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I have been playing the jazz guitar (electric, bass) for 43 years now. I have no banjo background/experience. I got this book yesterday in Kindle format. The Kindle format comes with the video access to see the digital version of the DVD that came with the hardcopy version of the book. On the very first page of the Kindle book, there is a URL there. Just click that URL, and it will take you to a page where you need to enter your email address only once. I believe the email address is a token that matches to your amazon email address. Do not wait for Amazon to send you an access link. The link to access the video, as I said is on the front page of the digital version of the book.
Geoff Hohwald, the author, is one tough instructor, and I like it. He's serious about what he wants you to do and stresses the importance of getting things right first before going to another section of the instruction. The book touches everything, from the posture, tuning, using the fingerpick, to reading the tablature (love this part)...AND it comes with the backing track bass and guitar mp3s (downloadable) to accompany your playing. The backing tracks some in three speeds- slow-med-fast. There's no need to read music notation as, from what I have seen so far, there are all in tablature format. I am only on the first 10 minutes of the video, and then I stop and read the Kindle book. It is important that you read the book and supplement it with the video or vise versa. But the book has a lot of info that really gets into the specifics and fundamentals of banjo playing.
There are online banjo instructions sites out there; there's one that charges $250/month. Ridiculous. Uhh no thank you. This book should suffice as a good starting point to learning the banjo. For a guitar player like me, the transition or rather the learning curve is slightly easier to cope with because some of the fundamentals of guitar playing do apply to banjo playing... hand positioning, picking/plucking, posture, even tablature reading. But there are other basics in banjo playing that are completely different from guitar playing. The tuning is one thing which is completely different from your standard EADGBE guitar tuning. So all the blues scales, pentatonics, major, minor scales you know in guitar is out the window completely because of banjo's GDGBD tuning. And this is the beauty of learning the banjo, the learning to "walk-again" moment to me is a priceless experience.
Get this book. This is all you need to get started with banjo playing. To a guitar player wanting to learn to play the banjo, this is the only book you will need. To someone with no experience in playing an instruments, guess what, this book is all you need to. Highly recommended!
Worth every penny. I love how it works you up from simple finger movements to more complex instead of immediatley hitting you with a full F chord as another book does. Doesn't have you wade through a bunch of stuff that is merely nice to know. There are other books for that if you want to know the theory behind chords & scales, etc. The DVD and CD's are excellent. I think DVDs & CDs are the way to go over youtube stuff. It's very easy to have DVD and CD players repeat tracks for you and they don't require a good internet connection.
I love this book! You not only get the music book but you also get 2 play along CD'S and a DVD to watch and learn. I've played the banjo before in my late 20's I'm now 67 years old. If you have any interest in playing the BANJO, despite your age, I highly recommend this course. One thing I really like on the DVD is the guitar and mandolin accompaniment. I laugh every time I get to play with other musicians. All you ever need is patience and practice. Do not, I repeat, do not be intimidated! In no time you will be laughing along with me as you play along with the DVD, and at the progress you will be making!
The Banjo Primer Deluxe is an OUTSTANDING choice for beginner banjo players - even those that have dabbled in it already. I originally used a DVD course that was ok and tried youtube, but Geoff Hohwald's is a MUST. I am an experienced guitar player and always wanted to try banjo. This course starts out explaining everything you SHOULD know first (i.e. the parts of the banjo itself, how to attach a strap, proper posture, tuning, banjo care, proper positioning of your hands/fingers for correct technique and efficiency, etc.) Other courses will jump right in and have you picking away without taking the necessary time to give you this important education about the instrument. He also provides you with a fantastic set of tips on "how to practice" - these tips apply to any instrument and I wish I had these at my disposal when I learned guitar! Worth the price alone. Seriously. I learned so much faster and more accurately as well. My playing cleaned up and flowed naturally. The Banjo Primer breaks down learning the banjo in simple, easy to follow steps at a very slow and manageable pace. Then in small intervals he speeds each one up gradually. Bit by bit, note by note you then begin to piece together full measures in sequence until eventually you are playing an entire song from start to finish. Then, and only then, does Geoff challenge you with 5 different speeds of backing tracks to jam along with a bluegrass band. He proves that ANYONE (any age, gender or experience) can play the banjo and play it well. If you have the ambition and follow along patiently, there is no doubt you'll be picking away like a pro in a very short amount of time with this course. I still can't believe how inexpensive it is for what you get. Loads of fun! Highly recommended.
Really love this book, after buying many books or finding different videos this one is my favorite. The teacher Geoff is very nice and reminds you to be patient and keep going. Following the instructions makes so much sense and he explains how to do something, and counts out when your going to start, then as he plays the notes appear at the bottom with an indicator on the notes that are being played with. Because of this its very clear to play along with him. Everything is quite nice and I am really glad I found this free on amazon prime, but purchased it anyways because I wanted my own copy. Geoff has a website with additional books, one that is prior to this one that I've also found super helpful where its got a lot of tracks at different speeds so that you play along. I find it all very relaxing and satisfying to play along with the book.
First all let me state this to get it out of the way, this is a book. I can tell it is a book because it has pages and a cover. Like most books I read it left to right top to bottom. The words are big enough to be easily read. There is a dvd and a cd that are included with the book. The dvd contains video lessons that back provide a visual and aural reinforcement of the concepts the author is trying to convey. I do not recommend this book if you are looking to make bread but it seems to work quite well if you are wanting to learn how to play the banjo.
This style of learning worked very well for me, and there's a great selection of songs. Geoff's arrangements of Black Mountain Rag, Kickin' Mule, and Little Maggie are 3 of my favorite tunes to play. I do wish the audio tracks had the up-the-neck parts included, as I've downloaded them to my phone and it's easier for me to learn when I can hear the song on repeat. It's fine to replay the video to listen to the high parts though. Love that the specific exercises are laid out for each song. Highly recommend this book for beginners.
I recently got my first banjo- I already play a little guitar and ukulele- and was looking for a beginning book that would allow me to learn banjo at my own pace. This book/video/CD is terrific! It starts out slow and detailed and progresses step by step until you are playing whole pieces in a matter of days. As a music teacher I am well aware that starting out with good habits is essential when learning a new instrument. The book and practice CD allow you to practice as much or as little as you want, while the video shows you exactly how to play correctly. I'm really enjoying learning and playing my banjo. My progress after only a week is amazing. Thanks for a wonderful product.
The DVD that accompanys this book is very informative and easy to follow. If you follow course and do all the exercises, you will be playing in no time. I love how each lesson progresses through exercises, to each song at a slow speed, then gradually taking you up to speed. It also really helped me get my slides and hammers down to sounding right.