There are a lot of things I like about our Banjo Masters interview series. One of the first things that come to mind about that is how I really enjoy picking who to interview. My thought on that subject has always been that the banjo is a very versatile instrument and there are masterful players doing radically different things from each other out there. My idea with this series is to pick players who represent different genres of banjo playing and who I consider master players who are both carrying on traditional banjo styles, but also expanding on what may be considered non-standard banjo styles. I also think it is really important to include players who may not be in the most popular or widely known categories. There are a lot of masterful players out there doing some exciting things with and for the banjo and I like talking to them and helping them to share their stories. Judging from the success of this series, I think people enjoy that too!
I am currently preparing a video preview for the newest interview in the series, Rex McGee, and I had the sudden urge to watch the previews we made of some of our other interviews. Here they are, in case you want to watch them again too! (And in case that inspires you to check out the actual interviews, here they are- https://vimeo.com/channels/1078567 )
The Butch Robins preview was a lot of fun to make. John Hildreth and I put it together to highlight the various aspects of Butch’s talk. Personal stories, live music demonstrations, heartfelt memories of life with Bill Monroe and a lot of history.
Sammy Shelor is a quiet, soft-spoken man who has a lot of fascinating stories to share once you get him started. He is a local legend around here and spoke a lot about family and tradition and music.
Ever since I first heard John Bullard play Bach on the banjo I was fascinated and kind of obsessed. John was one of the names I immediately came up with when I thought up this interview series because he is not only a masterful player, but he is doing something totally different from most players. He is a very nice guy and what he is doing is fascinating!
More to come soon folks! There are a lot more banjo players out there on my list!