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Teach Yourself Bluegrass Banjo Paperback – January 1, 1999

3.5 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Series: Teach Yourself Bluegrass
  • Paperback: 64 pages
  • Publisher: Music Sales America (January 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0825603234
  • ISBN-13: 978-0825603235
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.2 x 12 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #791,024 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
The instruction in this book is easy to follow and teaches you the basic techniques you need to get a true bluegrass sound out of your banjo. The CD that comes with it, however, defeats it own purpose when Tony Trishka sings over the top of the banjo. Not only does he sound God-awful, but you can't even hear the music he's teaching you to play. Even on the instrumentals it gets frustrating because he's clearly not playing the exact same tab that is in the book. To his credit, however, every thing that is in the book, even the simplest 4 note exercises, are also on the CD.
So 5 stars for the book, 2 stars for the CD, 4 stars for Tony's pickin', and 1 for his singing. Unfortunately this may be the best instructional book for bluegrass banjo beginners available. And I do recommend it. Just don't expect the CD to help you through your learning very much.
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Format: Paperback
This tutorial seemed to be written well enough, but as a complete banjo newbie I found it frustrating. It's didn't seem to offer enough variety of learning exercises at each new skill, so that I felt stuck trying to learn the same example over and over. I gave up on this book and bought "A Manual on How to Play the 5-String Bango for the Complete Ignoramus" by Wayne Erbsen (...) and I'm now having a great time learning clawhammer style as well as the slides, etc. that seemed so frustrating in Tony's book. Maybe it's better if you have more banjo experience to start with.
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Format: Paperback
Using this book I learnt to play a pretty fast and deft version of bluegrass yardstick Cripple Creek within four months, practicing for less than an hour a day - so it must work! The first two months weren't much fun, slogging thorough a hundred different versions of the same two tunes. But it picked up half way through, when real music was introduced and it became gratifying to play and improve.

One thing I should mention, everyone's been complaining that this CD's got (awful) vocals and guitar tracks masking the banjo (the very reason they bought it). This is true, it's pretty distracting. However, I ripped my version to MP3 to listen to in on my PC, and to allow me to loop small pieces easily etc (much easier than scanning on a CD player by the way). Anyway, I found out that most tracks have the banjo playing through one speaker and the guitar/vocals playing through the other. Just tip the balance of the speakers 100 % left and you've got isolated banjo track. I suppose it works for a normal hi-fi too.

At least that worked for the copy of the book I bought in a music shop in Australia.
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By Doc on September 21, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this to go along with a banjo I decided that I needed to learn to play. Assuming that it shouldn't be that hard as I already played fingerstyle guitar. I was wrong. I would agree with others that the book seemed to be well written but I am not sure that some time with a professional teacher might not have been the route to go. Not an issue for me as I just sold the whole lot and went back to my guitar.
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