Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

Discuss the Mandolin lesson: How to Play Slides on Mandolin

You see that note over there? Go get it! We’ll learn mechanics for slides, give you some great exercises to practice, and a fun game!


Awesome. Another great lesson for the mando. Brother guitar and sister banjo are shedding tears these past few weeks and cousin mando is smiling! I do have a technique question about downward sliding. Just like the back end of the doppler effect sliding downward for me is always quieter. Other than practice are there techniques to maintain volume when sliding downscale?


I find the same to be true for me and it seems I have to apply more pressure to maintain sustain, which is about the only tip I have.


Mr Ben,
ANOTHER great lesson!
Do you have any suggestions on how to lessen the sliding noise from the strings?

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Great information and very helpful for me. I have a lot of practicing to do. Thank you for all the awesome lessons.


This is GREAT! I’ve always had fits on Bill Cheatham trying not to overshoot that slide from 4 to 7 on the E string and this helps a LOT! Thanks!


Great lesson on slides!
I’d not heard anyone ever say that your left hand fingers should point to your right shoulder!
I also liked the discussion of equal pressure between your left thumb an left index finger. I’ve not been wrapping my thumb much, but tend to use more on the tip of my thumb, like a classical guitar player does. So now I tried to wrap my thumb more, and I’m able to do it much better than I have in the past!
I also am trying to wrap my thumb on the two octave scales and I can, EXCEPT when doing the two octave “B” scale. I find myself bracing with the tip of my thumb again. Is this normal, or should I work to try and wrap my thumb on the “B” scale also?


There are times that I use the tip of my thumb for really big stretches, but not necessarily with scales. Thanks for your kind words and I’m so glad the lesson has helped!

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Thank you so much! The biggest things would be:

  1. Make sure your mandolin action is as low as you’d like, setup is good, etc.
  2. Clean your strings and/or use a string with coating.
  3. Do not use more pressure than what is required to get a good note/tone.

I’ve always had trouble with that 5>9 slide on the A strings on your Cherokee Shuffle lesson, but it’s starting to get more consistent now with just a little practice on this lesson. I’ll work on that every day for a while and I bet I will nail it in the not too distant future! Love that lick as well, by the way…