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The banjo reviews database is here to help educate people before they purchase an instrument. Of course, this is not meant to be a substitute for playing the instrument yourself!

7170 reviews in the archive.

Backyard Music

Submitted by lawbyke on 3/20/2016

Overall Comments

I bought the Fireside banjo a little over a year ago. It developed a twang and they replaced it immediately and even paid my postage. As for the banjo, it is great fun.

Overall Rating: 10

Backyard Music: Fireside (Assembled)

Submitted by lawbyke on 1/25/2016

Where Purchased: Manufacturer

Year Purchased: 2015
Price Paid: 149 ($US)


Small, bright sound which is intended

Sound Rating: not rated


Came fully set up

Setup Rating: 10


The banjo is unique and particularly beautiful. It is almost a cross between Shaker simplicity and Japanese elegance.

Appearance Rating: 10


It does not appear to be extremely durable and is made for a small sound so you wouldn't use it on a gig, since that is not what is made for.

Reliability Rating: 8

Customer Service

Couldn't be more customer friendly. Needed repair and sent a replacement banjo.

Customer Service: 10


This is a light, inexpensive banjo made for playing by oneself. The parts are basic and you wouldn't dabble in changes.

Components Rating: 7

Overall Comments

I love it. The Fireside is a very light basic banjo. It barely weighs two pounds, but except for the light weight and small sound plays like a regular banjo. It is a great deal of fun to play and wonderful to take on vacation. In my case, an injury made playing a typical weight banjo difficult and the Fireside enabled me to play for much longer sessions than I otherwise could have. It is also easier to play than a typical banjo and has a very light action. As a novice, I could learn a tune on the Fireside and then shift to playing it on a regular banjo. It is made for playing alone as it has a limited sound that would be drowned out in jam. But the small sound is an advantage as playing alone you won't disturb others. It has the small sound by design and accomplishes its purpose. 

The Fireside is very beautiful. Unique looking. A cherry colored neck, a very light blond pot, surrounded by a black rim. So beautiful that I sometimes keep it on a mantle above a fireplace. When people see it, they look twice.

Overall Rating: 10

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