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Jun 8, 2024 - 2:39:46 PM
6948 posts since 10/13/2007

Here is ad ODE C sold by Ceres Banjo for about $1800 if there was no dickering. This seems like a good professional banjo but I don't know about Odes. So many people say I have $2k to spend on a banjo. This looks like it would have been great for them. Can someone explain to me what the thought process is on a banjo like this?



Jun 8, 2024 - 3:03:19 PM
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5470 posts since 11/20/2004

Much like the 60's-70's Fenders, also undervalued, based on sound and quality. People want a Gibson more.

Jun 8, 2024 - 4:06:02 PM
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5850 posts since 5/29/2011

Forty to fifty years ago ODE was one of the more sought-after banjos for melodic style players. It seems that times, and tastes, have changed.

Jun 8, 2024 - 5:51:37 PM
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Bill Rogers (Moderator)


28094 posts since 6/25/2005

They lack Gibson’s cachet. And they have a somewhat different sound. Twenty years ago Ode style C’s could be had for $12-1,300. They remain undervalued.

Jun 9, 2024 - 7:06:01 AM
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15753 posts since 10/30/2008

It wasn't that long ago we would see Ode Model C's here on BHO going begging when offered at $1000. EXCELLENT banjos but way under-appreciated.

They have a wonderful silvery clear tone, EXCELLENT necks with low action and great intonation. Odes (mostly the gussied up Model D) were the #1 choice of chromatic bluegrass players in the 1970s because of their easy playability and "perfect" intonation up the neck (much better than Gibsons and their conversion necks, generally).

The Model C has identical guts to the purtier Model D.

The Model C was ranked as "best" banjo on the market in Bill Emerson's review articles in Bluegrass Unlimited in 1969-70! His only critique was that the inlays were smaller than they could/should have been.

This year I have noticed sellers pushing up the asking price of Model Cs quite sharply. $1800 is among the higher prices I have seen; I remember a recent offering well above $2000 which I thought to myself "THAT will take awhile to sell!".

Several years ago I drove to Massachusetts to look over a Model C advertised for sale.  Nice banjo, I told the guy I was prepared to make an offer (I was going to offer him $800).  He got telling me how it was his first good banjo, and had played it all over New England for years but now he had a Granada and wasn't using it anymore.  He spoke of this Ode with so much passion and nostalgia that I finally told him I wasn't going to insult him with my offer, and I went home!  I think he was asking $1000.

Finally, Model Cs are NOT rare. They are offered for sale fairly regularly.

Edited by - The Old Timer on 06/09/2024 07:10:29

Jun 9, 2024 - 2:00:59 PM
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3117 posts since 11/3/2016

My first good banjo was an ODE all rosewood purchased new in the late 60's . The quality was outstanding ! Since , I've had a "D" which also was a fine banjo . I created a more desirable sound (for myself) by moving the resonator down away from the rim on the D .

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