94 episodes

Welcome violin geeks everywhere (or viola, fiddle, cello, guitar, trumpet...)! With all the detail and troubleshooting of a private lesson, violinist and violist, recording artist, author, and string teacher Laurel Thomsen shares daily discoveries, insightful interviews with top performers and music industry leaders, and tips for practicing, polishing, and becoming the best musician you can be. Episodes are accessible to beginners, yet contain the depth appreciated by the advancing student or seasoned performer alike. Happy Practicing! Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/violingeek/support

The Violin Geek Podcast Laurel Thomsen

    • Music
    • 5.0 • 20 Ratings

Welcome violin geeks everywhere (or viola, fiddle, cello, guitar, trumpet...)! With all the detail and troubleshooting of a private lesson, violinist and violist, recording artist, author, and string teacher Laurel Thomsen shares daily discoveries, insightful interviews with top performers and music industry leaders, and tips for practicing, polishing, and becoming the best musician you can be. Episodes are accessible to beginners, yet contain the depth appreciated by the advancing student or seasoned performer alike. Happy Practicing! Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/violingeek/support

    Female Composers in the Spotlight - an interview with Dr. Cora Cooper

    Female Composers in the Spotlight - an interview with Dr. Cora Cooper

    In this episode of the Violin Geek Podcast, Laurel Thomsen chats with Dr. Cora Cooper, professor of violin, viola, chamber music, and string pedogogy at Kansas State University, and the editor of "Violin Music By Women" and "Viola Music By Women," graded anthologies of almost entirely unknown, but wonderfully inventive and enjoyable pieces by women composers. We discuss Dr. Cooper's inspiration for the project and she shares some delightful stories about her search for material and the process of compiling the volumes. We gain tips for presenting and integrating new music into the teaching studio, and insight into her approach towards helping students identify technical challenges and practice more effectively when there's less time.

    Links:

    Violin Music By Women website and blog, including sound files for the volumes: https://www.violinmusicbywomen.com

    Purchase the anthologies plus much more at Sleepy Puppy Press: https://www.sleepypuppypress.com

    Tips for integrating the first book of the violin anthology into a Suzuki method approach: https://www.violinmusicbywomen.com/blog/guest-blog-by-claire-allen-integrating-repertoire-from-violin-music-by-women-with-suzuki-books-1-2-part-1-of-3

    Mary Cohen's "Violin Technique in Practice" book: https://www.fabermusic.com/news/mastering-violin-technique-with-mary-cohen05062020-1

    ~

    For more about host Laurel Thomsen, including her performance, teaching, and recordings, please visit https://www.laurelthomsen.com

    To check out Laurel's companion labor-of-love, the Violin Geek Blog, visit: https://www.laurelthomsen.com/violin-geek-blog

    If you have a violin, viola, fiddle, music biz, or practice related question or topic you’d like to have covered on the Violin Geek podcast or in the blog, have someone you'd like Laurel to interview, or have a story or insight to share, please send Laurel an email at laurel@laurelthomsen.com. You're also welcome to post your success story, comments, or suggestions to https://www.facebook.com/laurelthomsenmusic. Also, please reach out via email if you’d like to inquire about violin, viola, or fiddle coaching or lessons with Laurel via Skype, FaceTime, or Zoom. 

    Happy Practicing!


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    Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/violingeek/support

    • 1 hr 20 min
    "Counting Down the Hours" - finding freedom and joy with Classical violinist and fiddler Maura Shawn Scanlin

    "Counting Down the Hours" - finding freedom and joy with Classical violinist and fiddler Maura Shawn Scanlin

    In this episode we hear from Maura Shawn Scanlin, a Boston, MA based Classical violinist and fiddler who is bridging musical worlds with incredible poise and grace. Her new album, "Counting Down the Hours," with her duo "Rakish" is a joyful exploration of Celtic, Classical, and Americana sounds. We learn more about its inception and inspiration, and enjoy a couple choice tracks from the album. We also discuss Maura's approach to performing and arranging in different genres of music, how the practice discipline of her Classical training has also helped her learn fiddle tunes, and she shares tips for how we can learn to fiddle with more stylistic accuracy. Enjoy!

    Learn more about Maura Shawn Scanlin https://www.maurashawnscanlin.com

    Listen to, download, or purchase a copy of "Counting Down the Hours" https://rakishmusic.bandcamp.com/album/counting-down-the-hours

    Learn more about Maura's Duo "Rakish" https://www.rakishmusic.com

    Learn more about Maura's String Quartet "Rasa" https://rasastringquartet.com

    Other people and resources mentioned during the episode:

    Other musicians featured on "Counting Down the Hours": Conor Hearn (Guitars, Bouzouki, Vocals), Seamus Egan (Tenor Banjo, Mandolin, Percussion), Dan Klingsberg (Bass).

    Website for exploring Irish fiddle tunes: https://thesession.org/

    Gavinies Etudes https://imslp.org/wiki/24_Matin%C3%A9es_(Gavini%C3%A8s,_Pierre)

    Martin Hayes http://www.martinhayes.com

    Liz Carroll https://www.lizcarroll.com

    ~

    For more information and info about her performances, recordings, and teaching, please visit host Laurel Thomsen's website https://www.laurelthomsen.com

    To check out Laurel's Violin Geek Blog, a companion to the podcast, sharing tips, insight and inspiration since 2007, please visit https://www.laurelthomsen.com/violin-geek-blog

    If you have a violin, viola, fiddle, music biz, or practice related question or topic you’d like to have covered on the Violin Geek podcast or in the blog, have someone you'd like Laurel to interview, or have a story or insight to share, please send Laurel an email at laurel@laurelthomsen.com. Also, please reach out if you’d like to inquire about violin, viola, or fiddle coaching or lessons with Laurel via Skype, FaceTime, or Zoom. You're also welcome to post your success story, comments, or suggestions to https://www.facebook.com/laurelthomsenmusic.

    Happy Practicing!


    ---

    Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/violingeek/support

    • 57 min
    Learn to Love Your Metronome

    Learn to Love Your Metronome

    If the metronome inspires fear, dread, or frustration in you, if you're not sure how to even use it, or if you find practicing with it is getting a bit stale, this episode is for you! Join string player and educator Laurel Thomsen as she explores the goals of metronome practice, explains the steps we need to take as we build up our metronome practice, and shares tips for becoming more confident and creative in your practice with it. 

    Show Notes:

    Metronome mentioned - Matrix (my MR-700 is no longer available, but this MR-800 seems quite similar): https://amzn.to/3sTODNw

    Apps mentioned - Warchal Metronome: https://www.warchal.com/metronome.html Time Guru: https://avibortnick.com/time-guru/ Dr Betotte: http://www.ssworkssoftware.com/drbetottetc/drbetottetc.html

    Listen to and/or download "Sure Fire Way of Taking" https://officialramblingdanfrechette.bandcamp.com/album/new-disguise-2015

    Laurel's Violin Geek Blog https://www.laurelthomsen.com/violin-geek-blog/

    Visit Laurel's website to learn more about her performances, recordings, online courses, and private teaching https://www.laurelthomsen.com

    Listen to and/or download Laurel's new album "After The Fire" https://distrokid.com/hyperfollow/danfrechetteandlaurelthomsen/after-the-fire

    Order physical signed copies or exclusive downloads of the new album "After the Fire" https://www.danandlaurel.ca/Shop/



    Please email Laurel at laurel@laurelthomsen.com if you have a violin, viola, fiddle, music biz, theory, technique, or practice related question you'd like answered on a podcast or in her Violin Geek blog, have a topic you'd like her to cover or someone you'd like her to interview, or have a story or insight to share. Also, get in touch if you’d like to inquire about violin, viola, or fiddle lessons with Laurel via Skype, FaceTime, or Zoom. You're also welcome to post your success story, comments, or suggestions to www.facebook.com/laurelthomsenmusic.

    Happy Practicing!




    ---

    Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/violingeek/support

    • 1 hr 3 min
    Stories About Songs - "Money Shouldn't Talk That Strong"

    Stories About Songs - "Money Shouldn't Talk That Strong"

    In this episode we are celebrating today's release of Laurel Thomsen's fifth album with her partner, Canadian singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Dan Frechette, and travel behind the scenes into the making of one of the songs Laurel wrote for the album, "Money Shouldn't Talk That Strong." We learn about the song's origin and lyrics, the duo's recording process, particularly Dan's approach to layering guitar, bass, and drums, and Laurel's approach to composing and recording violin, viola, and cello, as well as the making of the song's music video which is also being released today. We listen to the song, as well as samples of rough tracks the duo made along the way. Enjoy!

    Listen to and/or download the album "After The Fire" https://distrokid.com/hyperfollow/danfrechetteandlaurelthomsen/after-the-fire

    Watch the "Money Shouldn't Talk That Strong" music video https://youtu.be/Im_ZjbZ0zPc

    Order physical signed copies or exclusive downloads of the album "After the Fire" https://www.danandlaurel.ca/Shop/

    For more about Dan Frechette, including his 100+ albums of original songwriting, please visit https://www.danfrechette.com

    Visit Laurel Thomsen's website, with info about her performances, recordings, and teaching can be found at https://www.laurelthomsen.com

    Please send Laurel an email at laurel@laurelthomsen.com if you have a violin, viola, fiddle, music biz, or practice related  question you’d like answered in her Violin Geek blog or on a podcast,  have a topic you'd like her to cover or someone you'd like her to  interview, or have a story or insight to share. Also, get in touch if   you’d like to inquire about violin, viola, or fiddle coaching or  lessons with Laurel via Skype, FaceTime, or Zoom. You're also welcome to  post  your success story, comments, or suggestions to www.facebook.com/laurelthomsenmusic.

    Happy Practicing!


    ---

    Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/violingeek/support

    • 50 min
    Stories About Songs - "Make Me Come Alive"

    Stories About Songs - "Make Me Come Alive"

    In this episode of the Violin Geek Podcast we get a behind the scenes glimpse into the making of Laurel Thomsen's new single being released today, "Make Me Come Alive," in collaboration with her partner, Canadian singer-songwriter Dan Frechette. We learn about the song's origin, the duo's recording process, the making of the music video which is also being released today, as well as the harrowing story behind their new album, due for release on January 21, 2022. We listen to the song, as well as samples of rough tracks the duo made along the way. Enjoy!

    Listen to and download "Make Me Come Alive" https://distrokid.com/hyperfollow/danfrechetteandlaurelthomsen/make-me-come-alive

    Watch the "Make Me Come Alive" music video https://youtu.be/jNue8FBwT3s

    Order signed physical copies or exclusive downloads of the new album "After the Fire" https://www.danandlaurel.ca/Shop/

    For more about Dan Frechette, including his 100+ albums of original songwriting, please visit https://www.danfrechette.com

    Visit Laurel Thomsen's website, with info about her performances, recordings, and teaching can be found at https://www.laurelthomsen.com

    Please send Laurel an email at laurel@laurelthomsen.com if you have a violin, viola, fiddle, music biz, or practice related  question you’d like answered in her Violin Geek blog or on a podcast,  have a topic you'd like her to cover or someone you'd like her to  interview, or have a story or insight to share. Also, get in touch if   you’d like to inquire about violin, viola, or fiddle coaching or  lessons with Laurel via Skype, FaceTime, or Zoom. You're also welcome to  post  your success story, comments, or suggestions to www.facebook.com/laurelthomsenmusic.

    Happy Practicing!






    ---

    Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/violingeek/support

    • 34 min
    "A Grand Journey" - bridging musical worlds with violinist Alexandr Kislitsyn

    "A Grand Journey" - bridging musical worlds with violinist Alexandr Kislitsyn

    In this episode we hear from Alexandr Kislitsyn, international violin soloist, chamber musician, educator, producer, and the newest member of the acclaimed Trio Casals. We learn about the trio's recent release, "A Grand Journey," featuring four debut works "inspired by traditional melodies and cultural flavors" for piano trio and solo piano, and enjoy a couple choice tracks from the album. We also discuss Alexandr's approach to practice, his attitude toward staying focused and inspired, and we learn about some of his upcoming projects and the way in which he's fusing his Classical background with modern sounds and interests. Enjoy!

    Learn more about Alexandr https://www.alexandrkislitsyn.com/

    Follow Alexandr on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/alexandr.kislitsyn

    Buy or stream "A Grand Journey" from Trio Casals https://www.navonarecords.com/catalog/nv6367/

    Learn more about Trio Casals https://www.parmarecordings.com/triocasals/

    Stream Alexandr's most recent electronic music single "2Light9:" https://band.link/tn5SN

    ~

    Learn more about and pre-order Laurel Thomsen's upcoming fifth duo album "After the Fire:" https://www.danandlaurel.ca

    Visit Laurel Thomsen's website, with info about her performances, recordings, and teaching can be found at www.laurelthomsen.com

    Please send Laurel an email at laurel@laurelthomsen.com if you have a violin, viola, fiddle, music biz, or practice related question you’d like answered in her Violin Geek blog or on a podcast, have a topic you'd like her to cover or someone you'd like her to interview, or have a story or insight to share. Also, get in touch if  you’d like to inquire about violin, viola, or fiddle coaching or lessons with Laurel via Skype, FaceTime, or Zoom. You're also welcome to post  your success story, comments, or suggestions to www.facebook.com/laurelthomsenmusic.

    Happy Practicing!






    ---

    Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/violingeek/support

    • 1 hr 10 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
20 Ratings

20 Ratings

Waitlossgyrl ,

Welcome Back!

I was so sad when you seemed to take a break from the podcast. I made it a routine to search for new episodes several times a year. I’m so glad to see new uploads! Thank you!

Violinguy88 ,

Wonderful yet intimidating

I'm listening to lots of classical music podcasts in preparation for my own podcast launch, and I have to say, Laurel's effort here is outstanding. Good sound quality, great information, clearly presented, and without the stick-up-the-@#! monotone of the NPR casts. Everything I strive for as I get ready to do this myself If this is representative of private violin/classical music podcasts (non-NPR or radio), then I've got my work cut out for me.

Chuck G Violin

rubberfaerie ,

So Grateful!!! Thanks Laurel!!

This is such an incredible treat! So helpful. I have a private instructor and also chew on this to utilize both. My only suggestion is for the podcasts are for the interviews / conversations with another. I would love to be able to hear the other individuals complete thoughts, their personal views and rabbit trails even. I totally understand that Listening in itself is an art form but in those type of situations its really important to talk less and allow the guest the platform. Still love em but would love them more! <3 Thank you again SO MUCH for taking your precious time and energy to do these Laurel!!!!

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