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Back it Up

Tuesday, February 11, 2014 @8:25:57 AM

Back again with another entry. If for nothing else but my own tracking I reckon.

More backup again this week. As is heard everywhere, it seems to be where the vast majority of your time is spent playing. I was tickled when I learned some backup licks a couple weeks ago and was able to apply them. Then, I realized how boring it would be if I only played those licks all the time. This month is tight around our house so I had to forego my lesson last week, but I started looking at backup videos from Banjophobic on his YouTube Channel. The possibilities for backup licks seem to go on forever. But, as I usually do, I approach it with knowing that I can only learn a couple at a time and use them.

What I’m really finding useful are videos showing how to apply these techniques and licks. John does a great job with illustration on how to play some of the licks in 9lb Hammer. He breaks down some theory and why or when you want to alter some of the licks covered earlier.

One problem I’m noticing, and it may or may not even be a problem at all. I’m finding that depending on whether folks think of rolls in 16th notes or 8th notes has a lot to do with how many beats of any particular chord they claim. I encourage folks thinking of things on their own or in groups, but some standardization would be great. I’ve seen tabs in both 8th and 16th so this really isn’t surprising, but if someone doesn’t understand how beats per measure or time signatures work (thank god for band in high school), it can be confusing.

So, I should have my lesson again next week. Until then, I’m going to keep on with my backup. I have learned a couple new songs (9lb Hammer and Clinch Mountain Backstep) in terms of breaks, but this backup journey is far from over.

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