Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

Happy New Year from Newbie Keith From Missouri

Hi Gang,
My name is Keith from Missouri. I have been playing on and off for years. Self taught, if you want to call it that. Now that I really want to learn correctly all I have found is that I have years of bad habits to correct. I am a beginner / intermediate but I am going to start back at the beginning with the basics and see where I can go. I bought a membership to the site for a Christmas present instead of trying to convince myself that I just need a better banjo. Do you guys ever do that to yourselves? Well clearly if I had a more expensive instrument then my playing would get better immediately, right? Is is just me? :grin:
I have an Epiphone Model MB250 . It’s a good banjo and really all I need for now. I just have to get over the “it’s not me, it’s the instrument” syndrome.
Interestingly enough my musical career has always been that of a drummer. I was pretty good and kept great time. However for some reason whenever I pick a stringed instrument I always speed up. Anyway, I have a LOT to work on and I just wanted to say hi and Happy New Year.


Hi. Keith and Happy New year, you pretty much explained me right there in a nut shell, except i never played a musical instrument before this banjer stuff . i have 2 good banjos but i want them all lol.

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Hi Keith and welcome.

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I saw your profile proper now, Keith. Welcome.

I am in my 50s and just started about 1.5 years ago.

I am the polar OPPOSITE of you. While I am looking for a resonator Banjo - I have the hollowcack Epiphone MB-100 and I feel like the banjo I have is much better than me!

I just got up the courage to post my first song (see Worried Man Blues in Video Swap.

I really like Ben’s site and think you made a good decision to join. My wife notices my improvements since joining 6 months ago.


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Welcome. I bought a Gold Tone CC-50 openback off craigslist that was unplayed for several years by the guitarist that sold it to me. I tinkered for a couple of months to see if I was really interested. Then I restrung it med light ghs banjo strings. The instrument immediately sounded better and stayed tuned much better. Maybe this would be an easier alternative to more instrument syndrome.

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I think so… but I would like to get a banjo with a resonator. I like the idea of something different… to try my hand on… someday.

I will always keep my 1st Banjo: Epiphone MB-100. However, I may take it somewhere for a “professional” setup and improvement

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My MB250 is a good banjo. I would recommend them for the price. Nice tone ring and it sounds good. I had it set up and it does well. My problem is I never took time to try to learn correctly. That is my goal for the new year and beyond. Currently practicing the box/alternative rolls. I have never purposely work on those and boy does it show!

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Will, you’re not that far for Elderlies’…they have some great lutiers there.

There are a few guys not too far from you that I know & could do it but not sure how to get you in touch with them right now…I think one is a member here but I don’t know his “handle”.

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Thanks for the idea and keeping an ear to the ground for me!

Welcome, Keith! Glad to have you here.

I’ve gone through the “I need a better instrument” phase many times. You might want to try heading out to some music stores or pawn shops and playing some other instruments. If your experience is like mine, you’ll soon find out that your instrument is just fine and you’ll lose that bug.

Good to hear you’re going back through all of the basic lessons. I’ve noticed a lot of “100 days” videos on Facebook lately. Maybe you could make one of those. Just video yourself every day, then create a video of all of the highlights of your journey. Not only would it be good for you, it would be inspirational to others.

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Happy New Year to ALL from Bonnie Scotland


Great to have you, Keith! Keep me posted on your progress!

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Currently trying to undo years of bad habits