.. new mando player

Well, since many folks have told me, and several online recommendations purport, if I want to learn to play fiddle, it’ll be easier to first learn to play mandolin (since tuning is the same, but mando’s have frets). SO … I bought a mandolin (F-style, Johnson M-95, I think … looks and sounds sweet!). I’ve already got a couple tunes down on it, and am working on chord forms and chop-chords to be able to sit in with jams. Any beginner advice? (BTW, have been playin’ guitar for 20+ years and also play a bit of banjo).

I’ve set the fiddle aside for the time being and now focusing on mandolin.

Be kind. I’m old. LOL

Thanks for the response. … so far, Old Joe Clark and most of Cripple Creek. Plus workin on following along with several ‘standards’ (mainly chop chords and some turnaround/transitions between chord changes), etc.

Like you said … its slow goin. I have figured how to transpose chords from guitar to mandolin … its challenging doin’ it on the fly, tho LOL. (take chord form from top 4 strings on guitar (when holding it) and reverse them … viola!) :slight_smile:



During the forty years I spent on guitar (acoustic) I’m ashamed to say that I didn’t learn much after college. I believe that had to do with having my own family, and not having the kind of daily feedback that I had in my college days in the seventies, from all my friends who played. I COULD have progressed further and faster if I had sought out the feedback, but raising a family and working took its toll on that.

When I started the mandolin in 2006 (now that the kids are grown and married), I got involved in a monthly jam that I have attended faithfully since then. In addition, I found the TablEdit freebie program that uses .tef files and Tabs. I had learned Standard Notation as a child, and could tell you the notes to this day (as long as they aren’t up and off, or under and off the scale), but Tabs have really sped up my learning process on the mandolin. I’ve progressed 10 times faster on the mandolin in just the three years I’ve been playing, than in comparison to the first 15 years on the guitar.

Admittedly, practicing every day, and seeking accoutibility from other mando players has been a big help, but so has having material to learn from. Mike Marshall’s DVD and others have also been a great source and challenge. Thank God for YouTube as well, and Satelite radio…every chance I get, I’m playing along with someone, somewhere, on some song!!!

-Plectrum Squeezer

Well (he admits with a blush) ALMOST every day, yes. From time to time something interferes with my practice time (life is like that, of course), but I “attempt” to get in 30 minutes a day. Many times I’m able to extend it to an hour, too.

-Plectrum Squeezer

My wife has told me that one of the reasons she married me 31+ years ago, is BECAUSE I play…and when I took up the mandolin, she didn’t bat an eye.

I get up at 4 every day, but then again, I’m in bed by 8 PM each night.

-Plectrum Squeezer