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Jan 12, 2019 - 4:24:47 PM
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124 posts since 9/26/2018

I’ve used SurveyMonkey for various reasons (like the HOA I was a board member for) and thought it would be really cool to try surveying BHO users here, just for kicks. If anyone has ideas for questions to ask on a future survey, please suggest them here.

No personal data is asked for; all answers are anonymous. 5 easy questions, will only take a few seconds. I’ll post results once I start getting a good number of responses.

surveymonkey.com/r/KJF52HZ

edit: My apologies to Australians and New Zealanders for not listing their world region as a geographical choice, but thank you for specifying in the comments. I’ll tabulate those when I analyze the results. 

Edited by - neilends on 01/12/2019 19:30:05

Jan 12, 2019 - 4:35:58 PM

50804 posts since 12/14/2005

I'm in.
Hope it turns out to be interesting.

Jan 12, 2019 - 4:46:14 PM
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1105 posts since 7/14/2004

You could ask how the player went about learning to play. i.e. teacher, self taught, tablature, instructional videos, books etc.

Jan 12, 2019 - 4:54:37 PM
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125 posts since 3/21/2016

You could ask what instrument people started on and if they wish they started on something else. Maybe if they kept their starter or wish they kept it.

Teddy

Edited by - teddy ruxpin on 01/12/2019 16:55:29

Jan 12, 2019 - 5:31:53 PM
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3531 posts since 10/13/2005

What age you started? What age are you now? How many years have you been playing? Why banjo? How many hours do you play per week? What keeps you playing? What banjo would you buy if money were no object? Favorite banjo player? How many songs can you play? How many tunes that you can play spontaneously/solo? Number one limitation for being a better player? banjered

Jan 12, 2019 - 6:46:07 PM
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3016 posts since 7/12/2006

The Masters of the 5String Banjo has a very good survey in it that was sent to many of the best banjo players of the day . The results are in said book, which EVERY bluegrass banjo player should have , by the way

Jan 12, 2019 - 7:20:24 PM

124 posts since 9/26/2018

Great ideas. I’ll do those for my next one.

Jan 13, 2019 - 7:35:18 AM

124 posts since 9/26/2018

Bumping in the hopes of getting more European responses!

surveymonkey.com/r/KJF52HZ

Jan 13, 2019 - 11:15:23 AM

Mooooo

USA

6212 posts since 8/20/2016
Online Now

Not as many people read the Other Banjo Related Topics. You can tag some of the usual suspects to get their attention or send out PM's. Don't forget Clawhammer/Old Timers, and 4-stringers...I don't think anyone cares about the 6-stringers. How many people have responded altogether?

Edited by - Mooooo on 01/13/2019 11:17:28

Jan 13, 2019 - 11:36:22 AM

124 posts since 9/26/2018

quote:
Originally posted by Mooooo

Not as many people read the Other Banjo Related Topics. You can tag some of the usual suspects to get their attention or send out PM's. Don't forget Clawhammer/Old Timers, and 4-stringers...I don't think anyone cares about the 6-stringers. How many people have responded altogether?


Should I post in those forums? I didn’t want to seem spam-like. I have about 110 responses so far, mostly from US folks (about 80%, the rest being Canadian and Australian). 

Jan 13, 2019 - 11:39:40 AM
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Mooooo

USA

6212 posts since 8/20/2016
Online Now

I would simply tag people here like phb, and janolov, etc...there are lots of Europeans who regularly post. You can PM people if you don't feel comfortable tagging them. If they respond, great, but they aren't forced to.

Edited by - Mooooo on 01/13/2019 11:40:38

Jan 13, 2019 - 2:37:06 PM

124 posts since 9/26/2018

Thanks for those tags. I don’t know people here as well as you might think I do, who’s from where, etc. 128 responses so far which is pretty good with interesting results. I’ll analyze and post in a day or two to let more chime in. 81% from the US and another 9% from Canada but that’s probably the real balance on BHO at large.

Jan 13, 2019 - 2:45:33 PM

Mooooo

USA

6212 posts since 8/20/2016
Online Now

I'm surprised you don't have anyone from Great Britain....maybe they are sore about that 8th of January post a few days ago...You can look through the Celtic Style Forum, and the Jazz Forum for people outside the US. Most people from outside the US have their home country or nation next to their photo or avatar.

Edited by - Mooooo on 01/13/2019 14:50:31

Jan 13, 2019 - 3:32:52 PM

124 posts since 9/26/2018

9 Europeans have responded in total so far. Clawhammer and Scruggs are their most popular choices.

Jan 13, 2019 - 6:54:34 PM

4575 posts since 9/5/2006

its not a detailed story of our lives its just a general info survey.....
i am interested in the final results though,,, should be a surprise

Jan 14, 2019 - 1:11:37 AM
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Players Union Member

janolov

Sweden

39401 posts since 3/7/2006

I think most players do only read a few of the sections and this Other Banjo-related Topics is not very popular. If you really want to get response from all kind of players you should post your request in every section in Playing The Banjo forums . Probably the mods will lock the threads but I think they will not delete it. I think a locked topic also  will make a lot of people more curious so they will read it and hopefully also respond to the survey! 

Jan 14, 2019 - 5:50:31 AM
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124 posts since 9/26/2018

At press time, 141 banjoists responded to my survey. Obviously, none of this is scientific.

GEOGRAPHY

79% of respondents are American. Another 10% are Canadian. 11 people responded from other parts of the world: Australia, Netherlands, France, Germany, Sweden, Denmark, and an American in Japan.

Within the US, 35% are from the South, 29% from the Midwest, 20% from the Northeast, and 15% from the West.

BANJO STYLE

On this question, users could pick more than one choice, so numbers will not add up to 100%. 68% said they primarily play Scruggs style and 43% play Clawhammer. A total of 39 other answers reflected the other styles BHO users play:

Blues (10 users)
Irish Trad (9)
Jazz (6)
Folk
Folk, Seeger style
Two finger
Four finger
Two finger country / Dave Macon
Rock
Melodic finger style
Melodic chromatic style
Ska, classic, and classical
Swing

REGIONAL DIFFERENCES

The percentage of Southerners who play Scruggs style is basically the same as for Midwesterners: 78 to 79%. The most dramatic regional differences are in the West and Northeast, where Clawhammer is slightly more popular than Scruggs. 64% of Northeasterners on BHO play Clawhammer, versus 59% who play Scruggs (there’s overlap). In the West, 53% of users say they play Clawhammer and 53% play Scruggs style.

BANJO COLLECTIONS

A majority of responders own multiple banjos. 54% own between 3 and 10 banjos. 11 users (8%) own more than 10 banjos. (My wording of the question here was flawed so there’s some unintended overlap.)

These were a lot of fun to learn from so thank you to everyone who responded. I’ll do this again in a while with new questions as suggested above. Feel free to add more question ideas here.

Jan 14, 2019 - 6:50:33 AM

124 posts since 9/26/2018

Skipped over one question by accident:

EXPERIENCE LEVEL

43% of responders have been playing the banjo for over 20 years. Another 30% have played for between 3 and 10 years. 12% have played for 1 to 3 years. About 4% are in my category of playing for one year or less.

Jan 16, 2019 - 8:04:02 PM
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1032 posts since 10/29/2008

That was a great idea. I am glad I am not the only one who said I play "folk" style banjo.

Jan 17, 2019 - 5:17:05 AM

4575 posts since 9/5/2006

i would have never guessed that 59 % of northeastern pickers prefer clawhammer ...
wonder why that is ?

Jan 17, 2019 - 5:40:23 AM

124 posts since 9/26/2018

quote:
Originally posted by 1935tb-11

i would have never guessed that 59 % of northeastern pickers prefer clawhammer ...
wonder why that is ?


I thought that was interesting too. 

150 people have responded by now so here’s updated data. 44 are from the east coast or western states. Among them, 59% play clawhammer and 52% play Scruggs (there’s overlap from people who play both). This is the biggest difference I found when looking at players from the other regions, the South and Midwest. Of the 79 players from those two regions, 77% play Scruggs and only 29% play clawhammer. 

Jan 17, 2019 - 5:45:51 AM

124 posts since 9/26/2018

quote:
Originally posted by Gary Blanchard

That was a great idea. I am glad I am not the only one who said I play "folk" style banjo.


I count a total of 5 people who responded with “folk” in their answers. That’s not a bad sample size from a small survey!

Jan 17, 2019 - 5:52 AM

1032 posts since 10/29/2008

quote:
Originally posted by neilends
quote:
Originally posted by Gary Blanchard

That was a great idea. I am glad I am not the only one who said I play "folk" style banjo.


I count a total of 5 people who responded with “folk” in their answers. That’s not a bad sample size from a small survey!


Especially since it is  a write-in choice. 

Jan 17, 2019 - 6:24:34 AM

2252 posts since 2/16/2017

And I’ll bet that a majority of the Scruggs pickers in the NE live north of New York City.

There is a much livelier bluegrass scene in New England, especially around Boston. I get the impression that there aren’t a whole lot of Scruggs pickers around Philly. I’ve seen too many local BG bands over the years with a clawhammer banjo player, and I turn a lot of heads when I sit down in a music store and try out banjos. Most stores have a really crummy banjo selection too.

There is pretty vibrant folk scene though, probably sustained by the Philadelphia Folksong Society, who is responsible for the Philly Folk Fest, which is bigger than ever these days. Also a lot of tenor and plectrum players because of the Mummers (that’s an ever-shrinking pool though, the Sting bands used to have a wall of banjo players, now they might have only 4 or 6 banjos in huge bands).

Jan 17, 2019 - 7:11:32 AM

124 posts since 9/26/2018

quote:
Originally posted by FlyinEagle

And I’ll bet that a majority of the Scruggs pickers in the NE live north of New York City.

There is a much livelier bluegrass scene in New England, especially around Boston. I get the impression that there aren’t a whole lot of Scruggs pickers around Philly. I’ve seen too many local BG bands over the years with a clawhammer banjo player, and I turn a lot of heads when I sit down in a music store and try out banjos. Most stores have a really crummy banjo selection too.

There is pretty vibrant folk scene though, probably sustained by the Philadelphia Folksong Society, who is responsible for the Philly Folk Fest, which is bigger than ever these days. Also a lot of tenor and plectrum players because of the Mummers (that’s an ever-shrinking pool though, the Sting bands used to have a wall of banjo players, now they might have only 4 or 6 banjos in huge bands).


I live in Arizona but was visiting family in Boston, and called every music store in Boston to find out their banjo inventory. It was pretty slim picking. The best store had 4 used banjos, none of which were all that great  

Phoenix is also not a good city for banjos but a used instrument store that’s been here since 1977 had a surprisingly decent stock of them. (Also all mediocre in quality though.)

Jan 17, 2019 - 7:46:44 AM

2252 posts since 2/16/2017

Probably have to know the right shop to call. There are a 2 specialized shops around here that are worth visiting, but everything else pretty much has a couple of Deerings/Goldtones/Fenders. And in some cases, the same banjos have been there for years.

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