Newsletter – March 2016

Welcome to another installment of the Fiddle Jam Club Newsletter! 

Welcome newest club members: 

Leon, Fae, Robert, Alice, Alex, Peggy, Mark, D, Becky, Nathan, Kat, Lee, Todd, Sarah, Kitty, Shannon, Kurt, Dennis, Anna, Kay, Izzy, Bobbie, Gunter, Stephen, Heidi, Gerry, Marcus, Gene, Rachel, Leslie, Scott!!!!  

May you all have many joyful and happy jams!

Newsletter Topics Below
: 1)  Featured Lesson of the Month: The Fiddle Jam Blues, 2) News: Outlaw Fiddle Electric Violin Pickup 3) Next: NewBee Beginner section, 4) Affiliate Partners wanted,
5) Help wanted 6) iFiddle column.


1) Featured Lesson of the Month: This is something new that seems like a good idea to me.  I’m open to your feedback, as usual.  If you are already one of our All Access Pass (AAP) members, you will already have complete access to this lesson and can skip this section of the newsletter, BUT, if you are just a member of our Free Fiddle Jam Club, I will be switching the coding of  a new lesson each month to give you full access, just like our AAP members.  The obvious choice for the first installment of this feature is the Fiddle Jam Institute’s namesake title tune: The Fiddle Jam Blues… of course!

I think that The Fiddle Jam Blues really hits a home-run educationally speaking.  It’s a super-high “coolness factor” tune, jam & backups featuring a simple two-fingered melody, single fingered Boogie Woogie backups, and a two-fingered EZ-Zone if you want to try improvising to it.

Quick story: A few years ago, I was hired to do some Fiddle Jam Clinics in the Lawrence, Kansas area.   I taught this tune to an elementary string class at a school there.  A year or two later, when I was honored to be selected to speak at the American String Teachers Association’s (ASTA) National Conference, they selected the teacher from that Kansas school to introduce me (a nice touch).  He told the audience about me coming to his school and teaching The Fiddle Jam Blues to his students in the beginning of the school year, and then added… it took him until December to regain control of his class!!!  Ha!  Evidently, the kids liked the tune so much that they wouldn’t STOP playing it!! ;~))

Navigate to the the full access version of this lesson here: The Fiddle Jam Blues complete lesson.

2) FIDDLE JAM NEWS: I’ve been holed-up on my Outlaw Fiddle shop developing a new kind of pickup that I think has the potential to be a game-changer in the electric violin world.  I’ve done many hundreds of experiments now, and have a working prototype that is sounding very good… open and alive, and not so stuffy like all the piezo elements out there, and can plug directly into any existing guitar amp on the market without a preamp… and CRANK as loud as any electric guitar without feedback!  I hope to make a bigger announcement soon.  Stay tuned here.

3) Next on the FJi Horizon: NewBee Beginner section.  With recent YouTube views of one of my beginner videos climbing (80,000+!), I’m starting to re-think my stance that Fiddle Jam was designed, not for the absolute beginner, but only the “near-beginner” and up.  The numbers do not lie.  I’m seeing a lot of interest in more beginner lessons, and feel that I might have a unique, creative, and well-rounded approach to offer beginners, compared to the standard, rather stiff and left-brain/thinking-dominant methods that have been on the market for decades.  

My approach with my private beginning students always involved a “creative & music-first” approach that included playing backups, jamming, call and answer sessions, composing silly songs., etc… right along with the appropriate introduction of notation reading and technical skills as the student was ready.  

While I develop materials, I really need your input!  What would you like to see FJi NewBee lessons cover?  What are (or were) your biggest stumbling blocks?  Your input could alter everything and help countless others!  Don’t be shy.  Send me your comments below.

4) Affiliate partners wanted: Interested in getting paid to promote the Fiddle Jam Institute?  We now have an affiliate program that supplies you materials to promote FJi in your own ways (friends, Facebook, online, etc…), and tracks the folks you send to us, paying you a respectable percentage for as long as they are members with us!  Interested?  Contact me below.  

PS: The above sound like it might be too involved for you, but you still want to help promote the Fiddle Jamming cause?  As a special insider’s Fiddle Jam Club offer, I will be happy to give you a free month of AAP membership when you refer a friend who signs up!  Just give me a heads up on your friend’s name and I’ll figure it out from there.

5) Help wanted: Lesson library to store conversions.  I am finding my time to be spread pretty thin these days and could use some help from the right person.  I’m looking for someone to convert existing lessons into individually sold items in our school store.  You would be given full access to the complete FJi Library for your own educational benefit.  We can talk about further renumeration depending on the skills you bring to the project.

The optimum candidate will “get” what FJi is all about and need to be able to create pdf files from existing lesson materials, and have at least minor graphics skills to make them look nice.

Contact me if you, or someone you know, might be interested!

6) iFiddle Magazine: I supplied another lesson for my friend Mike Spears’ iFiddle Magazine this month.  This one is on EZ Fiddle Chording knowledge.  I have a re-post of the materials here.

Check out the newest lessons posts (they are always listed at the bottom of each page on the site!)

If you have any questions or comments, please feel very free to post them below.  I love to hear from you!

Talk soon!


PS: If the contact form (that is supposed to be below) does not appear in your browser, click here to send me a message instead.

Remember, if you ever want off of this list, just let me know!  I’m not looking to spam anyone with unwanted inbox intrusions.  I’ll most likely be sending this out a couple times a month as we head into this new phase… maybe just a little more when there’s something new going on.  Till next time!


FJI Newsletter, Early March 2016

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