One of the most often asked banjo tips I get asked is “Do I have to rest fingers of my picking hand on the head of the banjo?”
You've practiced for a week, and now it's time to add your left hand!
We are asked regularly, is Bluegrass style finger picking more difficult than Clawhammer? Is Clawhammer more difficult than finger picking? Is plectrum/tenor style with a flat pick easier than Bluegrass style finger picking?
Ever notice how many “experts” there are on “learning to play banjo”, or anything, for that matter? While I urge all of us to explore their recommendations (and certainly I have shared some with all of you), it is the idea of “this is the best/only” way to learn that concerns me most. Since folks are like “snowflakes”…no one is alike (even twins; I know, I am the mother of identical twins), then how can there be only “one” best way to learn? Today, let’s explore the concept of “use what works for you.” It is this freedom of choice that makes learning banjo, or anything, a joy!
I recently wrote an article about strengthening your fretting hand’s pinky and ring finger. A common question that I have heard over the years is; “what good are exercises when I want to play songs?”
Admired and feared, improvising has sometimes been shrouded by mystery and misunderstanding. New banjo students are often baffled by top players who pick beautiful streams of notes but never the same way twice on a given song.
These days we all have limited time to do the things we like. We always have to make the most out of our time. If you are reading this, one of the things you like to do is to play the banjo, with one of your goals to always be a better player.