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I play clawhammer, and my jamming partner is...bluegrass...?

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

I jammed for the first time with another human being on Sunday, and while I wish I could say my playing went really didn't.  I have been learning clawhammer style banjo, and have been practicing slow versions of songs I know noting the melody.  It's roundpeak style, so it's not really the bum-ditt-ty rhythm, but more of a one-two stroke.  I love the way it sounds when I play alone, but when I tried to play with my friend playing guitar, it dissolved into a crazy jumble of mess.  He was playing much faster than I was used to so I couldn't really keep up with fretting the melody.  After the first two attempts at Soldier's Joy, I was reduced to strumming chords.   It sounded much better that way, actually, than me trying to stumble through the melody.  

I think part of the problem is my lack of experience, but also, J was used to playing in bluegrass jams. Are these two styles incompatible? 

Luckily, J was very nice about the whole thing.  He enjoyed himself, and was thrilled that he found someone who can sing harmony.  He invited me to come to the jam he attends each week, and says that I would be no means out of place.  I'm excited by the prospect of getting involved with a group of musicians, as I know it will really advance my playing...but I'm quite terrified by the prospect. I'm not even playing in the style that I have been practicing.  I'm worried about really getting things jumbled up in my head and hands. Lord, what have I gotten myself into....


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Playing Style: Clawhammer and Old-Time

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Playing Since: 2021
Experience Level: Just Startin'

Occupation: Graphic Designer & Video Editor

Gender: Female
Age: 58

My Instruments:
Deering Goodtime Artisan

Favorite Bands/Musicians:
Harry Manx, Carolina Chocolate Drops, Donna the Buffalo, Polecat Creek, Toubab Krewe, John Hartford, Charlie Poole, Ola Belle Reed, Bela Fleck, Abigail Washburn, Scythian, and Riley Baugus are my current favorites.

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Created 5/15/2007
Last Visit 6/7/2021

I love music festivals, juggling, walking, playing with my dogs and cooking...though not at the same time. I lead a local ukulele club, Triad Ukulele. I also play in a ukulele trio called the Sonker Sisters.

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