Gold Tone TS 250AT and the Newbie Tenor Player

  1. johnwalser
    After thinking about trying tenor banjo for 3 or 4 years, last month I finally decided to go for it. I did my research by reading the opinions of players on every site I could find and ended up buying a Gold Tone TS 250AT arch top 19 fret model. Because I knew it had a brass tone ring, I was expecting it to be heavy and was not disappointed. With that weight came a very sweet tone right out of the box. I put on Thomastik strings within days and yesterday, crafted an ebony 2 footed bridge ( slightly lowered from the 5/8 stock maple for better action) to mellow out the high notes. Probably, through blind luck, I got exactly the mellowness, clarity and playability I was looking for.

    My melody picking is going great and I am now getting the right fingers in the correct spaces a great majority of the time. The chording looks like it will take several months for me to become comfortable, but with daily practice, it should come around.

    The very first hour with the tenor made me realize how underused my little pinky is picking mandolin and guitar. The tenor has forced me to make my pinky an equal playing partner and now it is callused like my other fingers.

    Im happy with my new instrument and the decision to give tenor a try.

  2. John Kelly
    John Kelly
    You will grow to love it, John. Being able to get " the right fingers in the correct spaces a great majority of the time is a big part of it and you are already getting there by what you say. Good luck and happy playing.
  3. Topher Gayle
    Topher Gayle
    Cool that the ebony two-footed bridge seems to have mellowed the tone. I think I'll try that on an old Vega Style N which has just a circular metal rod as a tone ring. Maybe it'll sweeten it up a little!
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