Music has been a love my entire life. Though I primarily professionally played keyboards, I also have played trumpet, guitar, and bass.
What was it that first got you interested in playing the guitar, mandolin, or banjo?
I remember when I first heard the Darlings (The Dillards) on The Andy Griffith show as a kid and the banjo style of picking was fascinating to me. I thought how great this picker was to play so fast and have that far away look in his eyes like he’s off in another world. Great act. Later Earl Scruggs on the Beverly Hillbillies peaked my interest a lot. Then Roy Clark, Bill Monroe, Steve Martin and Bela Fleck kept my interest through the years. So in 2016, I thought I would try to learn how to play the banjo. I bought my first banjo and started out, like most, learning rolls. The first song I tackled was The Ballad Of Jed Clampett. That took a long time.
How long have you been playing and what’s your motivation to play?
I’ve been playing music since I was 9 years old. I played Keyboards in bands for about 14 years. I wanted a more stable lifestyle, met my future wife in Tampa in 1984. Been happily married ever since. My motivation is to be a good musician so I keep playing.
What’s your favorite lesson on Ben’s site and how has it helped you improve?
My favorite at the moment is the Banjo Fretboard Geography with Alan Munde. It has taught me how to move around the fretboard a lot better. But I have to say that every lesson @BanjoBen teaches has something new for me to learn, like variations on rolls, picking, and scales. TheTab and TablEdit are GREAT tools. And the back tracks are perfect for playing along with to get people used to playing with others. The Forum has a great group of musicians who can answer any question.
What’s your goal when playing?
My goal is to play relaxed, fast and have that far away look in my eye like I’m off fishing somewhere. LOL! My goal is to be able to play with other pickers and stay up to speed.
What’s your favorite hobby?
My favorite hobby the past two years has been the banjo, but fishing, electronics, home recordings, and gardening are also on my list.
How long have you been a gold pick member?
June of 2017
What do you do for a living?
I’m retired since 2016 but I was a residential appraiser for Hillsborough County in Tampa for 35 years.