Want to learn how to frail the old banjo? Patrick Costello wrote a couple of books on the topic last year, then gave away his books for free online. (You can still buy them on Amazon, though: just click on the book cover to the left.) Now he and his dad are giving away free online banjo lessons. The catch: They won’t post subsequent lessons until at least five people send them audio files of themselves playing the homework assigned at the end. There are 2 lessons online already — apparently the homework from the first lesson just “came pouring in.” I love it when newfangled tech (MP3s and the internet) intersects with oldfangled tech (banjos); it’s even better when it’s free, and educational. Thank you Patrick!