Cecilio The Silent Electric Violin
Recently I was
pleasantly surprised after doing some research for a writing assignment, to
realize I had gained a new respect for the silent electric violin. It is no longer a fad that insulted my musician's sensibilities, limited as they are. Having researched this subject, I would not be surprised to find myself the proud owner of one of these wired for sound violins.
Let me share what I have come to appreciate about electric violins.
4/4 Electric Violin Set
Impressed with the Sound Quality
You will find directly below this paragraph a video featuring a violinist playing one of my favorite songs, "Hotel California" made famous by the Eagles. After hearing him wing-it, I found myself totally impressed with both the instrument and his abilities. Give it a listen and see what you think.
So far as I can tell, it appears the well known makers of musical instruments produce the best electric violins.
Yamaha and Fender violins are a little pricey, but from what I have read it is well worth the price tag. Tonal quality suffers with cheaply made violins, electric or otherwise. If you are going to go electric, you might as well invest a little in the way of money to match the allotment of time you will be devoting to learning how to play the violin.
When I grow up, I plan on playing by ear just like this!
Rocking Out with the Electric Violin
You may be wondering about the conventional uses of an electric violin. While it is true you probably will not see many orchestras featuring a soloist on an electric violin, there are still plenty of opportunities to enjoy this style of music.
- More and more rock bands include electric violinists
- Country music has a strong connection with the violin/fiddle/electric violin
- The shy musician loves the ability to play silently into private headphones as the instrument is mastered. Just make sure your basic set-up includes headphones, such as featured here.
Take a quick second to give thought to all the music that features violins in one way or another. The electric violin is here to fill a particular niche of that market.
Electric versus Acoustic Violins
Violins come in many shapes and sizes. Acoustic violins will more easily match the skills of a novice or a child. Wait until you have become an advanced player before you take on the electric violin.
For the Budget Conscious Advanced Beginner
Even so, I totally understand not spending much money on an electric violin even if you are an advanced beginner. These days money is tight and you might not be able to afford the violin you like. However,If you can envision yourself becoming a well-rounded violinist and the electric violin appeals to you, then you should totally go for a cheaper model, preparing yourself for the adjustments you will have to make in order for the violin to stay in tune.
If this is applicable to your situation, places like Amazon have inexpensive violin sets that will service your immediate needs. (Just click on the link to the right of this page.)
Another option for an advanced player who is just beginning to play the electric violin is to take one of these babies for a test drive at any well established music store where instruments are sold. If you prefer, a sales person will be glad to demonstrate some inexpensive models for you.
Don't forget violins come in specific sizes; especially where children come into play. Take the time to match the correct violin size for your child. Here is a reference site explaining the many different sizes. How to match the arm length and age of your child to the violin is also explained. Most adults will be using a 4/4 full size violin.
Sends Chills Down my Spine
I would prefer to take my electric violin for a test drive, as it were. In fact it is an absolute necessity in my case.
As strange as it is to describe, one of the main reasons I stopped playing my violin was because I suddenly developed a sensitivity to certain notes. It was the higher end notes that would inexplicably send chills down my arms. It bordered on the uncomfortable, so I stopped playing the violin. I remember telling my mom about it, she thought I was looking for an excuse not to play the violin any more and told me it was probably all in my mind. I honestly wanted to play, however, I wasn't looking for any excuses. I just wanted to know why it was now so uncomfortable.
Now that I have had 17 years of MS experience. I can't help but wonder if my sensitivity problem isn't the result of some type of nerve damage. Likened to my present sensitivity to high pitched noises of any sort. To find out if this sensitivity is still present I will have to play a violin and see what happens. Well there or won't there be chills associated with the higher pitched notes?
I have no problem with the guitar or piano, or harmonica. So why the violin? It would be terrific to pick one up and find out the sensitivity problem no longer exists. I will have to remember to test drive one, the next time I'm at my favorite music shop.
If anyone has had an experience with an electric violin, please leave a comment, I would be very interested in knowing whether you would recommend it to others, or if you prefer the more traditional acoustic violin.
As for me, I fully enjoyed gaining a new respect for the electric violin. I would embrace the sense of privacy headphones would give me, as I most enjoy playing to an empty room the best.
Although I would not consider myself a beginner, I know I am rusty and would appreciate not subjecting an entire household to the whining noises sure to come off of the violin strings of of a rusty player. Hence my appreciation for a silent electric violin.
However, first things first, I have to find out if I'm still allergic to the violin.