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Blues is for gut-bucket people who run around with only half their clothes on - Reverend Gary Davis

Author Topic: Midland Banjo Fest  (Read 4612 times)

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Offline SteveMcBill

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Re: Midland Banjo Fest
« Reply #15 on: October 08, 2008, 02:21:42 PM »
Must admit I didn't realise I would be stirring up such polarisation with this thread. Glad I did !

I understand wholeheartedly the antipathy to banjo strummers - especially the type you do get in the UK which either accompany jazz bands or are in fact the band themselves - phalanxes of strumming banjos looking set to take over the world with their cacophony and grinning.

BUT, I came into guitar playing from a combination of an interest in ragtime piano and a girlfriend who strummed guitar and sang. From there I moved to playing Country Blues and blues oriented rags (Piedmont style) on guitar followed by arranging some classic piano rags for the instrument.

In banjo terms I have recently (actually for the last 20 years) been intrigued by ragtime fingerpicked on banjo and would point Weenie's at the Classic (not classical) Banjo website at:

Hope some of you enjoy it. Personally I really like the playing of banjoists such as Vess Ossman and Joe Morley.


Offline Richard

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Re: Midland Banjo Fest
« Reply #16 on: October 09, 2008, 07:43:38 AM »
Now d'you reckon infamous Big Ben Banjo Band would be an equal to the equally infamous Black and White Monsters both of BBC fame back in the dark ages on the 60's onwards?

Personally I don't mind a banjo especially when played by the likes of Ike Robinson. My introduction to it came via jazz and genuine early type jazz is fine... however, the very British manufactured phenomemememememeum of "Trad Jazz" all but masacred the poor instrument and did damn all for the musac when a guitar would have sounded so much better.

All that said, I am not cancelling my weekly copy of "Banjoey's Monthly" quite yet  :P
« Last Edit: October 09, 2008, 07:45:05 AM by Richard »
(That's enough of that. Ed)

Offline banjochris

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Re: Midland Banjo Fest
« Reply #17 on: October 10, 2008, 11:30:45 PM »
Although, oddly, I came to the banjo through British efforts, rock, Chicago blues and then country blues. But I liked Uncle Dave and Dock Boggs the first time I heard them.

That sounds like quite an interesting trajectory. Mind elaborating a bit?

Listened to a lot of swing and Andrews Sisters-type stuff as a kid (my grandmother had a bunch of that stuff). Discovered the Beatles in high school, then Cream, Hendrix and Dylan and started working my way back through Muddy Waters and Howlin' Wolf to Robert Johnson and Son House (and then many others) and liked the older stuff a lot better. From country blues to old-time seemed like a natural progression, so now I play both.


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