Instruments I wish I could play - Part 1
My first mouth organ was a Hohner in the key of C major and I can remember that the box had a boy on the front in Alpine costume blowing a horn. The first tune I learned was 'I Love To Go A-Wandering' rapidly followed by 'The Skye Boat Song' and 'The Minstrel Boy.' I stuck with the mouth organ for a few years, eventually learning to play blues harp after falling in love with the music of Sonny Terry.
My second instrument was the guitar, which I picked up during the skiffle boom and which led me into rock 'n' roll, from where I progressed into folk music proper, picking up the tin whistle, mandolin and banjo along the way.
Why I'm telling you all this is that I suffer from instrument envy, because the instrument I would really like to play is the fiddle. I can't think of any other instrument so expressive, whether playing slow airs or fast reels, whether played fairly staccato or with slides and glissandi. The bow and the strings together - to my mind - make some of the most wonderful music there is.
Listen to Dezi Donnolly or Aly Bain, listen to Eliza Carthy, John McCusker or Frankie Gavin; they're all very different in style but all play with wonderful soul and passion. Unfortunately I have a damaged left wrist which means my left hand won't turn over properly. The only way I could hold a fiddle in the correct playing position would be if it was nailed to my head.