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Old 11-14-2008, 08:00 PM   #1
Madam Broshkina
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Costello, Patrick: A Book of Five Strings. v1, 14 Nov 2008

A Book Of Five Strings
Strategies for mastering the art of old time banjo



From the introduction:

When I started playing the banjo I realized pretty quickly that the big picture boiled down to learning how to play the basic "bump dit-ty" strum while changing chords. Everything else involved was nothing more than the application and expansion of that basic skill set. This meant I could take the training concepts I had picked up in the karate dojo and apply them to the banjo.

The old timers I met agreed with me about the frailing stroke being the core technique of the style, but they also stressed the importance of rhythm. "It's the rhythm, kid. That's got to stay the same no matter what happens"

They also pointed out something that I like to jokingly refer to as the number one rule of folk music: "If you are in the rhythm of the song and following the chord progression it's hard to hit a wrong note."

Armed with this information I was able to get to work and start building up my chops. I wasn't mimicking the playing of another banjo player by trying to memorize the individual finger movements of a repertoire list. I was applying the basic skills and discovering my own voice as I went along. I wound up blending the discipline of my martial arts training with the sense of creative freedom my mother had instilled in me when I was growing up.

In this book we are going to take a look at these concepts and talk about how you can develop a personalized practice routine and skill set that you can use to "free up" your banjo playing in jam sessions and solo performances.

Come on, grab your banjo and let's get to work.


*** Includes musical notations so you can strum along****



This is the free online Creative Commons licensed edition of " A Book Of Five Strings: strategies for mastering the art of old time banjo".

"A Book Of Five Strings" is a genuine, printed on paper and sold in stores around the world "book". You can buy a copy at the Pik-Ware Publishing web site (http://www.pik-ware.com) or from Amazon. It is also available from your local bookstore or music store.

The only difference between this document and the book sold in stores is that this one is free. You can read it, send it to a friend, display a copy on your web site and, most of all, use it to learn how to play the banjo without spending a dime. You can even print it out if you wish. However, you will most likely spend more on paper and ink printing it yourself than you would by just buying a copy of the book.

Bucks County Folk Music Shop supplies us with top quality entry-level guitars and banjos for our workshops. We confidently send our friends there for any guitar or banjo related needs.

Be sure to browse through my other books."The How and the Tao of Old Time Banjo" and "The How and the Tao of Folk Guitar".

Patrick Costello
December 2004




This work is in the Canadian public domain OR the copyright holder has given specific permission for distribution. It may still be under copyright in some countries. If you live outside Canada, check your country's copyright laws. If the book is under copyright in your country, do not download or redistribute this work.

To report a copyright violation you can contact us here.
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