After the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band’s all-star compilation album “Will the Circle Be Unbroken,” this Carter Family classic’s place in the bluegrass canon was cemented for posterity.
As you’ll soon find, if you haven’t already, it’s a song tailor made for standard G banjo tuning.
To review, here’s the recommended procedure for completing this week’s assignment, “Will the Circle Be Unbroken”:
- Learn the tune. You have two different arrangements for a solo “break” for this song to learn, which you’ll find below (click here to learn more about the Brainjo levels). Once you’re able to play through the arrangement without consulting the tablature, move to step 2. You may also download each arrangement through the links below.
- Practice the tune with slow backup. Now it’s time to practice with some backup! Below you’ll find two different jam tracks, one of which is played through at a slow tempo. Practice first playing along with the slow jam track, focusing on keeping an even tempo and staying in time (click here for more info on how to get the most out of these jam tracks). Once you’re able to play the tune along with the slow jam track cleanly and in time, then move to step 3.
- Practice jamming. Now it’s time to take it up a notch! Play the tune along with the regular speed jam track. You’ll note that these tracks are designed to allow you to alternate back and forth between playing your solo break and playing backup on the banjo (and the various chord positions for each chord are displayed). Feel free to use them in this manner (especially if you have some experience with chords), or simply use them to practice playing your solo break.
“Will the Circle Be Unbroken” Tune Tutorial – Brainjo level 2
“Will the Circle Be Unbroken” Tune Tutorial – Brainjo level 3