Posted by Ted the Would-Be Banjo Guy on Sunday, May 19, 2019
I had some bluegrass banjo lessons back in the mid-1980's, and taught myself a little bit of frailing banjo in clawhammer style. I gave up the banjo for guitar later, and then gave up the guitar when I began having pain in my hands.
So now: I'm taking up the guitar again, and trying to re-learn the banjo. I bought a an inexpensive used Iida resonator banjo and found out the neck was a bit warped; I'm going to wait until the weather is hot to try and repair it. I just bought a left-handed Deering Goodtime open-back banjo because the price was right; I was thinking - for no good reason, I suppose - that if I could learn to play left-handed then I could minimize the stress on my left hand by making the right hand do the fretting, and the left hand do the less-stressful picking, and maybe that I could learn to play again without the bad habits I had the first time.
It made sense at the time, but maybe that was just an excuse to buy a Deering banjo.
Turns out - surprise! - that learning to play left-handed (and I'm naturally left-handed) is harder than I expected. And I'm not sure what'll happen when I get the Iida banjo fixed; playing both right and left handed seemed wrong somehow, and I doubt that I can learn to do both well.
I suppose I'll give an update if I ever make an headway, but don't hold your breath.
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