Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

The Dusty Trail!

This one was tough to upload, it kept saying “failed, metadata not saved, couldn’t save video information” but I left it to upload and it worked! This is an awesome song! Full details in the description at YouTube (click the video title instead of the play button to see it at YouTube)


Oops, the description was lost at YouTube, here it is:
This is a beautiful tune, which is uncharacteristic for a banjo tune…
I first heard the Hartley family playing this on YouTube, and immediately wanted to learn it.
This is about the fifteenth take, as I was having some trouble getting through twice cleanly. And I had to tune my banjo down half a step cuz the dtuners wouldn’t stay in tune at pitch, so I tuned down a half step and suddenly they stay in tune. I have no clue how that works… but I di like how it sounds slightly lower, I love lowered tunings.
Not sure I did the tune justice, but I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Tuning: fC#FG#C# 
Dtuner settings 
3rd string: F>D# 
2nd string: G#<A#

Banjo: Morgan Monroe MNB1
Dtuners: Cheat-a-keys
Strap: Lakota Leather 2" cradle
Fingerpicks: Sammy Shelor signature
Thumbpick: National Med
Camera: Samsung Galaxy S7 Selfie Cam

Nice Job Gunnar, What was your source for learning this one. Online lesson, TAB ?

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sounds awesome Gunnar

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Great job, Gunnar! Harmonics and D tuners at the same time? Awesome!

By the way, if your D tuners won’t stay in tune, you probably just need to tighten the screws at the base of the tuning pegs. There’s a sweet spot on those screws. Too tight and it’s tough to turn the keys. Too loose and they go out of tune.

Usually just takes a Phillips screw driver and some patience.

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One of the best named instrumentals ever… it just sounds like what one when play when sitting on a horse-drawn wagon and headed down a dusty trail.

I like it. Well played!

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Thanks everyone! Every so often I totally fall in love with a tune, and this is one such tune.

I asked on banjo hangout and someone had a tab. I wasn’t super happy about that, cuz it’s really hard to use tab by itself, but I learned it and then varied a few licks for my own taste or to sound more like Micah Hartley.

It wasn’t the fault of the tuners, each time I dtuned and came back up it was flat noticeably, but the tuner knob wasn’t slipping or anything. But I’ll check that next time

Especially for where I live, I’ve ridden down more dusty trails…

Thanks Gunnar

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That’s some mighty fine pickin’ and grinnin’.

Really well done Gunnar. It’s nice to be reminded that the banjo can be a beautiful melodic instrument. Sometimes banjo players fall into the ‘faster is better’ rabbit hole. Your recording is a testimonial to substance over speed. Keep it up.

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Always impressive Gunnar. That’s a good tune.

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DUUUUUUDDDDE! C’mon, you’re killin’ me. That was so cool, I was bobin my head up and down and sideways and every which way. Nice job and great smile at the end :grin:

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Great!! You are very talented!

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Thanks everyone!

Thanks so much! I love finding pretty banjo tunes that sound good (relatively) slowly

Thanks! I value the smile very much on other people’s videos, so I make sure to include it in mine. And I’m always happy to get through a tune cleanly.

Thanks Severin! Welcome to the forum, glad you could make it!

That is so cool, my friend.


Awesome! That was a fun tune and you did a nice job. I’ve never heard of it before, and I agree with you about it being a beautiful tune and it is certainly unexpected coming from a banjo. Love the ending.

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Thanks Ben, Mark and John!

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