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David Russell

Shelby Township, MI, USA

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Teaches Lessons: Online, In Person

Styles: Bluegrass (Scruggs)

Levels: Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced

Teacher Since: 1976

Pricing: $50.00 per hour

Listing Created: 11/15/2011
Listing Updated: 3/6/2020

More About Me

I've been playing the banjo since 1975, and teaching since 1976. I play Scruggs style banjo, and also melodic. My own style, though steeped deeply in Scruggs, has been greatly influenced by J. D. Crowe, Sonny Osborne, Allen Shelton, Bill Emerson, Terry Baucom, Alan Munde, Ben Eldridge, Butch Robins, Sammy Shelor, Ron Block, Ron Stewart, Jim Mills, and Bela Fleck, to name merely a few. Bottom line......... Nobody beats Earl Scruggs, not even on the best of days!

I have played in a number of Michigan area bands (regional bands) including The Sunnysiders, Blue Velvet, John Hunley and the Kentuckians, Timberline, The Fox River Band, The Mike Adams Band, Bluegrass Generation, New Direction Band, Run For Cover, Hardline Drive and most recently, The Powder mill Drifters. I also played in several bands while living in the Atlanta Georgia region from 2010 - 2014. I did have the chance to tour with the Frank Wakefield Band in 2001, and what a wild tour it was indeed.

I teach beginner, intermediate, and advanced students, mainly Scruggs style, and melodic style. Though I try never to sound exactly like any one player, I can teach you the styles of most all the classic Scruggs, and post-Scruggs players. I have studied all these musicians and have tried to learn from their experience and knowledge. My favorite kind of approach is a more bluesy, Shelor approach, which I refer to as the down and dirty sound. That in-your-face slamming drive, with properly separated notes. I utilize a lot of single string technique for blues tunes, and licks to spice up my breaks.

I live in Clinton Township, Michigan, and am available to teach you whatever it is you want to learn. I always start with Scruggs as a foundation, and then move students onto other approaches. First things first, however, and the means "Earl."

You can reach me at (586) 428-8879, or email me at


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