Contra and Square Dance Tunes for Clawhammer Banjo

David Brooks

Contra and Square Dance Tunes for Clawhammer Banjo

$ 180.00

Contra and Square Dance Tunes for Clawhammer Banjo with David Brooks

This class will meet online - an invitation to a recurring Zoom meeting will be sent by the instructor in advance of the first class meeting.


Fiddle and banjo have long been paired to provide music for dances. That pairing continues today at contra and square dances. This class will explore some of the popular tunes played to accompany dances. Tunes will include reels, waltzes, and, perhaps, jigs. Along the way, we will explore right-hand and left-hand techniques that will take your playing to a new level. We may also explore the three most popular clawhammer banjo tunings:

  • Open G (gDGBD) and A (aEAC#E or gDGBD with a capo)
  • Sawmill in A modal (aEADE or gDGCD with a capo)
  • Double-C (gCGCD) and D (aDADE or gCGCD with a capo)

Possible tunes include:

  • Angelina Baker (D)
  • Soldier’s Joy (D)
  • Le Grand Chain (G)
  • Julianne Johnson (D)
  • Tam Lin (Dm)
  • Shenandoah Falls (A)
  • Kesh Jig (G)
  • Sheebeg Sheemore waltz (D)
  • Others suggested by the class

Tab will be provided along with step-by-step instruction. Where available, we will use YouTube videos as well.


Who Should Attend

The class welcomes experienced beginners as well as intermediate players, and tunes will be arranged to meet the needs and skills of each student.  Students should have a basic right-hand clawhammer stroke and the ability to change chords easily in Open G tuning. Bring a capo.


Open to everyone ages, 11 and up.