Forum - Banjo Ben Clark



I seem to recall this having surfaced from time to time… but cannot recall if you have ever attempted playing or teaching this style - even for basic or educational purposes?

Any thoughts on if it adversely impacts Scruggs-style? Do you specifically know:

  1. Any good players/teachers who play both styles?
  2. Any good resources for learning?
  3. Consider hosting a cabin session about it?

Well, not sure about your other questions, but I know Russ Carson plays both really well. The only player I personally know who does both is myself, and I will not comment on my skills (or lack thereof)

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I don’t find it to harm my Scruggs playing, as long as you kind of think of it as a different instrument

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I haven’t hardly touched it, no, but want to.

  1. I don’t know any offhand though my sister katy is working on it.
  2. I don’t know, no.
  3. Yes, I want to!

Have you seen the video Jake sent me a while back? It’s a quick, fantastic primer.



This clawhammer primer is soooo cool

Thanks @Mark_Rocka - for sharing this!


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Cool. Doesn’t look like it will be terribly hard to pick up with the help of this video. Here is my question. Do you ever pop your thumb and play a melody note at the same time?

I have yet to really sit down with this video, but I don’t see why you couldn’t.

I honestly feel bad that I haven’t gotten this down yet, considering how long it’s been since Jake sent it to me. I guess it’s just that learning a new technique just feels overwhelming.

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Brother, with your raw talent, I don’t think so.

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Not unless the melody note is a hammer on. It’s not too hard to pick up, if you do like Scruggs style, practice your right hand a million times first

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Ok in response to @WillCoop’s question on This thread, here’s some of the videos I used

Those are just a few of the videos out there, I’ve used each of these videos, and actually not many others. They teach enough technique to play pretty much anything if you put in the practice


Thank you, @Dragonslayer!


I know this is a fairly old thread, but any more thoughts Ben on having a Clawhammer curriculum? I’ve seen Jake’s demo, I’ve seem all the stuff on the Deering site, but really looking for more in depth teaching that is oh so wonderful here as a Gold Pick member. Nobody seems to teach as well as you guys do.

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Thanks! We actually have all the curriculum completed, just waiting on the new site launch which has been a bear. Sometime this year!


Cool! This is the first I’ve heard of the new site. Will lifers be grandfathered over?

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I believe so. I’m pretty sure I heard Ben say that he’ll honor your life membership no matter what, even if you bought it a decade ago for $75 :wink:

Will there be lifetime memberships available on the new site, for someone who doesn’t have one yet?