Now, this little blog isn't about banjo picks, so rest easy that there won't be any battles started about those. There are as many opinions about banjo picks as there are banjo players!
But today's story is about FLATPICKS. We sometimes take them for granted, but not everyone knows what they are. Once a lady had seen our ad for the "Flatpicking Guitar DVD", and called us to ask, "What does 'flat picking' mean?" Well, we did our best to explain, but if you don't know what a flatpick is, then this won't mean much to you.
I have a particular, favorite kind of flatpick. These were made of a particular kind of plastic by just a few companies (such as Gibson), and they're no longer made. Well, I had hoarded about a dozen of these picks, and I used or lost less than one a year, thinking they were a lifetime supply. Then, about a year ago, I put them in a safe place.
Well, you know what that means. I lost them. They were so safe that I couldn't remember where I'd put them. I looked in every great "safe place" I could think of. I only had two of the picks that I hadn't put away, and I thought maybe those two would have to be my lifetime supply...
That is, until two days ago. The picks were on a shelf in in plain sight, and fell off when I put something else on that shelf. There they were, my favorite plastic. Good grief.
The moral of all this (if one exists) applies not just to flatpicks but also to banjo thumbpicks, and is in three parts:
(1) Don't get attached to just one kind of plastic for your picks;
(2) Use lots of different kinds of picks, like Bill Monroe did, so that your fingers are used to variety and can adapt to other kinds of plastic; AND--
(3) When you put your picks in a safe place, Don't put them in too safe a place. Put them in a place you can find again!
Everybody pick purty--