Instruments & Gear: Instrument Demos

Kel Kroydon Bill Evans Signature Banjo

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Bill Evans demonstrates his Kel Kroydon banjo, modeled after his 1930 Gibson Granada.

by Teja Gerken
January 26, 2017

Kel Kroydon banjos were originally built by Gibson for the Montgomery Ward catalog in the 1920s and ’30s. Today, Tom Mirisola’s American Made Banjo Co. offers a line of contemporary Kel Kroydon banjos, including a Bill Evans signature model, which is designed after Evans’ 1930 Gibson Granada.

The instrument has gold-plated metal parts and a Granada-style “hearts and flowers” inlay, and it is constructed with a striped maple neck, a figured maple resonator, and a three-ply maple rim. It has a Brazilian rosewood fingerboard, a Dannick 20-hole tone ring and a Timeless bridge. The instrument’s neck, which has a slightly thicker profile than most original prewar Gibson necks, is built by luthier Robin Smith of Heartland Banjo.

Evan’s is especially fond of his instrument’s custom engravings, which depict scenes from his home in the San Francisco Bay Area. The armrest has a Golden Gate Bridge motif that includes the city of San Francisco and Mount Tamalpais, and the side of the rim features another bridge motif with waves that go around the entire rim.

To study banjo with Bill Evans, enroll in his Beginning Banjo or Bluegrass Banjo courses now!

SPECS: Five-string resonator banjo. Dannick 20-hole tone ring. Dual coordinating rods. Maple neck, rim, and back. Brazilian rosewood fingerboard with standard frets. Gotoh tuners. Kel Kroydon engraved tailpiece.Timeless bridge.


Category: Instruments & Gear

Comments and Discussion

Posted by Scottnyg on
Hi Grant,
You can get Peghead t-shirts in the Peghead shop:

Scott Nygaard
Editor and Co-Founder
Peghead Nation
Posted by grant Sauerberg on
Wonder full banjo Bill but I could only afford a Peghead tee shirt like the one U are wearing. How do I get one and how much $$$$$$
Regards Grant Sauerberg Calgary AB Canada.
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