Monday, August 20, 2012

Andy !!!

When I first met Andy Thorn a couple of years ago, he was playing banjo for the Emmitt-Nershi band and had just been tapped to be banjo man for Leftover Salmon. Leftover Salmon's original banjo player, Mark Vann, had been a huge influence on me since I started playing banjo in the mid 90's, so I was excited that Andy was now interested in my banjos. Since Vann's untimely passing in 2002, Leftover had not been touring and only occasionally reuniting to play a few shows here and there. All of that seemed to change when Andy joined the team. For the last year and a half they have been constantly touring and just released a great new album "Aquatic Hitchhiker". I'm so grateful that IDI gets to be an ingredient in the current Leftover Salmon recipe. Thanks Andy!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The Next Generation

Here are a couple of pictures of the latest banjo to emerge from the IDI workshop. There are 3 new features on this one that I'm really excited about, and will be including as standard features on the next few stock banjos I make. Serious acoustic and electric tonal improvements!
#1 - Alder body with a hard(er) wood top (in this case, Tigerwood). This also means that the carved, integral tone ring is made of Alder/Tigerwood.
#2 - Custom, cast bronze tension hoop. Locally cast for IDI, nice and heavy for great tone!
#3 - Circuitry includes the "Fat Knob" (or SPC), this is a powered EQ unit made by EMG which boosts mid frequencies, while cutting lows and highs. This makes the single coil pickup feel a little more like a humbucker and really helps the banjo cut through the mix. Use the knob to dial in just the right amount (or none at all!).
 For more pictures and details visit the website at

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Post #1 : Oumou Sangare & Bela Fleck

Well, we're half way through 2012 and I figured it's time to start a blog for the purpose of sharing more frequent happenings in the world of Ian Davidson Instruments. There's a lot going on right now, but the most exciting has to be that Béla Fleck is currently playing one of my electric banjos while on on tour in Europe with Oumou Sangare! 
Pictures and YouTube clips are starting to roll in and I can't think of a better first post than this clip of the two of them. Its a beautiful song and you can hear the banjo loud and clear.