After about three years of struggling with standard tuned banjo with mediocre results, I have discovered "Wade Ward's High Atmosphere" tuning, which is a variant of open C, tuned something like eCGCD, but that's not important. The melody is mainly on the second and third strings and the right hand is doing square rolls or triplets as needed. I absolutely love this "sound."
The problem is that my dearly beloved (who is musically adept but not into "trad" stuff) says she cannot hear the melodies distinctly; they get lost in the picking pattern. When I remove my thumb and middle finger picks, playing with just the pick on the index finger, the situation improves. I would rather not forego the thumb pick, for a couple of reasons. Has anybody else encountered this reaction, and if so, what did you do about it?