About the Program
Give Me the Banjo
was featured in the 2011 PBS Arts Fall Festival.
Premiere Date: November 4, 2011
The banjo has been called America's quintessential instrument, perhaps because its long and contested history has encompassed so many popular musical forms, from black folk styles and the 19th century minstrel show, to blues, ragtime, early jazz, old time folk and bluegrass. One of the biggest challenges of making Give Me the Banjo was trying to cover the full range and breadth of music that the banjo has helped to shape.
Ask Dr. Ralph Stanley what he's been playing for the last half century and he'll call it "old time mountain music." Enjoy diverse performances from Cynthia Sayer, Taj Mahal, Rhiannon Giddens and Abigail Washburn.
Give Me the Banjo was produced by Knockabout Media LLC. For more on the banjo's diverse styles and history, visit The Banjo Project.