Ditched My Shoulder Rest

October 4, 2011 at 03:08 PM ·

 Hi all,

I recently went abroad for few months but I didn't bring my violin. Since I was itching to play, I bought a cheap violin online.

I didn't have a shoulder rest so I decided to experiment without one. I've practiced for a week now, and I can play comfortably without a rest or a sponge.

The few days were painful. I was not able to shift at all especially downshifting. My thumb seem to be glued to the neck. However, after one week of focused shifting exercises (Flesch, Sevcik, and Menuhin's thumb exercises), I can glide comfortably in all positions and experience no resistance. 

The key is to train your thumb to support the violin yet still flexible enough to slide across the neck. When you first try this, it will be an impossible task. However, with some dedication, your thumb will adapt to its new role.

Resting the violin on your collarbone can be painful if you are just wearing a t-shirt. The best solution is to have some thin cloth to cushion the bottom of metal bracket that holds the chinrest. 

As for benefits of playing without a rest, it definitely allows greater flexibility and range of motion of the left arm. I had a Mach One shoulder and it blocks my arm from rotate to the left to reach for the G string. Playing restless, my arm is able to move freely. Moreover, you just have one less piece of equipment to carry around and won't feel like a cat in the water if you ever forgot to bring your shoulder rest.

 

For the record, I have long neck and very bony body structure. In fact, I used to play on an Extra High chinrest(2x the height) with a shoulder rest set to Max Height. Playing restless does not require short-neck or meaty body because the violin is not actually being "held" like a shoulder rest would do. Instead, for most of the time, the violin is being balanced by your thumb, collarbone, and your head. There is actually a big gap between your shoulder and the violin.

 

I highly recommend anyone whose livelihood or career does not dependent on violin playing to try this out. Your left hand skill will suffer a bit at the beginning but with one week of focused training, you will regain your ability. 

Replies (100)

October 4, 2011 at 03:31 PM ·

Nick, do you know how many people are totally envious of you right now because it seems like you just picked it up and figured it out!  and others totally affronted that you dare try it  :)  We wage wars on this forum over whether it actually works to play with no shoulder rest!  sounds like it works great for you, more power to you  :)

October 4, 2011 at 03:49 PM ·

I just wish we could forget about the use or non use of a shoulder rest and just get on with playing the damned fiddle!!

I use one but I can easily do without if I'm trying out fiddles and it's a bind taking one on and off.

Either way it makes no difference. Try improving your sound, your intonation, your technique and your musical understanding, rather than waste time on shoulder rest issues. (And don't tell me the sound is better without one, as it is definitely not with my instrument!)

October 4, 2011 at 03:55 PM ·

I used to think people like Perlman could do it because they had no neck, LOL. But I saw a video of him doodling around on the fiddle, and he was just looking around to the left, to the right, up, down, etc while playing, and his head was nowhere near the chinrest. He just had it balanced on his collarbone and left hand, no chin contact, and the fiddle just stayed put.

I guess that underscores the idea that the instrument is not being "held" at all, just supported and balanced. And probably would be the case whether you use a rest or not, imho.

And I'm not anti-rest, I'm just a minimalist, lol.

October 4, 2011 at 05:07 PM ·

Nick,

Congratulations, the muscle relaxation that you have figured out in the shoulder/arm/wrist/hand/finger system of your left arm will pay you big dividends and improved performance in many ways.  Keep working the relaxed idea and more improvements will arrive.

October 4, 2011 at 05:18 PM ·

Good to experiement.  I've never used one...tried, at the urging of one teacher...but it hurt too much, so I tossed it.

I've seen heated discussions about the pros and cons...but I missed the war about only those who use them can play the violin...lol...

 

October 4, 2011 at 06:29 PM ·

I'd love to ditch mine.  I just don't know how to go about doing it.  My daughter played without one and she would draw a lovely tone from her instrument.

----Ann Marie

October 4, 2011 at 07:56 PM ·

 You know, recently I've tried practicing both ways, now can play both with and without a (low) rest, and DO do play both ways--depending on circumstances, wardrobe and the length of time I'll be playing.  It's possible...it helps me  maintain flexibility and lack of tension...and it works...for me.  

I agree with Peter...to a point; but some people just starting to make the switch (in)either direction) need reassurance; others need ideas to make their choices more useful.  As long as posters respect one another's choices and don't make a moral value of what is an individual playing choice, what's the problem?  If you get tired of discussing it, don't open those threads.

October 4, 2011 at 08:29 PM ·

 Glad to hear this Nick.  Without even hearing you, I'm sure your tone projection has increased by at least 20-30% just by throwing this rest away. 

October 4, 2011 at 08:52 PM ·

Oh dear - there, goes the neighbourhood: the rest/less tone-wars are about to start....

 

October 4, 2011 at 09:04 PM ·

Anyone tried that Phantom Adjustable shoulder rest? I found this from their website, it says it is designed to allow for increased long axis rotation of the violin as well as freedom of movement of the left collar bone/shoulder joint.

October 4, 2011 at 09:59 PM ·

October 4, 2011 at 11:07 PM ·

 Eric...that is an interesting question to Nick....

I used to use a much higher chin rest before I stopped using the shoulder rest (stopped using it just over 8 months ago), about twice as high as the one I have settled for now!  If I was to put back the chin rest I used to use 9 months ago it would give me a migraine and then snap my neck in half these days LOL LOL  (I know as I actually did try to put it back on a month ago to see what it would feel like)..who knows how and why I used to find it 'so comfortable' back in those shoulder rest days!!! and to think I also had the shoulder rest 'yanked up' to the highest setting and with the highest legs I could buy off Kun!!! (oh dear, I feel nauseous only thinking about it.....)

how much I have changed in the way I hold and play the violin it is really quite a 'transformation'

  

October 4, 2011 at 11:47 PM ·

October 5, 2011 at 02:19 AM ·

Good for you! Next step is that you should move away from using your thumb to hold the violin up in favor of using the round part of the palm just below the first finger. The thumb is a little loose support on the other side of the neck that keeps the violin from falling off that little "ledge".

 

October 5, 2011 at 05:48 AM ·

 Hi Eric, I will reply in detail this evening, now have to 'dash out' to work...but no, my neck is not as 'long' as yours, I 'think' I measure about 10cm (11 at most) from collarbone to jaw but will check when I get back from work in about 12 hours from now ;)  the chin rest I use now is approx 2.4 cm in height, the one I used to use before is at least 4cm, again I can post the measurements this evening...

for me my technique has improved in many ways now that I have found the right set up for me: improved vibrato, improved tone (and I think this is not because I don't have a shoulder rest I think it's because 'I move better myself with my left and right part of my body'), best of all: hugely improved intonation (my fingers find it a lot easier to fall on the right spot first time as I have achieve a fluid left arm/hand).  Only one thing left to do now: lots of practice to catch up ;)

October 5, 2011 at 07:10 AM ·

My, you do have a giraffe neck . Mine is only 13cm and I'm 6'2". No wonder I don't need a raised CR, but always cushioning on my collarbone. Maybe I shrunk, but I'll never regret the day I ditched the SR. Even when I'm not playing, I'm admiring the naked back of my fiddle, then I just whip it onto my shoulder without worrying about dislodging any attachments......  

October 5, 2011 at 10:00 AM ·

OK so not to be outdone I tried playing 'without' yesterday.  It wasn't too bad but I had a lesson later so this was not the time to explore.

It was harder for sure, your hand has to 'do' more.  I did get the sensation of more tone but I suspect the reason is that my head was a bit more tilted and my ear closer to the F hole.  I wonder if thats the explanation? 

More interesting, however, was that when I put my SR back on my shifting seemed to have improved.  Kinda weird since it was off for only an hour or so but my hand seemed more confident somehow.

An experiment worth repeating....

October 5, 2011 at 03:05 PM ·

  Hi Eric and Jo,

I'm not using any extra-high chinrest right now. Instead, current setup has the standard Guarneri style chinrest. The distance between my collarbone and my jaw joint is about 13cm.

I think it's important to understand the two different philosophy of playing restless:

1. The violin is BALANCED between your left hand, collarbone, and head. The violin will point to the ground when you take away the left hand support. To point the scroll up, you simply raise it up with your left hand. There is a gap between your shoulder and the back of the violin.(E.g. Menuhin`s 6 six lessons on Youtube)

2. The violin is Held by your head and your collarbone(or shoulder? not really sure); Similar to using a shoulder rest, the violin remains in the playing position without the support of the left hand. (E.g. Zuckerman`s masterclass)

 

If you approach "restless" playing from the #2 perspective, you will need a short and fatty neck or lots of padding for the scroll to remain high without the left hand. I think this is where most people run into problems when trying to make the transition. I like #1 because balancing seems like a better concept than having a fixed support. Everything written below is from #1 perspective.

 

When playing with shoulder rest, we are taught to use our thumb passively. For example, when we shift, the thumb is suppose to glide with the hand passively. If you try to play with the same type of passive thumb technique without a shoulder rest, you will run into many problems such as not able to shift or do vibrato.

 

When you play without a shoulder rest, your left thumb will take on an active role. For example, right before you shift, your left thumb needs to do some "preparation" movement or else your thumb will get stuck in one position.

 

I'm not going to say playing restless is better or will make you sound better. However, I feel sick now whenever I recall the physical sensation of having a kun style shoulder rest resting on my body. If you put your right hand on your upper left chest (just next to your armpit), you will feel muscle movement when you rotate and move your left arms. A shoulder rest puts weight on this muscle and restricts your movement.

 

When playing restless, you shoulder is relaxed. You know immediately whenever you raise your shoulder because it's a very obvious feeling. When I played with a rest, I couldn't even notice if I was raising my shoulder because the entire left part of the body was tensed.

 

@Corwin,

I'm trying to avoid using the base of my left index finger as support because I lose finger agility when I put pressure on it against the violin neck. I understand some advocate (Galamian) the base of 1st finger as a contact point but I think that's on the presumption that you can already play fast passages without excessive tension. However, it's inevitable to use the base of 1st finger for brief support from time to time during shifting.

 

@Peter,

I'm not a professional violinist so I can afford to experiment with different approaches. I prefer restless playing because I feel more comfortable physically. I do think my finger agility and shifting have improved since I took off the rest. On the other hand, if you tried both approach (properly) and have no physical discomfort with a shoulder rest then keep using it. All I'm saying here is to encourage people to give it a shot. You won't know what is good or bad without trying it yourself.

October 5, 2011 at 03:18 PM ·

 Thank you for your post Nick,

I personally knew all that you explained, I also watched Menuhin's videos and I have his book.  When I play (have played without a rest now for 8 months and I don't use any support of any kind, not even a chamois) the violin does not touch my shoulder, just my collarbone.  Yes at times it will 'slightly' touch the shoulder when I go to higher positions, as you know playing with no rest the violin is much more 'mobile' and never stays 'fixed', but it will mainly stay away from the shoulder (though as my shoulders are not very slanted the gap is very minimal, perhaps only about a quarter of an inch to a third...).

BUT....going to the collarbone side....my chin and 'at times' my jaw will be resting on the chin-rest most of the times, again here I am not 'static', if you watched videos of Oistrakh (though I don't play anywhere near as nicely as him) I do movements similar to him with my head, not as much as he did but on a similar line....I will sometimes have my nose in line with the scroll, sometimes I will turn more to the side, sometimes I will raise my chin a bit, but mainly my chin will be down gently on the chin rest keeping the violin stable.  If I had a much longer neck I think I would need a higher chin rest as result maybe (to keep the violin stable).....I can't tell for sure as I am not in that situation.....also have only been playing 8 months with no rest and who knows, I may feel different in 2 years.

October 5, 2011 at 03:38 PM ·

 Hi Jo,

Could you please tell me your thumb and the base of your 1st index finger? Is your thumb curved most of the time, and does your base of your index finger constantly touches the neck or you leave a gap as demonstrated by Menuhin?

 

The biggest challenge right now is to keep my thumb curved like Menuhin said. It's not that I'm tensing my thumb so it won't curve. Instead, the issue is when I curve my thumb, the neck will sometimes slip down to trough between the thumb and the hand. To prevent the slipping, I have to stretch my thumb out which tenses it up.

 

Thanks!

October 5, 2011 at 03:49 PM ·

Jo, interesting comments about the head movement. I find myself doing the same thing, sometimes just to change from a static position, but other times to angle the violin differently. For example, often when playing on the E string for a lengthy passage, my nose may be pointing at the scroll and the fiddle is flatter; conversely, when dawdling on the G string or in higher positions, my head may be forward with chin down, and the fiddle is tilted at a sharper angle. I like having the freedom to put the instrument exactly where I need it at any given time.

I also notice my thumb has a tendency to dance all over the place. At any given time it may be straight out, curved, opposite the 2nd finger, or pointing straight back at the scroll. It just follows the hand and fingers in a supporting role as best it can. I hope that's a sign of finally learning to relax.

October 5, 2011 at 03:52 PM ·

Nick,

I play restless, and I allow the violin neck to sit on the webbing between my thumb and first finger on the lower strings.

October 5, 2011 at 04:44 PM ·

 That's it David, I sometimes do that too (change the tilt of the violin with my chin ;)) and my thumb just like yours is 'fluid'.... 

Nick, no I don't use the 'Menuhin hold', I use the double contact so yes, the base of my index finger does touch the base of the neck pretty much all of the time, I do let it come off a little when I 'safely' reach first position though to play a better vibrato with my first finger as otherwise my first finger would be 'too squashed'.  I have tried to play the Menuhin way with no contact from the base of my index finger but found no benefit in doing so and only started playing worse, so as they say 'why fix something that ain't broken'? ;)  so decided that for 'me personally' I should carry on playing the way I have been playing for the past 4 and a half years (with the 2 point contact).

the way I hold the violin with no rest is very similar to the way this man (Abram Shtern) holds it:

www.youtube.com/watch  (only he tends to look straight ahead a lot more than me, I tend to look neither at the scroll neither straight ahead, kind of 45 degrees in between if it makes any sense...most of the times)  I just happened to have learned the piece he plays in that clip ;) now and again I like playing along with his video lol

 

 

October 5, 2011 at 08:43 PM ·

 Sorry for going off-topic but I'm compelled to show this to you guys:

 

www.youtube.com/watch

 

This girl only played violin for 3 years since 10 but she plays the Mendelssohn like someone who have been playing seriously for at least 10 years. I'm simply amazed...

October 5, 2011 at 08:57 PM ·

 well done to the little girl in Nick's link, I'm always happy to see/hear people of all ages doing well and enjoying it :)

October 5, 2011 at 09:44 PM ·

October 5, 2011 at 10:52 PM ·

<<<play the Menuhin way with no contact from the base of my index >>>

 

This is just an excersise to develop dexterity of the thumb.

October 6, 2011 at 03:24 AM ·

It'll be good when the Israelis and the Palestinians can finally make peace so that we can concentrate all of the world's diplomatic efforts on the truly important conflict -- whether or not to use a shoulder rest. 

I grew up not using one, and since I switched to using one I find that I feel more free with my left hand.  I learned all the tricks of supporting the violin while shifting etc.  But now I don't need them!  One thing obviously is that you should make sure your shoulder rest AND chin rest fit and work well together.  That takes a lot of experimentation and one must be patient.

October 6, 2011 at 06:08 AM ·

 Hi Henry, though Menuhin does teach excellent thumb exercises, he also 'did teach' to keep a space between the hand and fingerboard at all times, not just for the purpose of the exercises 

www.youtube.com/watch

at 3:40 in his lesson he starts to teach about the violin hold, at 4:00 he starts talking about the left hand and he specifically shows and talks about the 'rounded space' that there should be between the inside of the hand and the fingerboard.  This is what he taught.

 

October 6, 2011 at 07:53 AM ·

The contact of the violin to the first finger base joint is vital to supporting the violin without an SR. If not then the head will be required to support the violin entirely. YM mentions to move the base joint away to gain flexibility of the thumb and allow freedom when shifting and vibrato. But mainly the violin only rests on the base joint...'the shelf'. And there can be regulated pressures applied between the thumb and base finger joint for varying maneuvers But this pressure is never static...applied for a maneuver and then released.

 

October 6, 2011 at 10:12 AM ·

sorry Henry, I am 'not' arguing the importance(or not) of the 2 point contact (using the base of the index finger), that is the way I hold the violin with no shoulder rest after all.

I was only pointing out what I saw/heard in the Yehudi video....that is what he is saying that's all....in that part of the video he is 'not' saying to have a gap 'only' when doing vibrato or only in certain passages, not that I can hear anyway and I have watched the entire video...., if I have misunderstood him I am sorry, can you point me to the bit in the video which I have not heard properly please?

October 6, 2011 at 11:27 AM ·

I have'nt watched YM's video, however, I have read/studied his book '6 lessons' to the letter.

He advocates an excersise to push/pull the fiddle with the thumb pad away from the 'first finger base joint'. This is done with the thumb alone, and also with the thumb and a finger pressing on the string. This excersise requires the flexibilty of the first joint of the thumb.  

October 6, 2011 at 12:09 PM ·

Being a curious sort of fellow, I did an experiment with my violin.

With a Kun shoulder rest, it weighs 568g.

I put the rest, still attached, on the scales, scroll on the floor. Now the weight registered was 408g, so the floor was taking 160g of the violin's weight.

I then pushed down onto the chinrest with my hand until the violin was raised up, and the scroll was floating above the floor. So, now, the weight acting on the scales was violin + rest, plus my pushing to raise the violin. Its only support was the rest on the scales. Now the weight registered was around 1600g - it was fluctuating, from 1580 - 1620 ish as I couldn't keep it perfectly steady.

That means that to keep the violin level with no help from the floor,  I have to add around a kilogram to the chinrest. That's over two pounds. Now, you may well be able to apply that by relaxing the head onto the instrument, but as soon as you add that extra weight, you also have an equal counter pressure upwards from the collarbone or shoulder,.

So, I took off the rest, and put the violin on the scale, on its back: it weighed 482g
I replaced it with the scroll on the floor, and lower part of the back on the scales. Now the weight was 326 g

So when I place the violin between my collar bone and my left hand, the collarbone takes 326g of the violin's weight, and the left hand just 156g.

From these measurements it can be seen that,  using a shoulder rest as a fulcrum to hold the violin without support from the left arm requires an additiona kilo of weight at the chin rest.

When I placed the violin on its back on the scales, and bowed, the increase in weight was between 20g and 100g or more, depending on contact point, where on the bow and speed, as well as weight applied.. This too would increase the amount of weight needed at the chin rest to lift the violin,, and as the bow is further away from the shoulder rest than the chin rest, the leverage effect means that the amount of weight applied at the chin rest needs to be a multiple of the weight from the bow, as the  distance from bow to shoulder rest is a multiple of the distance from shoulder rest to chin rest.

gc


October 6, 2011 at 12:28 PM ·

100g of bow weight.....thats a significant contribution to keeping the violin in place.

October 6, 2011 at 12:58 PM ·

Graham,

Your experiment is very informative. However, it's important to note that it only proves that one shouldn't press too hard with the head.

You could do the same experiment without a shoulder rest than with.

BTW, I use a shoulder rest playing viola and go without on the violin.

Terry

October 6, 2011 at 02:40 PM ·

Terry - there is no fulcrum without a shoulder rest, and the weight is shared between hand and collarbone, as I wrote:-

"So, I took off the rest, and put the violin on the scale, on its back: it weighed 482g
I replaced it with the scroll on the floor, and lower part of the back on the scales. Now the weight was 326 g

So when I place the violin between my collar bone and my left hand, the collarbone takes 326g of the violin's weight, and the left hand just 156g."

gc

 

October 6, 2011 at 03:12 PM ·

 great experiment there...

"Terry - there is no fulcrum without a shoulder rest, and the weight is shared between hand and collarbone, as I wrote:-"

since the collar bone/whatever area touches the backplate of the violin, that contact point still serves as a fulcrum even if the chin applies the tiniest amt of downward force which is practically done by everyone playing without a shoulder rest.  but i concur with shoulder rest, some find it rather "convenient" to chin down on the violin.  some do it to show the hand free move; others do it under tension.

my kid has played around with or without sr.  she could manage both ways until she was working on a piece with a lot of very high register work..shifting up and down, across the strings.  then playing without sr caused more fatigue and since then she has come back to the use of sr, along with center mount chin rest. (it was teacher's idea to get back to sr, that my kid needed to work on shifting more solidly first,,,instead of shifting and worrying about violin popping out,,,which i agree)

no bid deal.  whatever works.  

 

October 7, 2011 at 01:21 AM ·

I'd be curious how people navigate with high register work, such as Wieniawski Scherzo Tarentelle, without a shoulder rest. It does seem to be a challenge, as Al suggests.

Graham, I concur with Al regarding the fulcrum issue.

October 7, 2011 at 04:04 AM ·

 The point of contact in the upper registers is the palm against the bout. Its actually the easiest aspect of playing restless.

October 7, 2011 at 06:18 AM ·

 Corwin is right, 

here is a photo I took only a month after I learnt to play with no shoulder rest (please note: I was 'posing' for the photo so when I play these days I look a bit more 'natural' than that, I also used to play with my violin quite high up on my shoulder, these days I use a left mounted chin rest and the violin is lower towards my chest, but at least the photo gives you an 'idea' of what Corwin said)

October 7, 2011 at 12:05 PM ·

OK, Jo, that's more or less what I do too. Getting up there is no problem. But how do you elegantly get back down? I haven't tried this with a shoulder rest either, so in all fairness, it could pose a problem too. The other thing is the work in Scherzo Tarentelle goes high up on the G-string. There are harmonics all the way up at the end of the fingerboard. I don't really want to lift the left shoulder but maybe for stuff that high it could be necessary.

There's another SR thread going on right now and Ronald Mutchnik mentions several youtube videos. Perhaps it has something to do with placing the violin into a slightly different position to negotiate more extreme movements (like harmonics high up on the G-string)

http://www.violinist.com/discussion/response.cfm?ID=21011

October 7, 2011 at 01:08 PM ·

My posture is a bit different from Jo's (as illustrated). My thumb is always on the neck and it provides the "lever" to move back down.  The hardest part of restless for me was downshifting from third or 4th position to first position on the G string. 

I won't articulate it exactly but in a sense a restless player is like a bicyclist. A bicycle cannot balance very well while stationary (although I watch people try it at stop lights.) A cyclist constantly lets the bicycle fall from left to right then picks it up and pulls it back until it falls the other way. Once you are experienced cyclist you are not conscious of the increasingly subtle left to right dropping of the bicycle. 

Playing the violin restless is constantly dropping it and picking it up. Cultivating this is an extremely effective left hand technique builder with many right arm benefits.

October 7, 2011 at 09:39 PM ·

  I like your analogy Corwin with the bicycle.  I'd perhaps go a step further and say playing the violin with a shoulder rest is much like riding a bicycle with training wheels.  The training wheels are there to keep the bike balanced and upright even when the bicycle is not in motion.  It is nearly impossible to ride a bike and keep it balanced when it is not in motion (doing the very same thing) without the training wheels, unless of course the person riding the bike, puts his/her feet down on the ground  to maintain balance on either side. 

Playing without the shoulder rest properly I think requires one to maintain this balance between the left hand and collarbone.  Unfortunately people who have played the violin for years with a shoulder rest erroneously hold the violin up with their shoulders which really I think inhibits a player's natural left hand facility, sound, shifting  and vibrato.

 It's not possible to possible to win the Tour de France with training wheels much like it is not possible in my opinion to play at the highest possible level (in all facets) with a shoulder rest.

October 7, 2011 at 09:43 PM ·

  Thanks everyone for your inputs.

While practicing today, I noticed another benefit of going restless. Playing with a shoulder rest can actually mask my left hand deficiency especially shifting technique.

Without a rest, I had to change my left hand shape or else my fingers will get "stuck" while shifting. With this new hand shape, my shifting, vibrato and finger agility have improved.

In other words, without a rest, you will need proper technique or else the violin is unplayable. With a rest, however, you can get-by with poorer technique but might get stuck in the intermediate level.

October 7, 2011 at 09:51 PM ·

 In other words, without a rest, you will need proper technique or else the violin is unplayable. With a rest, however, you can get-by with poorer technique but might get stuck in the intermediate level.

Very true.  People like the shoulder rest because it makes the violin more accessible to the masses and covers up poor balancing and uncoordinated movements.  It is kind of  like comparing roller skating to ice skating.  Playing the violin without a shoulder rest is more like ice skating.  Nothing wrong with roller skating, but it is not the same thing as playing ice hockey.

October 7, 2011 at 10:34 PM ·

 Corwin, my posture has changed since that photo..in that photo I was approximately 4 weeks into learning to play without a rest, I used a centre mounted modern flesch chin rest and I was 'posing' for the photo.

these days I play with a left mounted chin rest which is lower in height too and when I play high up on the G string I have tried tonight, the tip of my thumb is still only just hooked under the neck of the violin and the thumb will follow the top rib of the violin too, the violin will lower slightly and yes will rest on my shoulder but my shoulder does 'not' rise, sometimes I actually rise the violin OFF my shoulder to make myself more comfortable or to achieve different results when playing.

Even when playing high on E string now the tip of my thumb mostly does not leave the neck of the violin or if it does the violin is slightly lowered and rests briefly on my shoulder and my chin is lowered onto the chin rest.

I agree with Corwin that initially I found down-shifting from 4th to 1st the hardest learning curve, it felt like my thumb was 'sticking' to the violin neck and not sliding enough even though I never ever have sticky or sweaty hands/fingers (quite the opposite actually).  Now in hindsight I know it was just down to developing the skill and developing the muscles involved in playing whilst your left hand holds the violin (I had been playing 4 years with a rest set to a very high position and my left hand NEVER taking ANY role in holding the violin AT ALL).  Now it's 9 months I have been playing rest-less and nothing is easier than to play with no rest, I got so used to it I can't even use the thinnest sponge or cloth in between me and the violin (can't believe the change, if one told me I would go through such transformation I would have found it hard to believe).

October 8, 2011 at 02:22 AM ·

I think Corwin's analogy is brilliant. Being an avid cyclist in my youth I understand very well how this relates to playing fiddle restless. <constantly dropping it and picking it up> This is how the fiddle balances on the shoulder, it is allowed the freedom of movement which is the key to balnce, not held rigidly/clamped on the shoulder. But as the cylist waits at the stop light, we violinists can hold on firmly in certain situations that command, but this is only necessary until the light turns green.

I don't think about analogies much, as when I rode a bike I did'nt think....'this is like standing astride a see-saw and trying to mantain a level board, or rocking it without the ends touching the ground"....I just rode my bike. Obviously these sensations of maintianing balancies are transfered to all activities subconsciously. 

I have used the analogy for the left hand....'a spider crawling up and down the wall", it must keep one leg in contact with the surface. As the left hand has 'legs' they each maintain contact with the fiddle for thier varing aspects of maneuvers. These legs are....  the thumb pad, the base joint of the first finger, the finger tips. And the palm of the hand on the shoulder of the fiddle, and also on the neck ( just like the 'Fry Pan' hold. But this is only used in occasional situations such as chord playing )

I have'nt played my fiddle since Corwin posted his analogy. This will be interesting because the advantage I gain from posting and reading posts on this forum is that concepts are reinforced in my subconscious. Not that I am having any problem at all with this particular concept, it will be interesting to feel how my subconscious has assimilated it in another way.

I hope that makes sense, this is a great media for us to communicate, but it has it's limitations. Where as one would reiterate the idea of a concept in many ways to help understanding for one self and for others.

 

October 8, 2011 at 10:59 AM ·

I hope that Nate meant to say its not possible for HIM to play at the highest level with a shoulder rest.  Because other wise its just so much crap.

Its just a freqkin shoulder rest Nate.  Maybe, like Jo, you found that it is much better for you to not use one.  but there are far better players than you you do use a shoulder rest.  Players who, like you, are serious about music and about how they produce it, intelligent and reflective players who also have access to great pedagogues and critics.  Players who themselves are great teachers and critics.  

The training wheels analogy is only appropriate for those of you who see a heirarchy in playing the violin - those lesser, amateur, unskilled -sadly, including vengerov, hahn,  ahh it doesn't matter - will continue to fruitlessly strive for better technique, while those who are on the brink of nirvana without a rest are nobly set on on their spiritual journey.  A bicycle is a machine held in balance by gyroscopic force, the essential component of that being movement sustained in a geometric plane.  A violin is an object which is susceptible to gravitational force, is has no capacity for sustained movement in a geometric plane.  Its a great analogy only for you to serve your implication of lesser ability -  that training wheels are for beginners who do not yet have mastery over a skill.

 

 

 

October 8, 2011 at 05:14 PM ·

 I don't think it's Nate's intention to say that you cannot be a better player than him if you use a shoulder rest. Instead, he meant to say that your potential might be limited with a shoulder rest.

A similar argument is talent vs hardwork. A prodigy might be pretty good if he just practices a little bit. However, he might be a world class superstar if he also puts in hardwork and reaches his potential.

Vengerov, Hahn and Shaham are great players with shoulder rest. Using the argument posted by Nate, they could potentially be better players than they are right now if they didn't used one. Of course, this argument is debatable because we will never know the truth.

 

 

October 8, 2011 at 06:35 PM ·

Another problem with the training-wheels analogy: The small kid starts with training wheels, then leaves them behind; whereas the preadolescent violinist typically starts without a shoulder rest and may or may not add one as he grows up.

I started playing violin in elementary school and played restless till 18 y/o.  Then I tried out some SRs and found one that I liked.  Now I have a comparison.  I, personally, liked the overall feel and response better with the SR than without.  So I've stayed with it.

I don't doubt that plenty of others with my same build -- 5'-10", moderately broad shoulders, medium-short neck -- prefer to play restless.  There's no blanket right or wrong regarding shoulder rests.  You have to go with the setup that best suits you.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Regarding tone loss from SR use: I can't dispute what others have said here on this subject -- only because I wasn't there, as an ear-witness, to make a comparison; but I myself have never experienced this problem.  Although tone loss was one factor Leopold Auer cited in advising against such attachments, the devices have come a long way since his time.

October 8, 2011 at 07:25 PM ·

"… he [Nate] meant to say that your potential might be limited with a shoulder rest."

The word "might" is crucial here -- it depends on the player.  Some might be more limited, while others might find greater freedom, as I did.

"A similar argument is talent vs hard work. A prodigy might be pretty good if he just practices a little bit.  However, he might be a world class superstar if he also puts in hard work and reaches his potential."

Taking this at face value, I agree; but in the context of the whole thread, it could suggest that the player who uses the SR is somehow cheating and isn't working as hard as the one who doesn't use one.  I hope this isn't what you meant to convey, but …?

"Vengerov, Hahn and Shaham are great players with shoulder rest.  Using the argument posted by Nate, they could potentially be better players than they are right now if they didn't use one.  Of course, this argument is debatable because we will never know the truth."

My sense of this is that we probably won't get to compare their playing with versus without SR.  They might not play as well when restless as we're used to hearing, but that's just my own speculation.  BTW, from what I last saw of Bell, you can add him to the above list.

Check out what Hahn herself says here on chin rests and shoulder rests and pads.

October 8, 2011 at 11:28 PM ·

October 9, 2011 at 12:48 AM ·

October 9, 2011 at 03:38 AM ·

 as is the chair....

October 9, 2011 at 03:46 AM ·

Hi Jim: here are two clips of Vengerov playing using no shoulder rest...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0DRdxT7XE1E

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jVI00SipQck

Enjoy!  Cheers!

October 9, 2011 at 07:12 AM ·

 Hi Christian, 

thanks for for posting those clips.  I am a big Vengerov fan so I was quite worried to find I really hated  his Chaccone.  It just seemed over blown.  Decided to shop around on the assumption I was going mad and discovered to my horror that the first five or six Chaccone`s I clicked were equally unbearable for one reason or another.  These were all players I truly respect and would go and here anytime and yet they sounded,  today for some reason  ,  either like the Pillsbury Doughboy on speed,  or just for me,  clipped and trite pseudo authentic performances.   I really did just want somebody to play in time,  not to smooth /heavy and let the music speak for itself.  Kogan finally added some sanity  but I still hadn`t fully recovered until I found Stern playing it which seemed suitably serious at an appropriate tempo with no changes in pulse according to what chord was being played.  Saved me from thinking I have been freaking out on udon.  

Just a bad hair day I hope,

Cheers,

Buri

October 9, 2011 at 09:42 AM ·

@Eric, yes - the bow can add up to 100g, or even more to the violin side - how much more weight then does the head have to add for that to be balanced?

October 9, 2011 at 10:54 AM ·

I am reluctant to assert the training wheel issue. Lance Armstrong with training wheels could outrace me anytime.

Most of us develop a technique out of necessity. Playing without a rest provides that necessity.I recommend it to the typical player and assert that most will benefit.  The super talented can develop a technique without something to compel them. Even so it remains to be seen what the long term effect of locking the violin on the shoulder will do for the length of their careers.

October 9, 2011 at 12:48 PM ·

A bit off topic, but I agree with Buri regarding the Chaconne.  Stern's rendition is the best I've seen.

October 9, 2011 at 04:43 PM ·

 I've heard of many a player from the older generations who had padding sewn into their tuxedos or otherwise hidden. Keep that in mind as you seek to emulate...

October 9, 2011 at 07:34 PM ·

Scott, re: "I've heard of many a player from the older generations who had padding sewn into their tuxedos or otherwise hidden" -- yes, Isaac Stern comes to mind.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Christian, thanks for the Vengerov links.  What I was thinking -- and I should have worded my statement to fit -- was that we probably won't get to hear any one of these artists give us two renderings of the same piece, back to back, one with SR, one without, for comparison.  It could happen -- you never know who might have a special demo -- but …?

You know, before the OP mentioned him, I hadn't thought about whether or not Vengerov used the SR.  I didn't know Shaham used one, either; but then, although I've heard Shaham a lot, I've seen him very little.  Bottom line: Whoever the player, SR or no SR, it's the music that counts.  If I like the performance, I'll gladly hear it again.

October 9, 2011 at 07:42 PM ·

"Most of us develop a technique out of necessity. Playing without a rest provides that necessity."

Corwin, are you saying that playing with a rest deprives one of this necessity and/or that those who play with a rest aren't developing the technique?  Sorry -- I'm not quite following you here.

"I recommend it [playing restless] to the typical player and assert that most will benefit."

Could you point us to some documented studies that would substantiate this point?  And how would you define "typical player"?

"The super talented can develop a technique without something to compel them."

Again, I'm not following you.  What is this "something"?

"… it remains to be seen what the long term effect of locking the violin on the shoulder [with the SR] will do for the length of their careers."

I can't speak for the next SR user, but I've never had it locked on the shoulder -- that's something I'd find intolerable.  Depending on the need of the moment -- down-shifting, up-shifting; low position, high position; sul G, sul E -- I make slight adjustments in instrument and SR position and balance -- as I do with the give-and-take between hand support and chin support.  I hardly give it a thought -- the process is so automatic to me.

October 9, 2011 at 08:42 PM ·

The necessity is holding the violin up with the left hand. Some super stars may be able to develop a real technique without this necessity. I see a lot of players of modest accomplishments who use a rest who would be far better if they didn't have a rest.  No I cannot cite any study but I doubt a contrary study could be found either. It is just my opinion. That is all.

October 9, 2011 at 09:25 PM ·

"The necessity is holding the violin up with the left hand."

Yes, and I hold up mine with the left hand.  But from one moment to the next, the hand will have a greater or lesser share of the hold -- the see-saw effect.  This holds true -- at least for me, and it's a safe guess I'm far from alone -- with or without the SR.

"Some super stars may be able to develop a real technique without this necessity."

"Some superstars"?  Then the remaining superstar SR users -- and all the non-superstar SR users -- are somehow not "able to develop a real technique" without this necessity to hold up the instrument with the left hand?  Again, this necessity doesn't go away -- SR or no SR -- at least not for me; can't speak for the next person.

"I see a lot of players of modest accomplishments who use a rest who would be far better if they didn't have a rest."

How do you know this?  Have you worked 1:1 with each of these players, starting with SR and then going for, let's say, four weeks without -- so that you have an observable comparison?  Among "a lot of players of modest accomplishments," it's a safe guess that, at least with some of them, the SR isn't the culprit.  So many other factors could be in play -- I'm sure anyone reading this could write a fair-sized list of possible items.

October 9, 2011 at 09:44 PM ·

Well I already told you that it was my opinion. I don't know it and I have not worked 1:1 with anyone. Is there something about the word "opinion" that I need to explain further?

If we disallow opinions we better shut down most conversations because I haven't ever seen anything else on violinist.com but opinions including this one.

October 9, 2011 at 10:48 PM ·

"I can't speak for the next SR user, but I've never had it locked on the shoulder -- that's something I'd find intolerable. "

Then you would HATE the Bon Musica - it is shaped to fit over the entire shoulder

October 9, 2011 at 11:12 PM ·

Corwin, if there were nothing but opinion on v.com -- well, maybe some others would still like it, but I would find the site quite worthless.  There's a lot more than opinion here -- e.g., plenty of reporting of news and happenings and findings -- things that don't fit the dictionary definitions of opinion.

What prompted me to rebut you was your string of bold, sweeping assertions in your 10:54 AM entry that I've already quoted.  If you had identified them at the outset as opinions, although I might still have challenged them, I would have had more respect for your approach to the whole issue.  You didn't use the word "opinion" at all until your 08:42 PM entry.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Graham, probably so, judging from your description and the Bon Musica reviews I've read.

October 9, 2011 at 11:43 PM ·

October 9, 2011 at 11:49 PM ·

Yes, Eric, my last comment only applies to those who use the SR as a fulcrum and the head as a counterweight to hold the violin without support from the left hand.

gc




 

October 10, 2011 at 12:34 AM ·

Thanks for that explaination GC. I was confused because the weight of the bow and arm excert a downward pressure on the violin transfering it to the collarbone and left hand. Thus the head has a lesser duty to perform. Playing the violin without left hand support did not occur to me. 

October 10, 2011 at 01:07 AM ·

 Jim, You can't recognize an opinion when you see it? Did it look like news to you?Did it seem like a fact based study?  Did I present myself as an expert with credentials? I suspect that 90% of those who read my comments recognized them as opinions just as I recognize most of what  you have said on this thread as an opinion. 

October 10, 2011 at 02:10 AM ·

To the person who asked to see how one would get up in high position in that passage from Wienawski's  Scherzo Tarentelle without using a shoulder rest you can  hopefully get some idea of that in  the following video ( though a bit dark because of black and white film and Menuhin wearing a dark jacket) at about 1:35

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k8K53QCdS20

 

 

October 10, 2011 at 02:37 AM ·

"Jim, you can't recognize an opinion when you see it? … I suspect that 90% of those who read my comments recognized them as opinions …."

Yes, Corwin, I can; and, what is more, I did recognize them as such.  Or, more precisely, in your case, I spotted what I suspected might be nothing more than your own personal opinions -- worded in such a way, however you intended them, that some in the audience could take them as definitive, authoritative pronouncements -- some of which my own personal experience, not just my opinions, contradicts.

So I decided to smoke you out** and try to get you to either back up your assertions with hard evidence or else tell the whole v.com audience in plain language -- since not all of us are native English-speakers -- that these were, indeed, only your opinions.

I mean no disrespect -- sharp and pointed though some of my words may be; but my experience as a two-time trial juror continues to markedly change the way I look at all kinds of issues -- probably at least as much as your going restless changed your playing.  When one party presents its side of the case, I can feel, oh, so convinced; but when the other party gets its turn, many a case falls apart.
____________________
**Link provided for benefit of non-native English-speakers.

October 10, 2011 at 02:44 AM ·

Well Sherlock you have been busy.

...smoking me out!? I wasn't even hiding. When did I say my opinions were worth more than your opinions or anyone else's opinions on v.com.

October 10, 2011 at 03:02 AM ·

Sorry -- point taken -- about not hiding.  More like the teacher saying, "Mr. Slack, come to the front of the room and tell the whole class."

So on this humorous note -- well, I find it a bit humorous -- and with me nearing the fall-down stage of fatigue, I will sign off for the night.  4:40 AM comes up fast -- no connection with A-440.

October 10, 2011 at 03:14 AM ·

 Good heavens,

I only write at 4 40 because that`s when I get up....

Cheers,

Buri

October 10, 2011 at 03:21 AM ·

Since we are on the subject of shoulder rests, anyone want to buy a bon musica, used only once for about 30 minutes? 

October 10, 2011 at 03:30 AM ·

We are on the subject of 'ditching SR' and I don't know what anyone is doing in here if they use them?

October 10, 2011 at 05:21 AM ·

 don`t plan for what you think the enemy is going to do. Plan for their capability???????

Clausewitz on shoulder rests.

October 10, 2011 at 11:20 AM ·

I think v.com has a highly warped proportion of non-SR players.  When I go to student recitals (as an audience member), or when I play in orchestras (community or pro), practically everyone uses SR.  It is very rare to find a violinist that does NOT use SR, at least in my circles. 

 

October 10, 2011 at 11:51 AM ·

I've ditched my violin and just play on the shoulder rest now, it saves so much hassle.

October 10, 2011 at 11:59 AM ·

 i've ditched my violin and the shoulder rest.  feel perfect now.

October 10, 2011 at 12:16 PM ·

Buri said:

Clausewitz on shoulder rests.

So we conclude that a shoulder rest discussion is the continuation of policy by other means.

Ergo, we must anticipate The Fog of Shoulder Rest Discussions.

QEI

Although our intellect always longs for clarity and certainty, our nature often finds uncertainty fascinating.
Karl Von Clausewitz

October 10, 2011 at 01:13 PM ·

 "I think v.com has a highly warped proportion of non-SR players."

Not sure about that, but the non-SR-ers are certainly the more vocal, on every thread I've found on the subject...a bit like proselytes, except that many have been not-using them for years.  And one of my colleagues, a fervent non-SR-er for years, now has started to use a VLM diamond--and he's actually shamefaced over it!  Me, I go both ways (yeah, that's going to cause problems, I can see it now) depending on the situation.

October 10, 2011 at 01:26 PM ·

I knew a viola player (dangerous to admit, I know!) - and he went to a so called top teacher (who in my opinion was definitely not) - who insisted he got rid of his shoulder rest. This unfortunate colleauge of mine spent 3 years struggling without a rest (he had a lot of problems that without the rest were even worse), and then one morning came to a reheasal and took out his SR and put it back on.

When I asked him why he said that the teacher had sacked him. Although I was tempted to say "I told you so" I resisted.

I know the teacher (who was a well known soloist) was a con man as I went for a lesson myself just to find out.

In my experiencce most people use a SR and its only probably 10 per cent who do not, at least in Europe and the UK. Maybe Americans are different ...

October 10, 2011 at 02:02 PM ·

what lurks in the dark is this:  who is arguably the most outstanding violinist in human history, if you have to pick one?

most will tip their hat to heifetz, i suspect.

since h did not use a shoulder rest and he was that great, was not using a sr a key to his success, some of you must have wondered? no way to answer that with certainty.  but it is worthwhile to emulate and see for ourselves.

some try and succeed; others try and fail to find comfort and the ability to play at one's best, (playing at one's best will probably bring up another heated discussion).

nothing wrong with continued experimentation because each day we are a newer person.  but after a while,  each individual should have some idea on what works and what does not.  are you the type that can be better off using some level of support under the violin or do you play the best with nothing underneath or are you the type who ditch sr because other better players you admire do not use it?  i dunno.  i think people need to listen to their own feelings and experiences, as well as elders' suggestions and stories.  it is a balancing act to find your optimal performance for now and the near future.  beyond that, who knows.

 

 

October 10, 2011 at 02:16 PM ·

@Smiley,

Not sure how the general population of violinists would pan out, but here are the results of a v.com poll: 65% SR, 35% no SR.

http://www.violinist.com/discussion/response.cfm?ID=10248

 

October 10, 2011 at 02:20 PM ·

This topic is a fun read.  SRs are not a physical entity they are a pursuasion and I can well imagine that world wars will one day be fought both between users and abusers and even between proponents of one vs another.

Along the lines of the latter I have struggled with trying to find a comfortable hold for my violin.  I can play sort of without an SR but I like to put my violin under my chin and be totally comfortable without raising my left hand.  Thats just me (please forgive me oh non-SR tribe). 

I also have a high chin/long neck and resorted (yes I think that is the right word) to the Bon Musica not because of the hook (which I find irritating since I can't move the violin) but because of its adjustability and amazing height.  Its the scaffold for a block of flats not a bungalo. Although not comfortable the combination of the bonmusica with my conventional setup was OK - though my teacher was bugging me as to why I was always trying to adjust the location of the instrument on my shoulder.

 A couple of days ago I was in the violin shop and another customer was retrieving his fixed violin - and it had a chin rest I had not seen before that you guys are probably all familiar with called an SAS.  The remarkable things about this were its amazing height and adjustability (both angle and location).  It suddenly occurred to me that my problem might not be the SR but the CR (I hope I don't flush out the anti-CR tribe and yes, I have read that a SAS will probably junk my violin in less than 200-300 yrs).  I bought one there and then and - now I can use a kuhn.  Which is probably not the happy ending half our readers here were looking for but it is for me.

Perhaps if I get a CR that is twice the height I won't need the SR either - I can just sew a pad onto my bra strap and be done with it - and then I can be very holy indeed and you will all be wrong because you should be using a BP.

Have a great thankgiving (I'm in Canada, we have one too even if its on the 'wrong' date).  Be thnakful you have a head, neck shoulder and two arms that you get to argue about whether or not you should be a Socialist Revolutionary.  Or was it Slovak Republic or Socialist Republic.  Or Svergie Radio.  Or maybe Special Relativity.    Synchrotron Radiation? Stimulus Response.  No, Selective Repeat... Sound Reiinforcement... Speach Recognition... Ah, Suburban Rhythm... Superman Returns.. Saudi Riyal?... whatever...

*thanks to wikiwords

October 10, 2011 at 03:05 PM ·

"what lurks in the dark is this: who is arguably the most outstanding violinist in human history, if you have to pick one?

most will tip their hat to heifetz, i suspect.

since h did not use a shoulder rest and he was that great, was not using a sr a key to his success, some of you must have wondered? no way to answer that with certainty. but it is worthwhile to emulate and see for ourselves."

Heifetz was that -simply the greatest - because it was his musical genius - and nothing to do with using or not using a shoulder rest.

October 10, 2011 at 03:33 PM ·

if i have to guess, i would think h would be as great using a sr.  BUT,  if it were known now that h wore pink socks, many aspiring violinists these days will follow that trend!  

October 10, 2011 at 03:36 PM ·

I've been wearing pink socks for years ... the girls love 'em

October 10, 2011 at 03:57 PM ·

"since h [Jascha Heifetz] did not use a shoulder rest and he was that great, was not using a sr a key to his success, some of you must have wondered?  no way to answer that with certainty.  but it is worthwhile to emulate and see for ourselves."

Al, I don't know if Heifetz was one of those who did the following; but I thought it would be fitting to quote what Scott wrote in this thread yesterday, in case anyone missed it:

"I've heard of many a player from the older generations who had padding sewn into their tuxedos or otherwise hidden.  Keep that in mind as you seek to emulate."

This reminds me of what I read some years back about a once-popular trend among young conductors to emulate Arturo Toscanini by leading performances from memory -- when, in fact, they had neither AT's remarkable powers of retention nor his severe vision problems.

October 10, 2011 at 04:01 PM ·

No wonder I can't get the chicks.  My socks are white.  :-)

@Anthony,

I saw that survey, and like I said, the non-resters are disproportionately high on v.com.  If you take a survey outside v.com, I think you might find 95% use SR's.  At least that is my observation.

October 10, 2011 at 04:15 PM ·

" nor his severe vision problems."  thanks for the chuckle:)

it is really a very individual situation. for instance, if i have read what i have read here and kinda agree with some of the ergo principles and if i don't know who stern is and i am asked to guess if this person will need any support under the violin,

i would look at stern, his relatively short neck, his on the thick side chest,,i would have guessed, no, stern does not any support because i think the combo of his short neck and his thick chest should fit a violin nicely.

but then we know, as he showed in that china clip his "little secret",,,a foam pad that he inserts under his suit during performance. 

so it is really tough to say.

smiley, i warn you about wearing white socks with black leather shoes!  you won't get anywhere in the music world:)

October 10, 2011 at 04:57 PM ·

Not to inject more levity, though these limericks may have the opposite effect, but nonetheless, I go where angels fear to tread:

How the shoulder rest wars come and go,

While opinions are flung to and fro

In the final analysis,

Feuds lead to paralysis

And perchance one is never to  know

On the subject of pink and white: ( and it is here that I tread on even thinner ice... with apologies to Smiley and Peter)

Long, Long, Ago:

A violinist  wearing pink and white socks,

Played Chaconne, not Vitali's, but Bach's

The ensuing ovation

Inspired culinary creation

Thus was born bagels,  cream cheese, and lox

 

I will stop now lest someone throw a shoulder rest at me or  the aforementioned culinary creation.

 

 

 

 

 

October 10, 2011 at 07:57 PM ·

"We are on the subject of 'ditching SR' and I don't know what anyone is doing in here if they use them?"

Henry, I can think of two reasons right away, although there are undoubtedly a lot more.

Some readers might feel that they'd be better off without the device -- and want to read personal experiences of those who have successfully ditched it.  Then, since the SR issue is so emotionally charged, with strongly held views on both sides, some SR users may be saying to themselves: "Oh, man -- here we go again.  Now what are they [the non-users] saying about us?"
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
"I will stop now lest someone throw a shoulder rest at me or the aforementioned culinary creation [bagels, cream cheese, and lox]."

Ron, I promise not to throw either item.  You're a far better verse-writer than I am.  I'll stick to slaving away at prose.  I cook and bake regularly, but this particular culinary creation isn't in my repertoire -- yet.  Could be fun to try to learn it, though.

October 10, 2011 at 08:32 PM ·

Jim, of course one would be here if they were interested in ditching their SR, I reacted to some one trying sell an SR here?

I have stated the obvious reasons I ditched my SR, but one can not study YM's '6 lessons' and use an SR.........And BTW, I have REACHED my Nirvana! 

 

October 10, 2011 at 09:08 PM ·

"Jim, of course one would be here if they were interested in ditching their SR, I reacted to some one trying sell an SR here?"

Sorry -- it wasn't clear from your post -- at least, to me -- that this was what you were reacting to.  I checked the post from Mr. Hsu, immediately above yours.  If I remember correctly, he has now gone restless; so it sounds like he is looking for a new home for the SR he previously used "only once for about 30 minutes."  Would need to ask him directly to be sure, but it sounds that way to me.

Haven't studied YM's '6 Lessons'; so I'm not qualified to comment.

October 10, 2011 at 09:28 PM ·

 I love it how these SR/non SR threads always quickly get to 100 posts :)

October 10, 2011 at 09:43 PM ·

Yes, so do I.

This discussion has been archived and is no longer accepting responses.

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