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Can’t talk. New banjo.

Huh. First time I’ve ever gotten overnight service on an eBay purchase (turns out the seller has a relative in the courier business).

Yep, this is the banjo I bought by accident. I watch interesting banjos and put in a bid if I think they’re underpriced. It’s usually harmless fun; an underpriced instrument always goes through the roof in the last seconds of the auction.

Not this time. I was all on my ownsome bidding on this one. Oh, well…I got a great instrument at a great price.

It’s such a buyer’s market, I’d put all my dough in underpriced banjos. If I had any dough.

This is an English banjo of the Twenties. It was played in a dance orchestra. As it happens, the seller was able to tell me quite a bit about it and its first owner, which is really weird because he didn’t until I asked. Today. After the sale.

Why not put it all the interesting bits in the description? Might’ve fetched a few more quid. People are so weird.

The pre-War Gibsons beloved of bluegrass players were also originally sold for this market, the orchestral and dance band market of the Twenties and Thirties. They’re loud as hell, because they had to be to hold their own against the brass section.

Which is why the bluegrass boys love them. Earl Scruggs played a Gibson Granada in the Forties which set the standard for what a banjo should sound like. An especially good Gibson with all its original bits will easily sail over $200K.

This one…didn’t cost anything like that, but I don’t believe I’ve ever heard a louder banjo. It is, in the terminology of banjophiles, a hoss.

November 21, 2011 — 9:07 pm
Comments: 41