I recently taught an introductory fiddle lesson to a seveteen-year-old young lady. At the end of the lesson, she asked me, “Why do you play the fiddle?”
That’s an interesting question. Why do I do anything? Certainly, I do not play the fiddle because it is an easy road to riches. I do not play the fiddle because my parents forced me to do so, either. And life as a performing musician isn’t something anyone would say is remotely “easy”. So, why do I do it?
The short answer is this: It makes me happy.
There are other reasons, of course, but they all lead back to this one overriding consideration.
I advised this young lady that as she continued in her search for her next fiddle teacher, she keep in mind the fact that playing the fiddle should be fun. I should also have told her that it should be fulfilling on a very personal level, and it should bring her happiness. Her next teacher should help her find these things in her own playing.
I am currently reading a very good book called “The Fire Starter Sessions” by Danielle LaPorte. She makes a great statement: “Knowing how you actually want to feel is the most potent form of clarity that you can have … When you’re clear on how you want to feel, your decision making gets to the heart of the matter … First, get clear on how you want to feel. Then, do stuff that makes you feel that way.”
Are you unhappy with your choices and decisions in your life? Figure out how you want to feel. Make changes in your life that will lead you to feel that way.
As for me, I think I will continue fiddling around for a while longer. And helping other budding musicians find the joy and happiness that I get from sharing my music through the violin.
~ Michael Kelly, fiddler of Sligo Rags (Celtic Bluegrass Fusion)
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