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Old Time Fingerpicking
Classic Style Banjo
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Banjo Lessons: Transposing 3: “I'll Fly Away” (Key of D)

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now, you're working with a singer and the
singer doesn't sing in G or C.
D is the most comfortable, key for her or
he to sing in and so let's try this in D.
Now for D, I'm going to move the fifth
string up to A and
I'm putting it under the.
The tack there on the seventh fret.
[SOUND] If you don't have one of those you
can just be, really brave and
just tune up the fifth string all the way
up to A.
You could
do it with the fifth string being, in the
normal G tuning as a G note but
it's a little punchier and a little
To have it as an A note.
Okay here's how I'll Flay Away sounds in
So there's some fun things in here, every
key you play out of,
when you're playing in different keys,
other things occur to you.
When you're in G you're always gonna be
thinking about hammers and slides and
all those kinds of things.
But in C, you find a different vocabulary
where you're
Where you're hammer,
hammering on zero-to-two on the first
string to bring out melodies, or
zero-to-two on the fourth string.
[SOUND] In D, this is something that I've
developed over a period of time,
just found myself doing.
Instead of getting the melody note, on the
first string, [SOUND] Cuz,
as we had the, the very first melody note
of the tune, being in the key of G.
Being the third note of the scale, the
open second string and then the key of C,
the third note of the scale.
That being the first string, second fret.
And D.
If you just go up on the first string it's
the fourth, fret of the first string, and
just as these are just notes of the
chords, some glad morning,
if you play D chord, just hit the first,
second, and third strings and
come back to the second string, and that
gives you the melody note.
But, I found that I really liked the sound
Of getting the melody note on the second
string and using the first string as a
drum, almost like a fiddle would do.
[SOUND] [SOUND] and doing pinches,so i'm
getting the first note up here, Seventh
fret of the second string, some [SOUND]
[SOUND] than
I just move it down to the third fret of
the second string.
And then I add the index on the second
fret of the third string.
And I'm alternating [SOUND] With the
fourth string cuz that's D.
Again, pinching with the first string.
Middle, index, middle, ring, middle.
then I'm sliding
And going to the fifth string.
And then sliding five to seven,
two eighth notes
Back down to another pinch on the fifth
fret of the second string with the first
string open.
Now I'm hammering on, on, for the G chord.
it's one thing to remember that even if
you're in the key of D where you think,
might think well, I don't know what, how
to play in D.
How do I find the melody?
Or do I make it sound Scruggsy.
Or, I, I'm not using anything I already
Well, it's not always true cuz on the G
cord, and
there are a lot of G cords in the key of D
You can just do this hammer on lick that
you've done, hopefully many times before.
If you're done.
Doing intermediate playing.
From the G you have the hammer on.
Back to this.
So I'm hammering on.
As quarter notes.
I'm hammering to the pinky.
It could be the ring if that's better for
Back to the same way we started.
That celestial shore.
really like the sound of this
So, I'm sliding.
This is the interval of a sixth.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
Oh, sorry.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
There it is.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
You're going
up six notes from the first note.
[SOUND] And you get that note right there
The melody note is,
The melody note's on the second string but
I'm sliding into it on the fourth string.
With the middle finger.
And as I slide I hit the second string,
then forward rolls.
Three forward rolls to the fifth string
[SOUND] On the first two strings.
Move the whole thing down one fret.
The middle and ring.
One more fret for quarter notes.
And then, open first now the index on the
third string,
I'm sorry 2nd sting, 3rd fret, middle on
the 4th string, 4th fret.
And then
Going pinky to index or ring, to index.
A little single string lick.
Thumb, index, thumb,
It's actually an alternating thumb roll,
if you wanna look at it that way.
It is, just doesn't have the ro,
the flow because you're doing a single
So, that's how it sounds in the key of D.
And it has a completely different flavor
all sorts of other options that you
wouldn't have in G or C.
It's not better, it's just different.
So it's really good to experiment around
seeing how things sound in different keys.
So I will do I Will Fly Away one more time
up to tempo and then slow it down.