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Paperback Fiddle: One Woman, Four Strings, and 8,000 Miles of Music Book

ISBN: 0806531223

ISBN13: 9780806531229

Fiddle: One Woman, Four Strings, and 8,000 Miles of Music

Describes the author's passion for the fiddle and how learning the craft helped awaken her love of life and become connected to a nationwide community of teachers and artisans.


Format: Paperback

Condition: Very Good

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Customer Reviews

5 ratings

The music is the message.

Wagner connects the universal language of music to life experiences. While having a natural love for musical exploration may add to the enjoyment of her personal journey, it's not necessarily a requirement. There's a deeper thread here. Her music goes beyond a cathartic for personal trials, parental remorse, and family issues evolving wonderfully into a bright, happy, journey that was pre-ordained by the universe long before she knew what had hold of her. The common human thread of "I have to do this" echoes through the human condition of discovery, rebirth, healing, and finally destiny that all good people experience. In her case, it was the violin, transformed into the "fiddle", which was never a transformation at all, only a different languange spoken to the heart when it opened wide enough to listen. And the beauty of her story is how life, both good and bad, prepares us all for our passions, which if we're listening, is also our destiny. Heart warming and highly recommended.

Lessons from Fiddling

As someone who began playing the fiddle late in life, I highly recommend this book. Ms. Wagner's journey into the world of fiddle music goes far beyond learning how to play a few notes on four strings. As she shares her story with us, we see more deeply how the true lessons of fiddling teach us some of the most important skills of life: "the ability to improvise, change, and evolve. . . ." Indeed, we are all travelers on this journey.

Fiddling as a memoir

This is a wonderful book. A charming, insightful memoir that can be read on many levels. It is about learning to play a fiddle, taking a jaunt through fiddle music and the people who play it. This alone makes it a facinating book. It goes from bluegrass to klezmer to old time fiddling to cajun tunes all tied together with the love for the sound of a fiddle. It is also a memoir of a woman who has learned that life is unpredictable and rules don't always work. There can be apprehension, great losses and much pleasure. As she learns to fiddle she learns to improvise both on the fiddle and in her life.

An insightful and moving memoir

As a late-blooming folk musician, I highly recommend this book! Vivian Wagner charts her own journey as she explores fiddling and its place in her life. An amateur classical violinist from an early age, Vivian first felt no connection with folk music or fiddling, other than that it was something her mother appreciated. After her mother's death, she began to explore fiddle playing as a way to reconnect with her mother's memory -- and as her journey continued, it became so much more: learning to fiddle opened up her mind to new ways of looking at life, and musical improvisation became a metaphor for the skills she needed to deal with her failing marriage and the life changes that would bring. This book is not only for musicians; anyone who has had to re-chart their life as an adult will appreciate the story of how a violin can be transformed into a fiddle and a woman can transform her life from failure to success and hope.

Lyrical Journey

First things first: It's about more than fiddling. Vivian Wagner's exploration of an instrument is about learning to play, learning to explore, learning to climb out of a comfort zone and learning how to land on your feet. The book really starts to sing when her marital and musical challenges begin to merge into shared epiphanies. She discovers that life, like a folk song reiterated through the generations, can be altered to fit one's needs and desires. No strings attached.
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