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Guest blog by FiddlerMan, Pierre Holstien.
Meet our latest SJ friend and join us for the FiddlerMan Jamboree, Feb 21st, 2015, on
The whole fiddle-SJ-gang will put on a fun day of string music in support of their community at

The FiddlerMan Bio

Pierre Holstein

Pierre Holstein

I’m, Pierre Holstein, otherwise known as FiddlerMan. I grew up and studied in South Florida. Don’t want to bore you with my education 🙂 Played professionally for over 30 years in the US and Europe. Began working as a violinist in South Florida for 5 years including South Florida Symphony Orchestra and Miami City Ballet before moving to Sweden with my wonderful Swedish wife.

In Sweden I was a concert master in Gävle Symfoniorkester and had two great children, Michael 1988 and Emilie 1990. Four years later I became one of the Section Leaders in Malmö Symfoniorkester and stayed for 16 years before giving it all up to move back to sunny Florida with our family. Since professional orchestras in South Florida don’t provide acceptable income, benefits, and security, I felt the desire to do something slightly different.

Fiddlerman.comNot knowing where it would take me I founded with the intention of providing violinists, both new and experienced, a great place to learn, improve, get motivated, and just hangout. In addition to all it’s many resources, interested members participate in community virtual group video projects which they work on, record, submit for me to mix and post on YouTube.

The popularity of led to the start of in January 2012 which I am running with the help of my son. My knowledge of string instruments makes it easier to choose, test, adjust and suggest great affordable instruments for our customers. We also sell Basses, Cellos, Violas, Guitars, Ukuleles and Mandolins plus accessories. I believe that if we can’t satisfy a customer we haven’t done our job.

I strongly encourage our members to perform on streetjelly for it’s unlimited benefits of performance and motivation.

Thanks for this site.

More Fiddlers are Coming – Part 2

More Fiddlers are Coming – Part 2, by Barry Nelson

Continuing guest blog introducing the new fiddle players on StreetJelly.
See Part 1 – The Fiddlers are Coming!



Hi, I’m Bill Gunn, a.k.a. BillyG on StreetJelly and MadBill on the forum. I’ve always enjoyed music, of any style, and have played guitar for over 40 years. On occasion I have messed around with piano and low-whistle, and some five years back I got hold of an old fiddle. Unfortunately, it was extremely sensitive to temperature and humidity, and the tuning drifted so much it was almost unplayable, and after about 4 months of fighting with it, I gave up. But in March 2014 I decided to return to the fiddle, got myself an electric violin, and followed that up in July with a new acoustic in the form of a FiddlerMan Concert Violin.

Musical tastes? Well anything from the 60’s is good for me, from pop/rock to easy listening. Classical, I enjoy listening to, but rarely attempt to play.
Favourite performers? Neil Young, Neil Diamond, James Taylor, Suzanne Vega, Kate Bush – oh far too many to mention. Groups? Stones, Nirvana, RHCP, Led Zepp – again too many to name. Violin? David Garrett, Lindsey Stirling.

With my friends and colleagues on the FM site, I’m beginning to get a serious liking for specific “fiddle” music such as Irish, Scottish, Bluegrass and so on – but still have a long way to go!

My journey with this instrument has really just started, but I’m loving every second of it. I’ve always enjoyed playing guitar for my own pleasure and other folks’ general amusement – so let’s see how it goes with the fiddle!

See you on SJ!




SJ name: fishnrodds
Hi, I’m Paul. I’ve been fiddling for about 5 years, grew up listening to dad and grandpa play old time music, some Scandinavian, mostly USA stuff. It’s been a great experience so far. Other than family, my bigger influences have been guys by the name of Tommy Jarrell, Chubby Wise, Johnny Butten and the awesome people I get to play with at our local jams that keep me challenged. I will update this more on down the road. Thanks for listening! I play mostly two old fiddles, one is a no name that came off of eBay for 20 dollars. It almost went in the woodstove, but I decided to give it a new life. the other is an old stainer that my wife and daughter gave to me for Christmas last year. It’s my forever fiddle. Both were trainwrecks when I got them, I spend a lot of time monkeying and repairing old fiddles.


SJ name: Juan Violin
Hi I’m Juan, I’m 28 and come from Uruguay, South America. I’ve been playing for almost 3 years. I like music in general, my favorite is Irish music then I go with classical and some tangos. This is a style I’m just starting to get into.
Juan Violin




SJ name: fiddlinsteudel
I grew up playing the violin at the age of 4. Did the usual Suzuki method thing, and quit once when I got into middle school. I decided to take up guitar and played classical and jazz guitar for many years. After probably 12 years of not playing the violin, I decided to try it again. But this time, I decided to check out Bluegrass music. After that I didn’t look back. I’ve been playing bluegrass music for probably 12 years now. I play in two different bluegrass bands and frequent as many local jams as possible.





My name is Naska. I was born and still live here in Kazan, Russian Federation, Tatarstan republic.  =)  Yep, try to find that place on the map LOL! (editor’s note: we found it!)  I was born on 12/11/1982 so I’m almost 30 years old.  =)  I was actually a present to my mama on her birthday (she was also born on the 11th of December.  =))  OMG! I was not the best present in her life LOL!

I bought my acoustic violin at the end of summer in 2008. But can’t say that I really learned to play it. My parents refused to listen to my off notes and horrrrrible bowing XD….Unfortunately, no mutes to be found in our stores =/ … Then I got an e-violin in February of 2010, and with this violin I developed lots of bad habits and no useful skills for playing it.  =(  When I met my teacher, she told me that we not only have to start from 0 but from backwards, LOL. She says that I’ve been playing since April of 2011, and who am I to argue?  =)   See more at my FiddlerMan interview.




I’ve always wanted to play something, piano, guitar, what ever. About 10 years ago after I arrived in Alaska, I decided I would love to learn to play the fiddle. After all, it’s so portable. You can play it around the camp fire, on a mountaintop or in the woods. It’s light enough to pack out on a backpacking trip over tundra and small enough it doesn’t take up much room in a small cabin.


The Fiddlers are Coming!

The Fiddlers are Coming, by Barry Nelson

Special guest blog introducing the new fiddle players on StreetJelly.

Barry Nelson

Barry Nelson

I’m sure you folks have seen them on StreetJelly. Those bow sawin’ fiddlers! Who are these guys and what’s up with those fiddles? Well, a little about the Violin first. The violin & fiddle are exactly the same instrument. Even classical violinists refer to their violins as their fiddles. But there are fiddle styles: old time, Irish, Bluegrass, Cajun, Western Swing…the list goes on and on.

The Violin has four strings (from low to high) GDAE, the Viola (the bigger one) is tuned a fifth lower and its strings from low to high are CGDA. We have no frets, so intonation is something we keep a close ear on.

So enough about the fiddle itself, there’s lots of great info on the internet and forums to help learn nearly any style. So lets meet a few of these StreetJelly fiddlers.

Barry Nelson: I picked up the violin 6 years ago and recently found the Viola a better fit. I play a mix of styles from Irish, Rock, Old Time, etc. If I like it, I play it. I also play guitar and piano, and I record my own backing tracks to jam with.


Toni Gomez

Toni Gomez

I am Toni, 49 year old violinist. I have always loved pianos and organs. A few years back, I thought I would learn to play the piano. I did not have a piano or know how to read music. So the violin came to mind. I thought about violin as my sister had one growing up. She had lessons through the school system for a few years. I was overlooked for playing instruments as I was painfully shy. Anyway, I started up on my own learning with YouTube videos tutorials and online sites. I also took about 12 lessons my first year. Since then I have learned from my violin community and my violin friends in real life. I am at 2½ years and I am as passionate about it as ever. I have broadened my horizons and I am learning fiddle and Bluegrass …I can’t believe how that good ole sound feels to play. I am obsessed with playing and continuing to learn all I can and be a great violinist/fiddler.


My name is Robin Swan, a.k.a. Feathers. I’m self taught on the fiddle, and that journey didn’t begin until I was almost 34 yrs old. I’ve been playing it for 18 years now, and still learning. I mostly play by ear, but can also read music. My ability to read music came from playing piano starting at age 4, followed by many years of lessons. And during my adventure, there’s been many great violinists and fiddlers who have inspired me along the way.

Robin Swan - Feathers

Robin Swan – Feathers


Stone Dog


Hi, StoneDog here. I am 62 years on the planet and rocking on. I live in Pittsburgh, PA, USA. The sound of this instrument sends bolts of pleasure though my spirit. I’m a guitar player. I like putting musical tracks together. I also play with vids a bit. I have a few things out there. I can put the rhythms, base, drums, and other various percussion to my tracks. But what has always been missing and something one cannot just import into the tracks I work with is the VIDDLE. When working with my music I have always had the need to hear some violin/fiddle within the track. SOooo I figured I better learn how to play one.




Pierre Holstein

Pierre Holstein

Pierre Holstein was raised in South Florida. Concert master of youth orchestras and a concert master at Eastern Music Festival in NC at 17 years of age. Studied with Thomas Tzaggaris and Tom Moore. Majored in music performance at the University of Miami. Took some lessons with Dorothy DeLay at Congress of Strings and world famous soloist, Ida Haendel in Miami. Played with the South Florida Symphony Orchestra and the Miami City Ballet before moving to Sweden in 1988. Associate concert master of the Gavleborg Symphony Orchestra for 4 years, then moved to the south of Sweden and became one of the principles in the Malmo Symphony Orchestra for 16 years. Recently moved to Fort Lauderdale with plans on staying in Florida. Pierre manages his website:



Diane - KindaScratchy

Diane – KindaScratchy

Diane, a.k.a. KindaScratchy. I’ve always loved violin and fiddle music, and have played a number of other instruments over the years, but a seemingly unrelated sequence of events led to my taking up the violin.

A number of years back I had occasion to travel to Shepherdstown, West Virginia, a few times for work. I discovered a place called O’Hurley’s General Store, which has a Thursday night jam session for local musicians who play guitars, fiddles, banjos, hammer dulcimers, harp, tin whistles, sometimes a bodhrán or Celtic drum. They play Appalachian folk music, Celtic music and the like. The seed of an idea was planted, albeit unintentionally. A few months later, my husband gave me my violin for Valentine’s Day. Read the full story and interview on



Dennis Boring. I started playing (learning) violin about Feb 2012, although I owned a violin for all of 50 years. Yep, our family had an old one that was broken and never got used. I figured I might want to play it a little after a David Garrett concert in Reno got me inspired. I fixed it, stayed with it, and now have four beautiful violins to play. I don’t play by sheet music and instead devote many hours to “picking out” the notes from a tune I hear. My oldest violin is about 130yrs, another around the 100yr mark, and the electric/acoustic is around 12yrs. Finally, the newest is one I made myself and play as much as the rest. I’m the only one in my family that plays an instrument. I learned music some 30yrs ago on piano. I still live in the same house I started first grade in. All my kids have grown and left the nest, and that leaves me plenty of time to practice! I’m single, a self employed mechanical engineer, and can play at all hours of the day or night!

Dennis’ violins, left to right: 130yr old Roberts, 100+yr old German Production, Chinese Aco/Ele, Handmade 2014.Dennis Boring - Fiddles