Now you know you need to start with practicing!:
Tony Trischka, who has been called "one of the most inventive banjo players alive" by Billboard Magazine, has recorded a nuts and bolts practice session that is designed to improve your timing, strengthen your hands and help you play with precision, power and rhythmic sophistication. It is filled with exercises, etudes and workouts for both your left and right hand, covering many of the building blocks of bluegrass banjo.
This in-depth workout will enable you to achieve sinewy slides, crisp pull-offs, powerful hammer-ons and locked-in right hand patterns. Working with a metronome, Tony details a variety of rolls that highlight the rhythmic aspects of the right hand. He helps you to "straighten out your time" so it's consistent and even, and shows you how to identify downbeats, upbeats and in-between beats while playing increasingly tricky rolls.
Tony' invaluable advice will help you to get better results from your practice time and maximize the efficiency of your practice sessions by dividing them into discrete sections. He provides helpful hints about metronome work as well as suggestions for expanding your creativity, using tunes like Tom Dooley, Cripple Creek
and some original Etudes to help you build your technique.
And your practice is rewarded when you find you can now play all these great solos!
"As a teacher with over thirty years of experience, I've found that students are hungry for material that goes beyond simply learning tune after tune. In fact, my students suggested a good portion of the material presented here. This lesson should be an indispensable aid to the aspiring bluegrass banjoist."- Tony Trischka
Tony Trischka teaches eleven classic pieces that are prime examples of banjo playing at its best. You'll learn them, note-for-note, just as they were played by some of the greatest players in the history of the instrument. By learning these tunes you'll not only expand your repertoire, but in the process will also become more flexible in your ability to mix up various rolls, play in several keys without a capo and move more freely around the neck.
Tony, who is widely known as one of the world's top contemporary banjo players as well as a historian of banjo lore, performs each tune with the help of John McGann on guitar. He then slows it down, going over the tricky spots and explaining all the right and left hand techniques you'll need to play it.
Here are the solos you'll learn: John Henry
(Earl Scruggs), Sitting on Top of the World
(Alan Shelton), Gold Rush
(Vic Jordan), Bye Bye Blues
(Alan Shelton), Dixie Breakdown
(Don Reno), Old Home Place
(J. D. Crowe), Salt Creek
(Bill Keith), Casey Jones
(Bobby Thompson), Clinch Mountain Backstep
(Ralph Stanley), Little Maggie
(Bill Emerson), Doug's Tune
"As always, Homespun's production values are topnotch. On each tune, split screen techniques are used so you can see both hands close up at the same time. The sound and picture are excellent and on the DVD version, random access allows you to jump to any part of the lesson in a flash.... All in all, this is a wonderful learning tool, and with all the classic banjo solos out there, hopefully the first of many." -- Banjo Newsletter