I don't post often, because I am pretty swamped most of the time, but I had a request from several people to post the order of my latest lesson series here, due to the fact that my Youtube page is not allowing me to link the lessons in the normal fashion, and folks want to be able to go through them in order.
This will help beginners learn how to memorize without tab, and also aid them in practice routines, such as isolation and repetition.
I have already put out lessons for Cripple Creek and Old Joe Clark, and the links below are for Foggy Mountain Breakdown. There is no charge, and I'm not selling videos or tab, but I have had a Youtube channel for awhile, where I teach guitar, and I have had requests to throw in a couple of banjo numbers.
For beginners who haven't learned to figure out tunes by ear, this is a good way to get away from reliance on tab.
Intro for Foggy Mountain Breakdown
This is in slow motion, and contains the practice videos, so you can build up speed and clarity.
Hope it helps.
For beginners, here is Cripple Creek.
Edited by - Rob Bourassa on 11/17/2010 13:02:44
Thank You! This is fantastic. I've been struggling with the tab for FMB. You are a great teacher, very clear, detailed and precise.
I'll mention generous. To take the time and effort is commendable.
I hope someone can use it.
My playing isn't what it used to be. I had the sad misfortune of having to support myself as a musician, and though I did OK as a guitarist, it was hard to make a real living with banjo and nothing else, so unfortunately, the banjo took a back seat, and I really haven't practiced in the last 30 years.
BUT, I still love it, and still love teaching, which I have never really stopped. I just took the lessons and slowed everything down at the typical problem spots, so someone could hopefully learn, without the aid of a teacher.
Hope it works for you, and thanks for the kind words.
Thanks Rob, I have tried various ways to get FMB your video made it easy to follow.
I have had the banjo under the bed for quite some time, now it re-appears.
I've really wanted to work on the FMB, but I'm a little green yet. (Okay, a lot.)
You've done such a great job breaking it down into manageable chunks, I might just give it a shot.
An act of great generousity, reflecting what the best of the Hangout is all about!
Thanks for the comments.
I have seen so many people struggle to learn banjo, usually with a book of tabs, and even though the notes are all there, the problem is more in how the student learns and digests what they are memorizing. If it is by tab, there has to be a point where they internalize the music, and sometimes that doesn't happen.
I teach guitar for a living, and play jazz and swing, but I still teach a couple of banjo students, and it never ceases to amaze me that some have been studying with a teacher for 3 or 4 years, and still can't play a tune cleanly, or up to speed.
I do mostly web cam guitar lessons, and I started my Youtube page as a way to post the videos for my guitar students to practice along with. I didn't think they would be viewed by the public, but then I started getting thousands of e-mails, from people who couldn't afford lessons, (and there are a lot) thanking me for the free lessons.
I only have a handful of banjo students, but I figured I would make these available to all as well. I hope they help someone. Times are tough, and all this cost me was an afternoon of work, that my private students can use anyway. They are the ones to thank, because they don't mind sharing.
I can't stand it when people ask for banjo lessons in a store, and they get a guitar player who dabbles with 5 string, and he starts taking someone through a book. This is the norm, and for those like me, who were fortunate enough to have a good teacher, count your blessings.
For those who don't, I hope this will work for you.
Thank you so much Rob, I am making it a mission in life to practice this and play it to the visiting folks when they drop in at Christmas time. I diligently worked my way through your series of YouTube lessons for '' Old Joe Clark '' and got the fingering down pretty good, this was fine up until about the tenth video in the series, where you announce with typical understatement '' Lets take it up a little '' and proceed to at least double the tempo in one jump, I'm still playing it regularly and maybe am getting a little faster over time. But its taking some time. Another thing I seem to be doing is to play and practice these tunes giving each note equal volume and importance, only to find half way through that of course some notes need to be '' accented '' as melody notes whereas other notes are just parts of rolls etc and shouldnt be given the same volume. This part is also taking its time to come out in my playing. Anyway its a fantastic thing you are doing here, I enjoy watching your youtube videos and would take this opportunity to thank you for your efforts thus far.
Edited by - bilbo on 09/09/2009 13:53:20
thanks Rob, excellant video, i'm been playing fmb for quite a while but it never really sounds right, i can race earl fron start to finish but i always seem to be taking shortcuts to get it up to speed and so it doesn't sound very good just fast and sloppy, i think your slow practice over and over and gradual speed up is the best way to go thanks again.
Great job, Rob, thank you for your efforts and good instruction! Welcome to the banjo hangout!
Any day playing music is a GOOD day.
Hey Rob - great to see you here. This is great stuff!
You make that Goodtime banjo sound great!
I am a seasoned old banjo player, but am fascinated by your teaching methods. If I had never played a five string banjo, I think what you have shown us here would get me off to a good start. You even wear your strap correctly and use a real metronome. You also get a great sound from the little Gumby! Thank you so much for sharing!!
I have tried never to use tabs for my students, and have been making instruction videos for them for years, so I have learned a few of the tricky parts to communicate, but it could always be better. Sometimes, I get tired, and forget where I am, because the things are so long and drawn out. But, that's what a beginner needs.
I also try to use a cheap banjo, to try to get them understanding that they don't need an expensive banjo as much as they do practice. I have seen a lot of players buy expensive banjos, and they get disappointed when they sound the same.
Another reason is, I haven't had a good banjo since 1980. I went about 15 years without one, and was given a Goodtime at a workshop I did for Deering, demonstrating their 6 string banjos. No one knew I played 5 string, including me, because it had been so long. I am a guitarist, and have a lot of instruction videos for guitar, but I also had a lot of requests for banjo lessons on Youtube, so I thought I would.
Thanks for the nice comments.
First off thanks for putting FMB on Youtube. I was wondering if there is someway to download these to the computer so I can work with them without being online. See I travel a lot and don't always have access. I tried with Realplayer SP but got a message that the clip couldn't be downloaded from that site. Any help would be appreciated and would like to see more of your lessons if you have more could you send me a list to firstname.lastname@example.org.
"The real Voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes"
Thank you, Rob.
I just erased them from my hard drive, so they don't take up too much room.
I don't have any way of doing anything you can't do with them at this point. I do a ton of lessons like this for my students, but I only put a few on line, because they take so long to complete.
I don't sell DVDs or tab, mostly because I don't want to deal with the copyright problems. My Skype students record the lessons to their own hard drive usually. When it comes for a song like this that's universal, I just put it on Youtube, so they have a reference tool to practice with.
I made it a little more extensive, so that those who are playing without taking lessons can also progress.
I only have a handful of banjo students, and most learn enough after a year or so to teach themselves, so I don't have many more tunes scheduled for Youtube until winter. I will be doing a version of Mule Skinner Blues in a couple of weeks, as long as I don't have any more snags. If you have any requests, let me know.
Edited by - Rob Bourassa on 09/16/2009 10:22:30
You are welcome Bob.
I've been wanting to play banjo for a long time, and just now picked one up. I've been lurking here off and on for a while.
Just wanted to chime in to say thank you, as this is incredibly helpful. Thanks for taking the time.
Nice Job! Thanks!
Looks like no one jumped on your question on youtube to computer.
If you go to your search engine, Google or whatever and type in free youtube to wmv converter or quicktime or your video player of choice there should be several choices come up. Been a while since I messed with it but not to much of a problem.
Some of the converter menu's are a little confusing but generally you can figure out how to run them. wmv is windows media player. There are several different formats that you can convert to. A learning exercise as usual but no big deal. good luck.
Thanks Rob, I am new and just getting interested in FMB. You have an easy peaceful way of instructing that makes it easy for me to follow. Your efforts here are very much appreciated.
Edited by - dgill on 09/20/2009 11:43:44
Marcel, you can easily download videos from YouTube. Just download the YouTube Downloader. It's free.
Every workplace should have a Banjo Break
'Advice' 1 hr
'Huber HR30 Tone Ring' 7 hrs
'Iida Banjo for sale' 8 hrs