Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

Guinness World Record

My wife and I are going to be vacationing in the Marion VA area in August. I just caught this over on the Cafe: … A-August-4

I was bringing my instruments with us anyway, and Galax looks like it’s about an hour away from the Cabin we’re staying at. So. I’m going to be famous. I knew I would someday.

Be sure to get some pictures. That’s pretty cool.

Will do. Caught some youtube of earlier records down there and it wasn’t quite the cacaphony I was expecting.

We did it!

I show up for 2 seconds several times in the TV segment: … -in-galax/

The number was dropped to 491 when they discovered 2 people were faking it. I think they were both behind me, one of them thanked me for blocking their view when we finished and I thought she was being sarcastic, but nope, she was just holding an instrument with the price tag still dangling off the headstock and trying to hide from the cameras they were using as part of the verification process.

Here’s a 30 second clip of ‘Old Joe Clark’ with yours truly in the red tee shirt and scowl (apparently I’m always scowling when I play, I call it concentrating) : … YuULa?dl=0

Full clips of the 1st 3 tunes, professionally recorded by my wife who couldn’t see the screen so randomly aimed it towards the grandstand, are available on request. LOL. She lost interest by the time the 4th tune came around, and frankly I can barely get through the shorter 30 second snippet myself.

Good call on the red shirt. It made you stand out in the crowd.

With that many mandos I’m surprised they could suss out who could play and who couldn’t, but it looks fun. Bet there was some good campground jammin’.

I forgot my lucky straw hat though. We were about 8 hours down i81 when I remembered.

The campground jams were the best part of the entire event. We actually left the Mandolin Contest after 20 minutes to cruise the camp because we were only day tripping. The way they do Old Time Music up here in MA, a little bit goes a long way for me, but I could’ve listened to some of those pickers down there all night long. Next time we’re in the area we’ll do it in the evening. I could use another 10 or 12 tunes in my repertoire and I’d feel comfortable trying to join in. Alot of Ben’s stuff would work.

In fact the second tune I ever learned on the Mandolin was Ben’s version of ‘Cripple Creek’, which came in handy last week. I also used his simpler version of Angeline The Baker, took me 15 minutes to learn that, but it’s been a month and I’m nowhere near close to mastering the crosspicked version.

Very cool trip!

I think I saw the lady behind you faking it.

— Begin quote from "Jim_G"

(apparently I’m always scowling when I play, I call it concentrating) :

— End quote

I have that problem too Jim. When I play in church, my wife and even other members have told me that I look mad. I’m so focused on trying to do well, that I can’t relax and just enjoy it. Not to mention that I’m a nervous mess. I guess the better we get, the easier it becomes to play, which will give us more confidence, which will make it more fun to be in front of my church family (or whoever we may be playing for), which in turn creates a happy, relaxed, glad I’m here, can’t wait 'till I get to do this again face. Whewww!!! I’m outa breath! Keep doing it is the answer.

I was at Galax last year and saw the guitar, mandolin and dobro contests. (A friend of mine got third on dobro). I hate to say, but sitting there watching over and over, kinda got old. I had more fun walking around and seeing all the jams going on throughout the campgrounds. Alot great music going on. Too bad we couldn’t have gotten our years together at Galax.

The Mandolin contest was on Tuesday and yeah, I only made it through the first 4 contestants when I got antsy. The Campground was slowly coming alive after sleeping the entire afternoon, so we just walked around catching jams.

I want to be more like the guy in the long hair, 3 rows behind the headstock of my instrument. Check him out at about 19 seconds into the video my wife took. We are planning on another week of vacation, with an evening at Galax. Not sure if that’s next year or the year after right now, but I’ll check in when that gets closer.

Jim, please be careful trying to emulate the long haired dude. Head banging leads to premature death of brain cells. That’s probably how I arrived at my low IQ.

Yeah, sigh, Mike, I’d probably throw my back out or hurt my neck trying that. Maybe I can just try wearing all black.

BTW, JW, congrats to your friend. He/She must be really good to finish that high at Galax.

We wuz robbed! … d/36016728

So it wasn’t a world record. Pbblt, my new favorite memory of the trip just changed to the ‘wild’ ponies on Mt Rogers: … …

That stinks! It was easy to verify… there were plenty of shots where they could be counted. I smell a little rat at Guiness.

Too bad rules and regulations condemn so many fun and innocent things in today’s world. Common sense at the top is nearing extinction anywhere you go! :unamused: