Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

Should I keep playing songs I know

Howdy I have been trying to teach myself the 5 string for about 2 years this time (started years ago but couldn’t make any head way) I just joined as a gold pick member this month. my question is I have watched the full study on rolls forward, reverse, square. working hard on the forward roll and I want to add the other rolls in turn. Should I keep playing songs I have worked on, and I enjoy, or stop with them and move only with the lessons at this, time thanks for the help.


Hi David, Great question and a wise decision to join as a Gold Pick Member. I started out twelve years ago self teaching with the Murphy Method and tried many different teaching methods along the way, each resource added something new to my knowledge and skills. But it wasn’t until I joined @BanjoBen as a Gold Pick member that I really started to make progress on the banjo. I would encourage you to keep practising the tunes you’ve learned and enjoy but also keep moving forward learning new lessons as you go. Choose one day a week or every two weeks to revisit tunes you already know. As you move through Ben’s lessons you will constantly be upgrading your playing skills and that includes roll patterns.


Archie’s right… It’s ok to keep playing songs you know but also mix in learning new material and challenge yourself. That’s how you will improve. Also, the more advanced you get and the more you learn, the songs you already know will start sounding even better as you add more improv of what you’ve been learning.

The most important thing is to keep it fun and enjoyable!


Archie has a good approach to it…

I regularly re-visit things I already know. When I learn a new lick I like a lot, I look for places I can use it in songs I’ve already got down.

Part of my normal practice is like a constant “bag o licks” lesson.


I can’t speak for anyone else, but I’ve actually forgotten how to play songs by not practicing them from time to time. I’ve had to completely relearn a song more than once.

Keep playing, add licks, and build your repertoire.


Me 2 @Mark_Rocka but I have also remembered tunes I haven’t played in years weird I know




thanks to all . I practice everyday for about 2 hours and to keep the old songs alive every 2-3 days great idea thanks again


I share the same thing as @Archie and @Mark_Rocka … well, sort of… as I don’t have nearly the depth of songs or playing experience as these skilled fellers!

For me… Since my song list is MUCH shorter … it is bits, pieces and passages of songs that I go back, re-read and rediscover… “Oh, that passage is different than what I thought it was… or different than what I play from memory!” Lol! :thinking::face_with_hand_over_mouth:


Yep, keep 'em alive but fix bad habits inside those tunes if you notice them. Honored to have you!