These horrible bricks of wood that were rental violins also had tapes on them for the "Suzuki" method, were just terrible; my fingers would "trip" over the tape, thus un-enhancing my playing. That pussy Suzuki shit with tape is beyond horrible. How in the hell are you going to understand that when your hand shifts from From 1st to 2nd position, all of the intervals change from – for a D Major Scale – open D string, whole-step, whole-step, half-step, whole-step (or open A string), whole-step, whole-step, half-step in 1st position to - for 2nd position - (3rd finger on the G string, whole-step, whole-step (or high-position on the “D” string), half-step, whole-step, whole-step, whole-step, half-step. These configurations change for every mode (Major or minor, Aeolian – being natural minor, Mixolydian; there are seven in all) and for every scale. String players routinely shift to whatever position suits their playing style; I tend to jump all over the place; 1st, 4th 6th, 2nd, 3rd, whatever. For Shostakovich's Big Symphony Number 5, we're in about 11th position I think for the famous viola solo. We, and be we, I mean all string players are subject to this, are at the mercy of physical laws and the higher up the fingerboard we go, the more important are ears become. Some of the intervals are micrometers apart. That's where our “hand-framing” exercises come in, and that's the last of any kind of facts you'll read in THIS post. I truly digressed!
If you learn the "Suzuki" method you're hand is frozen in one position using the tape system, and if you can't use hand-framing and play by ear, and LEARN your goddamned fingerboard like the God, the Pedagogue Ivan Galamian intended, burn that hunk of wood! You don't deserve to call yourself a non-fretted string player.
I tried drinking my way through rehearsals and that didn't work. I started ending up in first violin sections. You know what really, really sucks? Playing Mozart on the violin. Yes sir, there is Hell in a barrel right there. The only two things that Mozart ever wrote that were worth a shit were “Don Giovanni” and his “Great Mass in C minor”; the latter left unfinished at his death. I have NEVER liked any other piece by Mozart; no passion, and he was too fussy, but he made up for it in spades with Don Giovanni and his Mass. Playing Mozart on the viola is a big enough pain in the ass; all precision and no payoff; playing him on the violin is just sheer torture. A lesson in pointillism to me, with all the fussy pretentiousness of that day and time. Ick.