Honors Program

Midway Honors

Date of Award


Thesis Professor(s)

Lee Bidgood

Thesis Professor Department

Appalachian Studies

Thesis Reader(s)

Ted Olson, Roy Andrade


The two-finger banjo style languishes as a small footnote in the lexicon of old time banjo music—very important to a passionate (and lucky!) few, but not known by too many others. This research is a starting point to understanding the meaning of two-finger banjo; through a review of primary literature, interviews, witnessing performances, and individual investigation of playing two-finger banjo, I have been able to document some understandings about the style.

These understandings informed further appreciation of old time music, the old time music (and banjo) communities, and the art of making music in this way—while describing the journey, I gained insights from scholars, folklorists, musicians, recordings, and made many discoveries that I documented in this thesis. I have concluded that one of the best ways to find meaning in any pursuit is by engaging with your community and connecting yourself to your art.

Document Type

Honors Thesis - Open Access

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

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Audio (MP3). Teague, Ed. Pretty Little Gal with the Bright Blue Eye.

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Audio (MP3). Keys, Will. Going Back to Where I Come From.

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Audio (MP3). Hood, Richard. Colored Aristocracy.

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Audio (MP3). Elkins, Jeff. Wilma Lee's Waltz. (Richard Hood, banjo)

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Audio (MP3). Decosimo, Joseph. I'm Troubled.

Bristol_Brothers-Black-Eyed_Suzie.mp3 (2908 kB)
Audio (MP3). Bristol Brothers. Black-Eyed Suzie.

watch-v=67cvHPOhEn4.txt (119 kB)


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