Southern Old-Time Fiddle Tour

Bruce Molsky
75-minute video, includes music on pdf file
  • Code:DLMOLFI21
  • Skill Level:Early Intermediate (3)

Bruce Molsky takes you on a grand tour of traditional fiddling, region by region! He teaches six tunes, each from a geographical area of the southern U.S. that's known for great old time playing --  West Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, Texas, Tennessee and Mississippi. You'll learn the licks, bowing patterns and special tunings that give this music its haunting sounds and toe-tapping drive and excitement.

As you play along with Bruce, you'll be learning a variety of bowing patterns -- from the basic shuffle and saw stroke to more advanced combinations -- as well as droning, rhythmic emphasis, phrasing and other subtleties that put drive and beauty in these great old tunes. With his deep understanding of these styles, Bruce effortlessly brings you beyond the basics and into more advanced playing techniques.

Each piece is in a different tuning, an important aspect of the old time style. Before long you'll be playing Washington's March, a version of Bonapart's Retreat from Pocahantas County, West Virginia (DDAD tuning); Saddle Up the Grey, a great old square dance tune from Mississippi (GDAD Tuning); Old Bunch of Keys from North Carolina (AEAE); The Lost Indian, a Texas tune (AEAC#); and the pulsing Candy Girl, a 1924 Tennessee tune in AEAD or "sawmill" tuning.

Singing and playing fiddle at the same time is one of Bruce Molsky's signature performing techniques, and he takes apart Do Round My Lindy, a song from Georgia in ADAD tuning. He demonstrates how you can use both basic and non-traditional harmonies to create compelling sounds and add to the richness of your accompaniment.


"Not only can Bruce Molsky play the devil out of a fiddle (not to mention a banjo and a guitar), and sing at the same time, he can teach you how to do it, too. On his first video for Homespun Tapes, Molsky guides the intermediate fiddler through six tunes from various parts of the South in one of the best structured instructional videos I've ever seen. The production and filming is excellent, with full body and close-up shots set up so the viewer has a clear view of both hands at all times....The lesson is an excellent way for intermediate students to master specific tunes that open out into a wealth of regional fiddle styles from the South." -- Dirty Linen


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