Minstrel Banjo

For enthusiasts of early banjo

I've been watching several tutorials about Clawhammer since Mark Weems mentioned this. One thing is the concept of "down". Down in the right hand motion can be directed straight toward the head of the instrument. it can also be interpreted as aiming toward the floor. How do you all interpret this?

Another difference is watching the brush of clawhammer where the first finger and the thumb make contact with the string in a slight delay, whereas Stroke style has the finger and thumb making contact with the string at exactly the same time. 

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There is actually little mention of the thimble in the books. 

Just a little more "oblique".

The Briggs’ Banjo Instructor of 1855. On page 8, it says “In playing, the thumb and first finger only are used; the 5th string is touched by the thumb only; this string is always played open, the other strings are touched by the thumb and the first finger, the thumb and finger should meet the strings obliquely, so as to cause them to vibrate across the finger-board. The strings are touched by the ball of the thumb, and the nail of the 1st finger.


Just trying to clarify my thoughts on the Briggs statement. It was a murky part of the discussion and I 'm not sure we all understood it. I'll look forward to comments on this. Hopefully the photo helps. 

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