Minstrel Banjo

For enthusiasts of early banjo

Hi Guys,


Sorry it has been a while since I posted here (still one of my favourite places on the net), but I've been busy playing Scottish lute music http://scottishlute.com/ 


Mel Bay have just brought out the first of two early banjo books I did for them. The second should be out very shortly.


The first is American Classics for Banjo, which is not the title I had in mind. Nevertheless, it is out and will hopefully get some exposure for the works of Buckley, Baur and Converse. See all the info and table of contents here: 



I recorded the CD with my Luke Mercier early fretted banjo with gut strings and the early fingerstyle technique. Much of the stuff works with stroke technique as well. Despite this, they put a modern banjo on the cover...well, it might bring this repertoire to a new audience, and hopefully they will follow the link I give to this site.


The second book is (or should be) called The Early Irish-American Banjo. Many of these tunes were played stroke style, so might well be of interest to folk here. I've included tab in both books, but have also transposed the keys to modern notated pitch. However, my recordings are in the old eAEG#B tuning, sometimes with a raised 4th string.


Let me know if you have any questions about the books. 


I've co-founded the Edinburgh Banjo Club, and will be giving them a talk in the not too distant future about the minstrel banjo, and, naturally, this place will get a large plug ;-)



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