Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

Understanding Minor Keys (soloing)

Hey folks, mandolin player here who has found Banjo Bens lessons to be extremely valuable and I have improved my playing all around because of it. I play in a Bluegrass band and I still find myself “lost” when playing in most minor keys. I feel like my brain is set to “major” and I’m having trouble flipping that switch. Any video recommendations? Any advice? This is a simple fix but I’m not sure how to approach it.


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It’s not super simple, but you do get better with practice! One way to think about it is to play in the relative major key, yet use the minor root note. You find the relative major by counting up from the minor key 3 half steps. So, the relative major of A minor is C major. If I’m playing in A minor, I think of playing in the key of C major but starting and ending on A. Give it a try and let me know!

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Hi Mike

Like you I had trouble getting my head round playing in a minor key but in my case it was the banjo. Working through @BanjoBen 's lesson’s on this topic has really helped me.

Check these out and see if they help…