My first professional fiddle job was in Cody, Wyoming and we played an hour a night for 120 nights in a row for the tourists headed to Yellowstone National Park.
When I started back then I used a Fishman violin pickup that slid into the space in the bridge of the violin (I do not recommend this). It sounded harsh and wasn’t the best option.
My Favorite Piezo Violin Bridge Pickup And Pre-Amp Combo
After a few months of research and asking every fiddle player I knew, this is the best violin or fiddle pickup I could find. People are constantly asking me what I use, because it truly sounds amazing, so here I’ve written a guide on fiddle and violin pickups, and how I chose mine.
What I, and most of my fiddle playing friends in the alternative country music scene use for on-stage, is an L.R. Baggs bridge pickup.
I also run my signal through an L.R. Baggs pre-amp to get the smoothest and most natural tone.
With those two elements, I’ve been able to successfully make my violin sound like a natural, clean, acoustic instrument when it used to sound harsh, thin, and fake.
However, you do need to take into account the violin you’re using. This makes a huge difference in your amplified sound. I am using a fairly new violin built in 2005 and has a deep, rich tone. It’s definitely not an antique, and in my opinion, sometimes the older violins can be harsher.
This fiddle pickup is road tested and after I had it installed on my violin, I’ve basically never touched it again. It always works, stays tight on the body of my fiddle, and always sounds great.
While researching for this post, I’ve also discovered that Sara Watkins, Mark O’Connor, and Lindsey Sterling all use the same setup.
Other Violin Pickup Options
If that setup isn’t what you’re looking for, you do have other options that might suit your situation better. I’ve jotted them down here for your reference.
The Band Violin Pickup – I’ve never used one of these styles and I’ve never known someone who has, but I believe they’re used more in the classical violin area. They may sound fine, but they definitely detract from the look of your violin.
Microphone Violin Pickup – This type of pickup is suited best for quiet environments for perhaps classical or bluegrass settings. I’ve seen a few people use these to get a very accurate sound from their instrument, but they do create issues with feedback in loud environments.
Let me know if I’ve missed anything here or if you have any questions about my setup. I’d love to chat!
So I recently decided to start recording and releasing all my practice sessions via YouTube and I thought I may as well make the audio files available for download in case anyone wants to use the fiddle and violin samples in their music.
So in this post, I will compile all of my fiddle and violin practice audio files for download. Please know that some little licks or melodies may be copyrighted by someone out there but for the most part, everything I play is original randomness from my brain.
Please be cautious in using other people’s melodies but feel free to use my original randomness in your music. All I ask is that you give me attribution and credit in whatever you create. For linking purposes please link to https://www.rossobrown.com
Thanks for reading this and signup below to download the files. I want to release proper audio samples in the future so by signing up, I’ll be able to notify you when I finally do.
P.S. If you’d like a specific audio file in its raw format without any effects please let me know and I’ll send it to you, just message me at firstname.lastname@example.org
P.P.S. If you’d like to collaborate on producing a sample library to sell online, please send me a message!