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List of Post-Bela Fleck Progressive Banjo Players

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Sep 28, 2020 - 10:13:27 AM
3285 posts since 4/16/2006

Hey all you banjo players out there in Hangout Land!  I am currently researching and writing a new book about progressive banjo players, post-Fleck.  I have compiled a long list of banjoists, names of which most banjo devotees are familiar.   Some of these include, Matt Menefee, Noam Pikelny, Ryan Cavanaugh, Rex Magee, Chris Pandolfi, Gabe Hirshfeld and Adam Larrabee.  I have many others but there are lesser known musicians I am not aware of to possibly include in the book.

I have to admit that I do not know a good number of post-Fleck progressive players that are out in dimension banjo.  

I am asking you all for names of players that are really pushing the envelop with what can be accomplished on a five-string banjo.  They could be Classical banjoists, Jazz, Pop, etc..

I was very fortunate to have Bela to write the foreword to my Earl Scruggs biography.  It gave me the idea to continue the narrative about the ever moving boundaries of the banjo.

 

Thanks!!

Sep 28, 2020 - 10:21:42 AM

KCJones

USA

951 posts since 8/30/2012

Dave Hum and Barry Waldrep come to mind.

Sep 28, 2020 - 10:41:42 AM

Westvon

USA

3285 posts since 4/16/2006

quote:
Originally posted by KCJones

Dave Hum and Barry Waldrep come to mind.


Thanks!  Yes, I actually know Barry from the time I lived in Atlanta.  I used to help the previous owner of banjo.com, John Drummond, pack up and ship out starter banjo kits during the pre-Holiday season.

Sep 28, 2020 - 10:50:44 AM
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2355 posts since 12/31/2005

Andy Thorn

Graham Sharp


Jeff Mosier

Not sure Alison Brown is "post Fleck"

Edited by - Brian Murphy on 09/28/2020 10:54:06

Sep 28, 2020 - 11:47:08 AM

1840 posts since 2/28/2003

Matthew Davis
Gordon Stone (RIP)

Sep 28, 2020 - 11:53:11 AM
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592 posts since 2/26/2007

Does Jens Kruger qualify for Post-Bela Fleck?

Sep 28, 2020 - 12:07:37 PM
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4207 posts since 6/15/2005

BB Bowness
Gina Furtado
Bennett Sullivan
Mark Cassidy
Tabitha Agnew
Billy Failing
G Rockwell
Greg Liszt
Mike Munford
Danny Barnes

Sep 28, 2020 - 12:31:22 PM

13375 posts since 10/30/2008

Lord have mercy Ned Luberecki!!! That boy is OUT THERE.

Sep 28, 2020 - 12:42:44 PM

ChunoTheDog

Canada

407 posts since 8/9/2019

Is it really post-Fleck era if he's not dead?

Sep 28, 2020 - 1:01:35 PM
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Westvon

USA

3285 posts since 4/16/2006

quote:
Originally posted by Brian Murphy

Andy Thorn

Graham Sharp


Jeff Mosier

Not sure Alison Brown is "post Fleck"


 

Yes, if anything she is a contemporary of Fleck given that they both began playing careers around the same time.  She's definitely worth a huge mention, however.  Thanks!

Sep 28, 2020 - 1:05:18 PM
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Westvon

USA

3285 posts since 4/16/2006

quote:
Originally posted by FiveStringPop

Does Jens Kruger qualify for Post-Bela Fleck?


Most definitely, Jens would be a post-Fleckian player.  I have him on my initial list.  Thanks!

Sep 28, 2020 - 1:13:20 PM

Westvon

USA

3285 posts since 4/16/2006

quote:
Originally posted by ChunoTheDog

Is it really post-Fleck era if he's not dead?


Not in the manner in which I am referring.  By post-Fleck, I mean those players  who came after him that evolved styles and approaches to the banjo beyond even what Fleck plays.  For example, Matt Menefee has recorded video game sound tracks.  Not a "dead" Bela post, but an "after" Bela generation of players.  Thanks!

Sep 28, 2020 - 1:14:50 PM

Westvon

USA

3285 posts since 4/16/2006

quote:
Originally posted by arnie fleischer

BB Bowness
Gina Furtado
Bennett Sullivan
Mark Cassidy
Tabitha Agnew
Billy Failing
G Rockwell
Greg Liszt
Mike Munford
Danny Barnes


Thank you Arnie, I am grateful for the input!  

Sep 28, 2020 - 1:16:21 PM

403 posts since 9/23/2009

In no way am I worthy to be mentioned in the same breath as Bela Fleck. But in terms of musical interests: https://jab182.wixsite.com/johnbunge .

Sep 28, 2020 - 1:41:38 PM
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1725 posts since 4/10/2005

Half the graduating class in the Americana program at Berklee performaning arts conservatory, I guess. :(       Hope they all did their solfege.

Edited by - ceemonster on 09/28/2020 13:42:00

Sep 28, 2020 - 2:03:27 PM
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2355 posts since 12/31/2005

I should have mentioned Andy Thorn's predecessor in LS, Mark Vann.

Sep 28, 2020 - 2:44:13 PM

Bill H

USA

1394 posts since 11/7/2010

Wes Corbett

Sep 28, 2020 - 3:23:11 PM

209 posts since 10/26/2008

The Fireside Collective player Alex G ?

Could we throw Eli Gilbert on the list?

Sep 28, 2020 - 4:28:30 PM

1030 posts since 10/5/2008

Andy Pond, who used to play with the Snake Oil Medicine Show, is definitely somebody worth looking into. He's a killer player who was directly influenced by Bela.

Sep 28, 2020 - 4:52:16 PM
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AGACNP

USA

100 posts since 10/12/2011

Noam Pikelny

Sep 28, 2020 - 6:08:08 PM

KCJones

USA

951 posts since 8/30/2012

quote:
Originally posted by Westvon
quote:
Originally posted by ChunoTheDog

Is it really post-Fleck era if he's not dead?


Not in the manner in which I am referring.  By post-Fleck, I mean those players  who came after him that evolved styles and approaches to the banjo beyond even what Fleck plays.  For example, Matt Menefee has recorded video game sound tracks.  Not a "dead" Bela post, but an "after" Bela generation of players.  Thanks!


It's a tough question to answer. Almost any reasonably successful modern banjoist that wears fingerpicks will fit this description, just because of the influence Bela Fleck has had over his career. I think you'd be hard-pressed to find a banjo player under 40 that hasn't been heavily influenced by Bela Fleck. Among the under-30 crowd, Bela Fleck is a more well-known than Earl Scruggs. Nowadays it seems like everyone plays a combination of "Scruggs", melodic, and single-string. You could easily say, "every banjo player in the progressive/jamgrass scene". 

On-topic answer: Billy Failing

Sep 28, 2020 - 6:13:46 PM

KCJones

USA

951 posts since 8/30/2012

I don't mean to spam, but here's another one that I think warrants his own post:

Ben Wright, of the Henhouse Prowlers.

Not only does have a wonderful banjo style, he is a bonafide "Cultural Ambassador" with the US State Department. Traveling the world spreading the joy of banjo to all that will listen. He could provide a great value to your book, I think. Especially considering Bela Flecks journeys to Africa in the past, the efforts of Ben Wright would be very topical.

Sep 29, 2020 - 5:02:39 AM

5789 posts since 9/5/2006

i think trischka could be the root of todays melodic/jazz/blues banjo players,,,
even though thompson and keith were more well known for the melodic aspect.
i believe tony is the one who kinda brought the 3 style of this approach up front,,although johnnie whisnant had a jazz approach to his style doing ragtime numbers 3 finger style early on. bela did take lessons from tony early on and it planted that seed. if the book is focused on bela ,, then a mention of tony in the preface would be in order. just my 2 cents

although next to earl ,, bela is probably the most famous banjo player in the world,, he has taken it where no one ever thought it could go.

Edited by - 1935tb-11 on 09/29/2020 05:15:17

Sep 29, 2020 - 5:21:22 AM

2695 posts since 12/4/2009

Hello,

Ryan Cavanaugh. Pat Cloud’s influences on the banjo started early.

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