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Good tone is a recipe with many ingredients, mostly involving the bow. We soon learn that weight is an important component, as well as bow speed and keeping the bow straight. However, good tone can still remain elusive. It's happened so many times in my teaching career - a new student reaches out, quick to list how diligent they’ve been about doing everything “right”: their bow hold is flexible, they play parallel to the bridge, the bow rarely drifts away from the same spot, and they’re striking a balance between bow weight and speed. They wonder, is it the instrument? The bow? The rosin? The strings? Or maybe some people just have a knack for making a violin sing, and others don’t? In frustration they might even be wondering if they “have what it takes.” Learning to play violin was supposed to be fun!

If this sounds familiar, listen in as I explain and demonstrate why our sounding point is a crucial factor for tone, and unfortunately one that many have never even heard about before!

Please email me at if you have a violin, viola, fiddle, music biz, or practice related question you’d like answered in the blog or on a podcast, have a story or insight to share, or if you’d like to inquire about violin, viola, or fiddle lessons with me, in-person or online via Skype, FaceTime, or Zoom.

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Laurel Thomsen

Violin, Viola, Vocals
Performance, Instruction, Recording

Based in Santa Cruz, California

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Photography by Michelle Magdalena
Skype: laurelthomsen

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