Monday, December 8, 2008

Banjo...It's a Happy Instrument

Well, it started when I was just a sprout, when my sisters taught me a little on the guitar. They would show me a chord or two, then I would practice until I could do it. This went on through my youth until after my return from overseas in the military, I did a stint in a top 40's show band up and down the East Coast. After a couple of years of that I opted for a real job, and just did some playing now and then.

A few years later I was at a festival, still doing my top 40 and rock stuff, and there was a guy playing a banjo. I stopped and watched, listened, and wow...I just had to learn how to do that too. So through some contacts I found someone who used to play on the Grand Ol' Opry, was fantastic on several instruments, lived nearby, and talked him into giving me banjo lessons. This went on for about a year and a half, until I was starting to really put things together on my own, new licks, finding my own style.

There are several types of pickin', from old time clawhammer to what I do, the three finger "Scruggs" style. I love to play the bluegrass, gospel bluegrass tunes, and just pick out different artists styles to play. I've never had a more relaxing time then when I'm just sitting and playing on the couch for Tanner. And the best part is, he don't even run away!

Sometimes people don't understand that I play bluegrass banjo, yet love to sit and listen to Queen, Pink Floyd, Bon Jovi....I guess it seems to much of an oxymoron. The bad thing about getting hooked on the banjo though, is you seem to come down with "B.A.S", or "banjo aquisition syndrome"....always looking for that better or different sound. This can start to really add up.

So if there's anybody out there who likes this, or any type of instrument, give a shout, leave a comment, I'd love to hear from you. Enjoy the music, whatever it is.....