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New Old Subject - David Frey's Ultimate Plectrum Banjo Books

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Aug 5, 2020 - 3:32:37 PM
5 posts since 2/20/2020

I've been looking for David Frey's Ultimate Plectrum Banjo Player Books and haven't had any success finding a copy. Is anyone willing to allow me an opportunity to copy my own from an original? I am willing to pay anything reasonable (surety) to have the book(s) shipped to me for copying by me and returned. You keep the funds of course.

Aug 6, 2020 - 4:53 PM



503 posts since 2/16/2005

There's a copy of Volume 1 being offered on eBay for $475 (!!), but perhaps you can make a reasonable offer and bargain the owner down a bit.  I believe the book originally sold for about $50, so even being out-of-print and somewhat scarce, I think anything over $100-125 would be too high, at least for my pocketbook. 

The same book is also apparently held by a couple of public libraries, such as the Carnegie Free Public Library in Pittsburgh, PA and the Eugene Public Library in Eugene, Oregon.  I know you're in Arizona, but you might check with your local public library and see if they could arrange for an interlibrary loan with the Carnegie library or another public library that also has the book in its collection.  

Another source might be the American Banjo Museum in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, (405) 604-2793.  They have a lot of banjo memorabilia, books and pamphlets.

Finally, I think Dave Frey's co-author of the book was Susan or Susanne Sangiacomo.  Dave passed away a few years ago, but if she is still alive and if you could locate her, she may have some copies left or may know where some copies could be purchased.  Good Luck! 

Aug 7, 2020 - 3:39:49 AM



503 posts since 2/16/2005

In my Internet wanderings, I also stumbled upon an interesting book, "The Plectrum Banjo Chord Bible," which  contains over 1700 chord formations.  Although I'm not a big fan of these chord encyclopedias (who could remember even half of these chords?), the portion of the book that I was able to access on Amazon was interesting because it discusses chord theory and explained how some of the chords are constructed.  And it's also possible that there are a few new fingerings here that might be helpful. 

For example, I had always made a basic Gmajor chord by fretting the 1st string at the second fret and leaving the other strings open.  That gives you a melody chord with a D note on the fourth string, which is very useful.  But then I learned from Don Van Palta that you can also make a very similar G chord by fretting the fourth string at the fifth fret and leaving the other strings open.  Same basic chord, but you don't have to run back to the nut to make it, which can be very efficient and helpful in melody chord work.  That's the great thing about music, there's always something else to learn!  

The book is available from Amazon and costs $25. Here's the link:    SETH

Edited by - sethb on 08/07/2020 03:42:59

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