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Alan Munde , banjo player par excellence

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Jan 25, 2022 - 10:47:18 AM
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chuckv97

Canada

63594 posts since 10/5/2013

Just want to give a shout out to a great musician, instructor, and all around fine human being. I first saw Alan with Country Gazette in 1974 and the excitement was hair-raising. Here’s a great example…
youtu.be/5aN7JxaSJz8


 

Jan 25, 2022 - 1:40:50 PM
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1820 posts since 9/10/2003

Killer tune By a Killer player !!!! "I'm looking over a four leaf clover"

Brian

Jan 25, 2022 - 2:13:32 PM
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Texasbanjo (Moderator)

USA

27163 posts since 8/3/2003

I could listen to Alan play for hours (and have!). Great song, great picking, great player.

Jan 25, 2022 - 2:23:12 PM
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1020 posts since 10/4/2018

Alan is by far my favorite picker. He always does a great job with those old standards, but his original instrumentals is where he stands head and shoulders above the rest. And, yes, a heck of a good guy.

Jan 25, 2022 - 2:26:46 PM
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3944 posts since 9/12/2016

Alan was one of the great melodic explorers before , choppy single string got trendy among the young ----gotta make a mark crowd. A shame gifted folks didn't stay with that style imo---But I had it coming-- when melodics came around and everyone was getting in above their head--the old strong scruggsers were wishing the same--

Jan 25, 2022 - 2:31:07 PM
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chuckv97

Canada

63594 posts since 10/5/2013

That second break is a beaut!

Jan 25, 2022 - 2:44:03 PM
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329 posts since 2/27/2004

Was the first Country Gazette album “Banjo Sandwich”? That’s when joined the Alan Mandy fan Club! Then I heard he and the Country Gazette live at the Texas State Fair back in 1974(?). What a picker and master of the 5-string banjo.

Jan 25, 2022 - 3:31:58 PM
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203 posts since 7/22/2012

I sat almost directly in front of his banjo, while sitting in the front row, at a small Bishline Banjos concert one year. Some of the best banjo playing I've ever seen or heard.

He is being inducted into the American Banjo Museum and Hall of Fame later this year, I learned...

bluegrasstoday.com/sonny-osbor...-of-fame/

Jan 25, 2022 - 3:54:15 PM
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chuckv97

Canada

63594 posts since 10/5/2013

He’s also the co-winner of the Steve Martin Banjo Prize


 

Edited by - chuckv97 on 01/25/2022 15:54:39

Jan 25, 2022 - 4:50:57 PM
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3944 posts since 9/12/2016

he was around a long time before the banjo sandwich

Edited by - Tractor1 on 01/25/2022 16:54:39

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Jan 25, 2022 - 5:36:35 PM
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329 posts since 2/27/2004

quote:
Originally posted by Tractor1

he was around a long time before the banjo sandwich

You are correct!  Poor Richard's  Almanac was the first.  
Jan 25, 2022 - 6:35:49 PM

chuckv97

Canada

63594 posts since 10/5/2013

Did some digging , here’s the list of songs that he recorded with Jimmy Martin.
Homesick
I’ve Got My Future On Ice
Midnight Rambler
Between Fire and Water
Singing All Day and Dinner on the Ground
Lift Your Eyes to Jesus
Shake Hands With Mother Again
When the Savior Reached Down for Me
Help Thy Brother
My Lord Keeps a Record
I’d Like to be Sixteen Again
I Cried Again
Chattanooga Clog

Edited by - chuckv97 on 01/25/2022 18:36:13

Jan 25, 2022 - 7:09:25 PM
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13134 posts since 6/2/2008

quote:
Originally posted by PickinFool

Was the first Country Gazette album “Banjo Sandwich”? That’s when joined the Alan Mandy fan Club! Then I heard he and the Country Gazette live at the Texas State Fair back in 1974(?). What a picker and master of the 5-string banjo.


First Country Gazette album was "A Traitor in Our Midst" released by United Artists in 1972. Included the instrumental Hot Burrito Breakdown. This was followed by the 1973 album "Don't Give Up Your Day Job" that included Huckleberry Hornpipe.

The first appearance on record of a group using the name Country Gazette might have been the bluegrass interlude on The Flying Burrito Brothers live album "Last of the Red Hot Burritos." 

"Banjo Sandwich" that you asked about was an Alan Munde solo project released in 1975.

Jan 25, 2022 - 7:37:01 PM
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329 posts since 2/27/2004

I stand corrected. I have all of Alan’s albums regardless of the order in which they came out. With or without the rest of the guys. They were all great musicians.

Jan 25, 2022 - 7:52:45 PM
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4373 posts since 6/15/2005

From one of my all-time favorite albums, Dad's Favorites, here's Alan at his mind-boggling best.  Byron Berline goes first and then Alan comes in at about 2:13:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yacr9RstKCU

Jan 25, 2022 - 7:54:49 PM
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GStump

USA

467 posts since 9/12/2006

I have always admired Alan's playing. I think he said in the great book, "Masters of the Five String Banjo," OR it might have been on an album notes.... that he at times would intentionally play something slowly, so as to be able to hear all the "pretty notes" of a tune; and that given a choice between two notes (MY question or thought - "that might fit a given situation?") he would normally choose the "prettier" note..... can't go wrong there!!

Jan 25, 2022 - 11:21:18 PM
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TX2AK

USA

197 posts since 12/23/2011

Mr. Munde is indeed a top notch player. I love listening to him. Among his many teaching engagements, he is a founding teacher at “Camp Bluegrass,” in July in west Texas, and he answers emails himself for attendees, which is pretty cool. I’m going for my first time this summer, and I can’t wait to meet him in person. My wife has picked her fiddle back up for the first time since our boys came along a decade ago, and we’ll be in the RV lot on campus in Levelland. We are both recently back to playing bluegrass, and I’d love to hook up with other BHO members, so please message if you are going; I’d love to have a beer, tea or dinner with fellow Hangouters.

Jan 26, 2022 - 12:13:07 AM
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HSmith

UK

462 posts since 12/30/2005

Since hearing 'Traitor In Our Midst' way back in the 1970s, Alan Munde has been a huge inspiration to me. I live in the UK, and back in the 70s bluegrass, whether recorded but more specifically, live was hard to find. Country Gazette made a European tour, and I was lucky to see them twice, at the Victoria Palace theatre in London, and at the University of Sussex in Brighton. It was a revelation! This was to me the absolute epitome of quality playing. The material was fresh and new, Byron Berline's fiddle soared and sang, Roger Bush's slap bass really drove along, Roland White's lead vocals were perfect, and on top of all this was the most tasteful, inventive banjo playing I'd ever heard from Alan Munde. Not only was his melodic playing perfect, his Scruggs style had great drive, and he sometimes played in (what w ere then) most unusual keys. Truly a master.

Jan 26, 2022 - 8:10 AM
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2062 posts since 10/9/2004

quote:
Originally posted by chuckv97

Did some digging , here’s the list of songs that he recorded with Jimmy Martin.
Homesick
I’ve Got My Future On Ice
Midnight Rambler
Between Fire and Water
Singing All Day and Dinner on the Ground
Lift Your Eyes to Jesus
Shake Hands With Mother Again
When the Savior Reached Down for Me
Help Thy Brother
My Lord Keeps a Record
I’d Like to be Sixteen Again
I Cried Again
Chattanooga Clog


..and here's a sample from his Jimmy Martin days; enjoy!

https://youtu.be/d8TxYsBTuA8

Quagmire

Jan 29, 2022 - 9:37:20 AM
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898 posts since 3/14/2003

Not only is Alan one of the absolute masters of banjo, but he's one of the most humble, unassuming, and unpretentious legends that I've ever met. He also has a great, understated sense of humor and a gentle way of effective teaching.

Jan 29, 2022 - 11:02:49 AM
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75966 posts since 5/9/2007

I've been a fan of Alan's since reading his columns in Frets Magazine.Once I heard his Huckleberry Hornpipe I had no choice but to learn it.

Jan 29, 2022 - 2:20:44 PM
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3944 posts since 9/12/2016

When Sonny Osborne gave his playing a thumbs up ,even though Alan was throwing out killer but tasteful melodics , it made him certified .

Jan 29, 2022 - 2:22:58 PM

3944 posts since 9/12/2016

Over on the internet Archive I found but now lost--Alan in europe with the flying burrito brothers ,his classic self

Jan 29, 2022 - 3:22:49 PM
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358 posts since 5/21/2020

quote:
Originally posted by chuckv97

Just want to give a shout out to a great musician, instructor, and all around fine human being. I first saw Alan with Country Gazette in 1974 and the excitement was hair-raising. Here’s a great example…
youtu.be/5aN7JxaSJz8


A regular guest teacher at BanjoBens Cabin Camps

youtube.com/watch?v=b_WGZt6IYGs

Edited by - FenderFred on 01/29/2022 15:27:54

Jan 31, 2022 - 11:48:50 AM

banjoez

USA

2422 posts since 7/18/2007

Alan Munde is a banjo genius. I have no idea how he comes up with such innovative techniques and fingering to make every song sound fresh, different and exciting, even old war horses.

Feb 2, 2022 - 1:01:15 PM

2079 posts since 1/10/2004

What else can be said? Well if you've ever had the pleasure of being around him you'll know he's a pretty funny guy to boot.

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