Minstrel Banjo

For enthusiasts of early banjo

I'm glad some people jumped onto this idea. I'm inspired to post another one, staying on the tangent of solid banjo material that is overlooked. Here is one from Winner's 1883 penned by the respectedAl Bauer. He was an important figure in Early Banjo, and survived his military service in the Civil War to remain active in music. His "Banjoists's Budget" book has some of the quirkiest and catchiest melodies ( and titles ). Here is one called Zara Jig. It will present some challenges, but stays fairly simple. It will jump up high. It is written in 3 sharps ( key of A ). Play it on any banjo...any tuning, as long as you reference E as the thumb string. There are no fingerings, so be creative. I have worked out some for it, but I thought it would be fun to see how people treat it. It is equally at home as a Stroke tune...or Guitar style.

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It's a super crappy hand written version, but I'll put it up anyway.


I thought this tune looked familiar, then  realized I had seen it Ira Ford's "Traditional Music in America"(1940). The tune is note for note the same as this setting, however he adds the D# to the key signature in the B part while also redundantly retaining it in the notation . He also added a repeat at the end of the B part instead of the D.C.

I've never been able to find much about Mr. Fords sources, many seem to come from old books though some appear to be transcriptions,  at any rate there is some interesting material in there. 

Here's the scan.


Is there a tune of the week after 3-29-13?


No. I really got no responses on Zara Jig.

Anybody can suggest one.

I'm playing it...not well. It's just a busy time at work. 

I know the point of TOTW is to hear others play, but for me it has been a wonderful way to dive into the music. I enjoy the suggestion of a song, even if I can't nail it down in a week's time. 

Than you for your efforts, Tim. Please know that even though I may not post a video, I am working on the given song!

Tim ,, its probably old and stale to you,,,, but Boston Jig may be one not too tough for many ,,, but still a real neat tune.  


I will learn anything with Boston in the title. I am a good ole Yankee gal. 

Nothing is old and stale. I love them all.

ahhh,  thers no song of that title, there is" Im a  good ol rebel",,, but its not nice. were taught down here not to like Yankees ,, but I still do like some :) jesting here folks,

Valerie Díaz Leroy said:

I will learn anything with Boston in the title. I am a good ole Yankee gal. 

 So to start Boston Jig as TOTW   could I just post it tomorrow?   Im not sure how this works.  Or whats needed.


Its in Tims book,,, also in the Harpers Ferry videos

Go for it Steve.

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