Lesson #042, Rhythm and Counting V

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Lesson #042, Rhythm and Counting V

Hi Everyone,

Lets go back to the 1/4 note just for a bit. Remember the 1/4 note is equal to 1 beat..... we know there are 4 beats in 4/4 time. Remember the top number 4 is beats per measure....... the bottom number is the type of note..... or the 1/4 note or quarter note.

I'd like you to play the banjo over the guitar track using the 1/4 note. So each measure you be playing four notes on the Banjo. Lets count to four gain........ 1 2 3 4...........now using the 1/4 note you will be playing a note for each number. Your foot goes down on 1....you play a note.....your foot comes off the floor.... you play a note........your foot goes back down on the floor...... you play a note......your foot comes back off the floor....... you play a note. Four beats per measure......Four 1/4 notes per measure!

You'll be using these 1/4 notes quite a bit in your playing. Mostly in your back-up, but also in your soloing.

I'd like to talk at tempo as well in this lesson. Tempo is a word used in music for the speed at which you play a tune or a song. You can play a tune or song as fast as you want........as long as everyone else you are playing with is playing at the same speed! Whoever starts a song ...will set the tempo... its up to everyone else to keep that same tempo throughout the song. Always remember when you are learning new things to keep a very slow tempo..... then gradually build up your speed.


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In 2009, at the age of 60, I decided to learn to play the 5-string banjo. I searched the internet for lessons and struck gold when I found David Cavage's free banjo lessons at Musicmoose.org. His video hosting site revver.com was having some serious problems at the time so I downloaded as many of the lessons as I could whenever they became available. Revver.com stopped operating shortly afterwards and, sadly, Musicmoose.org is no more. I contacted David early 2020 and he told me he no longer had the original master videos and feared they may have been lost forever. This amazing course of free banjo lessons, from absolute beginner to advanced player, is too good to be forgotten, so this is my attempt to get David's work back out there again so that he can teach, inspire and spread the joy of banjo pickin' to more generations of budding musicians, just like he did with me. I've rounded up all the Moose stuff I could find and put it here, so start pickin' and enjoy!-------MooseHerder.