bands/musicians The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time  

Ranker Music
7.6k votes 2.6k voters 73.2k views 72 items Embed

List Rules Vote up the all time best banjo players in history

Who are the best musicians to have ever played the banjo? The banjo is a four or five string instrument. Early versions of the banjo were created by Africans in Colonial America, but today it is most closely associated with bluegrass, folk, country, and traditional Irish music. A mainstay of old-time American music, the banjo is a popular instrument, even today.

The greatest banjoists ever are from different eras and genres but are all hugely talented on their instrument. These best banjo players have spent years honing their skills to become the best. These musicians often helped define their respective genres, and many teach others to play the banjo as well.

The greatest banjo players of all time are from all over the world and include musicians such as Charlie Poole, Bela Fleck, Earl Scruggs, and Pete Seeger. Even comedian Steve Martin plays the banjo!

Vote up the best banjoists in history on the list below, or add a musician who you think is the best banjo player ever, if he or she isn't already on the list.
list ordered by

1
732 127
Earl Scruggs is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Earl Scruggs Bluegrass, Gospel music, Country

Famous Banjo Players The Best Ski Apparel Brands

2
527 172
Béla Fleck is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Béla Fleck Rock music, Folk music, Folk rock

3
202 105
Ralph Stanley is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Ralph Stanley Traditional bluegrass, Old-time music, Bluegrass

4
106 46
J. D. Crowe is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
duststang1 added J. D. Crowe Progressive bluegrass, Bluegrass

5
156 94
Tony Trischka is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Tony Trischka Roots, Bluegrass

6
318 223
Steve Martin is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Steve Martin Bluegrass

7
118 67
Ranker Video
dabowd added Jens Kruger American Folk

8
120 70
David

9
169 110
Noam Pikelny is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Noam Pikelny Progressive bluegrass, Bluegrass

10
48 12
Don Reno is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
John N Annette Egan added Don Reno Bluegrass

11
102 62
Grandpa Jones is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
MarkTimothyPierce added Grandpa Jones Old-time music, Bluegrass, Gospel music

12
143 100
Pete Seeger is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Pete Seeger Folk music

13
67 34
John Hartford is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
David Sekac added John Hartford Folk music, Bluegrass, Country

14
93 59
Ron Block is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Ron Block Bluegrass, Alternative Country

15
85 54
Alison Brown is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Alison Brown Americana, Jazz, Bluegrass

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16
75 47
Alan Munde is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Alan Munde Bluegrass

17
69 44
Pete Wernick is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Pete Wernick Bluegrass

18
54 30
Eddie Adcock is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Eddie Adcock Bluegrass

19
73 49
Barney McKenna is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Barney McKenna Folk music of Ireland

20
51 29
Bill Emerson is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Bjoe added Bill Emerson Bluegrass

21
83 65
Abigail Washburn is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Abigail Washburn Americana, Old-time music

22
44 27
Raymond Fairchild is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
roger-dvorak added Raymond Fairchild Bluegrass

23
83 68
Jerry Garcia is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
evanswinington added Jerry Garcia Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk rock

24
284 288
Kit Evans is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Gareth Cotter added Kit Evans Bluegrass, Folk, Jazz Metal -  Kit Evans (Gentlemen of Few) shot to fame through his primary school talent show back in 2002 when he opted to perform 'Let The Bodies Hit The Floor' on the banjo, his talented musical display was described as "not ...

25
43 32
Charlie Poole is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Charlie Poole Country

26
45 35
Uncle Dave Macon is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Uncle Dave Macon Old-time music

27
27 16
Tony Furtado is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
cksqrd added Tony Furtado Americana, Blues, Jass

28
46 37
Eddie Peabody is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Eddie Peabody Vaudeville

29
30 21
Courtney Johnson is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
JBB1 added Courtney Johnson Progressive bluegrass, Bluegrass

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30
33 25
Danny Barnes is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Danny Barnes Rock music, Folk music, Jazz

31
34 27
Snuffy Jenkins is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Snuffy Jenkins Old-time music, Bluegrass

32
25 17
Eric Weissberg is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
edwardlatham added Eric Weissberg Bluegrass, Country

33
22 17
John McEuen is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
David Sekac added John McEuen Rock music, Country

34
25 22
Larry McNeely is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Larry McNeely Country

35
15 11
Roscoe Holcomb is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
gnicholls added Roscoe Holcomb Folk music, Old-time music, Bluegrass

36
18 17
Ranker Video
bill-cli added Buddy Wachter Jazz, Pop, Classical - AMERICA'S BANJO VIRTUOSO Master of the four string banjo, the uniquely American instrument, Buddy Wachter is acknowledged to be America's greatest virtuoso banjo player. Andrew John "Buddy" Wachter was born on ...

37
31 35
Lonnie Hoppers is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
ragtime added Lonnie Hoppers A Monroe Bluegrass Boy

38
7 5
Dock Boggs is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Howard Vogel added Dock Boggs Old-time music

39
40 47
Burl Ives is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Burl Ives Folk

40
8 7
Bernie Leadon is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Jdwalther added Bernie Leadon Rock music, Country rock, Country

41
28 33
John Hickman is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
John Hickman Ragtime

42
14 15
Mean Mary James is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
BarneyTaylor added Mean Mary James

43
7 6
Fred Van Eps is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Howard Vogel added Fred Van Eps Ragtime, Jazz

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44
34 42
Davidson Brothers is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
ragtime added Hamish Davidson Aussie Banjo Master

45
21 27
Herb Pedersen is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Herb Pedersen Folk music, Folk rock, Country rock

46
22 29
Tommy Makem is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Tommy Makem Folk music of Ireland

47
19 25
Bascom Lamar Lunsford is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Bascom Lamar Lunsford Folk, Traditional

48
0 0
Don Parmley is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Johnny Rojo added Don Parmley

49
14 20
Scott Avett is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
Brian Rhoades added Scott Avett Folk music, Folk rock, Indie rock

50
5 8
Winston Marshall is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Banjo Players of All Time
gnicholls added Winston Marshall