Category: Reviews

Reviews of fiddle equipment, accessories, media, etc.

Fiddlin’ – The Movie

Old Time Music was born in the Appalachian Mountains over 200 years ago, paving the way for Bluegrass, Country and Rock & Roll. Fiddlin’ celebrates the 80th anniversary of the world’s oldest fiddler’s convention. After watching this trailer, I just had to see this movie, so I purchased it on Amazon for $9.99. It can…

The Mountain Minor

Just you remember, Charlie, these old mountain tunes will bringyou back home; they’ll bring you back home. ~ Tom “Pap” Abner At the height of the Great Depression, young Charlie Abner has only known the beautiful hills of Kentucky and a life steeped in hard work, church and playing the fiddle when his father announces…

The Fiddle and Winter Humidity

Although it hasn’t officially arrived yet, Winter is quickly approaching the Northern Hemisphere, and cold air is already creeping in. Here where I live in Pennsylvania, we’ve already had nights where the mercury has plunged into the low teens (Fahrenheit) and days that have struggled to reach the freezing mark. With these lower temperatures comes…

Bruce Molsky on Peghead Nation

I really admire and enjoy watching Bruce Molsky play the fiddle. I have watched and studied a number of his videos, and have even used a couple in my blog posts: It’s All in the Bowing, Playing Faster – Part 2, and Old Time Bow Holds. Not only does the way he convey how to…

Classic Old-Time Fiddle

This album is a fantastic collection of vintage Southern Appalachian string band music from the Smithsonian archives compiled and annotated by Old-Time fiddler Jake Krack and Folkways archivist Jeff Place. Clark Kessinger, Wade Ward, Tommy Jarrell, Marion Sumner, Gaither Carlton, Eck Robertson, Melvin Wine, and many more old-time fiddle masters play their signature sounds from…

The String Cleaner

A couple of months ago I bought a nifty little accessory called The String Cleaner from the Fiddlershop. At $19.99, I thought it was a bit expensive and wasn’t real sure how effective it would be, but I took a chance on it anyway. Now, I’m glad I did! Constant practicing and playing leaves behind…

Legends of Old Time Music

During the folk music revival from the late 1950s to the 1970s, legendary old-time traditional artists were rediscovered, and previously unheard players of this tradition were found and brought to perform at folk festivals. It was an exciting period in the history of Old Time music which coupled “living legends” like Clarence Ashley and Tommy…

WonderThumb

I was intrigued when I ran across a product called the WonderThumb, an aid to attaining a relaxed and functional left hand position for violin. Much of the tension in the left hand is a result of a feeling of insecurity. Gravity is always trying to pull the neck of the instrument down the thumb,…

I’m Back…

It’s been two weeks since I’ve made a blog post, my longest hiatus since I started Fiddling for Older Folks! But, I’m here today. Our home business has been extremely demanding, this being the first day off in over two weeks. We’ve been working long hours producing our products and distributing them to the many…

Trying to Teach My Hands to Do What I Hear in My Head

The title of this post is actually the subtitle of John Hartford’s 1997 video entitled John Hartford’s Old Time Fiddling where he discusses and demonstrates many bowing styles and techniques, teaches several great tunes, and talks about what fiddling is for him. John Hartford (1937-2001) was an American original. He was a Hall-of-Fame musician, award-winning…