Ryan Joseph, a fiddler in Alan Jackson’s band, visited Southview last week. On hand to absorb his words of wisdom and hear his world class fiddling were Southview Orchestra’s string section and the Timberstone 6th Grade Orchestra.
Mr. Joseph, who began his career in Nashville as an elevator operator at the Country Music Hall of Fame, spoke to the students about believing that anything is possible if they follow their dreams…and practice. From those humble beginnings, Mr. Joseph has since played with the likes of Carrie Underwood, Jimmy Buffett, and Taylor Swift. He spoke passionately about treating music like language, teaching the young musicians not to simply play the notes but to feel their way through the rhythms and add their own inflections. Before the day was over, advice about life and verbal musical instruction gave way to an impromptu fiddling lesson. About a dozen lucky violinist from the Southview Orchestra joined Mr. Joseph on stage. In a matter of minutes he seemed to transform how the students played slides and with vibrato.
Thank you, Mrs. Fitzpatrick, for organizing this in-school field trip. It was the only day you were second fiddle in our book.