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I Owe it to You

Posted by nechville on Sunday, October 25, 2009

After all, This is a forum about banjos, so please forgive me if this seems overly self-promotional. I can't help it, My self preservation instinct comes out at times like these. My excuse is that I love my friends, and many of you guys and gals out there in the banjo-brotherly way, I want you to be benefitted by the information I share, and I hope my writing only inspires additional enthusiasm and respect for all types of banjos and all kinds of players and styles. When I tell stories about my successes, It should add something to your conciousness without devaluing what you may hold in traditionally high esteem. In other words, I believe my designs to be of a better value than other designs,(in economic terms, a lower cost/utility quotient) but in no way do I want to imply that other designs are worth any less. I hope you hear what I am saying.

Short Story #1

We'll call him Joe. He went to a jam and was blown away by a new boutique tone ring installed in a traditional banjo. Joe happened to have an order placed for a Nechville banjo, so he called me and asked if he could get one of these rings in his new Nechville banjo. I said I would try, so after some research, I finally procured a ring and fit it in his Helimount. In testing it out several people commented that it had a more traditional sound with a nice decay.  I offered to send both the Nechville ring and the expensive new ring so the customer could be sure he was getting what he wanted. A week later I got a call from Joe who said, "Wow, I liked the New ring, but when I put the Nechville ring in, it sounded way better, There was no contest". Don't feel bad if you have spent a lot of money on a new tone ring, If you like it, it's worth every penny. There is a place you can go where the values are very good because we cut out middle men and have over 30 years of experience with parts building and mechanics of banjos.

Short Story #2

I recent female customer, (We'll call her Joan) accepted my offer to build her a custom banjo on a trial basis. If she didn't like it she could get her money back. Being a Master-ful player, Joan was used to the "bluegrassy" sound that she got from her 13# heavy banjo, but she was tired of the weight, and probably heard Lee Kelso or someone raving about a lighter option. Joan was extremely skeptical and insisted that the banjo had to have that Bluegrassy tone, but be as light as possible. I suggested a new option, Aluminum oxide Tone spheres with a Honduras Rosewood Timbr-Tronic Tone ring. It weighs about 7#. She was blown away with the volume, and "Bluegrassy tone". Someone even more excited was Joan's teacher and mentor, a noted and respected video method teacher. There's still high value in those wonderful masterpieces, but if the job can be done at nearly half the weight and a fraction of the price, who's value is better?

Atlas Update #3

I'm getting more inquiries on the Atlas openback, and people want to hear a sound clip. I'm scared to do it because I don't clawhammer, (besides I'm out of Atlas stock right now). We were counting on Zepp to post a video, who has one now (and likes it), but he's been tending to personal issues and hasn't recorded it yet. We recently sent one to Kathy Fink who said she was surprised at the clarity and volume from an all wooden pot. She and others have commented about it having a nice solidness about it, and a pure tone. Muffled or thumpy would not describe the way I set them up. I use the same tailpiece as on my other Nechville banjos, and with a Renaissance Head and Flux neck connection it gives a note with a lot of body and fullness, but also has the power to give definition to each note. I think with some variation due to playing technique, these general qualities will be evidenced in eventual recordings that come out.   Happy Picking, until next time, Tom

7 comments on “I Owe it to You”

Tango_grass Says:
Tuesday, October 27, 2009 @12:34:44 PM

Excellent Tom. Keep it up.

nechville Says:
Tuesday, October 27, 2009 @1:59:30 PM

Hey Chris, You ought to come along on our spur janglin, rough ridin , banjo pickin tour de southwest!

Tango_grass Says:
Thursday, October 29, 2009 @2:35:19 PM

Oh man, wouldn't that be a blast. I think some gigs might conflict for me, but I'll check the schedule and talk to Al!

nechville Says:
Thursday, October 29, 2009 @3:57:54 PM

Hey, I was just kidding Boy,

Tango_grass Says:
Thursday, October 29, 2009 @10:12:57 PM

Well you know how it get into an up and coming band...and whoosh!! There goes your free time! next time!! ;)

Jim D Says:
Friday, October 30, 2009 @4:23:41 PM

NOW I find out that Zepp has an Atlas. I visited his shop a week or so ago and played everything I could get my hands on including an old SS Stewart. But now I'll have to go back to try the Atlas out.

nechville Says:
Friday, October 30, 2009 @5:00:38 PM

Try this link, It might download slow, but I finally put an Atlas demo up

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