Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

New Year Banjo Resolution?

  1. First, Happy New Year to Ben and ALL! :champagne::beer::beers::tumbler_glass::wine_glass::tropical_drink::cocktail::clinking_glasses:

Second, let’s get to task and declare our Banjo Year Goals and resolutions… large or Small!

Don’t “they” say that writing a goal down is the hardest but MOST CRITICAL 1st Step?

Maybe it is to master a lick or pick an ambitious (or simple but troublesome) song or Save for that next Banjer… or just use the comminuity here on the site for collaboration and kinship.

Whatever it may be, let me inspire and enable you here…

Banjo Billy-Bob


Already set and started my goals for 2018.

Study more up the neck Scruggs Licks & Phrases. Partial chord fingerings

Learn the following tunes.
Sally Ann
Sally Goodin
Dear Old Dixie
Devils Dream.

Opp’s I forgot Foggy Mountain Special


Mine is to really focus more on backup and timing


For me this year is all about going back to basics.


My goal is to learn all of the major, minor, and 7th chord positions all the way up and down the neck.


mine will be to learn D shape and F sharp 4 finger chords up and down. that is hard. training past 3 weeks minimal progress atm.

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I think mine will be to simply KEEP CALM and ROLL/HAMMER ON! I need to focus on accuracy and the melody note accents. I need to have G and Foggy rolls so engrained that they become just 2nd nature.

Maybe I am cutting too shallow for the whole YEAR… but right now, this is where my focus needs to stay. Perhaps not too inspiring but ESSENTIAL STUFF!

Next evolution to compliment the rolls is to develop my melodic playing using cross-string plucking and scales.

I am a beginner but I recently started pentatonic scales. 12356 for major. Finding ways to connect them like Ben’s chord walking has been very entertaining. No resolutions yet. I guess this post will motivate me to look for one.

Get my daughter back to University so I can get down to some real practice. She occupies my office/her old room when in on break. Lol.

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You are a champion on both fronts: 1) Daughter in college who comes home for holidays and heads back to learn. 2) BACK TO PRACTICING! :+1::+1:

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Yeah I was def joking. Love her very much but having to share the room not so fun at times! lol

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I get it and appreciate the honesty.



I have a resolution to actually play and practice more! I’ve been so busy on the new site and putting out fires…it’s time to hopefully pick!

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Old topic, how many of you got this stuff done? If you haven’t, there’s still a couple months left :wink:

Dear Old Dixie is as much as I could manage so far. Been spending a lot of time on @BanjoBen 's lessons Other goals remain a work in progress . Thanks for the nudge @K_G I will get on and spend some time on these other goals

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I saw that you posted a video of dear ole Dixie, but I couldn’t watch it cuz slightly more than half the YouTube videos posted disagree with my browser (chrome) (although it might be cuz I’m in Africa :thinking:) I know @BanjoBen has a devil’s dream banjo lesson so that would be a good start :wink:


I am very happy you posted this “reminder” - for all of us to consider.

As for me… I did work quite a bit on getting the Foggy Lick and G lick down as well as just practicing on Rolls. I also have dedicated myself to just slowing down to “play it clean” - as well as mentronome work for tempo consistency.

For ME (and maybe it is just me), I’d much rather hear a slower delivery that is cleanly played versus a rapid-fire rushed approach that is sloppy.

I know the speed will come with time.

Then, there is the focus on melody notes. I think I have embraced this more throughout the year also. Definitely room to improve… but the notes sound more musical when I pay attention to this from @BanjoBen ‘s advice.

I will be totally honest, I remembered most of what I wrote but admit that I didn’t consciously hammer these point THROUGHOUT the year.

However, maybe putting them here must have had an impact because I feel I made progress in each!

I will also admit that I have had a number of distractions that did slow my progress…

Newly-built home (too much to do there!), new job, and the joyful distraction of playing my new Mando…

Thanks for revisiting this…


Your welcome! It’s great to look back and see where you came from and project that progress onto the future, and it’s also cool to hear from others about their progress :smile:

Will there be another topic for next year’s banjo resolutions :slight_smile: ?

There will be if you make one :wink: