Minstrel Banjo

For enthusiasts of early banjo

Save the date! September 10th-13th-Grand Opening of the American Banjo Museum

Hello list members, I wanted to let you know about the gala grand opening celebration of the American Banjo Museum which will be taking place in the Bricktown arts and entertainment district of downtown Oklahoma City, Oklahoma on September 10th-13th.

As the nearly three year, $3.3 million dollar project approaches completion, the music and heritage of the banjo will soon be on display for the general public. The Museum promises to be impressive, and will open in a three floor, 21,000 sq. ft. facility located at 9 E. Sheridan St. in Oklahoma City. It will feature state of the art exhibitory and present every chapter of the banjo’s story, from its humble roots in American slavery, through the minstrel and classic periods, continuing through the jazz age four-string banjo era up to its most recent identities in Bluegrass and international folk music. The Museum will also contain a gift shop, a coffee/snack bar, a Shakey’s pizza room that will be able to be converted into a 160 seat concert hall complete with stage area and a state of the art sound and recording system, a large research and archival room, a Four-String Banjo Hall of Fame room, etc.

All events during the grand opening weekend are open and free to the public. In addition to the Museum itself, the four days of the grand opening weekend will be highlighted by many musical performances from visiting musicians and celebrities. A limited number of performance opportunities are available during the grand opening weekend. Banjo players or groups wishing to participate must request to be scheduled as soon as possible. For out of town guests, there are several fine hotels all within walking distance of the Museum. For more information regarding the grand opening of the American Banjo Museum, call 405-260-1323 or visit: www.banjomuseum.org.

Hope to see you there!

Doug Back
Assistant Director
American Banjo Museum.

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The museum has changed its direction a bit, now including all forms of banjo. They haven't yet updated their website with the name change, etc.
Hi Dan,

Yes, the museum was the National Four String Banjo Museum, and that portion of the banjos history will continue to be the new museum's centerpiece (we have over 300 highly ornate 4-string banjos in our collection), however, the new sign went up yesterday and we are now the American Banjo Museum and dedicated to telling and preserving the banjo in all of its various styles and facets. Heck, I even went over to Fayetteville and took an extended minstrel banjo lesson with Clarke Buehling on Monday. The stroke style is totally foreign to me and it was like playing the banjo left handed. I ended up almost needing to take some Pamprin or whatever as my hand was suffering from Minstrel cramps.

Doug Back

Dan'l said:
To pause: This is "The National FOUR STRING Banjo Hall of Fame Museum" in full name. That means a lot on the Shakey's Pizza / Your Father's Mustache / Eddie Peabody / Harry Reser 20th century stuff, but even THAT kind of banjo could be fascinating, even to us here...
This coming from a man who can tremolo like nobody's business!

Put on a thimble and play a march (if you don't have one, I'll bring you one of my make when we meet at the opening).
Hi Dan,

Volunteer "docents," so to speak are very much needed during the opening. I have been asked to get 12 for each day. So far, I have recruited only about 25% of that goal. The volunteers won't need much training . We are looking for people who can greet folks, maybe assist in the gift shop, p0int people to the restrooms, that sort of thing.
As for your wife, the Bricktown district is very interesting-lots of restaurants, some gift shops, microbreweries, etc. The Oklahoma Bombing Memorial, The Cowboy and Western Museum, and a whole host of other attractions are close by. Hotels are close by too.

Doug

Dan'l said:
To pause: This is "The National FOUR STRING Banjo Hall of Fame Museum" in full name. That means a lot on the Shakey's Pizza / Your Father's Mustache / Eddie Peabody / Harry Reser 20th century stuff, but even THAT kind of banjo could be fascinating, even to us here...

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