Dating gibson mastertone banjos

Everybody's all worried about who invented the style and it's obvious that three finger banjo pickers have been around a long time — maybe since 1840.But it's my feeling that if it wasn't for Earl Scruggs, you wouldn't be worried about who invented it." He worked there about two years, earning 40 cents an hour, until the draft restriction for World War II was lifted in 1945, at which time he returned to music, performing with "Lost John Miller and his Allied Kentuckians" on WNOX in Knoxville.

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Earl's siblings, older brothers Junie and Horace, and older sisters Eula Mae and Ruby, all played banjo and guitar.

Scruggs recalls a visit to his uncle's home at age six to hear a blind banjo player named Mack Woolbright, who played a finger picking style and had recorded for Columbia Records.

Scruggs style also involves using picks on three digits, each plucking three individual stings — downward with the thumb, then upward with the index and middle finger in sequence.

When done skillfully and in rapid sequence, the style allows any digit (though usually the thumb) to play a melody, while the other two digits play arpeggios of the melody line.

He popularized the instrument in several genres of music and elevated the banjo from its role as a background rhythm instrument, or a comedian's prop, into featured solo status.

Scruggs' career began at age 21 when he was hired to play in a group called "Bill Monroe and the Blue Grass Boys".

Prior to Scruggs, most banjo players used the frailing or clawhammer technique, which consists of holding the fingers bent like a claw and moving the entire hand in a downward motion so that the strings are struck with the back of the middle fingernail.

This motion is followed by striking the thumb on a single string.

After Scruggs' death in 2012 at age 88, the Earl Scruggs Center was founded near his birthplace in Shelby, North Carolina, with the aid of a federal grant and corporate donors.

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