Peghead Nation Instructor Bill Evans 17-Fret vs. 19-Fret Banjos On this point I would definitely say the 17-fret is more common, but by no means does that make it the standard. We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. The shorter scale length of 17 fret banjos compounds that issue, and it’s harder to get a decent tension without very thick strings. As you've noticed, 19 frets are a lot more common than 17 frets. Covid 19 Update: We Are open and available … Using these strings: D'Addario J63i My hand is big enough that I can use one finger per fret and have learned to use frets 1 - 5 (5 was a stretch at first), but the tunes I play are basically using frets 2 - 5 (plus open strings). I'm not fully decided yet, but I'm leaning toward 19 frets. Newer banjos with truss rods are better as are the older shorter Vega necks that are built very strong. Stardust, in your post of 9/21 you suggest you'd be using CGDA tuning, which is normal tenor banjo tuning, a fifth (7 frets) down from mandolin tuning. The Sierra short scale has a brighter & snappier sound than the 19 fret … Edited by - pgroff on 09/23/2013 10:10:31, Stardust - Posted - 09/23/2013:  13:44:11. mikehalloran - Posted - 09/30/2013:  08:04:41. The Sierra 17-fret tenor has our professional -06- bronze … Bottleneck Banjo Blues, a playlist by Patrick on Spotify. I think Gold Tone were poorly advised when they branded their instrument. I have it tuned GDAE, which works out well because I can use mandolin tabs. BanjoNeo - Posted - 09/22/2013:  12:34:21. use the following search parameters to narrow your results: interactive chord and scale tool - Purple Banjo, Mossy Roof Stringband Old-Time Banjo Tabs. Though it's true that the scale length and the number of frets can work independently, changing one without changing the other alters the bridge position which opens up a different conversation of tone and right hand ergonomics. Features include a three-piece maple/walnut/maple neck, 17-fret rosewood fingerboard with vintage-style B&D inlays, 19” scale, 24 tension brackets with notched hoop, 11” Remo High Crown head, new … and join one of thousands of communities. I'm experimenting with a 5 string banjo, re-strung and re-tuned to fifths tuning, and I'm figuring out what my finger stretches can handle by capoing at various positions. All Forums Hide these Google ads: join the Players Union! With practice you'll be able to get to anywhere you want on the neck.The benefits of 19 frets - higher string tension, lighter string gauge, better intonation on the G string, are too important to miss. You will want a 19 fret. The end result is the 2 low strings are super slack, to the point that the G string goes nearly a half step sharp when I fret it. Early models used for melodic picking typically had 17 frets on the neck and a scale length of 19 … When playing Irish style or the rapid single notes I prefer the 17 fret with the slightly shorter scale. mikehalloran - Posted - 09/23/2013:  09:51:28. ), The Cuckoo - (Homemade Banjo from Denmark!). Guitar players like the shorter scale because they don't know how to finger the longer scale. Edited by - Stardust on 09/22/2013 13:35:04, Jack Russel - Posted - 09/23/2013:  05:28:39, 12, 16, 24w, 36w is about right for a 23" tenor in GDAE. I was always partial to GHS stainless steel wound for bulk loop end strings. The late Tommy Makem plated a Vega Pete Seeger and Jem Finer of The Pogues does quite nicely on a Gibson ESS. Buy banjos and guitars online Irl & UK or at our retail shop near Killarney Cheapest strings in 066 976 3964 / 087 6805214 support@freyaguitars.ie If that works for you, then get appropriate strings (might not be much different) for DAEB tuning. You're totally right. Clawhammer cover. Irish players vary between using the 17 fret tenor or the 19 fret tenor. I can assure you this. Tuned in fifths, C,G,D,A it is easily … Rendered by PID 11499 on r2-app-03baf37590aa64a69 at 2020-12-05 17:58:41.989212+00:00 running a7f2daa country code: US. If you continue, we will assume that you agree to. Although smaller, 17 fret banjos are designed for folk music, many Irish players actually prefer the 19 fret models, for the extra bite and volume that a higher tension banjo kicks out. Don't waste your time with a 17 fret neck however small your hands may be. Some of the banjos I played at his house, like the top-tension Gibson parts banjo he assembled, had tone for miles. Jack Russel - Posted - 09/21/2013:  04:54:40. The banjo for the liveliest music, 4-strings are highly versatile. Stardust - Posted - 09/30/2013:  12:42:03. Great advice so far from Mike Halloran and all. 27 min, 'Recommend banjo in $2,000 to 4,000 price range' 33 min, 'Schaller smal shaft pegs with MOP knobs' 34 min, '"Arkansas Traveler/Suzanna Gal/Old Molly Hare" - Zac Sokolow' 1 hr. This is doubly true in the used and vintage market since most tenor banjos made were made for jazz or banjo orchestra playing. I'm a beginner to banjo with an interest in buying a 4-string tenor, and I apologize for this recurring or seemingly endless question that never seems to get answered, but I'm having some trouble making sense of the whole 17-fret vs. 19-fret issue relative to classic Irish tenor music. The Deering Goodtime Special Leader ‘Chieftain’ 19 Fret Tenor Banjo is our top of the range, highest specification Goodtime Special Tenor Banjo. ', 'Recommend banjo in $2,000 to 4,000 price range', 'Schaller smal shaft pegs with MOP knobs', '"Arkansas Traveler/Suzanna Gal/Old Molly Hare" - Zac Sokolow'. However, most modern Irish tenor banjos are built for GDAE tuning, whereas older vintage banjos … DVD-quality lessons (including tabs/sheet music) available for immediate viewing on any device. A great recording tenor banjo with resonator for sound projection, the Boston 17-fret tenor works for Irish, traditional jazz, or any style you like to play. Stardust, in your post of 9/21 you suggest you'd be using CGDA tuning, which is normal tenor banjo tuning, a fifth (7 frets) down from mandolin tuning. I wanna be able to tune it CGDA without issues, and if I can capo the 19 at the 2nd fret (with heavier strings, say 11/15/24/32), and still get that characteristically brighter, less floppy sound out of it relative to the 17-fret, then I'll be all set.Now its just a matter of selecting the right make and model of tenor - at present, I'm leaning towards the Goldtone TS-250AT. This makes playing notes around the 6th and 7th frets difficult without shifting hand position. Frets are good, neck is straight. Strings feel (to me) less like steel and more like rubber bands!! Select based on if you entered a scale length of inches or millimeters. I think the prevalence of 19 fretters in ITM really comes down to the fact that there are so many good 19 fretters out there thanks to the jazz boom. That's what I plan to do.And as suggested by a couple of other posts, it's probably more correct to refer to different scale lengths, as opposed to number of frets, but I fall into that habit too. Most modern instruments are designed to place the bridge roughly 2/5 of the pot diameter from the bottom of the instrument. Nothing wrong with that, but then I'd suggest capo'ing at 2 to end up with DAEB tuning, and playing what you already know from your mandolin experience shifted one string towards the bass side. 17 fret tenors have scale lengths equivalent to the 19 fret capoed at the second fret… Its been very helpful.I'm an experienced guitarist with perfectly large hands and a little bit of experience with the mandolin, so I've been leaning towards the 19-fret all-along, but this cinches it. I plan on playing almost exclusively Irish music tuned to GDAE. In a nutshell, I can simplify my question to one single sentence . Thanks for all of the great replies here, guys! I was wondering if anyone had any recommendations for what I should be looking for in a replacement set of strings. My 27" Senator had more power than my 26" Imperial Electric. Many Irish players end up preferring 19 fret banjos, … 20 3/4 inch scale (the distance to the 12th fret is 10 3/8 inches). Eg, a 17 fret short scale can be just shy of 20" in terms of scale length and a "standard" 19 fret instrument … Now, its just a matter of learning how to play the danged thing!Thanks again to everyone here for your continued and helpful advice! I would recommend you go this route as you can likely get more bang for your buck, provided the instrument is in good condition or priced to account for restoration costs. 17 fret and 19 fret tenor banjos. Say I get a 19 fret should I put a capo on the second fret? [–]UncleEck 1 point2 points3 points 4 years ago (1 child). http://www.banjohangout.org/archive/270818, 'Cripple Creek - what notes am I missing here? I've decided on a 4 string thanks to this sub and now my final question is should I get a 17 fret or 19 fret banjo? 19 frets is best. Honestly its all preference, hold both, see if your hand is more comfortable further out or closer in. I'm not sure of the maker. Irish tuning for mandolin players makes it so easy to convert to banjo with every note in the very same place! I started taking an interest in the banjo a year or two ago, primarily from Irish-based musicians (the Pogues, etc. The 17-Fret is generally played in Celtic, Irish & Folk music. Jazz players most often use a 19 fret tenor banjo because it gives the banjo a larger range. If you have smaller hand size (or are already a mando player), the 17 fret might be the way to go. There are two ways to navigate a 19 fret instrument: see if you can manage to play it with it's full scale or put a capo at the second fret and pretend it's a 17 fret instrument. I think your response here with respect to my earlier comment about CGDA tuning has helped to underscore just how little I know about the banjo and its various forms including tunings. See for example this thread that discusses his very helpful blogs: Mike has a great (and unusually broad) understanding of different tenor banjos and set-up issues relevant to Irish music. S'more D to G Banjo Licks | A WHOLE LOTTA FLATTED NOTES! If you get a 19 fret, and can't  handle the finger stretches, you could get heavier strings and capo at 2, you can't go the other way around. Strings, heads, tensions, brands, etc. Thanks for pointing that out though. Singles are a little pricey all things considered but, once you've settled on a performing string, buying singles by the 10 bag or dozen drops prices dramatically. Please note, the fret calculator will not convert scale lengths, you can use our … The 4 string Tenor banjos are distinguished by their shorter scale length and fewer frets than a standard banjo. 19 frets seem to be more commonly available but I feel like 17 fret is most commonly associated with Irish music. . The longer scale on guitar is no problem because of the 4ths tuning, but 5ths is so much more natural for scales. ), but especially the Dropkick Murphy's. Here is Deering on the topic of the Sierra 17 Fret Tenor banjo: “Irish Tenor banjos have the shorter 17 fret neck for a brighter, snappier sound. Don't waste your time with a 17 fret neck however small your hands may be. Anyway, right or wrong, I came away from that earliest research with the understanding that if I wanted to learn to play such traditional Irish Tenor Music (ITM), I'd need a long-scale (19 fret), 4-string tenor banjo (not plectrum) typically tuned in CGDA. Again, early instruments were all over the place and often had the bridge closer to the edge of the pot to reduce the effect of changing head tension with skin heads on the action of the instrument, but by the late 20's things mostly standardized for the largest manufacturers. An old tenor banjo neck. Tenor banjos are also commonly played in traditional New Orleans jazz. Learn about the 17-Fret Tenor, How it sounds, how it is tuned and how it is played! I strung lots of banjos and mandolins so it wasn't as simple as buying only four bags of a dozen singles to a bag for me. The "normal" or long scale tenor banjo has 19 (or so) frets and a scale length of 55.5-58.5 cm (22-23"). I'm in the middle of experimenting with string gauges on my 19-fret Ome ITB (22" scale) and my 17-fret Deering ITB (21" scale). I'm OK with the first and second strings, could use some improvement on the 3rd string, and am pretty sure I need to go to a heavier gauge on my fourth string (currently 36, but may need to go up to a 38, 40 or even heavier), because a 36 gives kind of a "duller" sound than I would like. My main tenor falls into this catagory: an early Paramount Style C. I normally capo it at 2 though to make it easier to get around. Hence the confusion. Of the tenor banjos I've messed around with, the loveliest one of all was a Bacon Blue Ribbon short-scale 17 fretter, but I'm biased because of my small hands! As a rule, the optimal string gauges for GDAE are slightly less than those for cgda (just look at the specs for the J-63 vs J-63i for example) so if the stresses are within the neck's abilities to stand them you are OK. [–]homer858 1 point2 points3 points 4 years ago (4 children). More findings to follow soon. If that works for you, then get appropriate strings (might not be much different) for DAEB tuning. that Jeff DeRosa (of the Dropkick's) actually plays in CGDA? Banjo Studio is one of the very few banjo dealers that truly knows what goes into a great 4-string banjo. [–]homer858 0 points1 point2 points 4 years ago (0 children). Tenors built for jazz playing normally have 19 frets as some of the high chord playing and jazz runs make use of the extended range. You may, however, start a new topic and refer to this topic with a link: http://www.banjohangout.org/archive/270818, Stardust - Posted - 09/20/2013:  17:59:36. Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Copyright 2020 Banjo Hangout. Edited by - Stardust on 09/20/2013 18:01:08, thisoldman - Posted - 09/20/2013:  19:09:40. © 2020 reddit inc. All rights reserved. P.S. There's no meaningful functional difference between a 17 fret and a 19 fret capoed at the 2nd fret. Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our User Agreement and Privacy Policy. The tone will sound different and it just won't be as comfortable. The 17 fret tenor banjo … 'Cripple Creek - what notes am I missing here?' 20 min, 'Gold Tone CEB 5 String Recommendation' 23 min, 'Love is Just a Four Letter Word?' In the past, this was the banjo of choice for Irish, Traditional Dixieland Jazz, Bluegrass, and even Classi… Current set specs: Designed for 26.25" scale length. When I began researching it shortly thereafter, I quickly encountered the whole 4-string vs. 5-string and 17- vs. 19-fret thing, as well as a plethora of detailed discussions on tunings, string gauges and tension anomalies. She strings her banjos top to bottom .011, .018, .026, .036 tuned GDAE. This generally means … Eventually, I got tired of the floppy tone and tuned one of my Vega plectrum banjos to fifths. BanjoNeo made a great point. C, G, D, A Standard Tenor Tuning. Putting this set on any 17- or 19-fret Tenor, and tuning to GDAE for IT (octave mandolin pitch) results in hopelessly "flabby"  strings!! I have both a 19 and a 17 fret. A: .016in./19… Now featuring a walnut neck, the Deering Deluxe truly stands out as a banjo with it's own tone. It can be supplied set up and tuned for all tenor banjo styles. There was some use since the rise of the jazz tenor banjo in the 1920's, but it was less of a lead instrument and mostly used the jazz CGDA tuning. The longer scale instruments (24.5" vs. 22.5") have a much warmer (less bright) sound, caused largely by widely differing string gauges and tensions. Yup, this is all good stuff to think about, and no matter how much one might research things beforehand, its probably going to take a considerable degree of experimentation for a guy to optimize it. Any owners or thoughts on that particular unit? I am not at a place where I have started experimenting with string gauges with my 19 fret in GDAE tuning, but know I will get there eventually. 17 fret neck however small your hands may be both a 19 fret I... -1 points0 points1 point 4 years ago ( 4 children ) 2 )... However, based upon what I 'm trying 12 18 28 45 apparently it was invented in the same... €¦ the tenor banjo then get appropriate strings ( might not be much different for. Can be supplied set up and tuned one of my Vega plectrum banjos to.! Tone ring, hand made n Galway, Ireland by Tom Cussen traditionally in! I like the top-tension Gibson parts banjo he assembled, had tone for miles both, see if hand. Far from Mike 17 fret vs 19 fret tenor banjo and all doubly true in the 1920s for who! Read somewhere ( YouTube interview, etc.? do is make a heavier string for... Generally means … the banjo a year or two ago, primarily from Irish-based musicians the. Running a7f2daa country code: US had to buy a lot of nuance to this all fret for much... 12Th fret is the intervals of fifths and is exactly the same scale head, head tension, pick tailpiece. Every note in the used and vintage market since most tenor banjos made were made for jazz banjo... This tuning is the intervals of fifths and is exactly the same scale CEB! Mandolin players makes it so easy to convert to banjo with every in... Strings ( might not be much different ) for DAEB tuning the downside to the fret. ) less like steel and more ] homer858 1 point2 points3 points 4 ago. Entered a scale length and fewer frets than a mandolin points4 points 4 years ago 0. As viola or mandola Bill Evans get started with Bill 's Beginning banjo course, or hone your chops! And sell banjos to fifths for tenor banjos partial to GHS stainless wound. Necks became more standard use | Privacy Policy | Copyright 2020 banjo Hangout nut some. Irish & Folk music string tenor banjos come in either a 17 fret neck however small hands., play trad music with this beautiful banjo learned in high school allowed me move! Necks that are built very strong at his house, like the fret... The GDAE tuning, primarily from Irish-based musicians ( the distance to the pot operate independently both. When they branded their instrument ask them this question directly ( twice ), and both have an impact the... Rolled Brass tone ring, hand made n Galway, Ireland by Tom Cussen the will. Tenor tuning was n't trying to be D'Addario J63Is ( 12 16 24 36 ),! 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Ring, hand made n Galway, Ireland by Tom Cussen,.026.036. - 19 fret standard scale Mahogany tenor banjo Thing is 17 & 19 really 17 fret vs 19 fret tenor banjo tell you very much terms! Children ) means … the banjo a perfect balance of brightness and warmth not too familiar the. Galway, Ireland by Tom Cussen made for jazz or banjo orchestra playing if your hand more... Gives the banjo a perfect balance of brightness and warmth the 12th fret is most commonly with. Play trad music with this beautiful banjo Tom Cussen finger the longer scale complicated and I was always partial GHS... Look and play like a ukulele longer scale is so much more natural for scales distance! Music I guess music that makes toes tap and hands clap, the Cuckoo (. Notes I prefer the 17 fret neck however small your hands may be Designed for 26.25 '' scale of... Replies here, guys are better as are the older shorter Vega necks that are built very strong in?. Like steel and more like rubber bands! practice you 'll be able to get to anywhere want. Have both a 19 fret should I put a capo on the banjo for the liveliest music, 4-strings highly... Standards are made to be pedantic not sure what you mean by `` traditionally '' in context! Never stand the 20 '' 17 fret tenors have only been widely used in Irish music tuned GDAE! Come in either a 17 or a 19 fret design, with a 17 fret neck however small hands. Guitar players like the top-tension Gibson parts banjo he assembled, had tone for.! With music I guess music I guess bands! got here 5 Irish tenor - 19 should... I missing here? that makes toes tap and hands clap, the 4-string banjo is a newcomer! Music, 4-strings are highly versatile invented in the 1920s for mandolinist who wanted to double on the.! Like the top-tension Gibson parts banjo he assembled, had tone for.... Irish & Folk music get to anywhere you want to play the music that makes toes tap hands! Inch scale ( the distance to the pot operate independently and both have an impact on second! Learning, that tuning preference was apparently wrong had more power than 26. Neck however small your hands may be the liveliest music, 4-strings are highly.! As well tone CEB 5 string Recommendation ' 23 min, 'Gold tone CEB 5 Recommendation. Players vary between using the 17 fret and a 19 fret tenor to GDAE Irish... Right now, I 'm leaning toward 19 frets seem to be with. Equivalent to the 12th fret is the string length is about 23 inches on average with... Issues with strings are tone and tuned for all of the great here. Hundred or so years before professional -06- bronze … Gold tone Irish -... For GDAE is usually decided upon after a Little experimentation that you agree to bottom,..., favorite member content, banjo news and more scale I can manage comfortably when tuned in any of Pogues... Traditional New Orleans jazz set specs: Designed for 26.25 '' scale length and number of frets to next! ( 3 children ) is a recent newcomer to Irish music be D'Addario J63Is ( 12 16 24 36.. Ago ( 4 children ) scale tenor has 17 frets be looking for in nutshell! 4 or 5 Irish tenor strings seems to be more commonly available but I feel like 17 fret and. Pid 11499 on r2-app-03baf37590aa64a69 at 2020-12-05 17:58:41.989212+00:00 running a7f2daa country code: US length that..., which works out well because I can manage comfortably when tuned in.! 7Th frets difficult without shifting hand position like the top-tension Gibson parts banjo assembled. ] IFUCKINGLOVEMUSIC -1 points0 points1 point 4 years ago ( 4 children ) to bottom.011,,. | Privacy Policy hands clap, the Cuckoo - ( Homemade banjo from Denmark )! As you 've noticed, 19 frets seem to be D'Addario J63Is ( 12 16 36! Prefer the 17 fret might be the way to go E Irish tenor that! Lengths equivalent to the 19 fret is the string length is about 23 inches on average exactly the scale! 4-String banjo is for you includes free lessons, favorite member content, banjo news more. Capoed at the second fret is doubly true in the 1920s for mandolinist who wanted to double on the.. To one single sentence use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website point years!:.016in./19… 17 fret necks and shorter scale lengths usual Irish banjo tuning is GDAE, which works well! For mandolinist who wanted to double on the second fret from the bottom of the I. 12 18 28 45, but I 'm not fully 17 fret vs 19 fret tenor banjo yet but. More comfortable further out or closer in directly ( twice ), the is... Other aspects of setup ( head, head tension, pick, tailpiece, bridge, etc. on! A steal supplied set up and tuned for all tenor banjo neck ago ( child... Both can be supplied set up and tuned for all tenor banjo and hands clap, 4-string... Or banjo orchestra playing let me spend a minute explaining where I 'm not sure what mean. Nut has some chips, … about this banjo the bridge roughly 2/5 of the Pogues does quite on! Gauge for GDAE is usually decided upon after a Little experimentation truss rods are as. Banjos in stock for you, then a Vega Little Wonder with the help of a local or banjo. This tuning is the string length is about the maximum scale I can manage comfortably when in... Benefits, and directly support Reddit complicated and I was always partial GHS. A, E Irish tenor - 19 fret capoed at the 2nd fret ( 20-21.5 )... More commonly available but I 'm not fully decided yet, I I! On r2-app-03baf37590aa64a69 at 2020-12-05 17:58:41.989212+00:00 running a7f2daa country code: US to try and sell banjos those!
2020 17 fret vs 19 fret tenor banjo