What do we sound like?

June 22, 2010 at 03:08 PM ·

I've visited a lot of the profile pages on Violinist.com - but curiously the one thing we are ostensibly here for - making music - is not actually shared!  I hasten to add I'm guilty too but why is it - why have so few (if any) uploaded a recording of themselves?  Are we all waiting for the perfect recording?  Surely not since I know that many here are outstanding musicians. Then maybe its because noone wants to show off.  I think its a bit of a shame since this is probably the most attentive audience you will ever face :D

Perhaps the beginners should start the ball rolling - I mean if you are beginning then sure its not going to sound great but who cares?  I actually don't have a recital to upload - at least one that is less than 2 years old - but once I do I promise to share it...


Replies (100)

June 22, 2010 at 04:10 PM ·

Agreed. I'd love to hear what we all sound like. But it's different for professionals: they have to make a living out of sharing their music.

June 22, 2010 at 06:10 PM ·

Thanks for pointing that out.

June 22, 2010 at 06:14 PM ·

 I'm not sure people would find it very entertaining to listen to a beginner's wobbly intonation/patchy vibrato and squeaks and slips in rythm (the beginner is me lol)

June 22, 2010 at 06:14 PM ·

@Bart: Agreed. I'd love to hear what we all sound like. But it's different for professionals: they have to make a living out of sharing their music.

I don't understand: why different?  I'm only suggesting a short snippet - that could be seen as a networking opportunity...

June 22, 2010 at 06:17 PM ·

@jo - Why not?  If you don't document where you are then how will you know when you get better?  I did a recital at 8 months after returning - it wasn't great but I was happy with it since it was as good as I could do at the time.  Besides, only people who want to listen will click on the link...

June 22, 2010 at 06:20 PM ·

 are you trying to convince me? ;) hehehe

ok I have an mp3 of myself trying to play Meditation from Thais, and it's NOT very good, but I have only been learning violin for 3 years and 5 months so if one looks at it that way then it's not as bad....I know I will play it much better in another couple of years time....

I'll go and upload it then ok? ;)

ps can't find the mp3 anymore, it will have to be the video!! (oh my goodness can't believe I'll upload such miserable attempt at Meditation, I'll have to hide after this! LOL)

June 22, 2010 at 06:23 PM ·




June 22, 2010 at 08:01 PM ·

I don't know about anyone else, but as for me -- I'm not equipped with the necessary computer smarts and audio gizmos.  Besides, after only three lessons, I don't consider myself functional enough to presume to play for the talented folks on V.com!!  I'm still trying to acquaint my 4th finger with the concept of violin strings!!! :o

June 22, 2010 at 09:57 PM ·

I have recordings of all of my lessons (both in video and audio), so I have enough documents of my playing... However, watching/listening to my own playing makes me cringe every time, so I would not want to inflict the torture on others. ;)

June 22, 2010 at 10:06 PM ·

I sound like a rank n00b who's still sussing out how to use her pinky reliably on the top three strings of a 16.5" viola.  About par for the course.  :-)

June 22, 2010 at 10:33 PM ·

I have some recordings on YouTube and Facebook, and I've linked to some of them in various of my blogs.  But it's kind of a pain to upload them to more than one site, and I like YouTube's features (such as Insight, which tells me what countries the listeners are from and when they've listened) so I've never bothered with uploading them to my profile here.  Plus, I'm never really happy with how they sound, even if my digital camera had a good microphone and even if I weren't too cheap to buy better equipment . . .

June 22, 2010 at 10:45 PM ·

I see your point on the quality of recording etc - but at least give us your link to youtube on your profile page...


June 22, 2010 at 10:49 PM ·

On my profile there is a link to my youtube performance about 5 years ago of the Meditation from Thais. I'm accompanied (out of camera range) by the Hellenic Symphony Orcehstra. The concert took place in Rutgers University in New Jersey, but was also broadcast on Greek National Television. 

On my profile I also have a link to my website which has audio clips of my first CD. I hope to come out with my second CD by the end of the summer.

June 22, 2010 at 11:03 PM ·

Thanks, Raphael, for the Meditation from Thais. It is very beautiful.

June 23, 2010 at 01:20 AM ·

 Good idea! I uploaded an mp3. We also had three camera's rolling during this take so if I'm happy with the pictures I'll edit it and upload it on Youtube. We also did a take of Preludio by Bach for fun, so mayby that one as well!


June 23, 2010 at 01:27 AM ·

Excellent Christian - thats #3 I think :)

June 23, 2010 at 02:20 AM ·

>But it's kind of a pain to upload them to more than one site, and I like YouTube's features (such as Insight, which tells me what countries the listeners are from and when they've listened) so I've never bothered with uploading them to my profile here.

Hi Karen,

No need to upload them again.  If you right click on the youtube video, then choose the option "copy embed html."  then you can paste it into your v.com profile.  You end up with a profile that looks like mine


June 23, 2010 at 05:47 AM ·

@Christiaan: great fun listening to you!

@all: I get a "servlet error" message when I try to play a video on v.com. "No application configured to service your request." Does anyone know what to do about that?

June 23, 2010 at 07:30 AM ·

 My youtube link is also on my profile, although I'm not terribly good.

I'm not sure where my Mediation video is, must be in one of my blog entries or something. 

June 23, 2010 at 08:46 AM ·

I've uploaded a couple of clips. You're right, it is an underused feature. Thanks for drawing me out!

June 23, 2010 at 10:02 AM ·

This is awesome!  Now I'm going to have to find a morning to start listening :)

June 23, 2010 at 11:23 AM ·

Smiley and Elise, I uploaded some YouTube links.  3/5 of them are viola.  Some day, when I learn the 3rd page, and get a pianist, I might upload the Franck . . . that's a scary thought.  

June 23, 2010 at 01:06 PM ·

Thanks, Roland!

June 23, 2010 at 04:52 PM ·


Haha, that's good 'cause I sure had (have) great fun playing!

June 23, 2010 at 06:49 PM ·

Raphael - lovely thais - your violin caries beautifully obviously without a microphone.  Technical question: you use a lot of glissando in the shifts, is that written into the music or interpretation?

thanks!!  I feel I know you much better :)

June 23, 2010 at 07:59 PM ·

There is some rather timid Bach on my profile..

June 24, 2010 at 02:34 AM ·

This  and this!

June 24, 2010 at 02:53 AM ·

I periodically upload what I'm working on here.  The two that are there are fairly recent.
It is a bit daunting to record yourself, let alone put it up for public scrutiny.  It is the most terrifying thing a musician can do, especially for us amateurs.  Every time I listen to a recording I made, I end up applying the standard of professional musicianship, which I am definitely not.  It takes alot of effort to record something semi-worthy of uploading.

June 24, 2010 at 03:05 AM ·

Thanks, Elise! It's my interpretation. BTW, I was using a Chinese violin and bow , which were my favorites at the time. The violin is a beautiful, unlabled copy of the "Hellier" Strad.

June 27, 2010 at 03:30 AM ·

You play very nicely Ralph, love the vibrato pulsating in  time.

I did actually submit a few pieces I recorded at my 'home studio'.

But I deleted Meditation because I played a few out-of-tune notes,

which was commented on in a thread. But I think I would like to resubmit it now.

June 27, 2010 at 11:28 PM ·

In following this thread, I've listened to every file you all have uploaded, and I can truly say that I've enjoyed all of them.  I can't thank you individually, partly because of time but also because it would make the thread too long.  Still, you know who you are; you may be sure that I will play many of the files again -- and not just once or twice.

You make me want to jump in and participate, but I'm totally in the dark when it comes to mp3 recording and will need to read up on the subject.  I don't have the equipment or software, but that shouldn't be a problem too hard to solve when the time is right.

The garage, the best place for recording, gets beastly hot during these steamy Alabama summers -- except on overcast days.  Whatever works out, it'll probably be some months from now before I can try recording anyway; must take care of a lot of non-musical projects first -- on top of daily practice.

But you really got my creative wheels turning.  I'll definitely come up with something.

June 28, 2010 at 07:12 PM ·

I hate to say it, but I am a bit of a dinosaur.  I don't begin to know how one uploads anything.  These days, a lot of other things seem more pressing, too, so that it gets relegated to the back burner.


July 4, 2010 at 01:04 AM ·

OK,, so having started this topic I really felt obliged to upload something.  there's an audio of my practocing the first movement of Handel's IVth sonata.  Its just the violin without any accompaniment (hopefully I can record that in a week or so).  Any and all comments appreciated - I know its not perfect so do be gentle!!


July 4, 2010 at 03:41 AM ·

I just uploaded my one and only recording.  At that time, I had been studying for about ten months.




July 4, 2010 at 11:32 AM ·

Elise and Roland, very nice.  I enjoyed both your recordings.

July 4, 2010 at 12:43 PM ·

Thanks Smiley :)  I was going to try to get a full recording with my pianist today but she had to cancel so it will have to wait.  I like to play alone too though, you can't hide and have to be responsible for intonation and the end of each note (the recording is truly an invaluable tool - mostly for pointing out the bits that you are taking for granted).

July 4, 2010 at 01:10 PM ·

Actually Elise,they do not work... My audio and some others when you click on the button are out of order. Maybe we should ask Laurie about it. Something is wrong...

July 4, 2010 at 01:14 PM ·


How odd - they work for me!  Maybe you have a download filter blocking it?

Take a look if there is a line that appears above your page but below the buttons above - it says something about 'download blocked'.  If thats the problem you have to click on that and 'allow' the download.

July 4, 2010 at 04:18 PM ·

Thanks Elise...I have a new computer since last week and realised that my Quicktime was not on,but off...Silly Boy I am. By the way, I like a lot your violin discussion subject...Thay are quite inspiring. Soon, I will down load violin compositions of mine...Maybe  a few will enjoy them. I have just completed a solo violin sonata " D'Eugene Ysaïe à Jean-Sebastien Bach": Praeludium-Fuga-Sicilienne-Allegro" and a piece for violin and orchestra called "Amori e Leggende Italiana" ( Love and Italian Tales). These two works of mine are for Benjamin Beilman, who just won the first prize in the International violin competition in Montreal...


Wish you the very best!!!

July 4, 2010 at 04:29 PM ·


how very exciting - ,maybe one day I will be good enough to try one - or perhaps you could write 'ballad for the returning violinist' for me to premiere :D


July 4, 2010 at 07:08 PM ·

Elise, I will for sure think about something for you. Wait and see...

July 4, 2010 at 10:31 PM ·


Are you on facebook or you tube?

July 5, 2010 at 02:08 PM ·

I am on facebook but only for familily affairs and close relations. Most of my family live in The U.S.A., my brother Mickael lives in Alabama and my sister Diane in Fort Collins Colorado. My mother comes from Boston and it is with the great help of both my American grand-parents that I got my education and interest in music. My mother married a French -Canadian, my father.During my youth, I spent all the summer in Cape Cod. These are precious souvenirs, listening at my grand-parents house to the old recordings of Fritz Kreisler...

July 6, 2010 at 02:49 PM ·

Wow! Its really impressive, all of you...Very beautiful!!

How do you upload tracks to your profile?

July 6, 2010 at 03:32 PM ·

Click on "My Profile" at the top of the page.  Then on the right hand side of the page you will see a link to upload audio/video clips.


July 6, 2010 at 05:00 PM ·

...but it has to be in MP3 format I believe.

I downloaded a free program that converted my MAV file to an MP3 without any problem:

'power mp3 converter' from CNET

July 6, 2010 at 06:49 PM ·

I succeeded uploading two files. I was trying intensely to upload my Vieuxtemps, but some errors all the time occur when I try to do that, even if I have it in mp3-format...So I uploaded it to some page, that I put the link to during my profile. (Not the right panel.)

I am also returner and amateur violinist. Don't laugh too much, but enjoy :-)

July 6, 2010 at 09:18 PM ·

Hi Elise, I enjoyed your Handel recording. Very sweet :)



July 6, 2010 at 11:23 PM ·

Thank you Jim - its awfully scary to play to THIS audience :O

Have to check if you have one too...

I think this topic should be a permanent one on V.com - I mean this is really what its all about isn't it? 


July 6, 2010 at 11:28 PM ·

Jim - just visited your UT fiddling site - loved the diploma caprice!!  terrific playing....

July 6, 2010 at 11:44 PM ·

Lena - I managed to get to the Brahms.  What do you mean 'don't laugh'?  Just wish I could play like that - its beautiful and I think I know you better. 

Got a bit scared of the vieutemps down-load link site, so much ad stuff so did not get that one...


July 7, 2010 at 07:05 AM ·

 Hi Elise,

thanks :-) I feel uncomfortable by what I hear on my recordings, and the only few times I have played live for some pro violinist they usually get chocked with all the technical and tonal differences I have evolved from standard violin students/violinists/amateurs. They have even imitated sheeps when describing my vibrato :P 

Your Handel is truly sweet! Its amazing how quickly you have recaptured the violin after the long hiatus...What about learning Beethoven's Spring Sonata? I think you would play it wonderfully.

July 7, 2010 at 08:28 AM ·

Spring?  Its on my pile :D  I am totally disorganized with music - I have an enormous pile of everything and play whatever comes to mind.  Its the real pleasure of being a returner.  I've actually played through it with my pianist friend - she loves it because its really not a violin with an accompaniment, its truly a duet: the piano part is as interesting and challenging as that for the violin.

Strangely, I'm not that drawn to it though.  I seem to be spending most time on the second movement of the Handel 4th (there's a bit I need help with), the Accolay Concerto, Bach A minor - and now also the Mozart concerto in G.  [BTW I just googled Accolay and this came up from violinist.com posted in http://www.violinist.com/discussion/response.cfm?ID=5063.  Its a fantastic discussion about 'student' concertos in general and when and if to play them.]

I just posted on that topic to bring it back up...

July 7, 2010 at 10:03 AM ·


This has been a great thread. I will say that at the moment, only 3 months into my rehabilitation after my 30 year snooze, I am not confident enough to put my scratchings up. However it's an ear opener to hear real people playing real instruments in the raw and to realise that we're all human.

July 7, 2010 at 10:58 AM ·

Hello :) I just joined violinist.com recently. Looks like a very informative and friendly place to be too. I just added my video link to my profile. I play a 5-string violin from KC Strings, and write a lot of my own work. There's a mixture of that and some tuition videos too, on my YouTube channel : http://youtube.com/jimviolin

Now I'm going to go through this site and read about, and listen to everyone, and hope to ask and answer questions too  :) 

July 7, 2010 at 11:09 AM ·

@elise stanley : "Jim - just visited your UT fiddling site - loved the diploma caprice!!  terrific playing...."
Thank you :)

July 7, 2010 at 12:58 PM ·

I'm with Lena, I am just too critical about my playing. Plus, I can never decide what to play!

July 7, 2010 at 01:45 PM ·

@Lisa: good that somebody understands me :-) I usually try to optimize every phrasing of a piece so that it sounds better on the recordings even though I find them horrible...although, during concert (as the Vieuxtemps piece on my profile, if you download it from the given link) I get nervous, and then it does not help too much always.

July 7, 2010 at 05:53 PM ·

I think its important to just accept yourself as you are and take pride in that.  Sure, my recording has flaws (I hear even more than you do I'm sure) but its how I am now - or rather my best (obviously I threw away a lot of bad trials :) ) and I'm content to take pleasure in that - and hence share it too.  Else you run the danger of never actually achieving anything and always feeling insufficient. 

Besides, if I don't show you my current level of attainment (bad as well as good), how will I ever share my improvements?

July 7, 2010 at 06:02 PM ·

I have to say also, that I've been a second violinist for quite a long while now. We are not in the habit of playing the melody! I spend most of my time rehearsing V2 parts to orchestral works. This is not very interesting to hear recorded alone! But, I do have a repertoire of solo pieces I could play. But, honestly, it's not in my personality to do  that. I enjoy backing up others, I like being part of a team. I'm not one to take the solo, although I can!

July 8, 2010 at 06:10 PM ·

 By the way, I would really appreciate some feedback on my recordings :-)

July 8, 2010 at 08:38 PM ·

Lena: I tried one of your links - the Bach partita - the Q of quicktime came up and then it tied up my compter - I had to close IE to get out.  Can you check its OK? 

The ones on the remote server are scary - there are so many ads there I'm worried about downloading spyware with your file.  Are they in wav format?  If not you could try the conversion program I downleaded (see earlier post)..

July 8, 2010 at 10:03 PM ·


I don't want to contradict you, so I'll say you sound really bad.  I just wish that I sounded as bad as you do :-).  Keep it up.  You'll work out all those bumps -- even though we can't hear them. 

July 8, 2010 at 11:14 PM ·

Lets work at it Smiley, maybe if we do we can all sound as bad as Lena.  If we keep it up, maybe eventually maybe we can sound as bad as Perlman....:)

July 8, 2010 at 11:37 PM ·

geez, Lena, why your not a pro?


thank's for sharing!


July 9, 2010 at 12:38 AM ·

Lena, I think your Allemande is a very good example of what they're talking about in the other thread.....(Bach Partita II Allemande).

I enjoy listening to the many interpretations of Bach, even those metronomic renditions. 

July 9, 2010 at 11:21 AM ·

@Smiley and @Elise: thank you very much for your kindness. I hope yet to improve by recording and listening...its a hard work!

July 9, 2010 at 11:31 AM ·

@Elinor: thanks, but there is quite a high competition of so many talented musicians out there...Also, with the problems I have evolved in basic technique, I would have to rebuild my whole playing from scratch before being able to enter any academy. This is a process that could take years, and probably would take away my passion for the music. As it is now, I can be an amateur, and enjoy doing what I do, no matter how I do :-)

July 9, 2010 at 11:33 AM ·

@ Henry: yes, I noticed there were this discussion thread. I think many would get more or less upset if they heard my very free interpretation :-D

July 9, 2010 at 11:35 AM ·

Lena, sounded good to me. So much so that I printed out the music and I'm working in it now!

July 9, 2010 at 11:37 AM ·

@Lisa: Which piece are you working on?

July 9, 2010 at 10:52 PM ·

 Here's a recent recording of me playing  a Sonata for Violin and Handbell Quartet by Darrell Day at church. 

July 10, 2010 at 12:53 AM ·

Who cares if anyone gets upset when hearing your very free intrepretation??

There is this view that these six solos for violin......., "Bach meant to document particular compositional processes and techniques for students to study".....that's what it says on the record cover!

With that in mind these pieces must be open to many interpretations to explore the vast possibilities presented in this music. And so refeshing to hear uncharted territories explored.

Maybe we wont be invited to play these pieces at Carnegie Hall, but we could make a few 'bucks' playing them in our local communities.....and they would thoroughly enjoy our playing.    


July 10, 2010 at 07:23 AM ·

Michael: that is lovely!  Very gently played - matches the handbells beautifully.

Is this sheet music downloadable?  I'm going to a retreat this summer where there will be a handbell group...


July 10, 2010 at 07:28 AM ·

Smiley - just listened to your group playing 'Honeysuckle rose' at the nightclub - terrific and such fun.  Hey, everyone - go see what you can do with your violin ;)


July 11, 2010 at 02:00 PM ·

 @ Michael: Thats a very nice recording! You have a very sweet and sensitive sound. Are you professional musician? 

Actually, would it not be a useful idea to sort of gather all recordings from the Profiles, to some common page here at violinist.com? Of those that permit it? Now it is not possible, but I think it would be easier to listen to each other?



July 11, 2010 at 10:05 PM ·

I suggested something like that to Laurie - I hope its possible...

July 12, 2010 at 12:28 AM ·

Hi Elise,

Thanks for the encouragement, although I wouldn't exactly call it "my group."  We never played together before, just got up and winged it.  The guy on lead guitar is my business partner.  And we never met the sax player before that night.  He just happened to be there and walked on stage and started jamming with us.  You might notice me pointing in that direction to cue him in before he started.  At the beginning of the piece, we had no idea we would be joined by a sax player. To me, that is what makes non-classical music fun and exciting -- not knowing where the music is going to go.

July 12, 2010 at 02:12 AM ·

 Lena, that's such a nice compliment! No, I'm not a professional yet, but I really hope to be one day.  Truth be told, it was a really easy   violin part.... it only used the A and E strings, but the piece is so simple but says a lot.  After playing this piece for two services, the hand bell quartet and I got applause.  That NEVER happens at church. :)

July 12, 2010 at 12:36 PM ·

That's a good idea, Lena. If anyone wants to do it, feel free to add my youtube www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Ul2QUc5Gqc  as well audio clips from my website http://rkviolin.com



September 5, 2010 at 02:48 AM ·

 Are these gone now?  What about the concert calendar, is it gone too?  Is it a site upgrade or am I just confused?  Any info welcome!

September 5, 2010 at 05:45 AM ·

 I searched yesterday for the links, also.  Can't find a link to the links anywhere.

September 5, 2010 at 08:51 AM ·

In the meantime, I'd suggest that anyone who has audio or video of their playing, put the direct link in their profile. If it's something on their personal website, then the URL needs to include the filename of the sample, so that it plays on first click. If it's a YouTube link, it will do this anyway.

September 5, 2010 at 11:01 AM ·

I suppose its an upgrade thing - but just contacted Laurie to ask.  I'll post her reply.


September 5, 2010 at 01:24 PM ·

Tis gone. 'T will speak no more.

at least, the audio link in my profile has disappeared.

September 5, 2010 at 04:01 PM ·

A sound file 1 minute long recorded as an mp3 file at 128kbps will occupy about 1MB of disk space -  anything much less than 128kbps is not really acceptable for music recording.  I can think of two factors that would affect uploading and downloading a large number of mp3 files - disk space, and channel width.  Perhaps limits are being approached.

September 5, 2010 at 06:39 PM ·

That takes the discussion to file sharing sites, such as Youtube for videos, and several for pictures. Does anyone know of sites specialized in audio?

September 5, 2010 at 06:43 PM ·

I was wondering the same thing - youtube is used that way of course, by simply uploading pictures to go with the audio.  But a just audio site would be neat...

September 5, 2010 at 08:11 PM ·

 Hey there guys - Soundcloud is proving popular, and the basic membership is free...



September 6, 2010 at 05:44 AM ·

I just went to SoundCloud, joined the free mbrship, and uploaded my *imperfect* recording, which I planned to post on some page of violinist.com-- my blog, or my profile page-- but I do not see any "upload audio" button anywhere. I must be missing something....

September 6, 2010 at 07:02 AM ·

 there's "myspace music" but the files are played at only 96kbps.

September 6, 2010 at 01:23 PM ·

 If you want to make photos conveniently available on the web try http://www.flickr.com/ (it's easy to use and free, but no audio, no video).  All you need to do here is to place a link in a convenient place such as your profile or your blog.

September 6, 2010 at 01:32 PM ·

 Further to my post yesterday about audio file sizes I am reminded of another music website, www.thesession.org (dedicated to Irish folk music) which has no provision for uploading or downloading audio, video or photos, for the very good reasons of channel width and available server space.

September 6, 2010 at 01:34 PM ·

I honestly don't know where in my profile is there an audio upload function. I searched and searched but no luck so far.

September 6, 2010 at 02:44 PM ·

Elise: I rarely look at my profile up here,but it seems that my Ouverture and Visions Fugitives have simply vanished... and I cannot download anything,because there are no devices anymore do so on the right,when you click at your profile . Mystery???

September 6, 2010 at 04:56 PM · That's what we've all noticed Marc - I dropped a note to Laurie but no reply yet...

September 8, 2010 at 09:54 AM ·

er, this isn't how I might have hoped this topic would come to an end - that we don't sound like anything any more !!

Just to stoke it up - did anyone find a linkable, off-site place to upload audio ?

September 8, 2010 at 10:08 AM ·

There are many sites where you can upload anything for free. I personally use this one:



where we get 1 GB of space, and the only condition is to sign in at least once a month, otherwise they delete all the files.

September 8, 2010 at 02:50 PM ·

Friend's of mine have a video recorder..... I could at least have a video transfered to cd to upload..... I'll be getting a recorder for lessons hopefully soon.

September 8, 2010 at 05:02 PM ·

Elise, I read about SoundCloud here (in this discussion a few days ago) and tried it. I put the results on my blog. Thanks for stirring up the embers.

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