#1
I hope to apply to study Music at University in the next few years and thought it would be good to learn a second instrument to guitar.
A choice that seems to have pros and cons is the violin. Whilst its very popular, i think it may be slightly easier for me to pick up than other instruments as i have developed finger strength and dexterity from years of guitar.

Is there anyone who plays both and has any advice even vaguely helpful towards violin? much appreciated
#2
Learn piano. Pretty much all music students have to learn it, so you might as well get a leg up on it.
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#3
Violin is the same tuning as an electric bass, or the top (or bottom? I never know which...) strings on a guitar - EADG. It'll be really easy to pick up.
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#4
Maybe you should learn piano also.

But the main thing with violin is to do some bitchin' covers of awesome songs.
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#5
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Violin is the same tuning as an electric bass, or the top (or bottom? I never know which...) strings on a guitar - EADG. It'll be really easy to pick up.

Except it's the other way around. GDAE.
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#6
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Learn piano. Pretty much all music students have to learn it, so you might as well get a leg up on it.


This, I'm just starting as a music student and not knowing piano is making it a bit difficult.
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#7
I think it'll be a little harder since there aren't any frets. Never played so I can't help too much. I think Violas sound cooler imo.
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#8
Yeah thanks i was thinking... i KNOW the piano and can play it to a grade 1-2 standard i will keep at that definitely but thats for basic musical theory and i wanted another practical instrument on top of those
#9
Cello, sounds nicer and has a similar distance between notes when compared to a guitar.

but, piano is a better shot.
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#10
Violin is much harder to pick up than the guitar, especially as you get older. It is not at all like the guitar. It is more beneficial to become more proficient on keyboard not only to facilitate learning music theory but also in music production.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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Last edited by Xiaoxi at Jul 18, 2011,
#11
Piano 100%. Everything you know on how a guitar works musically applies to piano as well. The scales, sequences, progressions, choices of notes, all translate direction to a piano.

As far as violin, it's a VERY different instrument to play when compared to guitar. Your hand/wrist positioning is totally different and held in such a way that what you're used to doing on a guitar would be reversed, the tuning is different, you're using a bow instead of a pick, which GREATLY changes how you play it.

If you WANT to learn violin, then that's a great reason to learn it. If you're looking for something 'just because,' and have no real vested interest in becoming good at it or loving to play it, go with piano simply because what you know will translate more easily to it.

I personally love both piano and violin, though.
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#12
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Yeah thanks i was thinking... i KNOW the piano and can play it to a grade 1-2 standard i will keep at that definitely but thats for basic musical theory and i wanted another practical instrument on top of those

In music school, you're going to be focusing on your main instrument and piano. (Unless piano is your main instrument of course.) Focus on those two. Everything else is much less important from an academic standpoint. Go ahead and learn something else if you want, but don't expect it to do a lot for you from a school standpoint. Practice guitar and piano first and foremost.
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#13
Isn't violin like the guitar of the orchestral world? So many people play it that it is hard to stand out from the crowd?
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#15
Hang on, this wasnt about should i learn piano or violin... this was about whether violin would be manageable to pick up fairly quickly to an experienced guitarist... can we please take it back to that?
#16
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Hang on, this wasnt about should i learn piano or violin... this was about whether violin would be manageable to pick up fairly quickly to an experienced guitarist... can we please take it back to that?

No, it's not. I don't know where you've got this impression that they are similar, because they aren't. And I'm telling you that with both experiences.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#17
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Hang on, this wasnt about should i learn piano or violin... this was about whether violin would be manageable to pick up fairly quickly to an experienced guitarist... can we please take it back to that?

Unless you get a good teacher, no. And I've been a college music student and Xiaoxi goes to Berklee. We're trying to give you some actually good advice instead of telling you if what you're thinking is possible.
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#18
I actually did the opposite - I've played violin for around 14 years now and guitar for 7. I will say that, first off, the violin is a much, much harder instrument to learn than the guitar. I wouldn't recommend learning it without a teacher, and I would also say that learning to read music and not just play by ear is essential. Something to bear in mind is the steep learning curve; you sound absolutely terrible when you first start, but progress more quickly once you have the basics (first position and bow strokes) down. You have to stick through the initial terrible sounding technique to be rewarded.

I also study music at university, and it's amazing what an advantage you are at if you learn the violin, as so much of the study of music is diverted towards strings (the most versatile and emotional section in an orchestra). While I struggled in some areas, being able to mark bow strokes and understand the possibilities of a violin in terms of special effects, double stopping etc. put me ahead of my peers in the area of string writing and analysis.

Other than that, it's a beautiful instrument when played competently, with a rich back catologue of repotoire in all oevres of music, not just Western Classical, but Indian, Irish and Eastern European Folk, and Samba/Jazz musics.

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#19
It seems to me that violin requires a good deal more devotion to get even a small payoff compared to keyboards or guitar.
#20
Yeah sorry, no you guys have been pretty helpful, its just a few people that just come in and say the exact same thing others have. No, i would give a limb to go to Berklee. so yeah thanks and I think im gonna sit down with my theory teacher and prioritise what i need to do to optimise my chances of getting into a good academic establishment, on an aspirational level Cambridge. But yeah I am definitely going to continue to learn piano and take exams for guitar, as im sure any university would like me to have grade 8 in my main instrument
#21
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Except it's the other way around. GDAE.


this, so in other words, tuning is nowhere near like a guitar.

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No, it's not. I don't know where you've got this impression that they are similar, because they aren't. And I'm telling you that with both experiences.


this. they are completely different.
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