Danny Barnes

Hello Danny. Do you feel that banjo players generally value tradition over innovation? And, if so, do you think it is necessary to master and emulate the greats before you can push boundaries- or is it getting in the way of progress?
Many thanks, Ritchie

Danny Barnes responded on 09/14/2016

i suppose it's tough to speak of "banjo players" in the aggregate. there are so many different artists playing the instrument. i keep finding interesting stuff. i think that there is a system in place, a tradition so to speak, a type of framework that can be used as a scrimmage to learn about music and so forth. nonetheless there are a lot of folks ignoring this and just writing music and making records with banjo that don't really have a relationship to that....trip at all. there are folks that tend towards reductive thinking and folks that uh....don't. i don't really have a criticism of the way things are done in a sense, because it would appear that things are done in lots of interesting ways. i think learning to play and instrument, personally, is learning to solve problems. and it's very helpful to see how masters have solved those same problems. but i don't think it's necessary to have that approach. i suppose what counts is if the music is interesting.the end result.

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