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Knock of confidence.

Posted by Chris Cooper on Friday, November 28, 2008

Hi Folks,

Last night I went to my first jam session with a banjo, a small number of pickers (however they were some of the most respected pickers/singers on the British bluegrass scene).

I spent the evening lurking around on the edges of the jam just playing chords keeping time and learning what I could from the experience; time well spent I feel. Other than pickin with my dad at home this was my first experience of playing with other people on a banjo (I played guitar for most of my life before swithing to banjo).

A few numbers into the jam, the fiddle player struck up with 'The Goldrush' a tune that I have been working on for a while now and felt confident to play. So I stept into the jam for my break and.........made a real mess! This really knocked my confidence for some reason as I know everyone makes mistakes but at the time and for a few hours after it felt like all the practice and hard work had been wasted. To be perfectly honest I felt like giving up.

Ha ha ha! Oh well, I'll Keep on picking and try again next time.

Happy Picking Y'all.

5 comments on “Knock of confidence.”

Texasbanjo Says:
Friday, November 28, 2008 @5:32:23 AM

Don't give up.  Remember: practice makes perfect.  Everyone has crashed at a jam -- especially the first time you try to take a break.  Don't let it worry you.  Remember that everyone there was a begginer at one time.

The more jams you go to, the easier it will get.  You'll be less intimidated as time goes on, you'll feel more confident, etc.  So... keep going to those jams and one of these days you'll take a break and do it just perfect!

Guy Says:
Friday, November 28, 2008 @12:47:41 PM

Playing in a jam situation is so, so different to practising at home. Texasbanjo's advice is right on the button, keep attending those jams, especially if you can get to play with good pickers.


TopCat Says:
Friday, November 28, 2008 @12:47:47 PM


I guess it was a bit of a big ask for your first jam with a banjo (to step up and do a solo break, that is, rather than just vamping in the background). However you obviously did have the confidence to do it (which is to be applauded) and you were amongst friends, so no harm done. I'm sure you'll be knockin' 'em dead in no time.


Chris Cooper Says:
Friday, November 28, 2008 @1:29:15 PM

Thankyou all for your encouragement, feelin much better about it all now. once again thankyou for your support.

Happy Pickin!!!!!!!!

mark daniel Says:
Thursday, November 26, 2015 @5:58:20 AM

I'm really glad I stumbled across this post. The same thing happened to me last night, more than once! Ive been going to group picks for a few weeks now , and really enjoying it. The coordinator give me the shout for a break and oh man did I crash and burn ! Adrenaline , brain freeze, hand freeze the lot ! I wanted the ground to swallow me up.
Some great advice here on the comments, I will certainly take on board , chin up and get back practicing . I'm hoping the more I attend the jams, the nerves will ease a little.

I know your post is a few years old , but I'm glad you posted it. Best wishes, Mark . Wales Uk.

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