My Head is Achin’ and my Banjo is Vibratin’

Tim Sway is in the process of building me a solid-body electric five-string banjo. I reached out to him after getting word of his commitment to sustainable and eco-friendly alternatives to traditional instrument design and construction. His five-string electric pipa and ehru are cool, but a bass fiddle out of hollow core doors? Count me in.

Tim and I worked together and came up with a design that honors the roots of the instrument while giving it the same tonal freedom that the guitar experienced when it was electrified. Now I just have to find a good American-made amp and maybe some pedals.

I am not going to go into more technical details. Once he starts cutting wood, Tim will chronicle the build on his site. Once the instrument is in my hands, we will chronicle the process of adapting 40 years of acoustic playing to not only a new kind of banjo, but a new range of music.

Now the search for the right amp begins….

In Other News

We will be shutting down our YouTube channel soon and moving my entire archive of work – the books, audio files, and videos – to a new website where everything will be freely accessible.

The only catch is that I can’t organize this stuff.

The reason I pulled away from the Internet earlier this year, and a few other changes, is because I am starting to show effects from getting hit on the head too many times.

Losing Amy, neuropathy, hearing loss, and epilepsy I can handle. Putting down the guitar because of arthritis wasn’t easy, but it pushed me into contacting Tim. This new thing scares the hell out of me, but I am going to turn it into something positive.

In a few days, will go live. I will bring back The Daily Frail, and also begin posting my current book chapter-by-chapter as it comes together (more on that later). Anybody can access the material, and folks will have the option of slogging through material going back to 1997 and farther and creating an index so that people can search for specific topics.

This is not what I was planning to do, but I am excited about going electric – and even more excited about building an independent platform. will go live soon. I’ll keep you posted.