Banjo, Bluegrass, levels 2/3

Instructor(s): Frank Evans

In this workshop we will divide our time between the two most important aspects of playing the bluegrass banjo: back-up and improvising. We will learn new right-hand techniques as well as developing our knowledge of the fretboard in order to have a better understanding of each aspect. Each lesson will be designed so that you will be able to take each concept and apply it to your existing repertoire. There will be tablature provided and recording each lesson is strongly advised.

Frank Evans

Prerequisites:

A knowledge of basic G, C and D chords in open G tuning. Some basic knowledge of common roll patterns such as a forward roll or the alternate thumb roll.

About Frank Evans

Frank Evans is a highly acclaimed banjo player and musician, widely regarded as one of the most accomplished musicians in his field. Born and raised in Toronto, Canada, Evans was drawn to the banjo from a young age and sought every opportunity to surround himself with the Appalachian music of the United States. He won the youth banjo contest at the Clifftop Appalachian String Band Festival when he was 13 and later placed second overall.

Evans studied privately with some of the most renowned banjo players of his time including Chris Coole, Adam Hurt, and Jayme Stone and went on to be the first banjo player to be accepted into the Humber College of Music where he met the musicians that formed his band, The Slocan Ramblers. Their first album, Shaking Down the Acorns (2012) gained attention worldwide and led them to open for Steve Martin at the Toronto Jazz festival in 2013. The band’s second album, Queen City Jubilee (2019) garnered a Juno Nomination, and for their latest release, Up the Hill and Through the Fog (2023) won the Ensemble of the Year award at the Canadian Folk Music Awards.

In 2020, Evans moved to Nashville, TN and within a few months was invited to perform at the Ryman Auditorium with the Old Crow Medicine Show. Since moving to Nashville, Evans has been in demand as a session player and performer, and in March of 2023 was invited to be a member of the International Bluegrass Music Association Leadership Program at the Country Music Hall of Fame. 

Evans has recorded several critically acclaimed albums over the course of his career, each showcasing his incredible musicianship and unique approach to the banjo. His most notable projects include the duo album with fiddler Ben Plotnick, Madison Archives (2022), which won the CFMA Traditional Album of the Year Award, as well as earning a Juno Nomination. He is featured on two albums with Natalie McMaster, Sketches (2019), and her most recent album with Donnell Leahy, Canvas (2023).

Frank has become known for his distinctive style which blends traditional folk music with contemporary influences, creating a sound that is uniquely his own. 

His striking vocal stylings distinguish him as an original and captivating performer, both live and in recordings. Whether he is performing on stage or in the studio, Frank Evans is a true master of the banjo and a musical icon in his own right. His contributions to the world of folk music and beyond will undoubtedly continue to inspire and influence generations to come.

Evans tours the US, Canada and Europe, and has played on some of the most prestigious stages including Rockygrass, Merlefest, and Jacob’s Ladder Folk Festival in Israel. His exceptional ability as a teacher has resulted in invitations to teach at some of the most acclaimed camps including The Nashville Acoustic Camp, RockyGrass Academy, and Midwest Banjo Camp.

This is the first time Frank will teach at Walker Creek Music Camp and we’re very excited about having him and the other members of the Slocan Ramblers on our teaching staff.