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there is another aspect to this question that I'd like to hear some opinions on....is violin really suited for rock?
It CAN be, if played in a rock way. My problem with people like J.L. Ponty and Jerry Goodman and Allen Sloan is that they come to rock from a classical or country background, and don't really inhabit the violin as a rock instrument.

Violinists I would consider more rock-oriented:
  • Darryl Way: Wolf, Curved Air
  • Simon House: High Tide
  • Charlie Bisharat: Shadowfax
  • Michael White: The Fourth Way
 

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I'm looking for opinions on whether the violin is a viable instrument for rock and roll.
I think the better question is, "is Rock and Roll viable any longer?"

I know I am way past my fill of the guitar and drums being near sole instruments of popular/rock music for 65 plus years.
A waste of musical potential IMHO.

Think of all the great music that was never created because of the dominance of the guitar.
 

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I have it cued up at the 1:25 mark - This is actually a fairly good representation of what "rock & roll violin" would sound like but for God's sake, stop playing the video right after he finishes his solo - seriously - and whatever you do, don't watch it from the beginning - the vocals - especially the accent - are the stuff of nightmares... Jaysus... The guy can play but whoever it was that told him that he could actually sing did him no favors...

The bow twirling, however, is definitely cool, but when you do it, do it less than half as many times as he does as it stops being "cool" and becomes "annoying" amazingly quickly...
 

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There are lots of videos on YouTube and, if I knew how I would post links (but I’m too scared to try - I’m new here, you see!)
Looks like I've been lurking for a long time!
To post a video from YouTube, Regor, just press the 'share' button underneath the YouTube video. Lots of options will appear, one being a grey circle with 'copy link' in it. Press this and the link is copied. Then return to this thread and in your normal post either hold your finger down (if on a cellphone) or right-click (if on a computer) until the 'paste' appears. Click this and it will post your YouTube link. Finish the pst and the full YouTube link will appear in the thread. Trust me, its not that hard. ;)
 

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Underneath the YouTube video there's a button that says 'share". Click on it and one of the options is' copy link' (it's in a grey circle). Click on that and it copies the link to the video. Then in your next post right click (or keep your finger down) and you'll see 'paste'. Press it and the link is posted in the thread. As soon as you've finished your post the video will appear in the thread. Hope that helps, Regor. ;)
Probably the easiest way is to just copy whatever is in the address bar at the top of the YouTube page and then paste it right into the post -

This Italian lass can really play... Jaysus...

 

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in 1978 (?) I walked into Small Wonder Records in Walthamstow (a 9 minute walk from the Assembly Halls that Barbirolli &al made many an iconic recording) and swapped my live double Lynyrd Skynyrd album for a concert ticket at the Rainbow (Theatre) for a band called UK that had my favourite drummer at the time and guitarist (Bill Bruford & Alan Holdsworth). Pete Stennet, the owner, had his finger in many pies and did deals like this. Any road up, Eddie Jobson, ex-Roxy Music &cetra, on keys and electric violin. Well no point in going on about these incredible musicians, just listen to this and decide yourself if you think the electric violin has a place in rock n roll.

Window Building Fixture Font Facade



 

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Going back to my 80's days and one of my favourite groups, DMR.
In the 1970s I nicked about 50 in total of those tomato ketchup dispensers, almost entirely from Wimpy. Haven't got a single one left, they ran out in the 1990s at chez-moi. I met Kevin Rowland in the late 1980s, quite a nice chap.

Edit: In the days when it was ok to be photographed with a Vauxhall Chevette in the background 🤣
 
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Discussion Starter · #39 ·
I got some feedback this weekend from some of the guys at the session where I played the violin. Surprisingly, they want me to bring it to some other sessions, but the piano player had a really good observation. He said I should approach it like I was playing a horn.

I thought that was brilliant because the violin is a melodic instrument, not a rhythm section instrument, so trying to translate my approach from electric guitar to a violin really didn't work out. Horns dont play the whole time. They sit out entire sections. When a horn or horn section is accompanying, there are stock "pad lines", particularly in R&B, then when it is time to solo, its daddy blow that horn.

so after thinking about all that for a bit, I put on Miles Davis Bitches Brew and listened again to how Miles does it

and I also now realize from listening to the clips you all posted that I should not shy away from being a fiddle player when I do this. I had played with people before in Old Time and grass sessions, and I didn't want to use "Fiddle" licks in the rock sessions .....but I was wrong. There is no doubt that fiddle style works. I think I just wanted to consider myself a violinist instead of the fiddle player that I was, but I think Popeye said it best when he said "I am what I am"
 

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a violinist you should check out is Sugarcane Harris, who's considered a sort of Hendrix of the violin, and worked also with Frank Zappa


Nick Cave have worked for a long time with Warren Ellis, who's my favorite rock violinist. I love especially his stuff with his band The Dirty three, but that's quite difficult to classify just as rock or folk or jazz. But I highy recommend the album Ocean songs.



but altough he plays the viola, I think that John Cale could be a great inspiration, maybe you've heard already his work with the Velvet Underground

 
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