Clawhammer Banjo Lessons

We are proud to teach both bluegrass banjo as well as clawhammer banjo. Below you will see the outline of our Clawhammer Lesson Plan. We are adding several lessons every week with our eye on over 200 lessons before the year is out. When you subscribe to Banjo Mountain you get access to all of the clawhammer lessons as well as the bluegrass lessons. Many of our students choose to learn both styles while some prefer to focus on one. The choice is yours!

Beginner Banjo Lessons

We are really proud of our beginner section. With over 60 lessons it takes a student from zero musical experience to playing a song proficiently. Below you will see the outline of our Beginner Course as well as four sample lessons just to give you a taste of how we do things. However, if you’re serious about learning banjo then join Banjo Mountain and experience our easy step-by-step method.

Beginner Banjo Lessons

We are really proud of our beginner section. With over 60 lessons it takes a student from zero musical experience to playing a song proficiently. Below you will see the outline of our Beginner Course as well as four sample lessons just to give you a taste of how we do things. However, if you’re serious about learning banjo then join Banjo Mountain and experience our easy step-by-step method.

Lesson 1 – Holding the Banjo

Before we get started picking, let’s make sure you’re holding the banjo correctly. Good playing starts with properly positioning the banjo in your lap. While it’s important that you hold it in a way that feels comfortable, there are some specific guidelines you’ll want to follow to insure clean, precise playing. Let’s take a closer look at them.

Lesson 2 - Right Hand Basics

The right hand technique in clawhammer could not be more different that bluegrass. You don’t use picks. You don’t anchor. Everything is different and we get “the claw” setup right. 

Lesson 3 - Positioning the Fretting Hand

How do you hold the neck of the banjo? A lot of players make mistakes when starting that stay with them through their life of playing the banjo. Start off with good foundational technique.

Lesson 4 - Fretting Basics

What are the frets? How do you hold the neck of the banjo? What are best practices for fretting the strings? We cover all this and more.

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Lesson 5 - Tuning

You can tune using a tuner or your smart phone. You can also tune the banjo to itself using your ear. Learn how to do all three as well as pitfalls to be aware of.

Lesson 6 -Chord Basics I

If you’re new to music, you’ve heard the word “chords” thrown around. Now you’ll find out what a chord actually is and how to play it. Check it out – you’re well on your way to learning how to play a song!

Lesson 7 - Chord Basics II

Alright, we’ve done some practicing with the basic G, C and D7 chords and our transitions between all three chords are getting smoother and smoother.  Looks like you’re ready now for some more advanced chord work!  No better place to start than with the four-fingered (fretted) G and D chords, two of the most common-four fingered chords used in bluegrass.  Try ‘em out for size!

Lesson 8 - Tablature

Tablature can feel like heiroglyphics but it’s actually quite simple. It’s a visual represenation of the banjo neck and a very easy way to “read” music. In this lesson you will understand tab and how to read it. Which, of course, will unlock a door to an unlimited number of songs to learn.

Lesson 9 - Basic Picking Mechanics

Lesson 10 - The Bum Ditty

Lesson 11 - The Hammer On

 

Lesson 12 - The Pull Off

Lesson 13 - The Slide

 

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