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Level 1: Beginner
Level 2: Intermediate
Level 3: Advanced
Old Time Fingerpicking
Classic Style Banjo
Celtic Tunes
30 Day Challenge
Playing Backup
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Banjo Lessons: Playing with Others Part 1

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hugely important thing is the concept of
playing with other people.
Now, you may feel that you're just getting
started and
you're not ready to play with other
I have a student who's been playing for
about two years and
he's gotten very far along the way.
And, he still feels like he's not quite
ready yet.
Well, I had a chance to talk to Earl
Scruggs about this and I said,
what would you say to a beginner?
And he said, play with as many different
people as you can
right from the beginning.
And, I think Earl should know.
And, what he, I think what he's saying is
even if you're just doing simple chords,
even if you're just strumming you can just
play along with a guitar player.
Or if, you know, play Boil Them Cabbage
You must know someone who plays the
guitar, or it could be a mandolin or
even a piano.
And, just have them, [SOUND] just strum a
G-chord or hit in on the piano or
whatever instrument they're playing,
And then, have them strum on the C chord,
and then strum on the G chord.
And, the D seventh, and so on and so
For one thing,
just playing music brings you into a whole
social arena that you never knew existed.
This whole bluegrass thing,
it's just a wonderful wonderful world in
which to live.
And, you go to bluegrass festivals and
there's a lot of parking lot jamming and
you just, I have to say,
almost all of my best friends are through
music, particularly banjo players.
But, I have such a close-knit, group of
people all around the country,
cuz I tour a lot.
But, you'll just meet some of your best
And, it's a great thing to do rather than
just sit around watching television.
And, in a strictly technical sense, in
terms of what it does for
you playing with other people, it teaches
you about back-up.
It teaches you about improvising, just
working with other people,
playing leads, what to do, how to backup a
certain instrument at a certain time.
How to improvise,
which is a hugely important thing that
I'll be getting into in a little bit.
So, I can't say enough about the idea of
learning to play with other people.
A good friend of mine, Pete Wernick has a
whole bunch of jamming videos out.
And, he ha, he holds he, he has a jam camp
kind of a thing where you learn to play
with other people and so you might want to
check him out.
But, as you're playing with other people
you need to know some backup.
That's one of the important things to do.
So, I'm gonna talk about some backup.
And then, I'll talk just a little more
playing with people and what's involved.