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Sep 12, 2021 - 5:27:02 AM
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998 posts since 11/26/2004

I would think that not having an in person instructor to guide you from one lesson to the next in a purposeful and orderly fashion, which allows you to build on your abilities and knowledge, would throw you into the internet pit of sensory overload. You're left to decide for yourself in what order to learn and when you've learned enough to move on to the next step.

Sep 12, 2021 - 7:04:40 PM
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2568 posts since 10/17/2013

The OP’s horrible advice, taken at face value, would not get anyone wanting to really LEARN the banjo, ANYWHERE.

 There are scarce few professional banjo teachers who would think of teaching their student for free. 

 “Get it free or forget it” is ingorance to the core.

I can only imagine how horrible a teacher might feel after learning (pardon the pun) that their student was sloughing off their teacher’s effort in teaching them banjo, because they didn’t have to pay a cent. 

 I daresay that it wouldn’t have hurt me a bit, if I could have found a good banjo teacher back in Kansas when I started trying to play the banjo.

Paying for lessons shows the teacher that you are not just acting like he’s good for nothing, but that you have an honest desire to learn. 

Edited by - okbluegrassbanjopicker on 09/12/2021 19:08:19

Sep 14, 2021 - 11:09:36 AM
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2639 posts since 4/5/2006

quote:
Originally posted by mike_cabinet

I would think that not having an in person instructor to guide you from one lesson to the next in a purposeful and orderly fashion, which allows you to build on your abilities and knowledge, would throw you into the internet pit of sensory overload. You're left to decide for yourself in what order to learn and when you've learned enough to move on to the next step.


Cripple Creek, FMB, & a host of other tunes lurk in that pit. Seductive sirens luring the unsuspecting novice attempting to run before learning to walk.  devil

Edited by - monstertone on 09/14/2021 11:32:14

Sep 14, 2021 - 2:54:45 PM

58 posts since 9/13/2018

Oh My this thread has certainly got fingers typing. So, as a novice player a few thoughts come to mind....
First off not everyone has the funds to purchase lessons and may be like 'sparrows on a breadcrumb' devouring anything available (for free. Some folk may not have access to quality teaching. Another thought; Teaching is not simply presenting material. Much of that can be gleaned from the net/books and so on. Teaching is way more and not necessarily the sole domain of the most able players. Indeed, without wanting to sound in the slightest way offensive I'm sure not all Teacher/student combinations work. Thus another element maybe finding the right teacher (for you). I would love to be able to afford personal lessons; I'm begining to feel like a rudderless ship. Thank you so much to the members of this forum who have given up their time to put stuff up for free! Ps ... I am a Teacher and Coach but of totally different disciplines.

Sep 14, 2021 - 3:20:28 PM

6265 posts since 10/13/2007

quote:
Originally posted by Richj

Oh My this thread has certainly got fingers typing. So, as a novice player a few thoughts come to mind....
First off not everyone has the funds to purchase lessons and may be like 'sparrows on a breadcrumb' devouring anything available (for free. Some folk may not have access to quality teaching. Another thought; Teaching is not simply presenting material. Much of that can be gleaned from the net/books and so on. Teaching is way more and not necessarily the sole domain of the most able players. Indeed, without wanting to sound in the slightest way offensive I'm sure not all Teacher/student combinations work. Thus another element maybe finding the right teacher (for you). I would love to be able to afford personal lessons; I'm begining to feel like a rudderless ship. Thank you so much to the members of this forum who have given up their time to put stuff up for free! Ps ... I am a Teacher and Coach but of totally different disciplines.


Do you tell your students when the combination is not right between you?

BTW - it can take a month of practice to gain competency of one good lesson.

ken

Sep 14, 2021 - 5:02:15 PM
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2639 posts since 4/5/2006

quote:
Originally posted by From Greylock to Bean Blossom
quote:
Originally posted by Richj

Oh My this thread has certainly got fingers typing. So, as a novice player a few thoughts come to mind....
First off not everyone has the funds to purchase lessons and may be like 'sparrows on a breadcrumb' devouring anything available (for free. Some folk may not have access to quality teaching. Another thought; Teaching is not simply presenting material. Much of that can be gleaned from the net/books and so on. Teaching is way more and not necessarily the sole domain of the most able players. Indeed, without wanting to sound in the slightest way offensive I'm sure not all Teacher/student combinations work. Thus another element maybe finding the right teacher (for you). I would love to be able to afford personal lessons; I'm begining to feel like a rudderless ship. Thank you so much to the members of this forum who have given up their time to put stuff up for free! Ps ... I am a Teacher and Coach but of totally different disciplines.


Do you tell your students when the combination is not right between you?

BTW - it can take a month of practice to gain competency of one good lesson.

ken


Add to that: It may take a month, or more, not only for the student to feel at ease with the instructor, but for the instructor to find a way to get inside the student's head. wink

Weekly lessons need not be the norm. Some are able to perform lesson material in a weeks time & move on to the next challenge. While others, for a number of reasons, may take longer. It is often times difficult to find the time or, to discipline one's self to practice. And when starting from scratch, that light at the end of the tunnel sure seems a long way off.

Persevere grasshopper. smiley

Edited by - monstertone on 09/14/2021 17:05:06

Sep 14, 2021 - 10:41:19 PM

58 posts since 9/13/2018

Hi Ken,
"Do you tell your students.. .."
What a good question! Teaching and Coaching are student centred. Whilst school teaching (science) I would of course work on ways for my students to progress based on their individual stage of learning. Coaching in the Outdoors (Sea kayak) and working with adults I am not at all slow to recommend other providers if I feel their background/skills/environment are more suitable for the students progress. To better answer your question I think the only time I feel unhappy and discuss suitability is if the students' ambitions compromise safety. ... Hopefully not the same in the banjo world! But for banjo teachers I could well imagine the occasional need to moderate impossible ambition? ...

Sep 16, 2021 - 11:21:22 AM
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2639 posts since 4/5/2006

Paid lessons were, at one time, the domain of brick & mortar music stores, the choices being individual (private), or group. The former being costlier. Freelance instructors were on average less expensive. The internet has changed all of that.

IF able to find a pro or semi pro willing to take you on occasion as needed, such an arrangement may prove a viable alternative. No matter how one goes about it, the goal is to absorb as much information possible, in the shortest length of time, at the least monetary expense. Most likely at least one of the variables will suffer at the expense of the others. 

Good as everything else is, there remains something about real time in your face communication that more often hits home.

Sep 23, 2021 - 8:20:19 PM
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2568 posts since 10/17/2013

Stop it, whoever you are.

You are DISGUSTING!

Your post has NO place here.

Quit insulting Sherry. 

 

Sep 23, 2021 - 8:23:24 PM

2568 posts since 10/17/2013

Obviously you are a troll or maybe something worse. 

Sep 23, 2021 - 8:26:09 PM

2568 posts since 10/17/2013

Sickening insults need to be kept OFF this forum.

That was a grievous personal insult to Sherry and a deliberate one at that. 

Sep 23, 2021 - 11:59:58 PM
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phb

Germany

2979 posts since 11/8/2010

Jim Yates : perhaps you shouldn't have quoted the insults.

Sep 24, 2021 - 4:26:11 AM
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6265 posts since 10/13/2007

When comments come up like this that were defaming to a Mod, just report them. they will be removed promptly. And the poster will be locked out. Don't engage them. that is what they want.
ken

Sep 24, 2021 - 4:41:21 AM
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Texasbanjo (Moderator)

USA

26399 posts since 8/3/2003

I want to thank all the people who reported the troll who was defaming me.

He's locked out and hopefully will get the hint and stay away.

Just consider the source and ignore the troll. If he doesn't get any attention, he'll go away.

Sep 24, 2021 - 4:45:42 AM
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phb

Germany

2979 posts since 11/8/2010

Sherry, thank you for moderating this forum, you have the patience of an angel! In addition you are usually among the first to offer advice in the playing section even if the same question has been asked hundreds of times before.

Sep 24, 2021 - 10:00:21 AM

Jim Yates

Canada

6776 posts since 2/21/2007

I agree with Philipp and send my thanks for Sherry's taking the time and effort to moderate. So sorry that you were subjected to recent abuse.

Sep 24, 2021 - 3:49:56 PM
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Texasbanjo (Moderator)

USA

26399 posts since 8/3/2003

quote:
Originally posted by Jim Yates

I agree with Philipp and send my thanks for Sherry's taking the time and effort to moderate. So sorry that you were subjected to recent abuse.


You're welcome and it doesn't bother me.   When he figures out I'm not upset or insulted, but just think he's a jerk, maybe he'll go away and not come back.  If he comes back, we'll get him locked within a post or two.

Sep 25, 2021 - 3:42:16 AM

4363 posts since 12/6/2009

Earl didn’t play banjo. Earl created music so unique the music world had to give it a label of its own.......Bluegrass. Attitude should be, learn to play Bluegrass. Once that is learned playing the banjo will become easier.....IMHO

Sep 29, 2021 - 4:25:16 PM

6 posts since 9/29/2021

It’s hard to remember what has been said or not, but in-person lessons are pretty good if it is a personal friend or relative and it is also free, 30 minutes would be way too long and $30 would be a ripoff unless you already play and are looking for knowledge and not skill

You need basic music theory b-c and e-f breaks and also basic rolls or the basic claw hammer technique

There are videos on YouTube such as “all music theory in 25 minutes which is usually piano oriented, but good enough

There are other YouTube videos for basic roles and the Tony Trischka video that shows the basic D7 and C chords,

You would need to be able to basically play the banjo before you take any in person lessons for $30 or you will be wasting your money and will be frustrated

Sep 29, 2021 - 7:25:12 PM
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154 posts since 12/5/2014

Really late to the party, and I will probably regret expressing my opinion in here but I feel I should. I learned to play the banjo many years ago online via YouTube videos and other various sources watching videos here and poured a ton of my time into it. I was pretty poor back in those days, and lessons were a thing of luxury that I simply could not afford at the time.

After about 3 years of playing, i was doing a bitter better financially and I decided to take up a few paid lessons and was quick to learn immediately that I suffered from a condition known as “fly away finger”. It was really difficult to correct. I had no idea I even suffered from it, or what it even was. Not one time in my many hours of playing, did I ever even stop to consider my hand position may not be sufficient. It took an experienced instructor to see it. I basically had to start all over again. I had poor finger/hand posture and never realized it. I learned to limp along on poor posture and thought I was doing well. I never got fast and thought it was just because I was learning slow.

I now play much much better. I learned to anchor 2 fingers instead of the one finger that I did years ago. It really took a ton of discipline to retrain myself. I really spend a lot of time wasted, that could have been corrected had I known better.

So this is my personal testimony of something that happened to me. I’m not trying to insert a new dog into this fight because I like to argue. If I could back times up, a few paid lessons at the beginning would have saved me many many months of grief having to relearn. I could have spent my time advancing in my playing, not wandering around in the banjo wilderness for so long

Sep 29, 2021 - 8:02:51 PM
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58254 posts since 12/14/2005

That's OK.
Most folks on here are kind-hearted.
I just had to look at this again, to see why it's still being discussed.

Sep 30, 2021 - 7:21:15 AM
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2801 posts since 2/10/2013

I have found it difficult to find a good banjo instructor. But I have little doubt that working with a good dedicated instructor can help a person improve their playing ability. I like Youtube, but don't expect it to watch me play and offer constructive criticism. I sometime have questions, and I would appreciate receiving advice from an instructor. When someone offers me useful advice, it is a free and beneficial lesson.

Sep 30, 2021 - 1:30:22 PM
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2639 posts since 4/5/2006

Excuse me if I am repeating myself. I've told this story before on BHO, perhaps even on this thread. Since I wouldn't expect a newcomer to wade through 9 pages & remember every comment up till now, following is a not so brief refresher.

Almost everyone starts out in banjo wilderness & wanders around for a year, or more, before finding the door to the right path. I started in L.A. pre internet, with a long neck 5 string pawn shop special. Zero knowledge between folk, old time, bluegrass, how to find a teacher, or anything else. I found a guy playing tenor banjo at Shakey's, & practically had to twist his arm to teach me banjo 101. At the time, I was doing good to make ends meet & have anything left over. Add to that, zero expectations of finding anyone in the L.A. area into hillbilly banjo.

Walt was a multi instrumentalist, able to play anything with strings, & he had obviously taught before. During the two years while studying under Walt, I learned to read music, (again), a major triad consisted of the 1,3, & 5, minor triad flats the 3rd, dominate 7th adds flatted 7th, the common chords in any key will be 1, 4, 5, minor chords 6, 9, &10, yada, yada, yada. How to tune my banjo & how to use my hands. After trying both three finger & two finger/Seeger style, &  a bit of claw hammer, I choose to focus on three finger style.

After multiple inexpensive banjo instruction books, passing on the Scruggs book due to cost considerations, I finally discovered the Mel Bay/Sonny Osborne book. Up to this point there had been no distinction between three finger style picking, Bluegrass, & Earl Scruggs. While wandering banjo wilderness, I happened upon a guy playing Lonesome Road Blues & inquired about lessons. His advice was "buy the Scruggs book", so I bit the bullet & ordered the book. On picking up the book a week later, there were flyers of a Bluegrass festival/banjo contest in Norco. That festival blew my socks off! However, it proved to be the magic door to the Southern California Bluegrass community.

The time with Walt was prep school. The So Ca Bluegrass community was the real deal.                   

Edited by - monstertone on 09/30/2021 14:18:44

Oct 4, 2021 - 4:35:33 PM

6 posts since 9/29/2021

Most people don’t take lessons at all, they only learn online. I was told this by a guitar instructor at guitar center

The five string banjo is not very popular now and there was a long period where almost no bands had a banjo player

While I love to play, the only time you even see a banjo is when you are at some festival or bluegrass jam. Try to find a banjo player that is not at a jam or bluegrass festival, it is nearly impossible, even in Nashville

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