Feel the Boogie
John Annen | Md, USA | 06/12/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
Anger is amazing, but I was blow away by Driessen and cellist Eggleston.
I saw Driessen in concert and bought the DVD to try to understand what he was doing on stage. His stage performance was overwhelming. Too much going on at once. Driessen plays the bass and the tonal chord (major, minor, 7th...), rhythm and melody all on the same fiddle. All at the same time. It doesn't make sense, but these three guys make it look easy.
Eggleston calls it "a band in a box," and he can boogie like no cellist I ever saw. WOW! I had to try this on my cello. Well it isn't easy, but it is fun.
Their "Sweet Georgia Brown" and "Mercy, Mercy" are fantastic. Anger breaks each part down and explains what they are doing, how they do it and why. I am impressed. I set my DVD player to loop (repeat chapter) on a tune while I play along.
I use a mandolin to copy the bass, chord work and melody. The bowed rhythm is a little like deadening the mandolin strings while strumming. Then I try to play it all on the fiddle or cello. It isn't pretty. I sounds bad, but it sure is fun. And it's getting better everyday.
The video inserts are perfect. Homespun has produced a video that allows the viewer to see all the important close-ups at the same time. Very nice.
The student needs to read sheet music.
Even though the techniques are explained, there is too much going on to understand it without the sheet music. Actually the sheet music isn't necessary for the bass, chords or melody, but it is necessary to understand how the rhythm sounds fit between them.
The sheet music has a few minor errors and it only transcribes the basic concepts in each lesson (chapter).
I bought this DVD for a week ago, and I can't put it down."
Brian D. Tuttle | NY, United States | 10/23/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a great video for any (bowed) string player who would like to learn the "chop" technique to generate percussive rhythm. My best violin family instrument is double bass, but i found this technique less effective on the bass than on the fiddle and cello.
The musicians are great - if you are a string player and you don't know Darol Anger by now, then you probably need to loosen up a little. The other two are newer, though I have seen Rushad Eggleston perform in his "Wild Band of Snee" and heard him on the "Fiddlers 4" recording.
I disagree with the review that says one "needs" to be able to read music to get something out of this. I do read music (I have a masters degree in music performance), but I didn't bother to look at the booklet while watching it. Instead I just watched what they did and listened, and then started to "whack and unwhack" on my cello to see what happened. I liked the results, though it will take some practice to master. They break it down enough that you can at least get the gist if not copy exactly without reading ability (though I encourage you to learn to read if you can't.)
The show is informative, entertaining, chock full of great music, and inspirational. I highly recommend it to string players who wish to improve their ability to accomapany others or play in a non-classical ensemble where they might not always be the lead instrument. Very Fun!!!!!!!"