Fiddle, bluegrass, levels 2/3

Instructor(s): Jack Tuttle

Jack will teach a general approach to constructing bluegrass solos. He’ll show how to quickly locate the melody of a standard song on the fiddle and then reinterpret it in a classic bluegrass fiddle style. He will show when and how to inject standard licks into the solos as well as teach back-up methods for playing behind singers and other instruments. He will show bowing patterns that are common in bluegrass and show how to use bowings to add more rhythm to pieces. Also included will be bowing and left hand exercises, double-stops and other technical issues. Although he will teach by ear, written music will also be supplied.

Jack Tuttle
Jack Tuttle


Because this is an intermediate class, students should understand standard fiddle/violin technique of arm/ bow movement and left-hand fingering. Students should be able to play several fiddle tunes at a moderate and steady pace and have some ability to play simple melodies by ear. Familiarity with classic bluegrass songs is highly recommended. Jack’s suggested listening for those needing help in this area would be recordings of Bill Monroe, Flatt & Scruggs, the Stanley Brothers and Jimmy Martin and /or newer bands that cover this older material.

Bring: Students should bring a recording device to this class.

About Jack Tuttle

Jack Tuttle grew up in a musical family in rural Illinois and has been playing music since age five. He has performed professionally in the US, UK, Canada and Japan and has been a member of numerous bands, most notably with his own kids in The Tuttles with AJ Lee. Jack began teaching full time at Gryphon Stringed Instruments in 1979 and has built a complete lesson program on banjo, mandolin, fiddle and guitar. He has taught more than a thousand students over forty years, many of whom have become top players in the nation. He’s written twelve instructional books, and developed and taught special seminars in History of Bluegrass, Critical Listening to Bluegrass and Music Theory for Bluegrass. Jack has taught at many camps in the US, UK and Canada.

We can’t think of a single more experienced Bluegrass music teacher than Jack. His students are consistently pleased with his classes and learn a lot; we’re so happy to have him on staff again for this camp.