Posted by nashbanjo on Monday, April 16, 2012
After couple of months of lessons, I am loving this instrument and the way it makes me feel when I play it. It is pure joy.
My teacher, Ned Luberecki, is out this week, but he left me with a significant challenge when I show up in another week: Learning Train 45.
I am getting close to putting all the pieces together. But I am stumped at the ending. I can go through the notes at the end like I am supposed to do. But I can't make them connect to the first 3/4 of the song. I listen to it slowed down, sped up, but it isn't doing me any good to figure out where the notes fit in. Ned plays it so well. My notes at the end are slow and don't sound the same for some reason, even though I am playing the same notes.
I seem to have little breakthroughs on the banjo every day, especially when I'm learning a new song. I hope I can get the breakthrough soon. It is a great song and I want to play it over and over and over and over!
Thursday, April 19, 2012 @6:39:12 AM
Learning to play banjo or any other intsrument it is very important to listen carefully to other players. When I was learning Piano ( keyboad)
My teacher had me listen to classical music and describe what I heard. I now use that in my banjo playing. I listen to some of the great pickers and try to emulate what they are doing. Once that is done I change it a little to my own style.
Liste to Ned's picking alot and you will hear some of the nuances that he uses. Also don't for get to listen to other pickers.
Nice choice on the Deering Sierra. I have one along with three other banjos. Good Luck.
Thursday, April 19, 2012 @10:09:19 AM
Thank you for the encouraging words, CaptDave! I've been playing and listening every day and it is getting better. Every day there are new epiphanies, and I wonder if I will run out of them and hit my learning limit. That hasn't happened yet. I finally figured out the notes and it's starting to connect to the song. It sounds ragged and messy, but I think I'm getting it.
I'm enjoying this Sierra quite a bit. Ned set it up for me, and it sounds perfect. What do you think about your Deering Sierra compared to your other banjos? Where does it fit in to your picking?
Friday, April 20, 2012 @7:19:22 AM
Each banjo has it's own personality. My favorite is my Timless Timber built by Robin Smith. On my Deering I use Sonny Osborne 175 strings and it gives my a very bright tone which I like on certain songs. Other banjos I have are basically beaters and Play them occasionally or try to use them to teach kids. A couple of times I have played a friends Stelling Red Fox and like it very much. Maybe some day I save enough pennys to get one. BUT you can anly play one at a time.
Keep on picking you have a great teacher. Met Ned a couple of times and enjoyed his company. He has a great personality.
Friday, April 20, 2012 @12:32:37 PM
Ned is a blast. He's a very serious teacher, but at the same time he's fun to be around. He's very patient, especially working with someone like me who never picked a banjo before I went into his home. I feel like he is providing a great service to the world of bluegrass by being so good at teaching.
Sonny Osborne 175s... ok, I'll have to give them a shot. I asked Ned if my Martin strings were any good, and he just kind of went, well, uh, maybe we need to get you some new strings. He's so funny the way he says stuff like that. He's a great guy!
By the way, my Train 45 is coming along OK. I took my banjo to lunch in the park today and I got through it a few times without too much extra noise. It takes a lot of repetition to learn these songs, but I think I'm getting it!
Saturday, April 21, 2012 @7:43:33 AM
Just read your blog about your cat, Funny. I have a dog part pit and part lab. When I go to my music room and hit the first chord on the banjo he comes running and lays down at my side.
If I am playing keyboard, guitar or bass ge doesn't want any part of it and stays in the kitchen or his crate. Critters are really funny sometimes. Congrats on train 45 its a good tune.
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