"The Fiddle Book" is a treasure trove of information spanning the whole range of fiddle playing, from the spike fiddles of Africa and Asia to the Chinese Erhu, the fabulous Indian Sarangi and the mysterious Norwegian Hardingfele. It looks in detail at the most commonly played styles among today's fiddlers. From America there's Old Time, Bluegrass, Cajun, Western Swing, Country, Blues, Rock, Klezmer and Jazz, while from the British Isles there's Irish, Scottish and English, as well as a quick romp through Eastern Europe. Along with solid facts on the origins of different fiddle styles and the different instruments, techniques and repertoires involved, comes fiddlers' gossip, scandal and blatant speculation. You'll meet the first fiddle player to set foot in America; discover how Mary Queen of Scots escaped from 500 fiddle players, and who really wrote the Orange Blossom Special. In the company of the ghost of Cecil Sharp, we'll find out where it all went wrong for English fiddle playing at the Battle of Waterloo, and we'll uncover the crimes against music perpetrated by the Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin. We'll meet fiddlers on horseback, on the gallows, and on acid. We'll name the best fiddle player in the world, and the worst. We'll even find out what happened when the Devil came back to Georgia. As if this wasn't enough there is a wealth of musical examples of ornaments, bowing patterns, scales, modes, exercises and complete tunes to give you a taste of each style, each one lovingly and faithfully reproduced on the accompanying CD. And finally, the book answers once and for all the hoary old question, 'What's the difference between a fiddle and a violin?'. The answer, of course, is that fiddle players have more fun.