Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

Will the Circle Be Unbroken Banjo Contest!

Most contests are out of reach for beginners, but not this one! Closely follow the instructions below to be entered! WATCH THIS VIDEO!

Contest Lesson: Will the Circle Be Unbroken Build-a-Break
Contest Submission Deadline: Wednesday, 13 June, at 11:59PM Central


  • Must submit video link on THIS THREAD below by Wednesday, 13 June, at 11:59PM Central.
  • Play the first solo from the build-a-break lesson to receive an entry.
  • Receive ADDITIONAL entry for each additional solo you play from that lesson, up to 3 total.
  • One video per entrant. Do not submit multiple videos.
  • Rhythm track is required. See next rule.
  • Use one of the JamTrack MP3’s on the lesson page to record with. The speed doesn’t matter–you choose!
  • A maximum of three entries per contestant, one for each solo you play from the lesson.
  • US residents only (for prize purposes, unless you agree to pay shipping). See FAQ section below.
  • Video submissions must allow me to hear and see you play.
  • First drawn winner will receive a Bluechip thumbpick of their choice, a set of strings, and a case sticker, a $50 value!
  • Two additional winners will receive a set of strings and a case sticker!
  • Winner to be announced both here and on facebook Thursday, 13 June.
  • All contest participants give permission for me to possibly share their name, general location, and video submission both here and to social media.


Do I have to be a Gold Pick member? A: No, but you must submit video link here which requires you to at least create a free Silver Pick account. You can do that HERE.

Do I have to use a JamTrack MP3 from your site to play along with? A: Yes, I want to encourage use of that resource for practice.

Do I have to play the solos perfectly? A: No, your submission can have mistakes. I want you to try!

How do I submit my video? A: Upload to YouTube, Vimeo, or another video hosting platform and paste the link in the thread below.

How are the winners chosen? A: I will take all eligible entries and enter them into a randomizer application that will select 3 winners.

Is shipping included if I win? A: Yes, if you are a resident of the United States. You may enter from abroad, but you are then responsible for shipping costs if you win.

If you have questions, please submit them below. I’ll answer them in an edit of this post and delete your post so that entries only will be shown below.


Here’s my post for parts 1 and 2. The cat was trying to help me on the first part. :slight_smile:


What do I do to create a video? What equipment do I need? Thanks.

There are lots of ways to do it with a phone, tablet, computer, camera, etc. The best thing to do is search youtube for help or have someone help you that has done it before.

If you have a smartphone, it is very easy. I simply use the video part of the camera and usually have someone run that for me. Once you have a take that you’re happy with, you can use the “share” function to post the video to YouTube. Then you simply copy the link and post it here! Easy! Except for the picking accurately part. I find as soon as the record button is pressed, my accuracy takes a serious hit… It’s fun though, I hope you can figure it out and submit an entry. Good luck!


My phone has that same bug. I hope they get that fixed soon. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


Lol my phone has that same bug too.

Hey all. I could only get part 3 to 180bpm so far (barely!)… get’s quite tough going from part 2 to 3 on this one (plus I only started playing in December and my fingers don’t quite move that fast yet!). Sorry about the sucky video angle/etc. I’ve never really recorded myself so hopefully next time I’ll figure out a better way to shoot the video. Maybe get a tripod or something.

PS: This site has been extremely awesome for learning and advancing on banjo so thank you Banjo Ben for the time you’ve spent doing all of this! I’ve only gotten a few lessons into the intermediate track.

Hopefully this youtube embedded iframe link thingy works. If not i’ll edit and I guess just point to the link? And… embedding doesn’t work. Just pasting the link…


Brother, I am blown away! I couldn’t buy a better commercial for my website than the video you just posted! Great job, and you’re farther along at 6 months that I was. Keep going, my friend. This one is good for 3 entries!


Wow! That’s really impressive for the amount of time you’ve been playing. Bravo!

1 Like

Was about to say the same thing @Mark_Rocka I’ve been plucking at the banjo 10 years and I am struggling with this arrangement. Scott surely has a gift

Deering Goodtime? Sounds good! :smiley:
Good Luck…

Butch B.

Parts 1 and 2. I struggle getting my pinky over to the 4th fret on the D string in measures 16 and 32, so I tend to just jump over to it really quick. Should I work on stretching my pinky there over time or do with what works best for me?


I just started working on this arrangement and short on time to get it note for note and am having the same problem. I think in the long term it’s best to practice on this stretch, (a lot), however, if I’m gonna be able to get a video in by Wednesday, I’m gonna have to do what works best for me now and do the jump! Have fun, and good luck!!! :smiley:

Butch B.

1 Like

Sounding good! You need to work on that pinky for the long haul, though. This is a fairly common lick that will come up again, and the use of the pinky will be needed up the neck more even more. You can do it!


Thanks for the very kind words! (Mark_Rocka and Archie as well thank you!).

I meant to mention my local instructor too (which also helped me tremendously getting started)! For about 3-ish months (Dec thru Jan… maybe Feb) I was taking instructions from a gentleman named Brian Fesler here in Nashville mostly once a week. Very awesome banjo player/teacher and super nice guy.


My wife got me a banjo this past Christmas. I love it! Thanks for the awesome lessons Banjo Ben!!!


I’m hoping this video comes thru. I’ve done a lot of learning today and the learning may not be over (making a video). Thanks for the teachings @BanjoBen.


Great job! Good for 3 entries! I’m loving seeing everyone’s entries…y’all are inspiring to me!


Hey @5stringpreacher, this one’s for you, buddy. :wink: