Introducing Wayne’s World of Mandolin

One positive side of quarantining is time to work on new projects, and that is what Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out’s Wayne Benson has been doing. He just introduced his own YouTube channel, Wayne’s World of Mandolin.

“A few years ago, I realized that there was room for more mandolin content on YouTube,” the mando maestro reflected. With his band’s gigs canceled due to the pandemic and more time at home, it was a perfect opportunity for developing the content to launch his channel. 

“I’m looking forward to covering all kinds of material, but several of the videos are for folks interested in growing their musicianship through theory,” the new YouTuber expressed. “It’s a resource for people to learn mandolin, but the concepts I teach are universal and can be applied to any fretboard.”

Currently, there are several videos available for view. Benson will continue to release one new segment per week. The instructional sessions range from 8-22 minutes in length.  Topics vary and include subjects like developing good practice habits, setting the bridge for best intonation, and understanding the Nashville Number System. There are segments for beginners to more seasoned players.

“It’s a mandolin-centered channel, but not necessarily bluegrass-centered, though there will be plenty of that. We’ll talk about skills that are useful for a variety of genres like blues and swing, and general improvising,” the SC resident shared. “I want the channel to attract people from all different places in music.”

Wayne’s World of Mandolin is all Wayne. He developed the curriculum. He recorded the segments. He edited the videos.

“The whole thing is basically an experiment,” the 51 year old professional musician explained. “I’ve taught private lessons for years and have committed myself to being a real teacher, in addition to playing, so this is a perfect way to introduce some concepts that I cover with my students.”  

Benson really sees the channel as a way to give back, saying, “I’d been praying about what to do because I wanted to use the COVID-19 time wisely. Kristin (his banjo picking wife) and I were really humbled to get a couple of grants from Musicares and the SC Arts Commission. People have been so generous in their effort to support musicians during this time. and I did this in the spirit of giving back. I hope it’s a place where people learn. I feel like my love for the mandolin is a gift from God, and I’ll never be able to outgive Him or the blessing that the mandolin has been for me.  That’s worth sharing.”

Here’s the official trailer for Wayne’s World of Mandolin.

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About the Author

Sandy Hatley

Sandy Chrisco Hatley is a free lance writer for several NC newspapers and Bluegrass Unlimited magazine. As a teenager, she picked banjo with an all girl band called the Happy Hollow String Band. Today, she plays dobro with her husband's band, the Hatley Family.