Ron Stewart banjo tabs available online

Boxcars banjo man Ron Stewart is now offering download purchases of tab transcriptions, taken from the many recordings that have featured his picking over the past few years. At present there are 2 PDF volumes, sold as a ZIP file containing individual tabs.

Volume 1 includes selected transcriptions (solos and backup) from Ron’s Time Stands Still CD, plus recordings from Ronnie Bowman, Kenny & Amanda Smith, Dwight McCall, Ricky Wasson and others.

The second volume focuses on Ron’s time with the Dan Tyminski Band, with tabs from both their studio album and live shows. There are also selections from Adam Steffey’s One More For The Road record and Steve Gulley’s Sounds Like Home.

These tabs are presented in a simple, straightforward format, with right and left hand fingerings shown only where their usage may not be obvious to even a novice picker. Each volume sells for $20.

Typically, anything Ron Stewart plays on banjo is worthy of study, regardless of your facility as a banjo picker. Much of his work isn’t very demanding technically, but the lesson is in the attempt to capture the subtleties of tone and timing that mark him as a master. Some of his picking, of course, will stretch the abilities of most any 5-stringer, but the effort to learn these pieces will be valuable without regard to your success in accomplishing them.

A third volume with transcriptions from The Boxcars’ superb debut album is promised in the near future. You can see a list of songs in each current volume on Stewart’s web site.

Ron also has a second fiddle DVD due from AcuTab early this year. One can due much worse than to study this man’s music.

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John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.