Bringing Out the Octaves in a Melody

bowing bringing out the octaves in a melody e string fiddle lessons ifiddlemag octaves old time cajun May 05, 2020

Hi, I'm Mitch Reed with mitchreedmusiclessons.com. Thanks for joining me on iFiddleMagazine.com. I'm just gonna talk a little bit about some Cajun technique. So one of the things that you find a lot in Cajun music is the use of octaves, or leading up to the octaves. So I'm just going to play a little bit of a tune and kind of break it down and show you what I'm doing there, but it definitely is a Cajun sound. And if you're learning any Cajun waltzes this is something that can really bring out the Cajun style. So I'll just show you a little bit here. [0:37]

So what I mean by the octaves is walking up to them. [1:05] That is used a lot. So it's a first finger on the A string and a fourth finger on the E string. [01:14]

Then I go back to the third finger on the E string with the open A [01:20], another octave. In the old-time Cajun style, a lot of people would go to third position, but catch the open A string. [01:29] And then you have that high, high octave [01:33]

So a lot of Cajun waltzes go up to the octave. So that's one of the things you might want to do. It doesn't sound bad if you catch the open A strings. [01:58]

So there, I was just droning the A string, but if you add the octave to that, it really gives what I call the old-time style of Cajun music. [02:18] You could also use it on the other strings. It doesn't have to be the E and A. So there's a lot of times I'll use it. [02:40]

So that's the other thing is the use of the slide of the octave is also something Dennis McGee did, and Wade Frugé. And that can be a lot of fun too. There was an old tune that Wade Frugé played called The Little Calf is Dead where the B part is just sliding the octave. So it's like something like this [03:50]

So that's the B part of The Little Calf is Dead. So just wanted to share with you a little bit about some Cajun techniques. So octaves, you can even practice them. If you don't use them a whole lot, you can, you know, start on the E and A. [04:32] The can go to the third finger, [04:34] go to the next pair. [04:37] Practice it like that, but it takes a little while to get them in tune. Some days I get them, some days I don't.

So be patient, stay inspired and keep on fiddling. Thanks for joining me, Mitch Reed. Check out mitchreedmusiclessons.com, but definitely check out iFiddle Magazine. It's a great magazine that you can learn a lot of technique and learn a lot of things from a lot of different fiddlers. So thanks so much for having me and for joining me today.

Stay connected with news and updates!

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.
Don't worry, your information will not be shared.

We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.