it - the tunes are where it’s at.- where can I get a fiddle?

5 - The fiddle is too hard - where can I get a Mandolin?

6 - Right - what’s difficult about the fiddle is what’s good about the fiddle.

7 - Right - lets really learn the fiddle.

8- Ooh Ooh - I can join in!! and the Banshee is the best tune in the world.

9 - Ok, the Banshee isn’t the best tune in the world - lets learn some other tunes.

10 - Right - lets learn lots of tunes.

11 - Ok - lets learn to play some tunes properly.

And that’s where I am - don’t really know how to get to step 12 - or what step 12 is.

the joy seems to have gone. There are moments now and again when tunes is are really shared - But I seem to be stuck in no mans land - not good enough to contribute (important word - better than join) to the good sessions, but need something more than most of what I can find.

This must have occurred to lots of people - how do you keep going? how do you stop settling for what you have?

Or am I looking at this all wrong?

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

step 12: In the future go straight from ‘step 1’ to ‘step 11’

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

I’d love to help … but Premierflute has said it all.

Posted by .

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

This is very good, I am at step number 11 — still

I think step 12 is,

Watch, Listen, and then Practice over what you
liked - When you Watched and Listened ???

jim,,,

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

Jim we should all be at step 11 and you do it well

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

Step 12: GOTO 10

Once you get to steps ten and eleven you enter an enless loop.

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

skreech,

Yeah! that endless loop. —- Is called,

” It’s Never Good Enough ” - lol..

jim,,,

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

Reminds me of that old joke: A young man on the streets of NYC asks an old man directions: "Excuse me sir, but how do you get to Carnegie Hall?" Old man answers, "Practice!"
Step 12: Practice, practice, practice. But try learning the tunes from aural sources vis-a-vis recordings, sessions, ‘live’ as it were. In learning tunes by ear, you’re actually memorizing it as well.

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

As Churchill put it:

(1) "Keep b*gg*ring on…"

(2) "Never - never - never - never - NEVER give up..!"

The second quotation was part of an address to students, I believe; I don’t know the context of the first. It is safe to assume he was blotto when he said both, because he always was.

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

13 - take it easy for feck’s sake.

Posted .

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

"But this outline (only) goes to eleven!"

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

12. There’s always more tunes and you can always do better, so keep going because that’s the fun.

THE FUN. That’s what’s missing from your list.

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

Though the list was darn FUNny.

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

You’ve hit that little clearing in the forest where everything behind you used to sound OK because you didn’t know any better, and everything in front seems impossible because you don’t know enough. Gird up your loins, take a deep breath and step boldly forward.
Mind the dragons in there.

Posted by .

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

"Gird up your loins, take a deep breath and step boldly forward"

Just remember not to gird up your loins too tight - see SWFL’s post about "fun".

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

As Eddie Cochran once said -:
Just follow step one, two and three.

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

What fiddlerdan said,

Plus The Fun - Once you loose the fun, Go right back to

number 1 - lol..

jim,,,

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

"…not to gird up your loins too tight…"

Well, unless that type of thing is included in your definition of fun, in which case, carry on. Live and let live. To each their own, I say. :-P

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

There’s too much of this tolerance going on around here. It’s got to stop, I say. :)

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

Clunk, you’re already well ahead of the learning curve—you’re clearly obsessed. Also, you’re listening to yourself and others *and* you’re aware that you’re not yet good enough to contribute. (You’re probably much closer to being able to contribute than you realize, however.) This demonstrates that you have a musical ear, discernment, and a healthy sense of discretion. Good on you!

Take a deep breath and relax. Some things can’t be hurried. Besides, even the frustrating stuff on this trip can be fun.

On average, most people need somewhere in the neighborhood of three years on fiddle to have a semblance of control and musicality with the bow. So give yourself that time. If you haven’t yet, find a good teacher—s/he can help you avoid bad habits and progress more efficiently toward good ones. (Also buy the book The Perfect Wrong Note: Learning to Trust Your Musical Self) by William Westney and read it cover to cover.)

It is better to play the tunes you know *as well as you can* than to simply play more tunes badly. Pay attention to your rhythm, timing, tone, and intonation on every note. Paying attention to all the details and nuances eventually becomes such a habit that you forget you’re doing it. But the feedback loops are always there, and your playing will improve and soar because of it.

Enjoy the bits that you already do well. Dwell on those. Strengthen your weaknesses but savor your strengths.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

Posted .

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

Yes ok - learn more tunes properly, lighten up and have fun.

Will - Enjoy the bits that you already do well. Dwell on those. Strengthen your weaknesses but savor your strengths.
Lovely.
- thanks for the advice. Lather rinse repeat. On reflection I know that that’s all there is too it, just got to get on with it.

Do we need a discussion on the right way to loin gird? I am not sure if my girding ability is strengthened by reading from the loin girders handbook - or should I be spending time with other good loin girders? or will this mean I don’t develop my own style of girding?

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

Another thought: you’re not "stuck." You’ve moved forward a lot over the last 4 years. To keep moving, set small, short-range, attainable goals for yourself and play toward achieving them. The more specific, the better. For instance, to be able to do really good rolls, it helps to be able to do really good cuts. So set goals to learn cuts on each finger, and to make the cuts, crisp, clean, well-timed, and free of tension. Each of these is a goal in itself.

I like what veteran guitar picker Dan Crary has to say on this:

"I’m convinced that playing well is not so much a technique as it is a decision. It’s a commitment to do the work, strive for concentration, get strategic about advancing by steps, and push patiently forward toward the goal."

Posted .

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

I am at a funk point myself, feeling like I am making no progress, even though I can see that I am. Lately, music is like a chore. I am playing more and more accordion tunes at the session, which is exciting, but perhaps it is a bit stressful to push the edge of the envelope, as each time I bring out a new tune, I also have to fumble through it for a few weeks until it sounds halfway decent. Practicing at home, no matter how much, does not eliminate this struggle when a tune first comes out in public.

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

Will - that’s a great quote, a decision to commit to do the work.

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

I agree with Will - I have to - he’s always right. Another factor though
you have to learn what is good Trad playing and what is bad.
Otherwise you can’t coach yourself properly while you’re playing.
You might be working really hard on playing badly.

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

That’s all down to opinion, Sean O’Riada was anti-ceili bands and accordions

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

There’s nothing wrong with learning what is good and bad playing as you learn to play. It would be a bit daft to try to complete your appreciation and discernment before you ever even touched an instrument. Sure, you will end up working hard on bad playing at first, but there’s no way round that. You’ll be ok just so long as you keep your appreciation and discernment of what’s good ahead of your own playing.

Posted .

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

I thank God the first trad cd I got was when I was 12 at Christamas was "The Chieftains 10"
I also got a Jethro Tull cd but thankfull I listened to Paddy and co. first
-otherwise I’d be a flute playing rockstar

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

Christamas?

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

ha, While I was listening the Bothy Band, My brother was listening to Jethro Tull

Posted .

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

Michael - Appreciate and Discern what is good - that seems to make sense, however the clip that was posted on the thread about speed - the one with the box too loud in the mix - I thought that was good - did not understand what you said about the phrasing.
Away to listen to it again.

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

Ah - compared to the clip of the winning band - they are much better. But not really understanding why. I suppose it is like one is yellow and the other is also yellow but different - cant write it down? Like not able to describe a colour.

Re: My 12 twelve steps of tune.

Clunk999, i applaude your diligent efforts. But the bottom line, clunk999, is that you have to find a teacher. A good one, who can really help you correct errors and re-learn your tunes in a new and fresh and more solid way. If you can’t find somebody in your area, go find someone teaching at a festival or workshop. You must make the effort and take the risk - but think of it as an adventure, and you will reap the rewards for the rest of your life.

I was lucky in that I had access to one of the very best teachers in the world on my instrument. It made all the difference. Just think of your metaphor of the "12 step program" — at heart it is the recognition that you need help. Get the help that you need. We all "hit the wall" at various time in our musical lives, so don’t beat yourself up. There is nothing wrong with taking a break from playing too. Good luck!