Banjo player celebrates 50th birthday in style!


Fifty years old is pretty special!  The following quote is from our wonderful customer Kris Herfkens:

I have always wanted to play the banjo.  I’m not sure why, but the sound of banjo
music thrills me.  I played a bit of
guitar when I was a kid, but had wandered away from it by the time I hit
college.  As much as I love music, I
never tried to play anything as an adult.
My education and work took nearly all of my time.
Middle age has a way of reworking priorities, and it
occurred to me one day that I might actually be able to learn to play the
banjo.  I quickly acquired my mom’s banjo
(which had never been used) and started taking lessons.  In short order, I knew I would persist and I
wanted my own special banjo.
I scoured the internet for information on banjos, listening
to sound files and reading reviews.  I
was convinced that the banjo of my dreams was a Chuck Lee banjo.   A musical instrument like Chuck’s, however,
should belong to a fine musician, and I am most definitely not that.  Through an odd series of circumstances (Chuck
is a friend of a friend of a friend), I spent some time on the phone with Chuck
one Saturday afternoon. He is an amazingly approachable, down to earth guy, and
he patiently answered my questions and educated me on the workings of a
banjo.  By the time we hung up, I decided
that I wanted a Chuck Lee banjo soon, and that I could justify it to celebrate
my 50th birthday.
Much quicker than I could imagine, I was the owner of a
beautiful Chuck Lee Ovilla.  Chuck was
great about sending pictures and talking with me multiple times to pick out the
parts of this instrument.  I initially
felt a bit awkward about owning such a magnificent banjo.  It sounds and looks amazing.  I really felt like I didn’t deserve it!  For sure, the quality of my playing does not
do justice to this banjo, but I benefit from the quality of it every time I
pick it up to play.  And, I pick it up
nearly every day.  Slowly but surely, I
am learning to play clawhammer banjo.
The beautiful sound of this banjo and the ease with which it plays
constantly inspires me to keep on playing.