Posted by Bob Cunningham on September 03, 19102 at 10:11:29:
In Reply to: Learning the banjo posted by Regina Donald on September 02, 19102 at 16:24:38:
Bought my first banjo on 8/28/78 for $135 as a birthday present for myself. I almost immediately cut the tip of my right index finger completely off! Don't try this at home folks! Then I got busy with family and my career. The banjo collected lots of dust.
Bought my second banjo, a Gibson Earl Scruggs Standard from Elderly instrument in Lansing Michigan about 18 months ago. Signed up for Steve Kaufman's banjo camp in Maryville, Tennessee. That was fun, but how much can you learn in 4 days? Although I would go again in the future. Great instructors that year! Murphy Henry, Janet Davis, Gary Davis, and Jens Kruger !!!
Came home to the bluegrass capitol of the world! Detroit! (I hope you know I am kidding! Although if you look hard enough.....you can find it!) Called Bill Keith to buy some of those fancy banjo tuners, as if I will be good enough to actually use them anytime in the foreseeable future! When I mentioned that I was having some difficulty finding an instructor in South Eastern Michigan he fixed me up with a wonderful,patient guy named Vince Sadovsky (Banjo News Letter cover July 1984). I have been testing his patience for the last year! He hasn't said so, however I know I am his slowest, although most determined student he has! I keep paying my bill and he keeps letting me come back!
I enjoy the Murphy Henry tapes. Wish she would put them on DVD! I also have tapes from other sources, wish they would put them on DVD also! There is no substitute for a good instructor though! Although when you read "Masters Of The 5-String Banjo" by Tony Trischka and Pete Wernick. An expensive but worthwhile book ($50) you will notice that most of the best took very few lessons if any!
NashCamp is coming up in a few weeks (www.nashcamp.tripod.com). The instructors are Sonny Osborne, Bill Evans, and Tony Trischka. I will also be there to challenge these guys patience and skills as instructors!
If you really like the banjo, Do yourself a big favor and go see Earl Scruggs play on October 24th. at the Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank, New Jersey. ( www.countbasietheatre.org )
You wouldn't be able to tell it by the skill level I demonstrate on my banjos, However none of the four (4) that I own now collect dust! As soon as I decide between Geoff Stelling and Ome I will have a fifth! unless someone out there has $10.000 to give me! Then I'll get them both !
I hope I didn't bore anyone. I usually reserve that for my instructor! : )
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