Many talented folk and country musicians who are looking for new gear often ask the same question: does Fender still make banjos? The company is one of the most reputable manufacturers of string instruments in the world and they also used to be leaders when it comes to banjos. Nevertheless, a lot of players report that they can no longer find these instruments in guitar stores. So what happened, are they still making banjos?
The truth is: no. The company decided to stop selling banjos a few years ago. They deleted all pictures and information about banjos from their website. Since the 1970s, Fender used to import and re-badge various banjos, but it probably wasn’t a scalable business. Hence, banjos are no longer in their offering.
If you’re looking specifically for a banjo made by Fender, you can try to find used models for example on Reverb. On the other hand, they may be difficult to find, because they’re pretty rare. Still, there are a lot of different brands that offer great banjos. To be honest, some of them feature a better quality than Fender!
Fender Banjo Straps
Although the company doesn’t manufacture banjos anymore, they still create accessories for banjo players. For example, the only product related to banjos on their official website is this black banjo strap. If you’re digging this kind of vibe, it will be perfect for you. It’s also great for any lover of bluegrass music. Undoubtedly, any folk jam will be really cool and comfortable with it. In addition, it’s also pretty cheap!
Can’t find a Fender banjo? Here are the alternatives.
Fender may not be producing banjos anymore, but that doesn’t man that you should stop looking for a banjo. Other great guitar manufacturers, such as Ibanez or Washburn, also offer sell great banjos at affordable prices. These models are brand new, so you won’t have to worry about looking for a used Fender banjo. Although there are a lot of banjos out there, we picked three best models suitable for both beginner and more intermediate players. We recommend checking out these banjos:
- Washburn Americana B10
- Ibanez B50
- Oscar Schmidt OB5
In case you’re interested, here are short descriptions of all of these models.
Washburn Americana B10
To be honest, this Washburn Americana may be even a better choice than any banjo created by Fender. Why? Well, just look at the reviews! It’s one of the most loved and most popular models among both beginner and intermediate musicians. It may not be the cheapest banjo in the world, but it definitely features an amazing quality. Washburn is a really underrated brand and they definitely deserve a lot more recognition. We highly recommend checking out this Americana model!
It’s definitely the cheapest model on today’s short list. Undoubtedly, it will be a great starter banjo for amateur musicians. The banjo features a mahogany neck, back and sides. It has everything you need to start your folk and bluegrass musical journey. We highly recommend checking it out further!
Oscar Schmidt OB5
If you’re not familiar with this brand, Oscar Schmidt is a really good manufacturer of guitars and ukuleles. They may not be as popular as Fender, Ibanez or Washburn, but they still offer a really good quality. The OB5 model features a mahogany resonator and a rosewood fingerboard. In terms of sound, it has absolutely everything you need to jam really comfortably! Feel free to check out more details about this model under the link above.
It is really sad that Fender stopped producing banjos. Who knows, maybe it will change in the future? For now we can only either look out for old used Fender models or buy banjos from other manufacturers. Nevertheless, other brands also offer a great quality at affordable prices. So if you’d like to start learning playing on a banjo, there is plenty of banjos to choose from, not necessarily by Fender!
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