Creek Don't Rise

Hungarian Gershwin and Kurt Weill fan needs guidance
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Author:  paulrace [ Wed Jul 05, 2017 3:02 pm ]
Post subject:  Hungarian Gershwin and Kurt Weill fan needs guidance

A reader writes:

Hi Paul! I am a Hungarian classical guitarist. I would like to learn banjo, to play music by Kurt Weill, Gershwin and modern classical music. Can you give me an advice on which type of banjo would you recommend to me? Thank you so much!! Katalin

--------Our Reply-------------------------------

Thank you for getting in touch. You mention Kurt Weill and Gershwin, who wrote when jazz banjo was at its peak.

Typical jazz banjo for the era would be played on a 4-string tuned like a Viola.

Nearly any 4-string will work though I would rather use a 19-fret one if I could come across one at a reasonable rice where you live. 5-string banjos are used for American Folk and Bluegrass music.

Also, some German polka bands that also played jazz hits in the 1920s and 1930s used 6-string banjos. But typically you would play no open strings, you'd play all barre chords closer to the drum head than to the nut, if that makes any sense.

Hope this helps - Paul

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