If you want to learn to play a clawhammer banjo, you might want to look at an open 5-string banjo. open backs are not traditionally used in bluegrass, but they sound great.

If you are interested in buying a tenor banjo or guitar, then choosing a clawhammer banjo or resonator banjo is easy. 

Look at some examples of bluegrass banjos with a clawhammer and decide which one you prefer for yourself. 

Top picks

If you can’t decide one way or the other, the best choice is a Deering Goodtime 2. While a mid-range banjo that will serve you well as a soloist or in a bluegrass ensemble, it uses good materials and is a simple, high-quality product.

If you want a banjo that lasts a little longer, the Goodtime 2 is the right choice. Deering’s banjo has led to a well-deserved reputation as one of the most popular brands in the industry.

There are several other reliable brands such as Fender and Epiphone, so you can’t go wrong. 

The two banjos mentioned above are made of high-quality wood with a high gloss finish and are a good choice for beginners, but also for those who are interested in a more traditional banjo.

Another choice is Rogue, which builds the world’s most popular 5-string banjo brand, the Rogue Banjo. They use proven – and genuine – designs borrowed from other manufacturers, and develop instruments that are mass-produced. 

The strings are said to feel good and produce a clean and well-balanced tone, and they are a good choice for guitarists and musicians alike. 

Extras anyone?

One notable consideration for banjo beginners is that the manufacturer offers free basic banjo lessons on the company’s website. This model is not too complicated and does not require any setup, but it is still a good choice for beginners.

Some people will say that the resonator on a banjo is better than the opening of a banjo, but the sound quality should be as good, if not better. If you want to buy yourself a gift, the lowest price and best selling banjos are from Jameson Guitars, and the cheapest price is under $200. 

Depending on the brand, some add a special finish to the resonator, although many brands produce both open and closed models. You can try a range of different brands as well as a variety of other options to help you choose.

Expert help

Dedicated banjo specialists like can play all kinds of banjos and many sellers can help you make the right choice for your banjo. They will help you with technical questions, and be there to help you on your musical path after you buy. 

It can be a challenge to discover the best banjo brands without knowing how to play the instrument. It, therefore, requires some research to ensure that you get what you want from your new instrument.

Fortunately, good beginner banjos are often very inexpensive, and there is often a lot of information about the brand you will come across in your search. These tips will help you to assess the quality of the instruments you are looking for and the price.