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Intro to Up-Picking with Nora Brown

November 18 : 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

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The Handmade Music School Presents:
Handmade at Home – A Virtual Workshops Series
“Intro to Up-Picking” with Nora Brown
*Suggested donation of $15
Up-picking is a super fun and useful right-hand style on the banjo that can be best described as a sort of backwards clawhammer technique- instead of striking with the back of your pointer or index finger, you pull upwards with the inside of your finger tip. You get a super cool unique rhythm that can’t quite be achieved in other styles. This is a style that can be found all over but is used frequently in Eastern Ky. We’ll go over some of the basics of the technique and then we’ll learn a Virgil Anderson tune- Jenny Put the Kettle On.
Nora Brown started learning music at the age of 6 from the late Shlomo Pestcoe. From his studio apartment in Brooklyn, Pestcoe instilled in her the belief that music is meant to be shared. Nora plays old-time traditional music with a particular interest in eastern Kentucky and Tennessee banjo playing. Along with the banjo she’s interested in techniques of unaccompanied ballads form the Southeast region of the United States.
She has played at numerous venues and festivals on the East Coast including TED salon in NYC, Joe’s Pub, the Floyd Radio Show, Washington Square Park Folk Festival, Brooklyn Folk Festival, Brooklyn Americana Festival, Oldtone Roots Music Festival, Irvington Folk Festival, Summer & Winter Hoots at the Ashokan Center, and has had multiple month long residencies at famed Barbès in Brooklyn NY.
Nora has taught both beginning and advanced banjo classes at the Ashokan Center’s long standing old-time camp known as Southern Week in Olivebridge, NY. Nora continues to travel and learn from old masters and has taken regular trips to eastern Kentucky to visit with 90 year old master banjo player and former coal miner Lee Sexton and master banjo player and historian George Gibson.
Nora has won numerous banjo and folk song competitions at various fiddlers conventions including the Clifftop Appalachian String Band Music Festival and Grayson County Old-time and Bluegrass Fiddlers Convention.
In October 2019 Jalopy Records released Nora’s first album of 11 traditional songs and tunes called Cinnamon Tree. It was produced by the legendary Alice Gerrard and pressed by Third Man Pressing in Detroit. It’s only available on limited edition vinyl with a digital download and liner notes. Cinnamon Tree landed #7 on the Billboard Bluegrass Charts the 2nd week of its release.
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