Fiddle master Bobby Hicks spent some time at the Berklee College of Music in Boston earlier this month, just prior to the Joe Val Festival. Berklee professor (and banjo instructor) Dave Hollender sent along a brief report on the master class Hicks convened for fiddlers at the school.
Bobby spent about three hours playing with and coaching Berklee students who attended the master class on 2/12. The main focus was on how to play fiddle on bluegrass songs – breaks, backup, etc. He emphasized the importance of playing in tune, knowing the melody really well, and the fact that it is the bow that really gives players their own voice.
He demonstrated some great twin fiddling with Mike Barnett, a student who studied with Bobby before enrolling at Berklee.
It was clear that Bobby had a great time and the session ended with he and a large group of students playing some fiddle tunes he had recorded years ago with Bill Monroe – with Bobby and everyone else grinning from ear-to-ear.