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Tablature Directory
PRELUDE TO PARTITA III
ZZYZX 
SOUTH AMERICAN TUNE
LONGHORN EXPRESS
FIDDLE TUNE
DIANE'S REEL
THE FIVE STRING FANFARE
PIZZARAGA
BRIGHT ANGEL RAG 
KEMPS JIG

 

 PRELUDE TO PARTITA III

In my youth I had a small reputation as 'that guy who plays Bach on the banjo'.  but I only played Bach's melodies a la Pete Seeger in his GOOFING OFF SUITE.  About a year ago I heard a young concert violinist, Jennifer Bryan, play the prelude to the Partita III and I was struck by the similarity of it's many passages to banjo figures.  Also, it was written in the key of E Major, the natural key of my long-neck banjo.  I couldn't resist and I started learning it immediately.  It took the better part of a year to learn and notate it.  I got Carpel Tunnel syndrome because of the exertion involved.  I was in a hurry and played it many hours a day, for months, until I had to back off and take care of my wrist.
I have performed it a couple of times, but I still need lots of work to get it right. 
 
The first printing (on my computer) is a run of five copies.  Kelly  Kruyshoop did the final scanner copy from my awful script.  Regular length banjos can play it, but that would put it in the key of G.  I don't think Bach would mind.  The tablature booklet includes a measure by measure discussion of the music containing suggestions to help one and all over the rough spots.  It ain't easy, but will definitely improve your banjo playing.

Price: $30.00.

 
 ZZYZX
Back in the early seventies I was trying to think of an appropriate name for this new piece that had just crystalized into what you hear now.  Driving with Cosmo through the desert in Southern California I passed a road called ZZYZX Rd.  There was my name.  It was on that trip that I walked into Takoma in Santa Monica and came out an hour later with a contract for BANJO, the album containing ZZYZX.--



 

Price: $20.00

 

 SOUTH AMERICAN TUNE

Riding on a bus down the coast of Chili in l976, I was seated in the last row on the drivers side.  Directly behind my head was a speaker broadcasting a soccer game at full volume.  I was in extreme distress at the noise, none of which I could understand.  The bus was crowded, I couldn't move, and I had to endure it.  When the game was over the driver turned the radio off and it was like a deafening silence, even though it was on a  bus packed full of happy people going home for the Christmas Holidays.  My relief at the silence was equal to the pain caused by the game.

Suddenly the silence was broken by a Peruvian mountain band; panpipes, charanga, gitarrone, guitar, and other indigenous instruments, playing this tune.  I only heard it this one time, but it was burned into my raw ears and soothed me and I realized I had been amply rewarded for the torture of the soccer game.  I played it on my banjo hundreds of times before I left South America but could never find anyone who had ever heard it or knew it's name

Price: $20.00

 
 LONGHORN EXPRESS
Hobart Smith played a tune called The Little Green Hat on an old Asch 78 rpm in which he patted on the head between banjo lines.  Inspired by this, for years I tried to get some kind of percussion going, to no avail.  Finally I determined to play nothing at all until I had worked out a way of bringing percussion  into my playing.  After all, it is a drum head, Isn't it?  Painfully and painstakingly I worked the right thumb into playing a beat on the head above the fifth string in the second beat of the Seeger bump-ditty strum.  It got easier and easier until, in about fifteen minutes, I had it.  Now it is just as easy as the rest of my playing.  The Longhorn Express is the first piece in which I used it.  
 
My goal now is to notate all the pieces from the Takoma BANJO album.

 


Price: $30.00

 
 FIDDLE TUNE
This piece was recorded on BANJO, the Takoma album I made in l973.  Like the Longhorn Express, I play it too fast on the record, so take it easy, but take it!  

 

 


 

Price: $10.00

 
 DIANE'S REEL

In the early fifties I was sitting in Washington Square in Greenwich Village in New York City with Dick Greenhouse, another banjo player.  He played this tune for me which he had written.  Only the first and second parts.  In the next few days I had made up all the following variations.  I recorded it on TRAVELIN' MAN, my second album.

The lovely drawing of a very determined Diana, Goddess of the Hunt, is by Diana Rahfoth, an artist from Germany.  I use it on the cover with her gracious permission. 

 

 

Price: $20.00

 

 THE FIVE STRING FANFARE

The Fanfare is an old music form, rarely, as far as I know,  ever written anymore.  It was played to announce the entrance of Kings or other important personages into court or other important events.  Today the only vestiges of this practice would be the Marine Band playing Hail to the Chief at the entrance of the President, or at the other end of the dignity scale, some wag shouting 'TA DAH' to emphasize, tongue in cheek usually, that something was happening in his life.  There were also exiting fanfares.  The only one I can think of today is the ubiquitous 'Shave and a haircut, two bits.'  Horse races are usually started with bugle calls that are a kind of fanfare.  In any case, the Five String Fanfare is fun to play, if you have the patience to learn it.  It is recorded on my cassette tape, BANJOS, BIRDSONG, AND MOTHER EARTH.

 


Price: $10.00

 

 PIZZARAGA

Named after my dog, Pizza. Pizzaraga is recorded on my Takoma album BANJO.

 

 

 

 

 


Price: $20.00

 

BRIGHT ANGEL RAG

This was called FAIER'S RAG on the 1973 Takoma album, recorded before I ever spent any time in the Grand Canyon.  It is the longest and most diffacult piece I have ever written.  Full of jazzy chords and tricky rythms.  I'm still not sure I notated the triplets right in the tablature.  But it is definitely  my favorite of all the things I have written.

 

 

 

 

Price: $30.00

 

KEMPS JIG

This is an easy piece for five string banjo playing lovers of baroque music.  I lifted it from a Julian Bream recording many years ago.  You will fnd it on my cassette tape BANJOS, BIRDSONG, AND MOTHER EARTH.

 

 

 

 


Price: $5.00

 
Sorry about these prices,  but there is an enormous amount of work that must be done to produce the stuff. The difference in prices of these tablatures is in no way a reflection of their worth, only their length.

Send check or money order to (his grandson) Chris Wand at:
Christopher H. Wand
5 Burrell Court
Tiburon, CA
94920

Be sure and say which of the tablatures you want.

The e-mail address is: christopher.h.wand@gmail.com or call  415-531-7002

Copyright Billy Faier 2006-2008 All rights reserved