Course Duration10 Weeks
Bill's teaching is shaped to the needs and goals of each individual student. Playing with relaxation and utilizing comfortable hand positions for fretting chords and picking melodies is essential to a foundation of great playing. Bill will help you find what hand positions work best for you. From there, you'll learn the essentials of Earl Scruggs' three-finger picking styles and play bluegrass banjo classics such as "Cripple Creek," "Cumberland Gap," "Fireball Mail," "Foggy Mountain Breakdown" and much more. Other topics that can be discussed include accompanying others in bluegrass and folk ensembles, playing melodic and single-string styles, and learning the progressive banjo techniques of Bela Fleck, Tony Trischka, Noam Pikelny, and others playing fiddle tunes, jazz and contemporary tunes using the three-finger technique. Tablature examples are included in all of Bill's lessons and he has hundreds of topics to present. Student requests are more than welcome! The frequency of lessons is up to each individual student, depending upon their budget and available practice time.
The three-finger right-hand picking technique developed by Earl Scruggs ("Foggy Mountain Breakdown") opens the door to play all kinds of music on the five-string banjo. "Scruggs style" is great for playing bluegrass, country, and folk standards and also provides the technique that is ideal for accompanying singers and other instrumentalists in bands. In addition, Bill teaches melodic and single-string styles, which both can open the door to a more advanced study of scales, chords, and modes, while you learn to play fiddle tunes, jazz standards, Beatles songs and much more.
About the Coach: Bill Evans is a highly recognized and revered banjo player, known internationally for his talent and even being described as a "five-string banjo life force" by his peers. With a career that has spanned over thirty-five years, Bill is a passionate performer, a deeply knowledgable teacher as well as an excellent composer and writer. His thousands of fans worldwide, as well as his students, would agree that he brings an intense level of virtuosity as well as a contagious and unwavering passion to everything about the banjo.
Bill is known for successfully bridging the gap between contemporary and a more traditional sound, as well as shaking up the traditional playing techniques. Using these unusual methods, he has created a new style of music that is still firmly situated within the traditions of bluegrass while also drawing upon his vast wealth of knowledge of world music, classical and jazz. He has achieved this fine balance by using his previous experiences as a Music at the University of California graduate, his time in Berkeley, and of course, the International Bluegrass Music Museum where he is the associate director. As an expert player of the mid-19th century minstrel style banjo as well as late 19th to early 20th-century classic style banjo, Bill has a uniquely authentic performing style and showcases all of his widely diverse performing interests at his solo concert, "The Banjo in America."
ipassio enables the student to schedule lessons on days and times which work best for them. With payment collection and management being handled by ipassio, you'll be able to spend more time with Bill, learning to play great five-string banjo music!
Students enrolling for this course on ipassio can be sure that they receive individual attention from the teacher, as the class strength is limited to 1 or 2 students. It also gives teachers the opportunity, to gauge their student's progress in depth and make changes whenever and wherever required, to ensure the student gets the maximum out of this course. Since this course is detailed, students get the advantage of learning intricate details about this art form. The limited strength of the class also ensures that there is a strong bond between the students and their teacher clearing out any inhibitions that the student might have. The sustained guidance available from the teacher ensures that the student does not deviate from set goals or targets. Learning from a revered, experienced exponent of this art form, through the long duration of this course, keeps the student inspired and motivated to achieve more.
Bill has taught hundreds of thousands of banjo players of all levels from all over the world through his best-selling books and DVDs, hundreds of camp and workshop appearances and private lessons. His instruction is practical, down-to-earth and designed for the adult learner at any level, whether it be “how Earl & J.D. did it” or the latest in progressive melodic & single-string techniques. His books Banjo For Dummies and Bluegrass Banjo For Dummies along with nine Homespun, Murphy Method and AcuTab DVD projects have set the modern standard for bluegrass banjo instruction. He hosts two popular online banjo courses at Peghead Nation and has taught at almost every bluegrass camp in the world, in addition to hosting his own events in California and New Mexico. His own mentors include Sonny Osborne, J. D. Crowe, Ben Eldridge, Alan Munde, Bill Emerson and Bill Keith and in turn, he has helped many young professional players, including Chris Pandolfi, Wes Corbett and Jayme Stone. These days, he tours with his solo show The Banjo in America and regularly performs with guitarist Dan Crary and The Hard Road Trio. His latest recordings are Prime Time, recorded with Dan Crary and Wally Barnick, and The Banjo in America, a DVD/CD set from Old-Time Tiki Parlour recordings.
There are no prerequisites to participate in these one-on-one lessons with Bill. You will indeed to have access to a five-string banjo and Bill recommends having a carrying case, a strap and fingerpicks to make learning and playing easier and more enjoyable. Bill can help you with an instrument purchase and finding all of the accessories you need!