01 August 2017

Banjo honours

Bluegrass Today reports that Scott Vestal has been awarded the 2017 Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Banjo & Bluegrass. BT's John Lawless calls him 'a true innovator on the five string banjo and one of the most creative players we’ve yet seen', and Steve Martin reveals that Scott has been on the short list for the award every year since it was founded.

On the album cover (above) Scott is shown playing a Stealth Banjo, designed and marketed by himself; one of the most conspicuous features is the tunnelled fifth string, as used on many English banjos of the 19th and 20th centuries. Several examples of his wide-ranging playing can be heard on the Bluegrass Today feature.
The Prescription Bluegrass Blog announces that the American Banjo Museum in Oklahoma City will hold its three-day Banjo Fest on 7-9 Sept. 2017, incorporating the inductions into the American Banjo Museum Hall of Fame of John McEuen, Paul Erickson, Roy Clark, Tony Trischka, and Joel Walker Sweeney. The Hall of Fame, originally dedicated to four-string banjo players, was extended in 2013 to include the 5-string, with which four out of the five 2017 inductees are associated. Performers at Banjo Fest will include the Kruger Brothers and Gary 'Biscuit' Davis (who was touring Ireland in January 2014 with the Nation & Blackwell Bluegrass Band).

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