Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

What did I get myself into?

The good news, is that I have one of the coveted spots at the “Banjo Only” camp in April. The bad news (maybe) is that the only slot available was clawhammer - so I snagged it. But now, its got me thinking . . . what have I done? :face_with_raised_eyebrow:

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I would have loved to have been able to go to one of Ben’s camps but since I live on the other side of the U.S. it isn’t really that practical for me… Clawhammer is definitely an interesting subject to learn (I’m not very good at it lol). It is a lot of fun though and you will have a great time at Ben’s camp! :grin:

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You’ll be fine. They’re gearing the class to people who have never played clawhammer. That being said, if you want to get a little head start, check out this quick video Jake sent me a while back. It’s a great starter lesson.

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Just remember, without clawhammer there would be no comedy relief! :+1:

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Well, one of the things I learned at Banjo camp back in October is that with the crazy amazing talent in and around Nashville I could take whatever level I thought I was at and dial it back. So, I went in thinking I was Intermediate(ish) and I left a humble beginner. But, the cool thing was that even with the varying degrees of talent, there was no pecking order and EVERYONE was approachable with no regard to skill level. Folks were just there to help one another. So, I’ll be relying on that heavily as I tackle clawhammer. :cowboy_hat_face:

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I was fortunate to be at the October camp. I learned so much more than I expected and brought back a lot of information to work on. You’re going to have a great time and if you go with an open mind to learn you will. I’d be very excited for the side trips which Ben started offering. I’d like to hear what you think when it’s finished. I bet you’ll be pleased with the class. Make sure you come back and let us know. Bonne chance!

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@blkelk31051 I was at the October camp - part of the Squirrel Nut Pickers. Are you the banjo lady from Missouri??

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Buckeye, you made a good point. Now I can’t decide if I am basic, intermediate , novice or what…lol. I wonder what really determines your level. I have been picking off and on for many years, but I bet if I sat down with Ben or Alan for a couple of minutes, I would use my banjo for firewood.!

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@pickers-wedge Hey - the cool thing with these folks is that they are there to HELP you get better. NOT to judge or classisfy you as a “beginner” or worse. :roll_eyes: It does not matter where you are at. What does matter is that you go in humble and teachable cuz if you don’t, you WILL be humbled. I based my level on songs I was playing and how @BanjoBen classified them on his website. Now, I would not trust Ben with his college football predictions, but he’s pretty good when it comes to banjo! :innocent:

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Yes! I was in the Squirrel stew group.

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I went to camp thinking I was a low level intermediate but quickly realized that I am still in the beginner class. I had only taken online lessons and can play a few pieces, so my deficits were revealed quickly. I had to come home and do the basic work I would have done with an instructor. But in saying that, there was no shaming or negativity from Ben or Katy. I’ve found the lessons on his site that I need to work on. I’m still practicing those Y and X shapes but it’s coming together. I hope to get to another camp, hopefully in 2022.

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