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New Bluegrass Banjo Workbook (Companion to Bluegrass Banjo Ignoramus)

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Sep 21, 2020 - 11:40:14 AM
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58 posts since 7/24/2008

Hey folks! I know a lot of you have learned/taught from 'Bluegrass Banjo for the Complete Ignoramus' written by Wayne Erbsen (who is my dad, and I work with him publishing these books). You might have seen that there's a giveaway on this site now for that book as well as his new book, 'Companion to Bluegrass Banjo for the Complete Ignoramus'. The 'Companion' is a bit different than any other music book I've ever seen, so I thought I'd pop in here and fill you in on what it is, exactly.

The premise of the original 'Ignoramus' was to teach the bare-bones melody in such a way so that learners can dress it up however they want with a variety of rolls. Doing it this way means that people can make the songs as beginner or advanced as they are comfortable with, while also getting them to be creative, versatile banjo players from the get-go (it also helps learn songs by ear). The 'Companion' expands upon this, going into more detail on how to play a variety of rolls, and provides blank tab for all of the songs so that people can write out their own arrangements. It also gives additional tips for different ways to play each song. It's a really good tool to help learners solidify their rolls and get comfortable playing around with the songs.

It isn't just a blank book, however; it has several bonus rolls, 10 bonus songs, and even has a section on learning to play by ear. It comes with a CD (as well as online audio and downloadable resource pages), and like our others books is spiral bound.

You can enter to win it on the homepage here at Banjo Hangout, or purchase it from Native Ground ( or Amazon ( There are preview pages up in both places.

We'd love to hear what you think about the book, and any questions you may have about it!

Sep 21, 2020 - 2:24:04 PM
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6724 posts since 8/30/2004

Hi Annie,
I remember being given your Dad's 1st. book to edit. It was a great and a fun book but I felt it needed some timing corrections. As it turns out, he got very angry with me and sent me an email scolding me. I felt so badly about it. Later in years, his books all have correct timing.

I surely didn't meant anything disrespectful. These were the early days in music publishing of banjo material I guess....tell Wayne hi from me and that I come in Peace...Jack smiley

Edited by - Jack Baker on 09/21/2020 14:25:59

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