Re: Earl Scruggs Banjo

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Posted by Randy Escobedo on July 01, 19102 at 19:34:49:

In Reply to: Earl Scruggs Banjo posted by Chet Johnson on June 30, 19102 at 21:52:01:

Chet- This is a long history. I will try to keep it short. One could talk about this a long time. There has been much talk and much written on his banjos.

Earl plays his prewar Granada to this day. This is the banjo he traded another Gibson banjo to Don Reno for. If I recall a 1934 Granada. The banjo has went through many changes during the years. In time as the hardware got worn and the gold rubbed off so he had it nickel plated giving it the look it has to this day. The banjo has had many other looks. In time there were several necks made for it. Mahogany and maple necks which had there own unique inlay patterns and sound. One time the banjo had a new fretboard installed. The folks at Gibson put on a bowtie inlay style. Thus the '49 Classic as we know it today which is one of the new Earl Scruggs banjos offered.

The banjo has been refinished more than once. During the Revue years it was that honey brown color. This is the era banjo they used and patterned for the first Gibson Earl Scruggs banjos. In time it was refinished to Granada specs as we see it today. The neck that is on it now is one Gibson made. Earl likes a banjo with full inlay patterns. This is what the Gibson Scruggs banjos have. The Granada banjo with Hearts & Flowers inlay does not have inlay on the 1st & 15th frets. The banjo still has the original gold plated tone ring in it.

Earl's first Gibson was a RB-11 which went back to the early days of his music. There was also a prewar RB-3 & RB-4 he played. I really don't know just how many Gibson's he may of had in time. The Vega Banjo Company made a Earl Scruggs banjo he once endorsed in the late 1950s and into the 1960s. With all this as I mentioned his main instrument is still his old Granada. He has recorded with this instrument throughout the years with Lester, The Revue and present. This is the banjo he still takes on the road. This is the banjo that he used to record the original "Foggy Mountain Breakdown". Well, enough.....I could go on and on. Hope these short facts on his banjo helps you.

Randy E.

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