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Jun 3, 2020 - 9:53:33 PM
6 posts since 4/15/2015

Is it easier to anchor your finger on a textured head? I currently play on a smooth had and am having a hard time

Jun 4, 2020 - 4:39:03 AM

Texasbanjo (Moderator)

USA

24476 posts since 8/3/2003

Try licking your fingers before you put them on the head. That might help. There are also devices you can attach to the head that you put your fingers on to stabilize them.

If you're new to banjo, you may be tensed up trying to learn how to pick and your fingers aren't relaxed on the head. Try to relax your hand and see if that helps.

There are times when my finger(s) come off the head if I'm making a reach across the fretboard, but they always settle back down on the head. Maybe it's just a learning/practice experience that's needed.

Jun 5, 2020 - 12:11:50 PM

2191 posts since 4/5/2006

A textured head may be a little easier, but I wouldn't change heads just for that reason. 

Jun 5, 2020 - 1:01:02 PM

21 posts since 12/5/2015

Textured head works for my....but then the texture wears off and it becomes smooth.

Are your fingers slipping or coming off of the head?

Jun 5, 2020 - 1:54:21 PM

261 posts since 4/27/2020
Online Now

quote:
Originally posted by pperkins

Are your fingers slipping or coming off of the head?


This is a good question.  I used to think that my hand sort of slid toward the neck, tilting as it went.  I could feel my hand changing position, which stressed me out, and of course led to errors.

What I've found is that my hand is moving because my arm is moving.  My arm slowly pushes across the armrest, which - if my ring and pinky stay on the head - causes my hand position to change, resulting in the above errors.

Bottom line - I've found that the problem isn't my hand, but my arm.  So I try to slowly relax my arm, allowing it to pull back, and that helps a lot.  I'm still trying to stop it from doing that in the first place, but at least I figured out the real problem.  My hand was an effect, not the cause.  The true cause was my arm.  Heck, maybe it starts in my shoulder, I dunno

Now, if your fingers are just coming up and off the head, that's probably a completely different problem.  Just thought I'd throw out my own experience in case you're having the same problem.

Edited by - reubenstump on 06/05/2020 13:56:27

Jun 8, 2020 - 12:12:33 PM

Waldguy

Canada

298 posts since 4/27/2013

I have a Fiberskyn head, and it's smooth. I find it quite a bit harder on the head to keep my ring finger from sliding into the first string than on my other banjo with a newer, frosted head.

Of course both textures wear over time and become smooth, but for learning, I'd rather have a frosted head.

Jun 13, 2020 - 9:33:06 PM

6 posts since 4/15/2015

quote:
Originally posted by Texasbanjo

Try licking your fingers before you put them on the head. That might help. There are also devices you can attach to the head that you put your fingers on to stabilize them.

If you're new to banjo, you may be tensed up trying to learn how to pick and your fingers aren't relaxed on the head. Try to relax your hand and see if that helps.

There are times when my finger(s) come off the head if I'm making a reach across the fretboard, but they always settle back down on the head. Maybe it's just a learning/practice experience that's needed.


Hi Sherry, thanks. Iam usually tense and I have more problems with slippage as I try to amp up the speed which, of course, causes more tenseness. I'll focus on that a little more. 

Jun 13, 2020 - 9:36:27 PM

6 posts since 4/15/2015

quote:
Originally posted by reubenstump
quote:
Originally posted by pperkins

Are your fingers slipping or coming off of the head?


This is a good question.  I used to think that my hand sort of slid toward the neck, tilting as it went.  I could feel my hand changing position, which stressed me out, and of course led to errors.

What I've found is that my hand is moving because my arm is moving.  My arm slowly pushes across the armrest, which - if my ring and pinky stay on the head - causes my hand position to change, resulting in the above errors.

Bottom line - I've found that the problem isn't my hand, but my arm.  So I try to slowly relax my arm, allowing it to pull back, and that helps a lot.  I'm still trying to stop it from doing that in the first place, but at least I figured out the real problem.  My hand was an effect, not the cause.  The true cause was my arm.  Heck, maybe it starts in my shoulder, I dunno

Now, if your fingers are just coming up and off the head, that's probably a completely different problem.  Just thought I'd throw out my own experience in case you're having the same problem.

 


Hi Lorenzo, thanks for your ideas. My finger does slip, but doesn't come off the head. I haven't paid any attention to my arm. I'll have to keep that in mind. 

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