Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

Mike Boone from Jonesboro, Arkansas


What was it that first got you interested in playing the banjo?
I have always liked the sound of the banjo. Even though a lot of the songs are dark, the banjo always keeps a lively sound.

How long have you been playing and what’s your motivation to play?
I have been playing the banjo for three years now. I started playing because I have always wanted to play and life just got in the way. I decided that it was time to learn how to play and purchased a Deering Goodtime to start off with.

What’s your favorite lesson on Ben’s site and how has it helped you improve?
I am working my way through the Beginning Banjo checklist. My favorite tune as of now is The Wreck of the Old 97. This lesson has helped me improve by teaching me to listen for the melody while learning the rest that accompanies the melody.

What’s your goal when playing?
My goal while playing is to have a good time with the banjo. I purpose to keep in time with the music and to play it evenly and cleanly.

Are there any other instruments or genres of music that you enjoy playing?
I have played the guitar for some time. I enjoy Christian music.

How long have you been a Gold Pick member?
I started out being a monthly Gold Pick member a couple of years ago. I then upgraded to the lifetime membership in the spring of this year.

Do you have a favorite technique? What is it?
Scruggs style would have to be my favorite.

If you could play in anyone’s band, who would it be and why?
I can’t imagine myself playing in a band at this point in my playing. If I had to pick it would be the Lonesome River Band.

What type of gear or accessories have you found that work best for you?
My wife loves the banjo mute. The tuner that clips to the banjo is my favorite accessory.

If money was no object, what would be your dream instrument(s)?
A pre-war Gibson

If you didn’t have to sleep, what would you do with the extra time?
I would practice as long as my fingers could take it.


Welcome Mike! That’s a really good goal to have. Hope to see you around the forum!


Congrats on GPoTW! I enjoy playing Wreck of the old 97 too!

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Welcome Mike, Congrats on being GPoTW. I probably need a mute also.

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Congrats Mike!

I am very happy for you. I really enjoyed your profile and the “down to earth” honesty… like when you commented that you cannot fathom playing in a band at this point - as I feel similar with my playing…

Another example…

I suspect this makes you a man of all Banjo People as many of our spouses share this with you. A common thread among us :smirk: - even as we don’t like to admit it. :shushing_face:

I enjoy playing “Wreck” too!

As long as your playing isn’t a wreck… :smirk::wink::joy:

That is soooo true!

:joy::joy::joy: Sometimes I’ll be playing the “Wreck” on the mandolin, and forget what I’m playing and start “Will the circle be Unproken”.

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