The tenor banjo is the most popular member of the four-string banjo family. It is tuned C G D A just like a mandola, a viola or a tenor guitar. It provides the alto voice to the jazz band and excels at both rhythm and lead functions About the banjo our beloved friend, Wikipedia, says: “In almost all of its forms, banjo playing is characterized by a fast arpeggiated plucking, though there are many different playing styles.” Did you know that? I didn’t know that. It also says “The shorter-necked, tenor banjo is also typically played with a plectrum.” Ah yes, the plectrum. Anybody who actually plays tenor banjo probably knows this already. This example is a late Vega (the company was about to go out of business 9 years after this was made, but was purchased briefly by the C F Martin Company). Since tenor banjo had largely gone the way of the flightless Dodo bird by 1960, (Raphus cucullatus, or just “Raph” to its friends) banjos like this are not commonly seen. This handsome creature has the full scale – that being 22 7/8”, 19 frets to the body, its nut width is 1 2/16th”. The string spacing at the bridge is 1 5/16th”. This example retains its Vegan yellow rectangular interior label, its apparently original “Vega Plastic” head (no euphemisms here) showing skin oils. It sports a sunburst finish back of neck which is made of two pieces of maple and a center stripe of possibly walnut, a natural finish rim, a rolled bead between its head and the walls of its rim, a single coordinator rod, 28 brackets and nuts, a simple unsigned tailpiece, geared but unsigned tuners with crème plastic buttons, black glossy peghead overlay with “Vega” in script decal, and it has an adjustable truss rod. The fingerboard is crème bound (on 2 sides) ebony or stained wood hosting 9 mother of pearl dots in 6 positions, visiting from Chicago. The 4-piece “sectional” flange shows show normal oxidation, the added armrest has the “Elton” stamp and was therefore installed aftermarket. When the banjo came in this armrest was positioned on the lower treble side of the pot – as if it might have been played lefty but of course it’s a righty banjo. The back and sides of its resonator are gloss sunburst finish, and the resonator itself is made of maple laminate, showing light figure. This is, in all, a delightful instrument, maintained well and suitable for a limited eternity of being played in the jazz, Irish or folk style, or, as Wikipedia tells us (and this is all good to know): “Four-string banjos, both plectrum and tenor, can be used strictly for chordal accompaniment (as in early jazz), strictly for single string melody playing (as in Irish traditional music), in "chord melody" style (a succession of chords are played in which the highest notes carry the melody), in tremolo style (both on chords and single strings) and a mixed technique called duo style, which combines single string tremolo and rhythm chords. They sure do like to use the word “strictly.”
Our Discount Price is $1,438.00 and Our Cash Discount Price is$1,395.00.