Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

Chris Jackson from Emmett, Idaho

What was it that first got you interested in playing the guitar, mandolin or banjo?
About 2 years ago I decided that the mandolin looked nice and cute and little and I’ve always loved the part they play in the bluegrass mix so thought I’d give it a try.

How long have you been playing and what’s your motivation to play?
Mandolin- I’ve been playing “around with” for almost 2 years now. It’s definitely a challenge, but I like being challenged. I play because it feels right and it makes me happy!

What’s your favorite lesson on Ben’s site and how has it helped you improve?
I’m just a beginner mando player and have a long way to go. I do get a kick out of the characters that show up to stand in for Ben sometimes… like the 2 leprechauns that play Irish Washerwoman! ALL the lessons are very well done and its easy to see and understand what I’m supposed to be doing. It’s another matter actually pulling it off! I sure appreciate the MP3’s in the slower speeds when learning. It helps to be able to play along a bit slower and not get discouraged.

What’s your goal when playing?
To have fun!

Are there any other instruments or genres of music that you enjoy playing?
I started playing guitar as a kid after a camping trip. One of the older girls in the family we camped with brought her guitar and we sang all those old fun folksongs. I was hooked and shortly after ended up buying a guitar at a yard sale for $10. What a deal! I’ve been playing guitar off and on since I was about 12. Mostly on… I enjoy playing rhythm guitar with worship team at church. We’ve actually done several Bluegrass/Southern Gospel sets on Sundays. Fun stuff!

How did you find out about Banjo Ben?
I was cruising YouTube for lessons after I purchased my mando and up pops the guy that I had seen singing with his sisters Katy and Penny. I figured if they all had so much fun together maybe the lessons on his site would be fun too. They are! So much to learn… so little time!

How long have you been a Gold Pick member?
About a year I think.

If you could play in anyone’s band, who would it be and why?
Purple Hulls! They radiate talent and joy!

What type of gear or accessories have you found that work best for you?
My BlueChip pick and my arm rest

If money was no object, what would be your dream instrument(s)?
Longer quicker fingers!

If you didn’t have to sleep, what would you do with the extra time?
Improve my flatpicking skills and learn to sing better.

Anything else you’d like to add?
Thanks Ben for quality lessons at a fair price. You have a nice website with all the tools we need to improve our abilities. If only it were as easy as you make it look!


Congrats Chris on being selected this weeks Gold Pick member.

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Congrats on being GPOTW Chris! Hope to see you around the forum!

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Congrats Chris!!! Awesome job! Keep spreading the joy man!!


Hey Chris, let me know if you figure out how to get some Ionger fingers!