I am moving from my focus on playing nice banjos to salvaging classicsand developing an objective framework for valuing the vintage market. By training I am a research behavioral scientist. I see a need for a careful longitudinal charting of the value placed upon certain important banjo models over the century or so of their existence. I am not aware that this has been done in any public way.
It is a common belief that such banjos if found at a reasonable price can only go up in value. But what is reasonable at any time? What model in what condition? What is a fair dealer mark-up and what factors affect the market? Questions we all ask.
Shortly after I penned the above the vintage banjo market went into a slide. Very good quality Fairbanks, Vega and Bacon and Day banjos have gone for less than half of what they had been selling for. Conventional wisdom is to buy in a down market and hold. We will see.1 comment
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Playing Since: 1950
Experience Level: Purty Good
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Occupation: retired research psychologist
1891 Dobson Piccolo, 1899 Fairbanks Regent, 1903 Fairbanks Imperial Electric No.0, 1907 Bacon Professional ff, 1921 Fairbanks Whyte Laydie no.2 with Revel neck, 1926 Vegaphone Artist tenor, 1928 Vega Tubaphone openback, 1928 B&D Silver Bell 1 plectrum, 2000 Reiter Bacon Pro, 2000 Wildwood Paragon, 2009 Gorman Black Rose 5-string OB
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Last Visit 1/5/2019
Started playing plectrum at age 17 when I first arrived in San Francisco 1949. My father played tenor jazz and gave me a Vega Plectrum too big for his hands. I played in amateur jazz groups for 5-6 years. Played a little guitar, and got interested in 5 string in the 60s, but did not get one until 2000 when I retired. Studied with Jody Stecher and Joel Stafford in S.F.
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