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MORE STANDARDS
OF THE
AMERICAN BANJO FRATERNITY




At the ABF rallies there has always been informal group playing in the evening after the regular programs were over.  In the past few years there has been a decline in this activity.  As an experiment, the ABF has published a list of 30 pieces that many of our regularly attending members know.  This list includes the standards that are played during the round-robins (these pieces are presented on the home page of this site).  This list will help members who wish to participate in the informal jamming identify which pieces they need to learn.  Recordings of many of these pieces are not readily available and some have never been recorded.  To increase awareness of these pieces, MIDI files will be posted on this page as they become available.

Banjo Vamp is another of the dozens of banjo compositions by the Englishman Emile Grimshaw.

Colored Guards is another fine composition by AJ Weidt (see Kaloola below).  A special thanks to Fred Miller, an ABF member, for preparing the MIDI file presented here.

Colored Major by SR Henry (a pseudonym of Henry Stern) is a characteristic march and two step published in 1900 by the Lyceum Publishing Co., New York.

Honolulu Cakewalk by Lehrman is an easy to play piece that should be in every banjoists repertoire.  Both the first and second banjo parts are Clifford Essex arrangements.

Kaloola by AJ Weidt is a nice little number that was published in 1905 by Walter Jacobs, Boston, MA.  AJ Weidt was born in Buffalo, NY and had begun the study of the violin at the age of eight.  In 1908 he was actively teaching and directing several fretted instrument clubs in Newark, NJ.  Weidt's pieces are, typically, very well composed and fairly easy to play.

Pensacola by Parke Hunter (1876 - 1912).  Parke Hunter was one of the greatest classic banjoists of all time.  He was born in Bloomington, Indiana, but became a banjoist in the St. Louis area.  In 1895 he teamed up with another St. Louis banjoist, Cadwallader L. Mays.  Mays and Hunter played together for several years, but Mays died about 1903 at the age of thirty.  Around 1903, Hunter teamed up with Vess Ossman in the United States.  In 1904 William B. Farmer joined the group forming the original Ossman Banjo Trio.  Hunter has composed over sixty pieces for the banjo. A special thanks to Drew Frech and Fred Miller, both ABF members, for preparing the second banjo arrangement and the MIDI file.

Pink Lemonade is another composition by AJ Weidt and was published in 1921 by Walter Jacobs.

Plantation Symphony by Paul Eno.  Eno was a banjo teacher and a banjo orchestra leader from the Philadelphia area.  He is considered by many to be the most outstanding American composer for the classic banjo style.  Eno has over 60 compositions to his credit.  This piece is presented with a piano accompaniment.  Thanks to Fred Miller for this MIDI file.

St. Louis Tickle by Barney & Seymour, published by Victor Kremmer Co., Chicago, 1904.  The Victor Kremmer Co. published a lot of music in commemoration of the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair and it has been noted that this piece was a big hit.  Although the piece is credited to "Barney & Seymour," it may have been written by Theron C. Bennett, who went to work for Kremmer in 1904. You can hear Vess Ossman playing this piece by going to Dismuke.org and going about half-way down the page (use the back button on your browser to return here).

Spanish Romance by Emile Grimshaw.

Tattoo by Emile Grimshaw.

Queen of the Burlesque is a schottische which was composed by Arthur Tilley (circa 1885) and was later published by Turner's Banjo Budget.  Tilley was an Englishman who took up the banjo after hearing some minstrels.  He also made banjos from about 1882 until 1905.

Skeleton Dance is by Norton Greenop (1868 - 1930), an English banjoist.  He played banjo with the Moore and Burgess Minstrels, was a member of the Stavordale Banjo Quartette and he toured England and South Africa as part of a vaudeville banjo duet (Stanley & Greenop).  This piece can also be heard on the Kicking Mule Records' album Banjo Gems put out in 1980.  The arrangement presented here is from Turner's Banjo Budget.

Washington Post March by John Sousa (1889).  This MIDI file came from fellow ABF member John Cowles.  This piece was arranged for banjo duet by L.A. Callan (1892) and was recorded by Joseph Cullen and Albert Collins for Emile Berliner in 1899.
 

The remaining pieces on this list are:
 
 

Title  Composer 
Banjo Frolic Morley
Banjo Town Morley
Calliope Rag Scott
Darktown Dandies Morley
Eli Green's Cakewalk Koninsky
Gold Digger's March Morley
Mister Punch Morley
Palladium Rag Morley



 
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Copyright W. Talley.  All rights reserved.
Created July 27, 1998. Last updated January, 2002.