Who invented the three finger picking style for the five string banjo? Most people would say Earl Scruggs, although he was not the first person to play that style. What makes Earl Scruggs stand out is that he not only played with three fingers but he had a different approach to the banjo. Scruggs-style banjo is more than just a three finger finger picking style – it is a unique aproach to playing the banjo.
In the area of North Carolina that Earl grew up in, the banjo was being picked with three fingers by many banjo players. Earl became very proficient and began playing at dances, developing and perfecting his banjo technique. Soon people were talking about Earl’s banjo playing and his reputation started to grow.
Earl Scruggs and Marty Stuart