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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Looking for some advice

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Banjo52 - Posted - 01/19/2020:  22:17:19

I have a friend who plays the piano and she (age 92) wants me to join her playing the 5 string banjo.
We will start slow because I have only been playing for my own enjoyment (when things are going good). We did try but unfortunately I got lost right after the first few seconds because I am not sure how to get moving after the intro of one or two strums on the banjo (picking back-up is what we would like to do eventually). I am basically just above the beginners playing. Since my stroke I forgot so much so I am trying to get back into playing. Any advice would be helpful. Thank-you

Texasbanjo - Posted - 01/20/2020:  04:54:48

I'd start off with just strumming to the beat until you get used to picking along with the piano. After you can do that, then try doing vamps (pinches) on the off beats. When you can do that, then I'd try doing a simple forward roll for a couple of bars, then back to vamps. When that becomes familiar, then you can try walking up or down to a new chord or sliding into a root note. '

I guess what I'm saying is: use the KISS principle (keep it simple son) until you get familiar with what you're doing.

Banjo52 - Posted - 01/20/2020:  20:02:16

Thank-you Texas, I can't seem to get when she changes the cords so very frustrating. Never play with anyone so I find it hard to keep up. I will try to do some of the things you have suggested.

johnedallas - Posted - 01/21/2020:  07:48:39

Might be a good idea to just listen to her playing the piano for a while. You can get to know how she "ticks" - what her tempo and rhythm are like, and what pieces she plays. When you're not trying to play along, you can perhaps listen out for the chord changes, and then when you do join in, you'll be more familiar with the harmonies of the pieces you've been listening to.

Hope this helps,

Banjo52 - Posted - 01/23/2020:  12:00:06

Thanks John. We thought of trying out something simple like You are my Sunshine or This Land Is Your Land because I know these songs. I will see her and take some time just watching and learning as you suggest.

johnedallas - Posted - 01/23/2020:  12:14:46

Hi, Gary,
Yes, songs you already know well are the best to start off with!

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