I’ve been telling people I’m fiddling my way through the pandemic and it’s true. After I returned from Viet Nam in February last year, I started really working at learning fiddle. I’ve been doing this with the help of a lot of online resources and some sheet music. It’s been going pretty well in that I can play some tunes on fiddle now and it’s starting to sound better and better. At the same time, my approach has been somewhat haphazard. I’ve been concentrating on learning Appalachian old time music, which I also play on clawhammer banjo.
Recently though, I’ve been listening to more and more Canadian old time music, including some of our great fiddlers from the past, such as Reg Hill, Ward Allen, Al Cherney, Andy Dejarlis and many more. I thought I’d try to find a teacher who was fluent in Canadian old time music, with the goal of learning the Ottawa Valley style in particular and to build a repertoire of Canadian music.
I found a teacher – Cindy Thompson – who lives in the Ottawa Valley and has been playing that music – and step-dancing to it -most of her life. We had a trial lesson yesterday via facetime and I’m confident I’ve found an excellent teacher who can help me out quite a lot learning this music.