Minstrel Banjo

For enthusiasts of early banjo

Trio of Fiddle Tunes-Stroke Style on a Fretted Banjo.wmv

A set of tunes from the fiddle repertoire. Durang's Hornpipe, Fisher's Jig, and Jake Bacchus' Jig. Fisher's and Bacchus' are found in the Buckely Book. This was from the short time I had my hands on a fretted banjo...a Luscomb. Still Strokin' it...even though it was fretted. Makes the high altitude songs a little easier. It had a sweet tone that really would let the overtones ring out in a favorable way...kind of chimey or something. Anyway, I enjoyed it. It helps bridge the concept of what the fretless banjos grew into...smaller, higher, fretted, and more complicated music.

Views: 100

Comment by Paul Draper on December 7, 2011 at 12:48pm

Really nice!  btw are those Nylguts?

Comment by Tim Twiss on December 7, 2011 at 1:28pm

Thanks Paul. Yes they were...they make a special classic set.

Comment by Tim Twiss on April 9, 2014 at 8:16pm

I thought the Luscomb had a nice "shimmer" here, the way the notes rang. I wish I owned this. What are other good fretted banjos to get? I may be shopping.

Comment by Andy Chase on April 9, 2014 at 8:35pm

If you're not averse to new/Asian instruments, Eastman is making a pretty nice reproduction of a 1902 (I think) Fairbanks Whyte Laydie that I've been drooling over lately. (Played clawhammer style by Adam Hurt here.)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kn3C1n8pse4

I'm getting the itch to try some of the classic style stuff (hence my recent question about guitar style) and am planning to put nylon strings and a proper bridge on my Saga SS-10, which was my main clawhammer axe for years before I got into the minstrel stuff.  It's on the "high end of the low end" but it's got a sweet tone and nice action, and looks nicer than a lot of its peers.

Comment by Rob Morrison on April 9, 2014 at 9:54pm

Andy--My wife made the mistake of leaving me alone at Vintage Instruments in Philadelphia for a couple hours, and a very simple, plain Haynes fretted  banjo with no tone ring followed me home.  I keep it in A/E tuning, and it plays and sounds soooo good.  And it didn't cost all that much, either.  I play it on my "Big John McNeil" video. 

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