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Nov 26, 2020 - 9:20:55 PM

Rwh56

USA

510 posts since 6/14/2009

Heard Steve Earle playing solo banjo and singing "Devil Put The Coal In The Ground". Clearly not claw or Scruggs style. Like he is picking the banjo like a guitar. Love the performance. Here is the youtube link:

youtube.com/watch?v=wLvJW5F9WT4

Rob

Nov 26, 2020 - 10:44:35 PM

Bill Rogers (Moderator)

USA

24250 posts since 6/25/2005

Seems to be an idiosyncratic, highly rhythmic, thumb-lead finger-style. Not atypical of many individual folk styles long present in the southern mouuntains.

Nov 27, 2020 - 12:42:54 AM

banjopaolo

Italy

1293 posts since 11/6/2008

In my opinion there is no need to put evry performance in a banjo style... a lot of great musician just play as they feel

Nov 27, 2020 - 1:34:29 AM

Alex Z

USA

4046 posts since 12/7/2006

"Like he is picking the banjo like a guitar."

That's exactly it.  He's applying a Travis-picking guitar technique to banjo.

When I was teaching, years ago, this is typically what a guitar player does when they first pick up a banjo and start to learn on their own.  Thumb back and forth as if on bass notes -- but one of the bass notes now is the 5th string.  First and/or second finger on one of the other strings, alternating with the thumb.

Edited by - Alex Z on 11/27/2020 01:35:52

Nov 27, 2020 - 5:31:30 AM

Rwh56

USA

510 posts since 6/14/2009

quote:
Originally posted by banjopaolo

In my opinion there is no need to put evry performance in a banjo style... a lot of great musician just play as they feel


Not to be too defensive, but I am curious about this one performance and not trying to pigeonhole every performance.  And if this playing is part of some tradition I am not familiar, I would like to learn more.   I heard the song on the radio yesterday, and was quite struck by the voice, lyrics and banjo.   One of many reasons for me to be thankful for banjo music.

Nov 27, 2020 - 7:10:49 AM

Alex Z

USA

4046 posts since 12/7/2006

Since you asked smiley,  my experience and observation is that this -- Travis-style picking on banjo -- is not a "tradition."

Rather, the player in this situation used the movements he was familiar with, and applied his musical creativity to use those movements to bring out the sounds that he felt fit the song.

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