our grass is blue

We are off to San Francisco later this week to attend the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival! As usual I am trying to figure out the easiest way to pack the least amount of stuff but still able to look somewhat stylish and not entirely like a hobo.  I found some great autumn inspiration on Pinterest to help me sort out my wardrobe for the trip.

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Hillbilly Fever: Cripple Creek

It’s Saturday, March 12 and we finally have our sunshine back.  We got our car washed and replenished the baking supplies.  I thought it’d be a good time to cook up another banjo video, while the cupcakes are being made.  Here’s my take on “Cripple Creek”!  Complete with faux aged-film!

Hope you enjoy your weekend!

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Hillbilly Fever: First Video

I’ve been inspired to post a video of how I’m coming along on banjo after 3 weeks of practice.  I’ve discovered a site called Banjo Hangout , which has turned out to be a great resource for anything banjo.  Lots of interesting forums specific to the style you play and skill level.  It’s great getting advice from old guys that have been at it for years and make their mission to help anyone who wants to learn.  There’s a real warm community of people and some a little brutally honest.  Some of those southerners don’t mess around when it comes to pickin’ and grinnin’.   

 Anyways, here’s a song called “Foggy Mountain Breakdown” which is a banjo standard.  It’s not close to the speed Earl Scruggs plays it but hopefully I can get there some day.

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Hillbilly Fever: Specifications

My banjo is a Beaver Creek BCBJC18

Body – Mahogany Resonator

Top – Remo Head

Back & Sides – Mahogany

Neck – Nato

Fingerboard – Rosewood

Rim – Aluminum

Arm Rest – Chrome Plated 18 Piece Bracket

Machine Heads – Chrome

 I’m to believe this is a beginner’s banjo, great for sitting on the couch and pickin’ away.  Fine by me and my wallet 😉 So far I’m totally satisfied with the sound and general feel of the banjo. 

 For two reasons, I play the three-finger technique of Earl Scruggs. The first being, when I imagine what a banjo sounds like, I hear Scruggs’ style.  Secondly, my thoughtful in-laws bought me the gospel of “Earl Scruggs and the 5-string banjo” by Earl Scruggs, Amen!

 Recently at our house-warming party, I met a new friend who recently bought a banjo and has a punk-rock background like myself.  Which got me thinking: ‘is there something in the greater-conscious telling us to play bluegrass?’.  There’s several people I can think of in our local music community that has picked up the banjo in the last couple months.  I’m hoping to get together with some of them and play!  There’s a group in Alberta called Foothills Bluegrass Society that hosts a few weekly jam sessions.  I’ve been meaning to go for about 6 months with my guitar, but work was taking up my early evenings.  Now that I have the banjo, I’m really excited to take in some tips from experienced players.  I will definitely be posting about it! 

Happy pickin’

Mr. Honey

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Hillbilly Fever: Intro to Banjar

On Sunday February 20th, 2011, at Vintage Music 88, I bought my first banjo.  It’s an instrument I’ve wanted for a mere few months.  I can’t quite remember where I got it in my head that bluegrass music was something I wanted to learn.  I imagine in the same way a mountaineer might look upon Mt. Everest, I found bluegrass towering over every musical influence of roots, rock and rebel music I’ve picked, strummed and bashed out on my 6-string for almost 20 years.  But bluegrass isn’t like Mt. Everest; world famous and ‘can’t-miss-it.’  It’s more like the Appalachian mountains it comes from.  Sprawls across the entire North American continent and still obscured, misunderstood, and mystical.  My kind of sprawl. (congratz Arcarde Fire)

I’ve now decided to blog about my ‘banjar’ and my life with it.  I’m hoping my banjo creates some great stories, relationships and most importantly, music.   Earl Scruggs started picking when he was 4 years old.  I’m 30 and just beginning…..I’ve also never blogged.  Welcome to the 21st century!  There’s no way Scruggs would approve of this.  I’ll be back really soon to talk about my banjo and banjo-related discussions.

I know when you visit yuppielove.org you expect a higher degree of writing, ideas and creativity from the amazing Kait Kucy.  It’s OK! You just happen to click on her husband’s section! All the good stuff can be found everywhere else!

Comments are always welcome (Thriftstore Cowgirl! That means you!). What’s the point of music without a community, right?!  Even if it is the backwoods of the inter-web.

Happy pickin’
Mr. Honey

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Introducing Guest Blogger Mr Honey with ‘Hillybilly Fever’

Yes, that is right!  My sweet husband, Byron aka Mr Honey is going to be doing some guest-blogging here on Yuppie Love about his new banjo and the experience of learning this new instrument.  Be sure to watch his new blog series starting tonight if you are interested in music and specifically bluegrass, folk and roots music as he will be sharing lots of great videos of his favourites as well as him playing guitar and banjo.

No banjo in the Little Jimmy Dickens version but this song inspired the title of the blog series.

xo Kait

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