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Showing posts from September, 2015

Master and Apprentice: Banjo Builder Workshop in Historic Peninsula, Ohio

The 191-year-old Peninsula, Ohio, provided the backdrop to a parade of pedestrians making their way from station to station across the bucolic village for Music on the Porches on Saturday.

Inside the close confines of Bronson Church, founded in 1835, a master and apprentice presented a free workshop on the art of instrument building. That master being the renowned banjo builder and artist Doug Unger and his former apprentice Mark Ward.

Unger and Ward began the workshop by playing several old-time tunes, discussing their work and the music, and taking questions from the audience. Unger then invited the spectators to step up to the front to see the instruments.

Returning for a Farewell Reunion

Mining the depths of experience for a solution to my lack of banjo-related posts, I remembered my last hair cut. As it is nigh time for another, this was a couple months ago.

My barber, a short walk from my house, had closed his shop for his lunch break. Not wanting to give up and go home, I killed time at my local record store. I only had a $20, and my hair cut would take up most of that, so I wasn't expecting to purchase anything. Flipping through the "Folk/Misc." section, though, something changed my mind.

The cover was a wreck, held together with yellowed tape. But the sleeve had done its job, keeping the vinyl clean. For $2, I couldn't resist the lure of Mike Seeger, leaning against an old GMC truck parked inside the pitch black confines of a red barn, wearing jeans and a blue work shirt, above the words "The Second Annual Farewell Reunion" and featuring such old-time luminaries as the Highwoods, Roscoe Holcomb, Kilby Snow and of course the New Lost Ci…