Most arrangements for banjo ensembles seem to have the 2nd banjo exclusively playing a rhythm part, chords mostly and usually in the first position. That doesn't seem quite "fair," wouldn't it be better if the 2nd banjoist had a more interesting part? Maybe take the lead in the Trio section or something? Are there arrangements that give the 2nd banjoist more to do?

Views: 74

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Some of Parke Hunter's second banjo parts are fabulous and greatly animate the lead part. It wouldn't be going too far to say that some of Cammeyer's compositions are incomplete without the second banjo part. "Dancer's Dream" for instance. The second banjo part of Joe Morley's "Banjoland" has some places where it is more in the foreground then the first banjo part and is also difficult to play in some sections. I'm not sure who composed it but it's more than vamping for sure. Some ABF members have written good second parts over the years.

Once Bill Evans is home from what has been pretty much constant touring these last few months we hope to be able to post some videos of some of these. They'll be imperfect but lively.

Forgive me for the faux pas of re-posting your joke, Carl, I had no idea I was stealing it.
Jody Stecher said:
Forgive me for the faux pas of re-posting your joke, Carl, I had no idea I was stealing it.

No problem, man, it's an oldie but goodie. Thanks for the information about 2nd banjo parts, I have much to learn. Looking forward to hearing your duets w/ Bill Evans.
Carl Anderton said: Looking forward to hearing your duets w/Bill Evans

So am I, I haven't heard them in months, Bill's been a man on the move. Now he's on his way to New Mexico and Colorado.
I rarely get to play the 2nd parts but Weidt usually has countermelodies going in his better arrangements; even the easy waltzes often have 2nd parts that are harder than the 1st. I haven't really found anything that has really intricate countermelody going though, esp. not much going on up the neck. Still, almost all of the usual sheet music is "arranged", no real reason not to hand off the trio (or whatever) to the 2nd. Hal Allert arranged a good bit of his stuff on his CD, even giving the piccolo the lead part in "Banjo Oddity".

I did get to play 2nd tonight on "Sunflower Dance" (tonightwas my banjo-workshop night down at the coffee shop) and even though it is a 1st position 'boom-chick" backup, it is a hoot and I really enjoy it.
" faux pas " ; here ' s an another French expression ; means litteraly " false step "

for the accompagniements ; i think that it' s better to keep in 1st position with a good & regular tempo , better than doing complicates acompagniements or counter_melodies with a moving tempo ( same thing for the cello)
the " nec plus ultra " beeing to have enought experience with the banjo band to do the 2 things ; But is it the situation of most of us ?

Reply to Discussion


© 2022   Created by thereallyniceman.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service