It's been awhile. The various early banjo events are so appealing, but they're all back East. I'd love to go but... (1) my gourd banjo is so perfect, I have no case for it, and I can't risk having it destroyed by the airlines. And (2) it would cost me thousands of dollars to do it. So, I won't be headed East.
But I do really think that if you are interested in what African-American banjo music of the mid-19th c. sounded like, you might want to check out my work. I've decided ultimately just to give this stuff away, so here are links (below) to my website (www.palouserivermusic.com) with newly-posted PDF files of tablature/notation versions of my arrangements for 5-string banjo versions of Louis Moreau Gottschalk's "The Banjo" and "Bamboula". You can hear them on my CD "American Akonting," which I think Mark Weems has for sale. Or you can buy them from cd baby. Or there are YouTube videos.
Anyway, I very much appreciate this forum, and my best regards to all of you... If you have any problems with these, let me know.