Minstrel Banjo

For enthusiasts of early banjo

From the Frank Converse Analytical Method. These are really good for building technique. Follow the fingerings for maximum effect. The solid line is what Rice called a "Strike" 30 years prior.

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Comment by Strumelia on September 23, 2012 at 3:24pm

For me, as a clawhammer player just beginning stroke style, one of big differences is in using the thumb on notes that wouldn't usually be thumbed in clawhammer.  It's awkward at first, but if you don't practice it you will be playing minstrel tunes in clawhammer style forever- and it just won't have quite the same sound or flavor.  Plus, you'll need those thumb moves for the more complex tunes later on. 

So my advice is- pay attention to the "X"s in the tutor notation- those are all your thumbed notes.  Some of those notes with the thumb will feel odd and difficult, but after a while it will seem logical and even natural...that's when you know you are beginning to transition into stroke/minstrel style playing.  I can only say this because I am in the middle of experiencing this right now, as a bumbling beginner stroke player, coming from clawhammer.   :)

Comment by Nicholas A Bechtel on September 23, 2012 at 3:40pm

Very cool, thank you.  interesting how things will just present themselves at the appropriate time.


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