The Three P’s

Murphy Henry

Murphy Henry

I suppose you’ve all heard of the three T’s for banjo: Tone, Taste, Timing. When I was driving home the other day after working out I was thinking about banjo playing and banjo teaching and this thought occurred to me:

Most of the questions that students ask can be answered with one of the Three P’s. And these all start with the word PLAY:

PM: Play More

PS: Play Slower

PWOP: (pronounced “pee-wop”): Play With Other People

Think about it. More on this subject (perhaps) later!

(I thought I’d use this when I didn’t have time to do a long blog!)

7 thoughts on “The Three P’s

  1. Steve Forsley

    Hi; Casey , my banjo teacher and jam partner , Bruce Stockwell ,, just showed me your BLN artical on Right hand Woes . I got Focal Dystonia back in 1998 and I am back playing better than if I never got it. You as a teacher of many need to contact me and I will explain and or help you deal with this in the correct way. Casey there is only one way to deal with FD , and that is fully understand what it is and go thru the recovery period the right way. ( long time but it can be fixed) I l learned about it in NY City from teacher and I cured myself. I am learning more about it all the time would be glad to help you. I am fully recovered and I can now say that I am a stronger and better player of Scruggs style , than I ever would have been if not been forced to learn and cure myself. contact me

  2. Dennis

    I previously promoted 5 P’s: Prior Preparation Prevents Poor Performance.
    [But your 3 P’s are obviously true too.] I’m going to continue p-ing. 🙂

  3. Martha Carlton

    I agree with all of your three P’s, Murphy. But, it is hard to insist on playing slowly in a jam when the majority want to play fast. I am constantly looking for others who want to play at the speeds I do, but, I am not always successful. I wish I could get my speed up, but, I can play a good many songs that are supposed to be played rather slowly, so I may have to be contented with what I can do rather than moaning about what I can’t do.

  4. Steve (in Japan)

    In Murphy’s 3 P’s, “Practice” can be substituted for “Play,” right?
    Dennis’ 5 P’s are accurate too.

  5. Patty

    Martha,
    Could you start a slow jam? We have them here in Portland and last I heard, they are very well attended! The nice thing about having so many people show up is it takes forever for the song to go around – which gives you tons of time to figure out the chords and your break! Try putting an ad on Craig’s List…

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