Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

He Could Have Called Ten Thousand Angels

A friend at church asked me to learn this song, which, for backup, is not that big of deal. But then he wanted a banjo break. LOL

how would I go about dissecting the break/melody to come up with my own? it doesn’t seem very long or even that complicated. I think in the video they are singing in A or Bb… We are going to try it in C.

find the melody notes in the key/position you want to do the song in and fill in around those to create rolls/licks that you like and think fit the mood and style of the song.

oh that sounds easy. lol :astonished:)

I think fiddlewood is off the internet for a while. It really is as simple and as difficult as what he posted. The process is simple, but it takes time and effort. Start by figuring out what key/position you want to play it. Then figure out the the melody. Just the notes of the verse with no embellishment. Then start adding to it. You can just play the melody then do rolls on the other chord notes, or you can come up with notes (licks) to connect the melody notes. I am not a banjo guy, but at first glance for a song like this I on guitar would probably be doing the equivalent of a simple melody with some basic rolls to fill in the dead space between the melody notes.

It helps me to Tab out the melody. If you don’t have Tabledit, you can get it here:
The free version allows you to save only 16 measures. The full version is like $59. If you are having trouble getting started, post where the hangup is (figuring the chord progression, finding the melody notes, embellishing). I suspect with more specific problems others will chime in with more specific suggestions.

Good luck and let us know how it is coming along.

— Begin quote from "paulmonsef"

oh that sounds easy. lol :astonished:)

— End quote

Ha! That’s what I thought when I read fiddlewood’s advice, too. He’s right, but he boiled a lot of info down to just a few words.