I've been working on a two-finger style for a some years now, but got more interested earlier this year, as I've never been satisfied with my sound, nor faithfulness to the better two finger musicians from the past. We had a few local sources who were highly developed, and not easily emulated. Pinches, reentrant licks, index lead, gap strokes, high positions, four string crossings and unique tunes are all giving me fits as I struggle to smooth it out and get it sounding musical. However, I feel like I'm turning a corner, and pledge to stay with it this time.
It is very rewarding. I primarily rap [clawhammer] banjo tunes, so its doubly difficult. I once was adequate with three fingers, but I developed focal dystonia, and it became a daily effort to keep any decent faculty maintained. I don't miss three finger picking, but I am enjoying progress with the two finger style that was a specialty in my area, giving it more charm and significance. I'm finding there's some things that can be done best with two fingers versus three. It might be analogous to the power associated with leaving notes out, versus adding notes in.
I look forward to surviving Winter with a fair amount of banjo and fiddle tunes, a hearty fireplace, and ample black coffee. Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas -
Monday, December 19, 2011 @11:26:05 AM
Hey Jim, I know whatever you end up doing on banjo will be great and good! Glad to see a new post by you, hope you and family are well! God bless and aloha, PH
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