Lorrie Gunn - children's lessons & play-along videos expert

Nursery Rhymes on your Violin

How mastering a minor 3rd can help you play most easy songs

In this video, Lorrie teaches violin beginners how to master a minor 3rd by having fun with a couple of famous nursery rhymes.

Released on October 7, 2020

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DISCLAIMER: The views and the opinions expressed in this video are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Virtual Sheet Music and its employees.

Video Transcription

Hello, fellow violin lovers. I'm here today to show you a really neat thing. What I want to show you is that if you know two finger patterns, you will be able to play lots of songs. Songs that you know, songs that are old, sort of chant, nursery rhyme songs. Let me show you the two finger patterns first. Now the very first finger pattern is a minor third, and this is a really cool interval, some people call it a universal interval. They say that it's an interval that even young children all around the world can hear this interval, especially when it's in the descending from the top down. Let me show you it, it will sound like this.

It's sort of like when you call, "Olly olly oxen free," that's when we would call it, when the game was over and we had to come in from playing hide and seek, that's what we would call, and it's that interval of a minor third. So let me show it to you on the violin. It's going to be a third finger down on the E string and a first finger down on the E string. Let's try playing that together, okay? So we'll play a three and a one.

That's right. Let's do it one more time. Three and one. Now the other interval that you want to know in order to play all these great songs is a perfect fourth. And this is a really nice sounding interval. We're going to play it here on the first finger on the E string, one, and then the fourth finger, just like that. Again, it's like this, one, four. The nice thing about the interval of the fourth on the violin is that it frames the hand. So we really are feeling where the first finger and the fourth finger will be. So now that you're good at both those intervals, we can play all kinds of songs. So let's play together, "Rain, rain go away, come again another day." Okay, so to do this, we're going to start on the third finger and we're going to play three, lift the three and play one.

Put the three down. Three, three, one. Play the three, three, three, one, four, lift the four, three, three, one. Very good. The next song you can play is the little song I used to sing at night when I would see a star, the "Star light, star bright, first star I see tonight." So let's try that tune. So to get it you're going to play first finger and third finger on the E, so we play star light, first finger, and then three, three, one, and then three, three, one, four, three, three, one.

So those two songs are based on the interval of a third and the interval of a fourth. So I hope you enjoy to continue playing them. If you want, there is a free sheet music download for the music in this video from VirtualSheetMusic.com.
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