Ring On The A String
I am working on some fairly fast material right now. While trying to eliminate erroneous noises during string crossings I noticed a sound I originally attributed to me accidentally hitting the D string while playing the A string. After going back over it again I discovered I am not accidentally hitting the D string. It seems my A string has a kind of ring to it after I play on it. If I cross from the A string to the E and back again the noise happens every time. It sounds like maybe either a ring or a harmonic.
Any idea how I can eliminate this? Would you suspect the strings? I just changed strings although it might have been happening before that since I had attributed the noise to sloppy playing.
Mute the string with the bow or your hand.
Is it the A string that is ringing, or (as I suspect) playing the A string excites harmonics in the other open strings. If the ring is on fingered notes of the A string, I double my suspicion. Try damping the open strings while playing the A string.
I appreciate you guys commenting. I will give this a try and report back.`
Let's say you're playing a fast passage in a classical sonata or concerto. If the passage involves a few open strings, I don't think you can be about muting the strings after they've sounded. I think the ring is part of what you're playing.
Thanks Paul, yes I'm not sure how I would mute a string in fast succession.
Honestly I'm not hearing anything out of the ordinary there, Tim. My friendly suggestion to you is to slow down a little.
I can't pick it out of the video either. I think it matters a lot if the "ring" is on the open A or other fingered notes as well. I recently had a similar problem with a metallic after-ring when playing the open A, which was traced down to exciting a high overtone (or two) on the E string. A stiffer bridge helped, and the details are in a post on Maestronet: https://maestronet.com/forum/index.php?/topic/329145-don-noons-bench/&do=findComment&comment=838048
Thank you Paul and Don. The defect is at 0:07-0:08 mark on the video. Maybe it's just a common kind of thing but seemed more prevalent on the A string.
Sounds like you might be describing a major body resonance (or two) which are usually around open A and C to C#. The video doesn't help... if you could just play one single note that illustrates the problem, then maybe.
Wouldn't "Ring on a String" be a good name for a band, like "Bang on a Can"?
Sorry, somehow I produced an empty reply.
I think Eva is correct, if I'm hearing what you're talking about. It sounds like you're touching the string when you don't mean to, which would make sense if you don't hear the noise when you play the piece slowly. You're maybe not lifting your fingers straight up when you take them off the strings. I don't think it's a problem with your instrument.
Thank you Eva and Scott for your comments.
I know! It's hard to resist playing everything at performance tempo. My natural inclination is to think that if I'm not getting something, it's because I "don't know the piece well enough," which I think of in terms of not having memorized the notes. Most of the time, this is wrong. Most of the time, if I trip up it's because there's some physical motion I'm not doing correctly.
I don't hear a problem. An open A is going to ring a little -- that's a good thing. That's what a violin does. You can dampen it with a finger but I wouldn't worry about it. You notice it because you're up close but your listeners probably don't.
Lots of good comments. I relate to Scott Bailey's last comment very much, even though it is not specifically about the problem of the A string.
Scott, Thanks for your comments on this.I am working on some slower material and have slowed down for a bit. I like the idea of playing only certain passages slower.