[Just here for the pictures? Scroll down…]
In the fall of 2013, I went on tour with the NY Banjo Summit. It was an unprecedented collection of banjo lineage—the catch being that the players had to have some association with New York State. The tour began with 12 people on a 12 bunk bus, plus our driver. There were 6 on banjo: Béla Fleck, Tony Trischka, Bill Keith, Eric Weissberg, Richie Stearns, and Noam Pikelny; 4 in the band: Russ Barenberg, Jesse Cobb, Corey Dimario, and myself; and 2 crew: Richard Battaglia on sound and Peter Lesser as tour manager. But wait! there’s more! We were joined by banjoist and wife of Béla, Abigail Washburn, their 4mos. baby boy Juno, Béla’s mother and a nanny. By the end of the tour we were 17 (incl. driver) on the same bus. I know, it kind of sounds like a joke, but I’m not joking.
BUT! Going into this, I smelled all the ingredients for the perpetuation of a long standing tradition of banjo jokes. As one that enjoys being in the kitchen, I decided to bake up a batch, but with my own style—in picture. To prepare for this endeavor, I studied all 271 represented at the Canonical List of Banjo Jokes in addition to taking suggestions from my tour pals. The goal was to illustrate a banjo joke in picture, post it, and see if folks could figure it out. We had a fun time making these.
Thanks to all for being great sports and for making fabulous music!
[Disclaimer: The ideas and concepts represented in these photo jokes are not the views of the photographer, nor do they necessarily represent any of the musicians abilities. No banjos or banjoists were harmed in their making.]
See if you can guess the joke. Stumped? Just scroll to the bottom. Enjoy!
FINAL TOUR GROUP PHOTO
Q: What’s the definition of perfect pitch?
A: Throwing a banjo in the dumpster without hitting the sides.
Q: How can you tell the stage is level?
A: The banjo player drools out of both sides of his/her mouth.
A banjo player walked into a bar…another banjo player walked into the bar…you’d think the second banjo player would have seen what happened to the first banjo player and ducked!
Q: What do you call an attractive woman on the arm of a banjo player?
A: A tattoo.
Q: Why did the banjo player(s) stare at the jug of orange juice?
A: Because it said “concentrate.”
Q: How do you make a banjo player slow down (or stop playing)?
A: Put sheet music in front of him/her.
Q: If you drop a banjo and an accordian from the top of the Empire State building (tour bus in our case), which will hit the ground first?
A: Who cares.
Q: What’s the difference between a banjo and an onion?
A: Nobody cries when you chop up a banjo.
Q: How many banjo players does it take to screw in a lightbulb?
A: One and 6 to….
- lament about how much they miss the old one.
- complain that it’s electric.
- complain that Earl wouldn’t have done it that way.
- argue about what year it was made.
- argue about how much it costs.
- ask what tuning is being used.
- stand around and watch.
Q: How can you tell there’s a banjo player at your door?
A: The knocking speeds up, can’t find the key, and doesn’t know when to come in.
Q: What’s the difference between a banjo player and a large pizza?
A: A large pizza can feed a family of four.