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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: First Performance (Yankee Jewdle went to a Senior Center Carrying a Banjo)


Please note this is an archived topic, so it is locked and unable to be replied to. You may, however, start a new topic and refer to this topic with a link: http://www.banjohangout.org/archive/331833

Aschmuckwithstrings - Posted - 06/19/2017:  20:25:16


I will be playing for some seniors who are close to me. I will also be singing. I am not great, but I hope to get better. I've been playing for about 2 months. What are some good, simple songs I can play for them, in your opinion? I like "Hard Times Come Again No More", but I'd like the opinion of somebody else. :) I have 10 days to prep. 

Aschmuckwithstrings - Posted - 06/19/2017:  20:26:40


Right! I only need one song. I almost forgot to mention. Clumsy me!

Mark Cox - Posted - 06/19/2017:  21:00:49


I can't tell you which song to play, but you might consider this. Do a medley of two or three songs strung together as one song. You might try to focus on songs that would be from the era of the people that you're playing for. Play  something that you believe that generation would be familiar with. Good luck!


Mark Cox - Posted - 06/19/2017:  21:12:46


Also, can I ask you what kind of music do you play? Do you like Clawhammer, Scruggs style? That might help us to help you find a song to play.


Aschmuckwithstrings - Posted - 06/19/2017:  22:48:28


quote:

Originally posted by Mark Cox

 

Also, can I ask you what kind of music do you play? Do you like Clawhammer, Scruggs style? That might help us to help you find a song to play.


 




I'm open minded. I enjoy Bluegrass, but also classical. 

nematode! - Posted - 06/19/2017:  23:24:10


quote:

Originally posted by Mark Cox

 

I can't tell you which song to play, but you might consider this. Do a medley of two or three songs strung together as one song. You might try to focus on songs that would be from the era of the people that you're playing for. Play  something that you believe that generation would be familiar with. Good luck!


 




I agree. The medley idea is a good one. I sometimes visit our 96 year old friend and she always asks me to bring my banjo. I can't sing all that well nor do I know many songs nor can I play banjo all that well either, but, to her I sound great. I play/sing stuff like, Red River Valley, Yankee Doodle Dandy, When the Saints Go Marching In, You Are My Sunshine or any novelty song from the first half of the last century. Fortunately, I won't be around to visit retirement communities in 40-50 years when, one would have to play/sing popular music that young people today like (rap, hip hop, etc., not that there's anything wrong with that type of music, though).

Helix - Posted - 06/20/2017:  03:35:37


Buffalo Gals

TN Ken - Posted - 06/20/2017:  06:32:24


Our group (banjo, 2 mandolins, fiddle and 2 guitars) plays at many Senior Citizen centers in our area and we play:



 In the Sweet By & By,  What a Friend we have in JESUS,  Life's Railway to Heaven,  Old Time Religion,  Unclouded Day,  GOD Saves Old Sinners, Victory in JESUS, I'll Fly Away,  Washed in the Blood,  I Saw the Light  and  Power in the Blood...some with singers, some just as instrumentals.



Also, sometimes, Rocky Top, Cripple Creek, Little Darlin Pal of Mine, as instrumentals.



 



Ken 

Rick McKeon - Posted - 06/20/2017:  10:34:14


Why only one song? Will you be just one act out of many? If so, do you know what the others are going to play so you don't duplicate songs?



I played several 1-hour rest home gigs each month for several years. What a wonderful way to serve! Here are a couple things to consider.



1. Even if their short-term memory is gone, they still remember the oldies from their youth (You Are My Sunshine, Home on the Range, etc.)



2. Invite them to sing along with you.



3. If you don't have a complete solo banjo arrangement worked out it is fine to just strum or do a little pattern pick behind your singing.



4. Some retirement centers don't want gospel music. It's best to ask first if it's OK. Strange as it seems, I used to play at a Jewish retirement center where they loved "The Old Rugged Cross"



5. Smile



Rick


Edited by - Rick McKeon on 06/20/2017 10:37:44

Aschmuckwithstrings - Posted - 06/20/2017:  16:48:40


quote:

Originally posted by TN Ken

 

Our group (banjo, 2 mandolins, fiddle and 2 guitars) plays at many Senior Citizen centers in our area and we play:




 In the Sweet By & By,  What a Friend we have in JESUS,  Life's Railway to Heaven,  Old Time Religion,  Unclouded Day,  GOD Saves Old Sinners, Victory in JESUS, I'll Fly Away,  Washed in the Blood,  I Saw the Light  and  Power in the Blood...some with singers, some just as instrumentals.




Also, sometimes, Rocky Top, Cripple Creek, Little Darlin Pal of Mine, as instrumentals.




 




Ken 







Very cute! Thank you for your suggestions. 

Aschmuckwithstrings - Posted - 06/20/2017:  16:49:32


quote:

Originally posted by Rick McKeon

 

Why only one song? Will you be just one act out of many? If so, do you know what the others are going to play so you don't duplicate songs?




I played several 1-hour rest home gigs each month for several years. What a wonderful way to serve! Here are a couple things to consider.




1. Even if their short-term memory is gone, they still remember the oldies from their youth (You Are My Sunshine, Home on the Range, etc.)




2. Invite them to sing along with you.




3. If you don't have a complete solo banjo arrangement worked out it is fine to just strum or do a little pattern pick behind your singing.




4. Some retirement centers don't want gospel music. It's best to ask first if it's OK. Strange as it seems, I used to play at a Jewish retirement center where they loved "The Old Rugged Cross"




5. Smile




Rick







Hey! You're that guy from youtube! Dude, I'm Bro with a Banjo.

Rick McKeon - Posted - 06/20/2017:  17:07:11


Hey Bro, Nice to meet you on the BHO forum!



Rick

Rawhide Creek - Posted - 06/20/2017:  18:56:55


quote:

Originally posted by Rick McKeon



 . . .


4. Some retirement centers don't want gospel music. It's best to ask first if it's OK. Strange as it seems, I used to play at a Jewish retirement center where they loved "The Old Rugged Cross"




 , , ,







This comment, added to Ken's song list, is a good reminder that venue and other aspects may need review when making musical choices. 



I was the music director for 6 churches over a 20+ year period (another of those chronic part-time gigs that helps feed the family).  I remember that, back in the late 70s/early 80s there was some controversy in the church music community about certain hymns/"gospel songs" (the distinction between these categories is a whole 'nother discussion).  



--Not discussing religion per se, but discussing religious music--



Short version:  Some directors/choir masters/organists had issues with pieces they considered "idolatrous", e.g. "The Old Rugged Cross" and "Holy Bible, Book Divine".  I'll leave the reason why as an exercise for the reader.

Aschmuckwithstrings - Posted - 06/21/2017:  13:23:48


quote:

Originally posted by Rawhide Creek

 
quote:


Originally posted by Rick McKeon



 . . .


4. Some retirement centers don't want gospel music. It's best to ask first if it's OK. Strange as it seems, I used to play at a Jewish retirement center where they loved "The Old Rugged Cross"




 , , ,








This comment, added to Ken's song list, is a good reminder that venue and other aspects may need review when making musical choices. 




I was the music director for 6 churches over a 20+ year period (another of those chronic part-time gigs that helps feed the family).  I remember that, back in the late 70s/early 80s there was some controversy in the church music community about certain hymns/"gospel songs" (the distinction between these categories is a whole 'nother discussion).  




--Not discussing religion per se, but discussing religious music--




Short version:  Some directors/choir masters/organists had issues with pieces they considered "idolatrous", e.g. "The Old Rugged Cross" and "Holy Bible, Book Divine".  I'll leave the reason why as an exercise for the reader.







There will always be religious people trying to one up each other. Some of us do it by being snobs about music. Some of us shoot that blasphemous pig who denies the prophecies of Oman. I don't perform religious songs in public, regardless of theme. I won't even perform "G-d Bless America." I apply the same rule to love songs. I don't do those. 

Aschmuckwithstrings - Posted - 06/21/2017:  13:26:07


The logic is simple: Senior Centers, where I perform, are always filled with both people happy with their lives and people filled with regret. Some of them went loveless or never had children or yadayadayadablablabla. Religious songs, outside a religious setting, seem to beg for a polarized room. 

John Gribble - Posted - 07/10/2017:  17:20:43


Songs which were popular when the audience was between fifteen and twenty-five years old usually go over well with a group of elders. So if you're playing for a group of  eighty-year-olds, songs which were poplular in the 1950s would be good. 

gicts - Posted - 07/27/2017:  10:27:33


I'm in Louisville too!



I was a paramedic for about 5 years and probably spent more time in nursing homes than I bet most patients did! In general, they're appreciative of any visitors, and seem to accommodate to any mood or aura that you set. I usually viewed and treated them like a great aunt/uncle. It's easy to gauge the vibe, I just wouldn't come out blaring like it was a kids party. I'd expect many would be very content getting lost in a melody and enjoying the companionship.



I'm picturing it's just an informal, small group verses a scheduled event in the lunch room or auditorium.


Edited by - gicts on 07/27/2017 10:29:26

ukenukem - Posted - 08/23/2017:  05:48:22


How about reworking Yankee Doodle starting with your post title? Loads of possibility there my friend!

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