Not sure where to begin? We covered the basics in this short guide to buying your first banjo. Still not sure? Send us a note or give us a call and we'll help you make the best decision.
Ready to follow through on that New Year’s resolution of learning how to play a stringed instrument? Newly retired and looking to take on the challenge of mastering a musical instrument? Banjo for beginners is so much fun plus our all-inclusive packages have everything you’ll need to get started. From the instrument itself to the carrying case and even online or phone support, the hardest thing is going to be deciding which banjo to purchase!
If the banjo is your instrument of choice next you must decide what genre of music you’re planning on playing. A five string banjo is used for bluegrass and clawhammer while the four string is better suited for Irish folk and Dixieland jazz. We wrote an entire blog post on the differences between 4-string, 5-string, and 6-string banjos.
This is also a good time to mention we wrote a Banjo Buying Guide that you can download below.
Most beginners are looking for a 5-sting model so they’ll need to decide if they want to play “clawhammer” on an openback 5-string banjo or bluegrass on a 5-string resonator banjo. Typically, beginner players are looking for an instrument at an entry-level price point. We recommend the Goodtime banjos by Deering. They aren’t the cheapest banjos on the market, but they are the best-built for the price. Players will typically select the Goodtime Openback from this series or the Goodtime 2 if they want to play bluegrass. Some beginners know they want a tone ring and will purchase the Goodtime Special as their first banjo.
Like we mentioned above, not everyone wants to play the same genre. If you’re thinking you want to play Jazz or Ragtime, you’ll want to browse 4-string banjos. Within the Goodtime series, beginners frequently choose the Goodtime Openback 17-fret or Goodtime 2 Plectrum. We also sell quite a few Goodtime Banjo Ukuleles which come in two lengths, the Goodtime Concert Scale Banjo Ukulele and the Goodtime Tenor Scale Banjo Ukulele.
And then there are the 6-string banjos. Taylor Swift actually plays a 6-string banjo in some of her music, they are popular with guitar players. The Goodtime 6 and Goodtime 6-R (resonator) are popular choices for beginners, but we do sell a lot of Deering Boston 6-String to experienced guitar players.
If you are feeling overwhelmed, don’t despair. We recommend downloading our Banjo Buying Guide. We have a page of beginner banjos that is worth a close look. You’ll see starter packs which are great because you’ll get a gig bag with your banjo to keep it safe. You can also call or send us a question. One of our banjo experts will happily answer any questions you have.