Derroll’s banjo techniques


My experience is that very few banjo-pickers are using the extraordinary banjo techniques used by Derroll Adams. These techniques are sometimes described as “simple”. But when you make the effort trying to master them, you will surely find out that they are not that simple because of Derroll’s very personal vision on playing the banjo.

It was Jef Van Gool, the bass player in Tucker Zimmerman’s band, who suggested to write down all I know about Derroll's banjo skills because we all felt they were getting lost after all. Nobody seemed to know how Portland Town originally was played, even Derroll said he didn’t remember exactly! But let's be clear, this site isn’t meant to be an absolute bible. You will be able to find different recorded versions of the same songs and some tricks I am not able to find. My intention is to provide some starting point and support to banjo-pickers wanting to learn Derroll’s way of playing and find their own way after that. I can not guarantee that all my notations are absolutely correct, there is a lot of guess work and trial and error in it. I suggest listening to Derroll to find out what he has to tell us about this...


So I invite everyone who can provide more information to join the project.
I will be happy to publish your suggestions.

Walter De Peuter