Earlier this year. Bill Evans taught a live workshop series called Melodic and Single-String Banjo, a deep dive into the two bluegrass banjo techniques that were added to Scruggs-style to create exciting bluegrass music from the 1950s to the present day. Now, all of the video lessons, tab files, listening recommendations, and other materials from this in-depth workshop are available for subscription. Take a look at Bill’s course introduction video above, and go to the main Melodic and Single-String Banjo page to enroll!
The workshop consists of four sessions on melodic style and four sessions on single-string, starting, in each case, at the very beginning. But players already familiar with melodic and/or single-string banjo can gain valuable insights from Bill’s introductory sessions. From there, Bill introduces more advanced repertoire and technique. In addition to learning repertoire and a variety of licks, you’ll come away from this workshop with a deeper understanding of melodic and single-string banjo that will undoubtedly add a whole new dimension to your playing.
In melodic-style, you’ll explore the technique, theory, and repertoire (first developed by Bill Keith and others in the early 1960s) that allows you to play consecutive scale notes on different strings. In addition to the basics of the technique, Bill will explore different keys and advanced melodic positions that players like Noam Pikelny, Tony Trischka, Béla Fleck, and most contemporary bluegrass banjo players use.
In single-string, you’ll learn to play the banjo as if you were playing with a flatpick, using an alternation of thumb and index finger to play melodic lines. Bill will start with basic exercises and then explore scale positions based on chord positions in closed and open positions, in different keys, and up and down the neck.
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