Mike Seeger presents a survey of southern banjo styles, teaching important historic pieces to help you develop a full range of repertoire and traditional techniques. Each lesson features a complete performance of a song or tune (played on a different historical banjo), commentary on its style and source, and detailed instruction for playing it using our easy-to-follow split-screen camera work.
The material presented here is based on Mike Seeger's Grammy-nominated Smithsonian CD "Southern Banjo Sounds".
Volume 1: Mike teaches nine historic songs using a variety of old-time picking styles including up-picking, clawhammer, multi-finger brush technique and others from the early African American and Southern Appalachian traditions.
Songs: Soon in the Morning Babe, Roustabout, Jim Crack Corn, Battle in the Horseshoe, Darling Cora, Devil's Dream, Little Birdie, Around the World and Whoopin' Up Cattle.
Volume 2 focuses on two- and three-finger techniques, some of which are the foundation for contemporary three-finger and bluegrass style.
Songs: Flop Eared Mule, Lost Gander, The Sailor and the Soldier, American Spanish Fandango, Got No Silver Nor Gold Blues, We're Up Against It Now, That's What Old Bachelors Are Made Out Of, The Last of Callahan, Lady Gay.
Volume 3 covers mid-twentieth-century styles, the majority of them using finger picks.
Tunes: Down South Blues - a Dock Boggs blues played with a "slide;" Last Night When My Willie Come Home - in Maybelle Carter and country rag-time styles; Wabash Blues - clawhammer instrumental; Bright Sunny South - Wade Mainer/Ralph Stanley "up-up" picking; Roll on John - Roscoe Holcomb style; Needlecase - early three-finger instrumental; Come My Little Pink - Earl Scruggs style; I'm Head Over Heels in Love - Mike's clawhammer version of Earl Scruggs style on an early Flatt & Scruggs song.