A very rough cut of the first half of The Ladbroke March written by Charles Skinner in the late 1800's.

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Comment by thereallyniceman on June 12, 2013 at 17:47

Very good Michael. You have obviously been playing another banjo or guitar style as you have made a lot of progress with this March.

Two things that I would suggest...

1st. The obvious.. get some nylon strings on that banjo and put the resonator back on so that you don't cut your leg off on those flanges!   ... even better still buy an open backed banjo exclusively  for classic style.

2nd. To bring out the foot tapping March tempo try to stress the first and second beats in this 2/4 piece.   

thus:  1 - 2 - 1 - 2 - 1- 2  or imagine marching  LEFT - RIGHT - LEFT - RIGHT - LEFT - RIGHT

Emphasising strong first beats in the bar will bring all your playing to life  :-)

Looks good, so keep up the hard work!


Comment by Michael Bean on June 12, 2013 at 18:32

Hello Ian,

Thank you for the comments and suggestions. I am currently looking into purchasing a open back pot to replace the flanged one. I had the resonator off originally because before the video I was playing some Clawhammer and Seeger Strum tunes. I am also a Classical Guitar principle at Eastern Michigan University where I study Music Education. I don't know that I'll ever put nylons back on this (at least not for a long while), but I am also looking to have a 19th Century "Minstrel" Banjo built and that will surely use the nylons. Originally, I had started working on this tune with a Gourd Banjo that was on loan and it sounded wonderful.

Comment by thereallyniceman on June 12, 2013 at 21:18

Those new to classic style are often so busy reading or remembering the notes, concentrating on alternate fingering or ensuring the hand shapes are correct that the rhythm is often neglected. I hope my suggestion regarding the beat will help less "experienced" beginners.

Michael, It will be great to see your progress into the Classic Style as you are obviously a talented musician. If we can help with anything please do just ask!

Comment by Mike Moss on June 13, 2013 at 7:58

Well done Michael, great performance for a first recording. Most Classic Banjo pieces aren't all that difficult and it's all in the flair -- the beat and the drive, but that mostly comes from listening to a lot of classic banjo. If you ever decide to get a banjo for classic style it needn't be an expensive one. I played a nylon-strung gold tone CC50 with a morley bridge recently (the cheapest gt entry-level openback) and I was surprised at how good it sounded. CB players used plenty of cheap banjos back in the day so expensive does not necessarily mean authentic. In the Pathe newsreel recordings of Tarrant Bailey Junior he plays a resonator banjo that sound awful and wonderful at the same time -- if that means anything.

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