What are y'all up to?

This topic contains 1,006 replies, has 17 voices, and was last updated by MoonShadows MoonShadows 1 hour ago.

Viewing 40 posts - 961 through 1,000 (of 1,007 total)
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  • #77624
    cricket
    cricket
    Participant

    So…getting ready for winter means getting all the instruments ready for lots of playing time?

    Well…I think my instruments are ready…winter’s not ready for us here yet though.  We’re still scrambling to get the wall and all the other junk that comes after it done before the weather does turn on us.

    My daughter has presented me with her opera wish list and I just don’t know IF I can possibly get it…it’s just too hard.  I did a couple of the short ones, but this next one she wants is really long and complicated and the tempo changes quite a bit througout, which is tough for me on the presonus, because I need to start a track as a guide…along with the metronome runnging…I really hate to try to play with a metronome, but I do it on the presonus to keep things solid enough for the tracks to hopefully fall into place…which is still very tricky for me, but I’ think I’m getting a little better at it.  For my own music, I set the metronome, play a guitar scratch track to keep time…play it with the metronome clicking insanely away in my ears…which is really hard for me to do…then drop the metronome and just play along with that guitar track…then I delete the guitar track once I get enough tracks going that the whole thing falls into the pocket okay and the tracks are mostly sounding as together as I can get them.  But with the classical stuff, there’s no scratch track, really…you sort of have to figure out which instrument has the most consistent line going…lots of times it’s the bass players…then go with that with the metronome as best as you can to use them as your scratch track tempo guide to try to line up all the other parts as much as possible…it’s tricky for me…but when the tempo keeps changing…well, maybe there is some way to do that on the presonus, but I haven’t figured out how…so…that might leave me trying to go forth without a metronome and just trying my best to keep the timing solid…ugh…also it sounds very, very hard…I don’t know if I can even do it…but i’m sure once I get time, after the wall is overwith…I’ll spend several days and hours just trying to see if it’ll be possible for me to do it or not.

    But in the meantime…another tune has been rambling through my head as we work…Walk along John to Kansas…it’s a pretty neat tune and I hope if I keep it in my head until I get a few mintues to record, to do it one of these days…I was thinking twin fiddling might be good for that one…but won’t know until I try!

    #77658
    Gunnar Salyer
    Gunnar Salyer
    Participant

    Ugh I hate construction. My dad decided to do a bunch of construction projects for the past few weeks, and I don’t like it at all. I haven’t been able to do my workout several days cuz before I can get into it I have to go shovel dirt or haul concrete or something. And I haven’t been able to play my instruments as much cuz playing music means I’m obviously shirking some other work I could be doing. And I didn’t even make my breakfast this morning before I had to go work. Yeah, I hate construction projects.

    #77668
    Frederick
    Frederick
    Participant

    I’m missing my online buddy, Steve Srader. He hasn’t posted anything in quite a while. Is he OK? Has anyone heard from him?

    #77669
    fiddlewood
    fiddlewood
    Participant

    Peggy…winter is when i do most of my learning/recording. During the warm weather I mostly just go over what I already know and try to improve it.

    Gunnar, manual labor is great for learning the deficiencies in your regular workout…if it’s sore, you’ve been neglecting it.

     

    • This reply was modified 1 month ago by fiddlewood fiddlewood.
    #77671
    Steve Srader
    Steve Srader
    Participant

    Fred thanks for thinking about me , I have a lot of irons in the fire , firewood , Working on being a School bus driver , The school is having a hard time getting drivers so there dragging me out of retirement and other things going on so many little projects to numerous to count , But I have been watching from afar , Kind of like Santa Claus , Naughty or nice I am watching ! Again thanks Fred for Caring !

    #77674
    Gunnar Salyer
    Gunnar Salyer
    Participant

    Hey look, Fred I just heard from Steve he said he’s fine, just busy…. 😂

     

    Dave, I know the work is good for me, but it’s been really inconvenient and blistering my hands. My workout is actually rather specialized for flexibility, I can do the splits because of it, and I don’t want to lose my flexibility

    #77675
    cricket
    cricket
    Participant

    Steve…I’ve been wondering where you’ve been!  Come back and join us!  Glad to hear you’re ok.

    Gunnar…should I say welcome to my world???  No…nobody’s welcome in this world of construction projects…except people who truly love this kind of work…I like farming kind of labor, but I absolutely hate all this shoveling concrete, gravel, rock hauling, rock bustin’, today it’s been: wake up and shovel dirt…lighter than gravel, but no fun to just move a huge scoop of dirt all around to places it goes…come in do dishes from last night, make lunch, eat lunch, go shovel dirt, come in for coffee now and then back out to work more, come in to do dishes and cook supper…etc.  blah blah blah…I wanna play music…and I love gardening and farming kinda labor, but that’s all been put aside this year and didn’t get much of that…I hate to complain, but I’m complaining…lol.  Of course our neighbor who’s a nurse and can afford to hire out jobs looked at it all and says it would easily have cost over 20,000 to have gotten this done by somebody…it has cost us around 3500 so far…plus a lot of agony and dreaded stuff…lol…some Ben Gay.  I’m tellin’ you, I had planned to get back onto my workout routine, but besides not having time for it, I was afraid I’d be too sore and achy from the combo of work and workout…so I put that off.  I had put it off for a while before anyhow…I like to try to stay in fairly good shape and feeling strong and not wobbly or weak, you know, if possible for an old lady like myself.  So now my shoulders, back and biceps are just screaming in pain…my core…ouch, my core…I’m just glad I didn’t start up with a buncha situps before …the shoveling, especially the gravel…will get you in the core.  Then I had busted my toe up really bad (walking through the house I did that, not working) and guess I favored it too much while working and ended up with a really terrible burning in my Achille’s tendon, which has spread up to the tendons behind my knee…and every step, every minute of the day, is pure agony on that leg…but I’m jumping around shoveling with all the pain…etc.

    Ok…I’ve complained enough…it’s obvious building retaining walls is NOT my thang at all…I sympathize with you, Gunnar.  Workouts build up your body, but some types of labor just stress it out…thus the workouts are a necessity if you have to do lots of heavy labor.

    Well anyhow… sorry for the complaining…I could use a whiny fiddle tune about now, but time to get back to work!

    #77701
    cricket
    cricket
    Participant

    It just hasn’t sunk in with me yet, but the wall is DONE!  My mind can’t seem to allow that thought.

    Plenty of other stuff needing to be done, but it ain’t nothing like the wall…lol.  The wall is done, the wall is done, click your heels together and keep saying it until you believe it…because…it is true!  And it really got done quicker than I thought it would.

    #77703
    MoonShadows
    MoonShadows
    Participant

    I’m looking forward to winter, even though I hate the cold and snow. And, the Farmer’s Almanac is predicting a “polar coaster” winter for us. Sounds awful! Our business takes up so much time from late spring to late fall that practice consistency goes out the window. During the winter I can practice a lot and for much longer periods of time. So, bring the winter on and those longer practice sessions, just not the cold and snow!

    Congrats on finishing the wall, cricket. How about a photo of the finished project? I would love to see it.

    #77704
    Steve Srader
    Steve Srader
    Participant

    Yes Cricket , all journeys begin with the first step and end with the last ! I think yes a picture would be a good thing , But I think that picture will weigh 10 lbs. very big picture ! Ha

    #77707
    Gunnar Salyer
    Gunnar Salyer
    Participant

    Well, the day before yesterday,  I unloaded about a ton of concrete from the truck before breakfast (with one brother’s help. It was about 1.5 tons total) and then as I was fiddling before bed, I broke my D string (correction, it broke itself while I was using it) which I didn’t have a single replacement for, so I put it away, and then changed them all yesterday. It was the first time for me to completely restring a fiddle. I put on a set of D’addario preludes (the only set of strings I had) and they seem to have settled already. I hope I don’t break another string, cuz the only spares I have are the ones I took off, and there’s no D…..

     

    Congrats on getting the wall finished Cricket! Now you’ll have some time to fiddle some more hopefully

    #77709
    cricket
    cricket
    Participant

    Gosh, Gunnar…I hear your pain…sorry you had so much work to do and sorry you’re on your last set of strings.  Hope they last for you.

    Yeah I thought about a photo of the wall…I’ve taken a few and the angle and stuff is really hard to capture…I might try another one after we get that hill cleaned up.  We had some leftover dirt and de-hilled it somewhat, on the top under the wall.

    #77716
    cricket
    cricket
    Participant

    Jim, hope you have a productive winter for practicing and it doesn’t get too cold where you are!

    #77720
    MoonShadows
    MoonShadows
    Participant

    Cricket, I have no idea how I wound up living in the Poconos since I hate the winters so much. Summer is oppressively hot and humid. Spring and Fall are gorgeous.

    #77722
    cricket
    cricket
    Participant

    I’m no good with the worst of winter either…I enjoy a snow when it’s not brutally cold, but where I’m at now, it’s usually too cold for me when we get snow…then it gets hard as cement overnight and the fun begins…lol…like…can’t shovel it.  We haven’t had those winters for the past few years, though.  Global weirding, you know.

    #77747
    MoonShadows
    MoonShadows
    Participant

    Bought a second fiddle today. My new Fiddlerman Artist Violin will join my Fiddlerman Concert Violin as my second fiddle, and I am looking forward to it’s arrival.

    #77748
    cricket
    cricket
    Participant

    Congratulations, Jim!  That’s exciting news.  Hope you love it…have to do a little bit of show-n-tell with it so we can all drool with envy!

    #77752
    MoonShadows
    MoonShadows
    Participant

    Amazing how I bought a Zoom Q2n video recorder a few months back to record myself, and still don’t know how to use it. I sometimes don’t have the patience for new fangled electronic gadgets! I’m still just making audio recordings. I’ll have to learn the new video recorder to show you the new fiddle. Might even put up my first video in The Lion’s Den if I can get up the nerve. In the mean time, you can see my blog post about it. Deciding on a New Fiddle

    #77757
    Frederick
    Frederick
    Participant

    Wow, Jim. Those fiddles sound so beautiful. Great blog.

    #77759
    Gunnar Salyer
    Gunnar Salyer
    Participant

    Congrats Jim!

    #77762
    MoonShadows
    MoonShadows
    Participant

    Thanks Fred and Gunnar!

    #77767
    Frederick
    Frederick
    Participant

    Calling all Crickets and Gunnars: here’s the latest post to his site. He’s my good friend Larry Odham from TN. I love listening to him play guitar.

    #77771
    Gunnar Salyer
    Gunnar Salyer
    Participant

    Oh cool, that was fun. He actually contacted me recently about sending me a few learning resources for Chet tunes.

    #77772
    Frederick
    Frederick
    Participant

    That’s great, Gunnar. He’s the guy that can do it. Larry is a top shelf individual who is absolutely full of music. I hope you get to know him really well. 🙂

     

    THIS THREAD IS ONE YEAR OLD TODAY!

    • This reply was modified 1 month ago by Frederick Frederick.
    #77777
    MoonShadows
    MoonShadows
    Participant

    I could listen to him play all day…so uplifting.

    #77778
    Gunnar Salyer
    Gunnar Salyer
    Participant

    Actually, I just arranged Grandfather’s clock in fingerstyle half inspired by this and the other half by Leroy Troy, it’s really fun to play!

    #77783
    cricket
    cricket
    Participant

    Lots of stuff going on around here and now I have no time at all for anything.  Hoping it all turns out ok.  Right now a big mess…mess of troubles.

    I can see I’m missin’ a bunch of good stuff on here…I’ll be back and try to catch up…if it’s not one thing it’s another…

    #77835
    MoonShadows
    MoonShadows
    Participant

    “if it’s not one thing it’s another…”

    Yup. Saw this the other day…

    #77840
    cricket
    cricket
    Participant

    Jim, I have seen that one on FB and it seems to be the truth, doesn’t it?  Fred, your pickin’ buddy sounds so, so CHET!  Very nice pickin’.  Surely he knows Eddie Pennington, from KY…there’s a small crowd who pick in that Chet way and Eddie is one of the organizers of their gatherings, etc.  They call it thumbpicking and won’t let anybody else call their pickin’ thumbpickin’, because it’s just so different…kinda Merle Travis-like, but really more Chet.  I thought it was gonna be Cherokee Shuffle…lol…then I realized apparently there is another tune, just Cherokee.  He’s good!

    #77848
    Gunnar Salyer
    Gunnar Salyer
    Participant

    Well, this morning I was awakened at 6:30 (three hours earlier than I usually awake 😱) and informed that I had about 0 minutes to get dressed and go haul bags of concrete. My brother and I together hauled 20 fifty Kg bags (110 pounds) out of one stack, over to the door, out the door into a wheelbarrow and into another stack. It was really REALLY hard. Especially at that hour, my hands are so weak in the mornings, I’m surprised I even was able to do it. When I finally got done and back to life, I went and tried to play fiddle and it was so hard (and painful) I couldn’t play fast and I could barely hold strings down. And my fingernails (that I use for fingerstyle) feel dead now. Fortunately, that should be the last of the construction

    #77860
    cricket
    cricket
    Participant

    Ouch… that’s heavy!  We haul 80 lb bags of concrete and that gets my legs wobbly.  I know all that hard work tightens up your hands and fingers…gotta stretch them out and wriggle them around some before you play to loosen ’em back up and prevent injury.

    Seems there are times when trouble starts following us in our tracks and stuff gets overwhelming and difficult…that’s what’s going on here at the moment…tired of trouble…hope it goes away from us soon and we can get onto some sort of even keel, for a change.

    #77865
    MoonShadows
    MoonShadows
    Participant

    Geez, Gunnar. That’s a lot of work after just getting out of bed! I can relate to your weakness and pain after that. Some days I move upwards of 6000 lbs. of cases for our home business. After that, I can’t even think of practicing I hurt so much. When I was your age (now 63), I used to sleep late too. Now, I am up and ready to go at 3:00am. I love getting up early. It is “my time” when no one else bothers me.

    #77866
    cricket
    cricket
    Participant

    One thing I like about being retired is we don’t get up until around 7 these days…as much other stuff that’s outta control…at least it’s the latest we have ever gotten to sleep to…I’m not a morning person either, so 7 sounds pretty good to me.  Then coffee…no work, no heavy stuff…I’m 66 and I’m an old granny…lol…gee whiz does it ever end?  I don’t mind a lot of it, really…I mean, I have always enjoyed splitting logs for fire (which, unfortunately, we have no need to do anymore), digging…I mean, I’m a good digger, and I don’t mind shoveling…but I wasn’t in the mood for all the gravel we shoveled and then the tamping…do not enjoy that at all.  Don’t like heavy lifting…not at all, especially up and down slippery and difficult sloping pathways…no, that ain’t no fun.

    Anyway, guys…everybody who loves to play music…look up on youtube or google some therapeutic hand and finger stretching….even wrist and shoulder stretching and exercises to keep those areas loosened up and flexible, strong, etc.  You can prevent playing injury, especially if you are doing a lot of manual labor, by keeping your hands in good working order.  Sometimes I even do an exercise I made up on the guitar fretboard that loosens up my fingers to prevent playing injuries.  Don’t want that!  I also wear gloves to prevent pinching my fingers with heavy objects, protect important nails…just keep scratches and cuts down, etc.  We need our hands!

    #77875
    MoonShadows
    MoonShadows
    Participant

    My Fiddlerman Artist violin arrived today.

    The first thing I noticed was the color of the violin. Unlike my Concert violin, the color is lighter, almost a honey and maple syrup coloring. I really like the way it looks. The only change I had them make was to replace the ebony Guarneri style chinrest with a ebony Flesch flat center model chin rest.

    Concert violin on left – Artist violin on right

    Now, off to play it!

    #77876
    Gunnar Salyer
    Gunnar Salyer
    Participant

    Congrats! Looks nice

    #77879
    cricket
    cricket
    Participant

    Beautiful!  Have you played it any yet?  Congrats!  I hope you love it!  It is beautiful and inviting.

    Well today are building fences at the top end of the wall so nobody goes ka-boom over the edge…whether it would be the dogs or one of us, or even school kids walking home from the bus who somehow for whatever reason decided to go jumping around our wall…lol…it’s a long way down.  Building picket fences isn’t a hard job, but I just don’t want to be doing it…wanna be playing music or something exciting like that.  But it’s gotta be done, so…that’s it…taking a coffee break and soon we will be back out there trying to finish up that part of the fence.  We have a lot of re-“engineering” of our poor little front yard…we’re turning my former front yard garden into a driveway…so we and our daughter next door can get our cars off the one-lane/ no shoulder road, where drunk people regularly fly up and down and barely miss our cars on a regular basis…lol.  Not to mention if we clear the snow in front of our houses and go somewhere, somebody has taken our parking spot by the time we get back and we find ourselves with no place to go.  So anyhow, the driveway should alleviate those situations, although we tearfully cut down the little apple tree I started from a seed when I ate a Jonathan apple…to show grandson when they first moved in when he was 1…just show him something growing…I figured it wouldn’t ever bear apples…but it turned beautiful…he’s 9 now and climbed on it all the time until we cut it.  Our little dog, Cricket has loved laying in the shade…it’s been home to mockingbirds, cardinals, and a stopping point for all kinds of birds…sadly, we cut it to make room for the driveway.  There goes my major gardening spot too…but…hopefully it’ll be a good thing for us…then we can figure out how to put up the rest of the fences once we get all of the space figured out.  I’d rather be fiddling!

     

    #77880
    MoonShadows
    MoonShadows
    Participant

    Thanks Gunnar and Cricket. I played it for a while this afternoon. It has a mellower and slightly darker sound than the Concert violin. Nice!

    Would love to see some updated pics of your project, Cricket.

    #77883
    cricket
    cricket
    Participant

    I’m sure you will share the beautiful sound with us one of these days…I love a mellow fiddle…love that rich sound.  I’ve never been a fan of the shrill sounds some fiddles can get.

    Well I’ve taken some photos all along the way to send to my Dad because he likes to see updates, etc., but the angles and stuff…it’s hard to tell what’s what…it’s a cramped up area and hard to get in a good shot.  I took some today and just now sent them to my dad…but they were awful…everything looked crooked and bad because you just can’t get it into a photo right.  This is why when we first knew we needed to “tear down that wall,” and “build us a wall,” (quotes from two presidents…lol), we tried to hire out people…of course we figured we couodn’t afford it but wanted some estimates anyway just in case we could manage to work something out with somebody…none of them would even give us an estimate…you can’t get equipment in there…had to be done with shovels and stuff…the blocks had to be carried one at a time down there, through an area hard enough to walk through without carrying anything…etc.  Nobody wanted to even give an estimate…so we figured we’d just have to do it ourselves…but let me look through the photos and see if any of them make good enough sense to somebody who’s never been there.  I feel for our dogs…we basically took their whole yard away from them…now they have a tiny square of fencing for them just outside the front door…they won’t get that back because it’s becoming a driveway…but we are gonna try to figure out a way to give them some sort of protected little pathway to get from the front to the part behind where we’re parking and before the wall drops down…there’s a little area there that would give them more freedom to just move their legs…lol.  We might be able to do something for them down in the back too, but they have trouble walking back there now because the hill is so bad for little chihuahuas…we’re gonna get chickens down there again too…so…I don’t know…it’s a tough area to figure out…lol.

    #78838
    fiddlewood
    fiddlewood
    Participant

    About a week ago I switched back to playing my older fiddle.

    Wow, so much touchier than the newer one!If I recall correctly it was about the same when I switched to the newer one exclusively about a year ago (or maybe two?).

    It’s probably doing me  good to have to adjust my playing so much…paying more attention to tone, intonation, pressure, speed, etc.

    difference in tone is completely different in these two fiddles. older one has been  re-graduated ( or hot-rodded) and has a far more “echoing” sound and can be overplayed really easily.

     

     

    • This reply was modified 3 days ago by fiddlewood fiddlewood.
    #78987
    fiddlewood
    fiddlewood
    Participant

    Must be getting old…My Sister & I have conflicting Dr. appts and I am the driver for both so I guess I’m rescheduling mine…Her pain clinic trumps my lung x ray test…

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