Study Fiddle, Fingerstyle Guitar, Flatpick Guitar, Mandolin, 4-STring Banjo & Bass Full Time at MBC

For 2018, we have full-time “tracks” in several instruments other than 5-string banjo. Here are more complete descriptions. Take all the classes offered for one instrument, take a few, or just dip in and out as the spirit moves you.

Levels: Please be aware that all instruction in tenor banjo, bass, fiddle, guitar and mandolin is likely to be at an intermediate level. Note that we NOT offer novice-level classes for any of these instruments (we only offer novice level classes for bluegrass and old-time banjo).

Fiddle Class
The MBC Fiddle Track: We offer a full program in fiddle, with one option during each class session. You can either study fiddle throughout, part-time, or just take an occasional fiddle class. Most classes in our fiddle program focus on “old-time,” or Appalachian style, but there will be some instruction on bluegrass fiddle as well. This track is recommended for fiddlers of any kind with at least one year’s experience, and for violinists with classical or jazz training who are interested in expanding their horizons. Our principal fiddle for 2018 is Erynn Marshall. Other fiddle instructors for 2018 include John Hermann, Peter Knupfer & Janie Rothfield.

guitar class

The MBC Fingerstyle Guitar Track: MBC’s fingerstyle guitar track is now regular part of our program. There will be one fingerpicking guitar option during each class session and you can study it full-time, part-time, or just take the occasional class. Note: to be comfortable in this class you should already be able to strum in rhythm and change comfortably among the most basic “open position” guitar chords (C, G, D, A, E, etc.). Pat Donohue is returning in 2018 as principal fingerstyle guitar instructor. Other fingerstyle guitar classes will be taught by Chris Rietz.

The MBC Flatpicking Guitar Track: MBC continues to offer a full program in flatpicking guitar, with one option during each class session. You can study flatpicking guitar full or part time. Note: to be comfortable in this class you should already be able to strum in rhythm and change comfortably among the most basic “open position” guitar chords (C, G, D, A, E, etc.). In 2018, our principal instructor is Chris Luquette of the Dirty Kitchen Band. Other flatpicking guitar instructors for 2018 are TBA.

The MBC Mandolin Track: MBC offers a full program in mandolin, with one option during each class session. You can study “mando” full-time, part- time, or simply take an occasional class. Note: to be comfortable in this class you should already be able to strum in rhythm and change comfortably among the most basic mandolin chords. For 2018, our principal instructor in the
mandolin program is Frank Solivan, leader of the Dirty Kitchen Band. Other mandolin classes will be taught by Don Julin.

The MBC Bass Track: We offer a full program in bass, with one option during each class session. You can study bass full-time, part- time, or simply take an occasional class. Our instructor for the 2018 bass program is Dan Eubanks. Other bass instructors will be taught by Tom T Hall.

New!! the MBC 4-String Banjo Program

MBC 4-Srtring Banjo Track. We now offer a full-time program in 4-string banjo, with one option during each class session. This program is open to players of both  tenor and plectrum banjo. You can study tenor and plectrum banjo full-time, part- time, or simply take an occasional class. Our instructor for this inaugural program is famed 4-string player Buddy Wachter; other 4-string classes wil lbe taught by Keith Baumann. Note: to be comfortable in this class you should already be able to strum in rhythm using a pick and change comfortably among a few basic 4-string banjo chord shapes.

Tenor vs. plectrum.  4-string banjo is generally played with a flatpick, or “plectrum.” Plectrum banjo is a very close cousin of the 5-string ; its four strings are tuned CGBD – pretty much like the four long string of a 5-string banjo. Tenor banjo is a bit more of distant cousin of the 5-string; it is tuned in “fifths” like a violin or cello.  Note that our program is based on original jazz-tenor tuning (CGDA), and NOT Irish style tenor. Irish-style tenor banjo uses a different tuning and a different picking approach.

Bass Class