Andrew Bird – “Using the Violin as a Songwriting Tool”

Andrew Bird shows us how the violin, although different from a guitar or keyboard, can be an effective songwriting instrument.


Instructor: Andrew Bird is an American multi-instrumentalist, singer, and songwriter. Since 1996, he has released 16 studio albums, as well as several live albums and EPs, spanning various genres including swing music, indie rock, and folk music. He is primarily known for his unique style of violin playing, accompanied by loop and effect pedals, whistling, and voice. Andrew has performed at Newport Folk Festival many times.

Subject: Students will get a glimpse into Andrew’s musical genius to learn how the violin, when paired with looping pedals, can be used as a songwriting tool. The video is broken into 2 sections: “How to Use Looping Pedals” and “Using Loops in a Band Setting”.

Age/Skill-Level Recommendation: Intended for medium-advanced level students with a solid understanding of how to play the violin, ages 18 and up.

Topics Discussed: Songwriting, violin, looping, pedals, music theory.

Recommended Use: We recommend this video be used for medium to advanced level violin players to encourage them to explore the capabilities of the violin, from both songwriting and audio technology perspectives.

Request Additional Resources

9 + 4 =

Suggested Sessions

14+, Newport Folk, Session, Workshops
"The Nashville Number System"
14+, Newport Folk, Quick Tutorial
"Alternate Tunings"
14+, Newport Folk, Quick Tutorial
"Travis Picking"