BOOKS by Julie Lyonn Lieberman

Expand your skills by entering the world of multi-style musicianship. To quote from the introduction to The Contemporary Violinist, "

The future is at our doorstep and my vision is of the contemporary violinist. One who knows fiddle styles (Irish, bluegrass, old time, Scandinavian, Cajun, country, et al.); can improvise in any style; greets odd meter such as 5/8 or 11/8 with expertise; can play rhythm violin; wails on the blues with lightning and thunder, and is equally at home with the classics.

It’s a new identity that embraces diversity. As our world gets smaller, perhaps we can be among the leaders and exemplify an inclusive and respectful approach to our neighbors. 

PLEASE NOTE: Rockin' Out with Blues Fiddle and Improvising Violin are about to go out of print. They will become available as VIDEO-BOOKS on this website in the coming months.


… Improvisation

       … Multi-Style Profficiency

             … Playing Healthy

About

How to Play Contemporary Strings
Book, video tutorials & backing tracks!

Find out what’s missing in your musical toolbox and bring your playing up to date. Modernize your capabilities to reflect the music and work opportunities of the 21st century. Classical pedagogy and contemporary skills are not mutually exclusive. The information and practice techniques presented in this book have been designed to enhance listening, playing, and ensemble expertise while serving to add dimension to traditional methods and repertoire. Creative musicianship, technology for strings, multi-style-ready contemporary techniques, as well as fluency with diverse musical structures from around the world are essential updates, whether you’re teaching school orchestra or are an amateur or professional player. Discover your own voice on your own instrument!

“As always, Julie Lyonn Lieberman takes concepts that appear difficult and makes them accessible and understandable to the novice player or teacher. Her research and knowledge about American Roots music is stunning – this book is a must have for anyone who wants to include contemporary string concepts in their classroom or studio.”

Dr. Stephen Benham, Associate Dean & Associate Professor of Music Education, Duquesne University; (former) President, American String Teachers Association

“Today I received an unexpected surprise in my Berklee mail from publisher Hal Leonard: Julie Lyonn Lieberman’s latest book! In the early 90’s, Julie’s books You Are Your Instrument and Improvising Violin opened many conceptual and perceptual doors for me. It’s great to see how her latest opus (How to Play Contemporary Strings: A Step-by-Step Approach for Violin, Viola & Cello) presents a direct and user-friendly approach for musicians looking to explore creative musicianship, technology, and stylistically versatile technique. …Congratulations, Julie!”

 –Dr. David Wallace, Chair, Berklee College of Music String Department

“I have studied with Julie for many years as an aspiring jazz violinist. Her approach to stringed instruments is unique and profound. Drawing on biology, kinesiology, neuroscience, as a well as a vast reservoir of experience and knowledge of world music, her teaching methods are beyond excellent. Every string teacher and student will benefit from her 21st century approach to mastering bowed string instruments.”

Douglas E. Noll, JD, MA, author, peacemaker, speaker, professor


About

A Festival of Violin & Fiddle Styles

For Violin, Viola & Cello (3 separate books, same content)

If you’re looking for an inexpensive, yet comprehensive practice system designed to super-boost your skills and repertoire, then A Festival of Violin & Fiddle Styles will provide you with a golden pass into the musical imagination of the world.

The book includes practice techniques, 30 tunes with backing tracks and tune demos, video tutorials and juicy tidbits of wisdom from some of the top players in the world, including Darol Anger, Bruce Molsky, Mark Wood, Rachel Barton Pine, Tanya Kalmanovitch, Abby Newton, Aly Bain, Andrea Beaton, Beth Bahia Cohen, Chris Haigh, Dave Reiner, Calvin Vollrath, Joe Deninzon, Jason Anick, Jeremy Cohen, Katie Glassman, Andrea Hoag, Melinda Crawford, Don Roy, Paul Anastasio, Roby Lakatos, Tom Morley, Vicki Richards, Sam Bardfeld, and Yale Strom.

Styles include Old-Time, Bluegrass, Cajun, Franco-American, Western Swing, Blues, Swing, Pop/Rock, Irish, Scottish, Shetland Islands, Cape Breton, Hungarian, Ukrainian, Klezmer, Roma, Calentano, Galician, Afro-Cuban, Tango, Swedish, Bollywood, Québécois, and Métis.

Julie Lyonn Lieberman has been opening doors and windows for string players to fly through since the time that few knew those openings even existed. Her generosity and ability to organize large amounts of information is remarkable, and we string players of the world are the beneficiaries. —Darol Anger, multi-genre fiddler, composer and performer

As a string player and contractor in NY for over two decades, I can testify that there is a growing demand for string players who can improvise, are familiar with many popular styles, and can play both acoustic and electric. Julie’s book is an extremely valuable tool for players who want to expand their musical skill set as well as their career opportunities! — Joe Deninzon, Rock and Jazz Violinist

Julie is one of the stars of the multi-genre string pedagogy world. Her new book is a brilliant all-in-one primer that answers all the questions you have and many you didn’t even know about. It’s sure to whet your appetite for more exploration into the amazing versatility of your bowed string instrument. Brava! —Rachel Barton Pine, concert violinist, recording artist

Julie Lyonn Lieberman has been teaching, performing and making fiddle music accessible and beautiful for decades. This new book is a high point of her work, and a great entree into a variety of styles that fiddlers will find enlightening. —Bruce Molsky, old-time fiddler, banjo player, guitarist, and singer

JULY GRAHAM
Designer

Julie Lyonn Lieberman has put together a wonderfully comprehensive overview of American and world styles. She has been on the forefront of our string industry for almost forty years! She is a respected musician and author of many powerful books on this topic and continues to lead us into the wonderful exploration of the multiple opportunities for music on a bowed instrument. Rock on, Julie! You are a treasure to our world! —Mark Wood, Emmy award-winning composer and innovator, electric strings

Playing multiple styles helps sensitize you to the alluring nuances of specific styles—from bowing patterns and accents to ornaments and variations, from repertoire and great historical performances to unwritten rules and expectations. Sure, it can be a challenge, but it’s a fun and worthwhile challenge, and A Festival of Violin & Fiddle Styles provides a lexicon of techniques and tunes. —Dave Reiner, Founder, Fiddle Hell Massachusetts Festival

MICHAEL S.
It Consultant

About

The Contemporary Violinist [book & CD]

The Contemporary Violinist will teach you how to play in sixteen styles! With the support of a practice CD, you will be guided through exercises and tunes designed to help you develop a feel for playing Latin, Flamenco, Gypsy, Tango, Klezmer, Cajun, Blues, Rock, Swing, Bebop, Country, Irish, Old-Time, Bluegrass, Franco-American, and Scandinavian.

Quotes from amazing fiddlers! The Contemporary Violinist also includes inspiring advice from Jean-Luc Ponty, Buddy Spicher, Mary Ann Harbar, Matt Glaser, James Kelly, Martin Hayes, Bruce Molsky, Jay Ungar, Mark Wood, Betsy Hill, Joe Kennedy, Jr., John Hartford, Randy Sabien, Claude Williams, Richard Greene, Stacy Phillips, Darol Anger, Michael Doucet, Leif Alpsjö, Yale Strom, Alicia Svigals, Willie Royal, Donna Hebert, Natalie MacMaster, and Papa John Creach! Features a preface by Turtle Island String Quartet.

Julie Lyonn Lieberman designed this book as a support system for classically-trained violinists and single-style fiddlers. Each of the sixteen styles offered in the book is supported on CD (she plays the tune and then the band carries on for another chorus or two). Each style chapter provides you with the appropriate left- and right-hand ornaments, warm-ups, an overview of the style (historic and context), as well as a quote from a key player of that genre. The front section of the book covers numerous topics, as does the resource section at the back. This book can keep you busy, informed, and entertained for a long time.

Each style provides step-by-step practice techniques, a unit on the history of each style, and a tune in the style that can be used as a lesson plan. The book gradually steps up in levels of difficulty and is self-explanatory.

A comprehensive teaching tool, The Contemporary Violinist includes a glossary of chords in all twelve keys, step-by-step details regarding how to capture stylistic elements, cool tips on technique, instrument maintenance, jam sessions, practice tracks, a glossary of double-stops, 13 paradiddles, a ground-breaking new section on rhythmic and pitch permutations, and a full section on pedagogy for improvisation in all styles. There’s even a fun section called “Fiddle Horror Stories” supplied by fiddlers from around the world, a Playing Healthy section, and quotes from a myriad of key players in the field.

… players are guided through dozens of exercises and tunes and how each can be used as a vehicle for improvisation.

– Chamber Music America

The book guides players through dozens of exercises designed to help develop the feel of each of sixteen styles.

– School Band and Orchestra

… a musical delight right from the start, opening up new musical horizons…a landmark edition…highly recommended.

– Jazz Educators Journal

… a veritable who’s who of fiddle players…a kaleidoscope of string styles.

– American String Teacher Journal

About

You Are Your Instrument

Now in its 7th printing, this unique guide is designed to help musicians open up new avenues of expression through a pain-free, healthy, fluid approach to music-making; overcome performance anxiety, general tension, and muscular injury; and increase learning skills while facilitating more effective motor coordination.

This is a highly recommended book to read for the musician who needs information about maximizing their full potential as an artist. It is practical in that it covers all aspects of musicianship, ranging from the mental preparation involved in performance to the actual physical preventative and healing care needed for repetitive stress injuries. Reviewers have stated, “Her six-level approach to memorization…is worth the price of the book.

This is a concise, intelligently written book of ambitious scope, which seeks to address the needs to the growing number of musicians who find themselves struggling with physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual injuries and limitations.

– STRINGS Magazine

Julie Lyonn Lieberman has put together a handsome, clear guide with a variety of tips and suggestions…. The book is a large format, well designed and cleverly illustrated…. This is a useful resource guide for today’s performing musicians, and a beneficial tool for teachers to utilize in assisting students to develop healthy habits.

– American Music Teacher

Julie Lyonn Lieberman has created a knowledgeable, well written and comprehensive guide to music practice and performance without being dogmatic, pedantic, or redundant — not an easy feat.

– Aileen Crow, Bookshelf

… a novel, helpful manual of interest to any musician.

– The Small Press Book Review

… a must for every musician’s library. I am excited about learning to play in a fluid, pain-free way. The insights from your book are sure to be very helpful in the weeks (and years!) to come. Already I can feel a difference every time I sit down with the instrument.

– Bill Ochs, Pennywhistler’s Press

Full of useful information for musicians of all genres, this book is laid out in an intelligent and attractive format that supports both browsing and in-depth study. The production quality is particularly impressive given that the book is self-published…. Her six-level approach to memorization is a great improvement over the haphazard methods most musicians use. (One musician told me it was ‘was worth the price of the whole book.’)

– Liz Stell, The Berkshire Eagle

Lieberman presents a wealth of information to help performers, teachers, and students arrive at a set-up which takes into account their body type, corrects any harmful physical habits, and results in a relaxed, natural solution. This is accomplished by determining the optimum playing position for each individual within the four planes: vertical (shoulder/jaw/head), horizontal, angle (scroll height), and tilt. Equipment is then chosen to support that optimum position and fill in any gaps. Lieberman gives wonderful tips for doing “detective work” to determine where tension exists, what is causing it, then choosing exercises and, in some cases, different equipment to balance the playing position, support good posture, and eliminate tension. Great emphasis is placed on having a dynamic, not static, set-up that can be tweaked to adjust for minor changes (weight gain/loss, different clothing, etc.) and establishing a natural relationship between the hands, arms, shoulders, head, and the instrument. All the basic types of shoulder rests, chin rests, and additional accessories which can customize the fit are discussed, as well as how to utilize their particular features to adjust for specific anatomical situations. No single solution is advocated. The viewer is encouraged to investigate all possibilities in order to arrive at the best solution for their own or their students’ needs, and then to remain constantly alert to any changes that would necessitate an adjustment of the set-up to maintain pain-free, relaxed, agile performance.

– American String Teachers Journal

[You Are Your Instrument] has much to recommend it as it provides much valuable information.

– Paul Mansur, The Horn Call

This is a highly recommended book to read for the musician who needs information about maximizing one’s full potential as an artist. This book is practical in that it covers all aspects of musicianship, ranging from the mental preparations involved in performance to the actual bodily care needed to prevent long-term injuries.

– Teresa Ancaya, Book Review

… an important addition to the growing field of Performance Medicine. The exercises and practice suggestions are carefully thought out and a great asset to musical injury prevention. 

– Dr. Richard Norris, M.D.

… solidly researched, very well organized, clearly written and illustrated, and if not encyclopedic at least impressively broad in scope.

– Ted Rust, Music for the Love of It

… good common sense approaches to physical well-being, and some helpful hints for approaching the stress that haunts all performers at one time or another. Useful reading.

– The Opera Journal

… both a practice and performance guide and a key to playing in a fluid, pain-free manner.

– The Bookwatch

… a reference compendium for minimizing physical pain caused by playing techniques…she’s covered the waterfront.

– JazzTimes

You Are Your Instrument is an exceptional title which shows musicians how to approach and understand their minds, their bodies, how to seek specific medical help when needed, the art of warming up, combating nervousness, carrying equipment, surviving the road, the importance of correct muscle balance, self exercise systems…and healing remedies.

– The Coast Book Review Service

Twelve-Key Practice

Twelve-Key Practice is designed for ALL levels, styles and instruments.  Julie Lyonn Lieberman provides comprehensive step-by-step practice techniques sequenced to harness the many facets of the musical brain. Her comprehensive system also offers hundreds of riffs, rhythms, and scales in American and world styles.

Imagine if you could HEAR a musical phrase, VISUALIZE its layout on your instrument by “seeing” and “feeling” the fingerings and/or embouchure in your mind’s eye, KNOW the names of the notes as well as the degrees of the key and FEEL the dynamics you want to include. All simultaneously, in a millisecond, and without moving a muscle… and in any key!

The Creative Band & Orchestra

The Creative Band & Orchestra provides conductors, directors and educators with over one hundred ideas, techniques, exercises and musical examples. Through this book, you will be able to: enliven ensemble interaction; introduce five approaches to improvisation; heighten listening skills; stimulate new brainstyles; develop innovative scores; incorporate rotational seating; implement motivational ideas; present playing healthy techniques; and more!

"If you're a music educator struggling to maintain your students' interest, this book is right up your alley. Presenting alternatives to the mainstream approaches to teaching music, Lieberman gives us a host of techniques, games and approaches that will horrify your stuffy music theory teacher. But get this: kids might actually enjoy them!" — Jazz Times

Lieberman offers diverse ideas and unconventional approaches for inspiring students to listen, improvise, and compose. — Music Educators Journal

… the text challenges the traditional role musicians play within an ensemble and offers new insights. — School Band and Orchestra 2003

… presents a new model to musical ensembles of all sizes and instrumentation for playing within an ensemble, practicing, and performing. — Jazz Educators Journal

One of my Masters candidates has taken Lieberman's ideas and used them in one of her "less than satisfying" schools and she told me that retention rates have improved and attendance and attention in the rehearsal domain has changed for the better. So, this may not be for the traditionalist but if you are one, maybe you should read this book! Ralph Hultgren, Head of Pre-Tertiary Studies
Queensland Conservatorium of Music, Griffith University

This text could spice up any sagging music program with tips on how to enliven ensemble interaction and introduce improvisation. — STRINGS Magazine

… offers strategies, techniques and games designed to encourage students to develop the ability to improvise.

— Allegro

Planet Musician

The First and Only World Music Sourcebook

Despite the fact that playing music is one of the most liberating activities known, many musicians are confined by their classical or traditional training. Planet Musician stokes the musical imagination and will help you break through your boundaries.
This exciting new Book/CD pack by Julie Lyonn Lieberman features practice material from around the globe that will enable you to expand your musical horizons and catapult your playing to new heights.

With more than 150 world scales and modes, mental and technical exercises, and its fresh approach, this innovative publication offers exciting ways for players to enrich their own musical style by integrating ideas, techniques and sounds from other musical traditions. Chapters include Earth's Sonic Playground, Common Ground, Scales and modes of the World, A World of Rhythm, The Global Voice, and Health Music Making. Words of wisdom from renowned musicians such as Bobby McFerrin, Pete Seeger, Glen Velez, Odetta, Michel Montanaro, Steve Gorn, Billy Taylor, Layne Redmond and others are included, as well as a preface in which world fusionist Paul Winter discusses his musical journey of discovery. Planet Musician also contains a complete glossary of world instruments and styles, and a guide to world music on the internet.

The 74-minute practice CD features electrifying vocalist Carol Maillard (Sweet Honey in the Rock), percussionist Tigger Benford, and keyboardist Dan Kleiman presenting dozens of challenging exercises designed to build technique, enhance listening skills and develop rhythmic mastery.

The musician's practice guide and key to styles from around the world.

Planet Musician: The World Music Sourcebook for Musicians

…provides a number of clearly described practice techniques. Her practice suggestions are accompanied by a compact disc. — Bill Crow, Allegro, Local 802

…a one-of-a-kind publication world-music sourcebook. The amount of material in this book is amazing. — Jazz Educators Journal

…striking out into new territory once again, Lieberman has always been a step ahead of the curve. — Fiddler Magazine

…ideal jumping off point for further musical explorations. Lieberman enables us to develop our own approach to understanding unfamiliar styles. — STRINGS Magazine

Yes! Lieberman’s new book contains a wealth of information and inspiration. It is an exciting new addition to the library. — Connections!

additional resources

12 Rock Strings Lesson Plans

These ready-made lesson plans will enable you to contemporize your teaching curriculum. Includes backing tracks and students handouts with teaching points, exercises, as well as listening and analysis—ALL for $16.95.

Lesson One. Where did the rock style of music come from? Left-hand techniques: slides, vibraslides, and rock trills … Lesson Two. Three skills every rock string player needs to develop … Finding the Tonal Center…The Pentatonic Scale … Lesson Three. Riffs in Rock … Lesson Four. Rhythmic Phrases and the use of syncopation … Lesson Five. Learning by ear … Lesson Six. Playing in a Band … Variations on a melody … Taking a Solo … Lesson Seven. Preparing for Rock Band Rehearsal: SongMaps … Patterns: an important preparation for soloing … Lesson Eight. Harmonic Progressions: popular chords in rock … Lesson Nine. Introductions and Endings … Lesson Ten. Permutations … Lesson Eleven. Amplification … Lesson Twelve. Listening and Analysis …

This series can be coordinated with Julie's ELECTRIC SPICE video tutorials.

Electric Spice Extravaganza

Learn to play electric violin like a Rock Star with Julie Lyonn Lieberman! In her 12-lesson VIDEO series, you’ll learn everything from how to choose an electric instrument, to techniques, troubleshooting, and special effects.

This video series is suitable for all levels of players, and includes a handout with Julie’s top choices for pickups; several guest artist videos; and a seven-page Electric Strings Lingo PDF.

— How to choose an Electric Instrument — What Equipment Do I Need to Get Started? — What Kind of Bow Should I Use? — What kind of strings should I use? — Tone on an Electric — Amps, preamps, and mixers — The Looper x Special effects — Practice material — Left-hand techniques — Right-hand Techniques — How to Organize Your Gear — What is a Pedalboard? — Four-, Five—, Six-, or Seven Strings?

This series of video tutorials were created for [my]talent FORGE.