I don't like to have to switch banjos when I switch from three-finger picking to clawhammer. The banjo should do also for clawhammer… Lately I've been playing more clawhammer on my Recording King RK-35, and I like it a lot. Here's a short demo video.
Clawhammering my RK-35, I got the idea to show how nice (to my ears) a normal Mastertone-type banjo can be for clawhammer. A modern one too that is very popular in bluegrass circles, the RK-35. Also with a normal, "bluegrass-like" setup.
In recent years, people seem to make a big separation between so-called "bluegrass banjos" and a "clawhammer instrument", as if these banjos are two totally different musical instruments that have little to do with each other. Also ignoring the fact that not all old-time banjo music is clawhammer.
Of course, people who prefer a 12" or even bigger thin rimmed openback banjo with a not so tight skin head, nylgut strings, high action and a thick bridge, may not like the Mastertone. It is very good to have different tastes in music. Me myself, I prefer more the old-time players of the 1960s and 1970s with Tubaphone and Whyte-Laydie banjos, for instance. Think of Art Rosenbaum with his heavy and bright sounding Wildwood…