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Banjo: An Object that Defines the South

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Tyler Thibodeau

on 19 October 2012

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Transcript of Banjo: An Object that Defines the South

The Banjo Bibliography Smith, Kenneth H. “The Five String
Banjo in the Music Classroom.” General Music Today Oct. 2011: 19-26. Print Davis, Wes “The New Old-Timers.”
Southwest Review 2010: 89-115. Print Alden, Ray “Trends in Old-Time
Banjo, Part 5.” Old-Time Herald Feb.-Mar. 2010: 12-15. Print Laemouahuma, Daniel J. “The
Senegambian Akonting: The Origin of the Banjo.” Akonting Articles. N.p., 30 May 2009. Web. 8 Oct. 2012 Pestcoe, Shlomo. “The English
Zither-Banjo.”Shlomo Pestcoe. N.p. 01 Feb. 2009. Web. 8 Oct. 2012 Predecessor came over to the U.S. South on Slave Ships from Africa The bodies were first made of dried gourds And the strings were made from animal intestines later, the bodies were made of wooden rings with animal hide, which was eventually replaced by plastic, stretched across it The banjo usually has four strings ...with a fifth, shorter string for higher pitches This was a later addition to the age-old instrument Two methods can be used to pick the banjo scruggs....
....and clawhammer In the 19th century, guitar-like frets were added to the instrument A wooden resonator was also added to the back to increase the instrument's volume and project it to the audience while playing Scruggs picking style uses a plucking motion with the index, forefinger, and thumb. A thumb pick is usually used to assist with thumb plucking, and sometimes finger picks are used for the other fingers Clawhammer picking style uses the thumb as a stop for the top string and the pointer or middle finger as a strumming finger ...it also has a unique droning sound The banjo became an integral part of southern folk music throughout the 19th century

It usually is accompanied by a fiddle Today, it is an instrument present in almost every country music band It also has been an integral part of bluegrass music performances such is the case with the bluegrass band 'The Stanley Brothers' The banjo is also a symbol of the laid-back nature of the South It is an instrument played as a leisure activity and it is often featured in songs denoting relaxation It is also a symbol of free-thinking Banjos are used in a unique style of southern music and they are a unique instrument, developed solely in the South "Banjo" by 'Rascal Flatts,' one of today's star country bands notice the banjo and fiddle in the song, plus the lyrics "go till you hear the banjo" to denote the location of relaxation In the future, the banjo will continue to define the South... ....continuing to generate unique music for different genres.... ....and growing as a symbol for relaxation and free-thinking. Started as the Akonting from the Senegambian region

Name “Bangoe” (Mandinka language spoken in the Senegambian region of West Africa) originated from reference to the bamboo stick used to build the neck of the Akonting instrument

Changed to Banjo over time (Laemouahuma) (Smith) (Smith) (Smith) (Smith) These enhancements were invented by Brooklynite Alfred D. Cammeyer This construction became known as the zither-banjo (Pestcoe) (Pestcoe) Today, "a new generation of independent-label musicians have latched onto the banjo as an emblem of musical authenticity" (Davis) (Smith) (Smith) (Davis) (Smith) (Davis) (Smith) (Davis) The young are "less genre bound... ...less concerned with boundaries and more flexible." (Alden) "Let's get things rolling with the basic flailing strum... ....Relax. Get that rhythm down." (Davis) Symbol of Southern relaxation and free-thinking
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