Sponsored By
 
 
Earl Scruggs: A Player’s Guide
with Bill Evans
Live Workshop
Live Workshop
Live Workshop
 
 
About This Workshop
 
Earl Scruggs: A Player’s Guide picks up where Earl’s renowned instruction book Earl Scruggs and the Five-String Banjo leaves off, teaching tunes and techniques that will help each student become a more complete Scruggs-style player.
 
 
Meet the Instructor
Bill Evans
 
 
Bill Evans is an internationally recognized five-string banjo life force. As a performer, teacher, writer, and composer, he brings a deep knowledge, intense virtuosity, and contagious passion to all things banjo, with thousands of music fans and banjo students all over the world, the product of a music career that spans more than 35 years and includes appearances with David Grisman, Peter Rowan, Tony Trischka, Dry Branch Fire Squad, Mike Seeger, Hazel Dickens and Alice Gerrard, Laurie Lewis, Jody Stecher, and many others. Bill has a master’s degree in music from the University of California, Berkeley, with a specialization in American music history and he has been a scholar/artist in residence at many universities across the United States. He is also the author of Banjo for Dummies, the most popular banjo book in the world.
 
 
 
The Earl Scruggs: A Player’s Guide Workshop Includes:
  • Eight one-hour live Zoom sessions, held every other Saturday, from 1 pm to 2 pm Pacific Time, February 30–May 29, 2021
  • Analysis and instruction for many classic Earl Scruggs tunes
  • Complete tunes as well as lessons on licks for lead and backup
  • High-quality video recordings of each session so you can review what you've learned and revisit them after the workshop has concluded
  • Transcriptions of songs in tablature for each session
 
 
Sign Up for Live Workshop
 
Workshop fee of $200, participate live or view recordings on your own schedule.
 
 
 

Earl Scruggs is without question the most influential five-string banjo player in the history of the instrument and a thorough understanding of his style is essential to playing bluegrass banjo well. Earl Scruggs: A Player’s Guide picks up where Earl’s renowned instruction book Earl Scruggs and the Five-String Banjo leaves off, teaching tunes and techniques to enable each student to become a more complete Scruggs-style player.

 

Among the topics to be covered are:

  • Easy Earl: straightforward tunes and solos (“Shortening Bread”)

  • Early Earl: Earl with Bill Monroe and His Blue Grass Boys

  • Fiddle tune and slow song (teardrop) back-up (“Fiddle and Banjo,” “I’ll Just Pretend”)

  • Solos to Flatt and Scruggs vocal tunes (“Head over Heels,” “Doin’ My Time”)

  • Up-the-neck solos & discussion of fingering (“Why Did You Wander?”)

  • Boogie-Woogie Earl, licks and solos (“Six White Horses”)

  • Drop-C tuning (“Farewell Blues,” “Ain’t Gonna Work Tomorrow”)

  • Earl’s most awesome licks for leads and back-up

Bill has also invited 1996 IBMA Banjo Player of the Year Charlie Cushman to join him as a very special guest for one workshop session. Charlie plays banjo and Earl Scruggs–style guitar in the Earls of Leicester, the Flatt and Scruggs tribute band led by dobro legend Jerry Douglas. He will discuss some of the most important aspects of Earl’s playing that move beyond tablature, including Earl’s fingering choices, right-hand rhythm and note spacing, and much more. 

For those of you taking Bill’s courses on Peghead Nation, note that there will be no repetition of Scruggs content with the lessons on the Beginning Banjo and Bluegrass Banjo courses. Please join us for this special eight-session live workshop!

 
 
Earl Scruggs: A Player’s Guide Workshop
 
Welcome to Earl Scruggs: A Player’s Guide
 

Bill talks about what he’ll be covering in his workshop and gives recommended reading and listening ideas.

 

 
SESSION 1: Earl Scruggs with Bill Monroe and his Blue Grass Boys, 1946–47
 

Bill starts Earl Scruggs: A Player’s Guide by talking about Earl Scruggs’s early years and then he looks at his playing with Bill Monroe from 1946 to 1947, with tab for “Cripple Creek,” “Molly and Tenbrooks,” “Ain’t Nobody Gonna Miss Me,” and “Blue Grass Breakdown.”

 
SESSION 2: Earl Scruggs and the Mercury Sessions (1948­–50) Part 1
 

Bill talks about Flatt and Scruggs’s groundbreaking Mercury Sessions, in particular Earl’s playing on the songs “Down the Road,” “No Mother or Dad,” “Why Don’t You Tell Me So,” and the iconic banjo instrumental “Foggy Mountain Breakdown.”

 
SESSION 3: Earl Scruggs and the Mercury Sessions (1948­–50) Part 2
 

Bill continues his discussion of Flatt and Scruggs’s groundbreaking Mercury Sessions, focusing in this session on the songs “Farewell Blues,” “Doin’ My Time,” and “I’ll Never Love Another.” He also reviews “Foggy Mountain Breakdown” from the last session.

 
SESSION 4: Earl’s Leads From the Mercury and Columbia Sessions
 

In this session, Bill looks at Earl’s leads and back-up to “Doin’ My Time” from the Mercury Sessions along with three great solos (“I’m Head Over Heels In Love,” “I’ll Stay Around,” and “The Old Home Town”) from Flatt and Scruggs’ November 21, 1950, Columbia Records session. These are all classic performances and he uses these breaks to analyze Earl’s approach to creating solos to Lester’s vocal tunes.

 
SESSION 5: Special Guest Charlie Cushman
 

In this session, Bill is joined by 1996 IBMA Banjo Player of the Year Charlie Cushman. Charlie plays banjo and Earl Scruggs–style guitar in the Earls of Leicester, the Flatt and Scruggs tribute band led by dobro legend Jerry Douglas. He discusses some of the most important aspects of Earl’s playing that move beyond tablature, including Earl’s fingering choices, right-hand rhythm and note spacing, and much more.

 
SESSION 6: Boogie-Woogie Earl: Foggy Mt. Special & Six White Horses
 

In this session, Bill looks at Earl’s “boogie-woogie” style, exploring the jazzy licks and techniques used in the classic tunes “Foggy Mt. Special,” “Six White Horses,” and more. Bill will explore some of the most challenging aspects of these songs, discussing right- and left-hand fingerings, rhythmic approach, back-up, and more, expanding upon many of the ideas introduced in Sessions 2 and 3 on the songs “Down The Road” and “Doing My Time.” 

 
SESSION 7: Special Guest Thomas Goldsmith, Earl’s fiddle tune backup, and “Across the Blue Ridge Mountains”
 

In this session, Bill is joined live by Thomas Goldsmith, the author of Earl Scruggs and Foggy Mountain Breakdown: The Making of an American Icon. He explores with Thomas his research for the book, his relationship with Earl and the Scruggs family, Earl’s early life and influences, and much more. After the talk, Bill looks at Earl’s banjo-and-fiddle duet accompaniment style as well as his solo and backup on “Across the Blue Ridge Mountains” from Flatt and Scruggs’s 1963 Vanderbilt University concert.

 
Session 8: Earl’s Gems: Rolling and Vamping
 

Bill begins this final session with a review of the fiddle tune backup techniques presented in Session 7 and an analysis of Earl’s straightforward solo to “Across The Blue Ridge Mountains.” To finish things up, Bill presents what he calls “Earl’s Gems: Rolling and Vamping,” comparing and contrasting licks in D and C as well as presenting some of the most advanced vamping-based licks heard in “Flint Hill Special.”  and “Bugle Call Rag.”

 
 
Want to offer feedback or suggest a lesson? Need help with the site?
 
Contact Us
 
Sponsored By
 
 
 
Want to offer feedback or suggest a lesson? Need help with the site?
 
Contact Us
 
 
  About Us       Shop         Support         Contact Us         Email Sign up         Advertise        Sitemap        FAQ        Privacy        Terms         Subscribe   Sign In  
 
String School
    ● Courses
    ● Live Workshops
    ● Instructors
    ● Sample Lessons
    ● Play-along Tracks
    ● Notation Guide
    ● For Beginners
 
Learning Lab
    ● Workshops
    ● Advice
    ● Repertoire
Instruments & Gear
    ● Instrument Demos
    ● Vintage Vault
    ● New Gear
    ● Fine Lutherie
 
News & Reviews
    ● Recordings
    ● Events
    ● Breaking News
 
Featured Videos
    ● In The Studio
    ● Live Onstage
    ● Backroom
 
Partners
    ● New Products
    ● Inside Look
    ● Performances
    ● Partner Pages
 
 
© Copyright 2020 PegheadNation.com
 
 
    ● Courses
    ● Live Workshops
    ● Instructors
    ● Sample Lessons
    ● Notation Guide
    ● For Beginners
 
 
    ● Vintage Vault
    ● New Gear
    ● Fine Lutherie
 
 
    ● Workshops
    ● Advice
    ● Repertoire
 
 
    ● Recordings
    ● Events
    ● Breaking News
 
 
    ● In The Studio
    ● Live Onstage
    ● Backroom
 
 
    ● New Products
    ● Inside Look
    ● Performances
    ● Partner Pages
 
 
© Copyright 2020 PegheadNation.com