Modern Strings: a Journey

modern strings
Electric violin, pedals and electronic music!
Electric violin, pedals and electronic music!

I’m a classical violinist. A few years ago, I discovered rock music, which took me on a journey that involved things I couldn’t have imagined when I was just a teenager studying my instrument. From playing electronic music, to creating a distortion-fueled rock band, the world of alternative, modern strings has captivated me.

Thanks to “the internet“, I found out I wasn’t alone. In fact, there are many people all over the world taking on their own path. (By the way, this is the point where I should ask you to recommend my site to your friends ūüėČ Cheers!).¬†From buskers to rock band members, playing electronica, blues, rock or more, as a beginner hobbyist or a full-time pro: modern strings are here to stay.

The Fiddle Forum is a wonderful place to meet these fellow crazy fiddlers – as it is the main resource for alternative string players. I decided to ask to the community to tell their stories, to understand how other people have stumbled into this world. Now, I’ll share the interesting things I’ve learnt.

Share Your Journey

I started a thread asking my fellow string players about how they got started, why they decided to stir in the direction they did, to what level they play (hobby or pro). I wanted to know what instruments and styles they played, the gear they use, etc.

It’s interesting that most players seem to have started at a young age, as one would assume¬†is the tradition. However, others have taken on the violin later on in life (such as user tpquinn), or have made the transition from other instruments such as piano and guitar (as user GovernorSilver did).

Hobby or Profession?

The same applies when it comes to whether it’s a hobby or a profession. To me, for most of my life, I’ve paid my bills with a violin in my hand. I’ll admit that doing operas and musicals can be more profitable, but pop string quartets are a good source of income as well. Rock and electronic music are harder to break into, but they’re so exciting!¬†User Rosalba¬†plays as a hobby, but she expresses her passion for traditional folk music in an inspiring way (“[my fiddle] took over my life. I play because I want to, love it, and have to.“).

User Nick2‘s story had it ups and downs: from rocking out in bands as a young adult, to quitting for decades, and then finally getting back to it in an amazing way. After playing for bands and soloists, recording, touring, and busking – he certainly qualifies as “a full-time¬†muso“, as he points out. If you’re unsure that it may be too late, don’t worry!

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