They Ought to Have a Name for It – JIT Failure

You’re playing along with an improvised break and you just used that right finger or thumb when you realize that you need it for the very next note – a JIT Failure. JIT stands for ‘Just In Time” and is a standard concept in IT and manufacturing. The idea is to not waste storage space for things in inventory; just have them at the very last moment and so minimize the expense of overhead. Our picking fingers are just that way as well; we need them at that exact instance, and not before. But if you’ve just used a particular finger, you can’t use it again if you’re playing fast!

What I like to be able to do when this happens is go ahead and make room for the quarter or half note rest that ensues, and work that extra bit of delay and syncopation into the break somehow. If you can pull that off, it actually sounds even nicer; no small part being due to the spontaneity of it.

About Pgibson

I'm from Huntsville, Alabama where I work as a Software Engineer and part-time banjo instructor. My wife Miiko and I worship at Rivertree Downtown. I've been playing various instruments since my teen years. I started mandolin and dulcimer at about age 17 and banjo at 20. I love just about all kinds of music. In terms of banjo styles, I play and teach Scruggs, melodic, clawhammer, and 2-finger styles. I'm also very keen on theology, being a Trail Care Partner with the Land Trust of North Alabama, photography, urban planning, architecture, astronomy, ATM (amateur telescope making), birding, martial arts, and about 30 other distracting hobbies to a (mercifully) lesser extent.
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