15 Best Beginning Banjo Books Reviews 2023

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What are the Best Banjo Books to Buy?

The banjo book is a guide as well as an educational book that contain all the knowledge, methods, and technique needed to turn into an excellent banjo player. The beginning banjo books are your indispensable companion when it comes to learning the way to play the banjo. The Banjo books are not only recommended for beginners but banjo players are also suggested to get the book as it exposes them to the basics and enhances their playing skills.

No matter your level of expertise, you’ll always learn something new from banjo books. This Banjo Books buying guide is packaged to familiarize you with the best banjo books out there and also offer you some info about the banjo and the features you stand to enjoy when you get your copy of the Banjo book.

What does the banjo book contain?

If you purchase a banjo book today, the next is part of what the book is expected to include. You have to pay attention to the fact that there are styles of banjo books with varying features and contents.

Once you open a banjo book you can find the followings:

  • The Basics of banjos
  • Banjo maintenance tips
  • Practice exercises to boost your playing skills
  • Downloadable Practice examples and videos
  • Classic Bluegrass songs
  • How to choose and change strings
  • Tips and techniques to make you a better player

There are a lot of other features that come based on the type of banjo book and the aspects that the writer likes to emphasize. To know the best banjo book to buy, we have painstakingly reviewed the most effective Banjo books available.

If you go through the reviews, you’ll discover the distinct features of every one of the books. This may guide you toward getting the one that’s excellent for you whether as a beginner, intermediate, or expert banjo player.

15 Best Banjo Book Reviews

1. Bluegrass Banjo for Complete Ignoramus

Authored by Wayne Erbsen, The bluegrass Banjo for complete ignoramus will train you on the way to playing banjo with fun. This book is ultimately packaged for absolute beginners with no prior knowledge of banjo. This book is unequaled as a result it comes with a personal guarantee by the writer affirming that it’s going to assist you to learn to play a bluegrass banjo successfully.

This book teaches the pure and naked melody to the 23 simple bluegrass favorites. This book is a wonderful book that teaches learners the way to play a song in multiple ways instead of just memorizing it a single way.

Bluegrass Banjo for the Complete Ignoramus Best Beginning Banjo Books

The writer is a seasoned banjo trainer he has introduced the book in an unbeatable method that will make you become an independent banjo player. Aside from that, Wayne reveals a simple method to embellish each melody with the assistance of simple rolls.

This book for Complete ignoramus comes with a link that can be used to download about ninety-nine educational materials.

This wonderful book will learn how to play the following songs:
  • Down the Road
  • Mountain Blues
  • Long Journey Home
  • Nine Pound Hammer
  • Man of Constant Sorrow
  • Roll in My Sweet Baby’s Arms
  • When the Saint go matching in
  • Shall we gather at the river
  • And many more

Bluegrass Banjo for the Complete Ignoramus! features

Beginning banjo lessons have never been more fun! Written for the absolute beginner, this FUN book is guaranteed to help you learn to play the bluegrass banjo

2. Banjo for Dummies: Book + Online Video and Audio Instruction

Authored by Bill Evans, the Banjo for dummies is a good banjo book to think about buying. The book offers a clear presentation of the steps involved in mastering the 5-string banjo. The book takes you thru with nice attention to detail as well as easy–to–comprehend instructions. The banjo for Dummies is a wonderful book for beginners with a lot of attention given to the mechanics of the banjo. The book is a good learning tool that comprises songs that is not so many.

The banjo for dummies is good for any individual who searches to learn this great instrument. It is usually a helpful guide for musicians who intend to boost their skills. The Banjo for dummies is a simple guide that everyone who’s eager on playing 5-string banjo successfully must-have.

Banjo for Dummies Book Online Video and Audio Instruction 2

If you get this book you will be able to get started with chords in addition to choosing patterns. Also, this wonderful book will enable you to explore Clawhammer and bluegrass style.

The Banjo for dummies comes with several notable features that are:
  • Tuning advice for your banjo
  • A full banjo buyer’s guide
  • Techniques for selecting Bluegrass
  • Over 150 video as well as audio examples
  • Effective ways to change strings and choose accessories and lots more

Banjo for Dummies + Book Online Video and Audio Instruction features

The banjo is both a staple of old-time music and an instrument that makes frequent cameos in today’s chart toppers.

3. Earl Scruggs and the 5–string Banjo: Revised and Enhanced Edition

This is among the best-selling Banjo methods. Earl Scruggs and the 5-string Banjo Book have been of great help to numerous players of banjo all around the world. The revised ad Enhanced edition comes with a lot of intriguing features similar to up-to-date lessons, more songs, and lots of different amazing improvements.

Earl Scruggs and the 5–string Banjo book is all you need to begin playing the banjo. It’s going to interest you to hear that the book comes with a CD featuring Earl Scruggs making explanations and also explaining over 60 examples.

Earl Scruggs and the 5-String Banjo: Revised and Enhanced Edition

Earl Scruggs and the 5-String come with all info that you need to know in order to start playing the banjo professionally.

You'll get the following from the book:
  • History of the 5-string banjo
  • Getting familiarized with the banjo
  • Tips on how to read music
  • Tips on how to read tablature
  • Banjo tuning
  • Autobiographical notes
  • Steps on the way to building a banjo
  • Right-hand rolls as well as left-hand methods
  • More than 40 songs and many more

Earl Scruggs and the 5-String Banjo: Revised and Enhanced Edition features

The best-selling banjo method in the world! Earl Scruggs’s legendary method has helped thousands of banjo players get their start.

4. You Can Teach Yourself Banjo

This is a wonderful banjo book by Janet Davis. It’s a nice book for brand-new banjo players. The book is clearly written and it comes with simple and easy-to-follow tablature. It also comes with a CD which means that you can know how a song and exercise should sound. This awesome book is an effective teaching guide for banjo tutors and also an excellent reference book for people learning the instrument.

And lots of other guidelines that may assist become excellent melodic-style and bluegrass banjo players.

The book comes with a 60 minutes video which can be used to study by hearing or with the tablature that comes with the companion book. The video comparison book may be bought on its own. Another excellent feature of this book is the inclusion of a DVD. The DVD will take you through lesson 22 while the rest of the lessons require a CD to allow you to listen to those licks.

You Can Teach Yourself Banjo

Janet Davis is an excellent writer that presents her ideas in a direct, simple-to-comprehend video for the 5-string bluegrass banjo.

If you purchase this book you will learn the following:
  • Easy methods to read tablature
  • Roll patterns
  • Licks
  • Chords

You Can Teach Yourself Banjo features

This is the ideal beginner’s book, presenting the basics of playing the 5-string banjo is a way that is both fun and produces quick results.

5. Clawhammer Banjo Tunes

This wonderful banjo book was first published in 1973 and has taught lots of people the techniques involved in playing a Clawhammer Banjo. This book has outperformed other banjo books in this category in a great variety of ways.

The Clawhammer Banjo for the complete ignoramus is designed to assist beginners to master the act of playing banjo easily and fast. The 40th Edition of this book is newly up to date and repackaged with excellent spiral binding.

This book is a wonderful banjo book to think about buying for simple and swift learning of the way to play the banjo.

Clawhammer Banjo for the Complete Ignoramus

The new edition consists of the same easy-to-read, pleasant and easy instruction just like the original book. Additionally, the new edition has been repackaged to teach you the way to play up to 31 old-time songs. The banjo book teaches with a sense of humor in addition to the laid-back method.

The Clawhammer banjo for full ignoramus will teach you the way to play the following songs:
  • Buffalo gals
  • Cotton–eyed Joe
  • Cripple creek
  • Down in the Willow Garden
  • East Virginia

Clawhammer Banjo for the Complete Ignoramus features

Originally written in 1973, this book has taught more people to play clawhammer banjo than any other book.

6. Play the 5–String Banjo: Third Edition

Authored by Pete Seeger, it is an excellent banjo book for learners who are willing to practice and work hard to attain their dream of becoming excellent Banjo players. The book contains a highlight which that provides an extensive history of the banjo and it additionally includes a very explanatory section that teaches how to tune and hold the banjo. Buying this book is a good way to start learning banjo as a beginner because it takes you through every bit of the info you need to know regarding the banjo.

Play the 5–String Banjo: Third Edition

That is an important manual for banjo players in addition to tutors who need to upgrade their knowledge. The book includes lyrics melody lines, solos notation in standard form, banjo accompaniment, and tablature. This excellent is well structured for simple learning, the chapters cover materials like hammering on, pulling off, double thumbing, a basic strum, and so on.

Play the 5–String Banjo: Third Edition features

This basic manual for banjo players includes melody line, lyrics and banjo accompaniment and solos notated in standard form and tablature.

7. Banjo Primer Book for Beginners Deluxe Edition

This is a wonderful Banjo book written by Geoff Hohwald Geoff. This primer book is designed for beginning students who are eager on learning the playing methods of the Scruggs style bluegrass 5-string banjo. The book presents its banjo teaching method in a simple and easy-to-understand format.

The Banjo Primer Book for beginner Deluxe Edition begins with the banjo basics for beginners. The book starts with an introduction to what a banjo is, some simple guides and These novices’ lesson comes with easy-to-follow tips which are very effective as a banjo teaching aid for people as well as a group of learners. The course will serve as a bluegrass songbook after mastering the essential techniques.

The Banjo book comes with a DVD that provides video instruction on each exercise allowing you to listen to all songs at three speeds. These are slow speed – for studying, medium speed – for practicing, and up-tempo–for performance.

Banjo Primer Book For Beginners Deluxe Edition 2

The Banjo Primer book comes with features that can assist you to learn fast and turn into a professional banjo player as fast as possible. You need to note that the audio exercises, video lessons, and tablature are also accessible online.

Banjo Primer Book For Beginners Deluxe Edition features

This course starts off with beginner basics like parts of the banjo, tuning, how to read tabs, and simple rolls.

8. The Ultimate Banjo Songbook

The Ultimate Banjo Songbook has a wonderful compilation of banjo Solos that can improve your learning. It’s indeed a book for intermediate as well as those with little advanced knowledge of the instrument. The Ultimate Banjo Songbook is an excellent book that teaches you all that’s required to turn into a professional Banjo player.

The Ultimate Banjo Songbook: 26 Favorites Arranged for 5-String

This book comes with fantastic packages that let you record demos for listening as well as playing along. The book comes with a code that you should use to access online audio. A notable feature of this book is the multi-functional audio player which helps to carry out some features such as setting the loop points, slowing down audio without changing the pitch, changing keys, and others.

The Ultimate Banjo Songbook is a wonderful combination of banjo classics which include the following:
  • You are my sunshine
  • Great Balls of fire
  • Foggy Mountain Breakdown
  • Bye Bye Love
  • The Entertainer
  • Lady of Spain
  • Rocky Tops
  • An Antonio Rose and Many others

The Ultimate Banjo Songbook: 26 Favorites Arranged for 5-String features

The package also includes recordings of demos for listening and playing along. The audio is accessed online using the unique code inside each book and can be streamed or downloaded.

9. Hal Leonard Banjo Method – Book 1: for 5-string Banjo

It is an incredible banjo book that’s properly structured and written by a person who appreciates the importance of music theory in addition to the playing of instruments. The Hal Leonard Banjo Method is a book that’s highly recommended by music professionals and Teachers as a result of its simplicity and it is very simple to use.

The book presents an essential introduction to music theory as well banjo Playing Techniques for beginners. With only a few lessons in this book, you’ll learn the chords, Banjo rolls, and a few classic songs.

The Hal Leonard Banjo Method contains two cross-referenced supplement books in addition to two educational banjo books. These books are carefully structured to offer learners an effective method for the bluegrass style.

Hal Leonard Banjo Method - Book 1

The audio may be simply assessed online with the assistance of the distinct code provided in each of the banjo books. This audio could be streamed or downloaded as well. The audio files include multiple–function audio players that assist you to set loop points effectively, Change keys, slow down audio without affecting the pitch, and pan right or left.

The Hal Leonard Banjo Method is an effective banjo book for the beginner who wants a complete and detailed approach to the bluegrass style.

Hal Leonard Banjo Method – Book 1 features

Covers easy chord strums for the beginner; learning tablature; right-hand rolls characteristic of bluegrass; techniques such as hammer-on, slide and pull-off.

10. Bluegrass Banjo for Dummies

The Bluegrass Banjo for Dummies by Bill Evan is what you have to turn into a professional banjo player. You’ll definitely gain lots from the ebook whether you’re an absolute beginner or an experienced banjo player. The Bluegrass Banjo for Dummies is your complete guide towards mastering the recent most popular contemporary and traditional picking styles.

The Bluegrass banjo for dummies comes with many excellent features. Among the features of this wonderful banjo book is step-by-step instructions that give an unmatchable banjo-playing experience, video clips, online audio, and lots more.

The book gives you all the things you have to know to be able to play any type of music on the 5-string banjo. The books will get you started with the roll Pattern basics to Scruggs style picking.

Bluegrass Banjo For Dummies

If you get this book, you will be able to study left-hand methods like pull-offs, slides, and hammer-ons. As well as, you will be able to play wonderful-sounding licks and perform good tunes similar to old Joe clack, Cripple Creek, and lots more.

Bluegrass Banjo For Dummies features

Online audio and video clips combine with the book’s clear step-by-step instructions to provide the most complete – and fun – banjo instruction experience available anywhere!

11. Easy Banjo solos: For 5-String Banjo

Authored by Mac Robertson, this Banjo book is a wonderful guidebook that’s advisable for music instructors for effective studying of banjo playing methods. It is an ideal banjo book for players who like the three-finger playing style.

Additionally, the book comes with incredible songs which are very simple to learn because of the division of every song into two versions – the super-easy version and the advanced version. The super-easy version permits learners to get familiarized with and master the song before proceeding to the advanced version.

Easy Banjo Solos For 5-String Banjo

The Easy Banjo solos is a book that lets you play 5 –string banjo arrangements of your favorite songs like Merle Travis, Hank Williams, Woody Guthrie, and lots of others that are included in the updated second version of this wonderful reference to the banjo methods.

This is a perfect banjo book to think about buying for practical learning of banjo playing strategies.

The Easy Banjo solos include numerous classical songs for practice, some of these songs are:
  • This Land is Your Land
  • Nine Pound Hammer
  • Ballad of Jed Clampett
  • Will the circle be unbroken
  • Hey, Good Lookin
  • I will fly away
  • Ashokan Farewell and lots of more incredible songs

Easy Banjo Solos For 5-String Banjo features

Play 5-string banjo arrangements of your favorite songs from the Beatles, Hank Williams, Flatt & Scruggs, Woody Guthrie, Merle Travis and more in the updated second edition.

12. Absolute Beginners – Banjo: The Complete Picture Guide to Playing the Banjo

It is a great work of Bill Evans and it’s an excellent first book for bluegrass banjo. The Absolute Beginners – Banjo Book contains almost all the things a beginner will need to become familiar with Basic rolls, chords, and lots of other basics. Bill Evans is a good teacher with many years of professional experience. That is evident from his book as the methods there are introduced in a simple and easy-to-understand way.

Bill Evan’s Absolute Beginners – Banjo Book is a perfect educational material that can be used for classroom teaching as well as self-learning. This incredible banjo book uses a method designed to make learning the 5-string banjo instrument easier than it was.

Absolute Beginners - Banjo The Complete Picture Guide to Playing the Banjo

This book explains with step-by-step pictures as it takes you from the exercises on the first day of studying to the stage where you’ll be able to play an entire song by yourself. This banjo book is one of its kind; it presents learners with the owner’s manual approach to the banjo.

The Absolute Beginners – Banjo features the following:
  • A look and learn the course
  • Practical tips about setting up, maintaining, and playing your banjo
  • CD tracks that guide you on how things should sound
  • And many more

The Complete Picture Guide to Playing the Banjo features

The Absolute Beginners award-winning method has been designed to make learning the 5-string banjo easier than ever before!

13. Clawhammer Banjo – Tunes, Tips & Jamming (book & CD set)

The Clawhammer Banjo – Tunes, Tips & Jamming is a wonderful banjo book that’s purposely structured for beginners. The book presents the essential mechanics of Clawhammer as an easy method that anybody can understand easily. Apart from the truth that the book is fantastically organized, it’s entertaining with concise and clear instructions.

This book is good for everybody no matter your stage of expertise whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, or advanced banjo participant. The Clawhammer Banjo book comes with myriads of unparalleled features.

Clawhammer Banjo ~ Tunes, Tips & Jamming

A few of these features are instructional MP3 CDs, tabs, and lyrics to about forty-four ancient banjo tunes, effective tips about learning tunes on the fly. This wonderful Banjo book will tutor you on the way to jam as well as the art of faking it and improvising. To enjoy these songs and many more, get your copy of the book on your next visit to the market.

If you purchase the Clawhammer Banjo – Tunes, Tips & Jamming, you'll learn to play the following songs:
  • Big–Eyed Rabbit
  • Barlow knife
  • Blackest Crow
  • Chilly Winds
  • Hang Me

Clawhammer Banjo – Tunes, Tips & Jamming features

Wayne’s newest clawhammer banjo book has something for everyone: beginners, intermediate and advanced players.

14. Blues Banjo: Lessons, Licks, Riffs, Songs & More

This can be a nice banjo book credited to Fred Sokolow. The Author is a resourceful musician and writer. He has written a lot of instructional materials and musical topics. The banjo book includes the basics of banjo and examples that may assist greatly in perfecting your banjo playing abilities. This Banjo book adopts excellent teaching methods to boost learning.

Blues Banjo Lessons, Licks, Riffs, Songs & More

If you get this book, you’ll have access to online audio tracks that may be streamed or downloaded. The book stands out amongst others due to the unique way it teaches the way to play the blues on the banjo. This can be an incredible banjo book to purchase for effective learning of this wonderful instrument.

This incredible banjo book will teach you the following:
  • Play blues using different banjo tuning
  • How you can play in the style of blues similar to John Hurt, Mississippi
  • Scales
  • Chords
  • Numerous approaches to soloing
  • Tune around and boogie backup
  • How you can play blues up and down the neck
  • And lots of more

Blues Banjo Lessons, Licks, Riffs, Songs & More features

Best-selling author Fred Sokolow teaches you how to play blues on the banjo with this instructional book and audio pack!

15. Bluegrass Jamming on Banjo Books with CD

That is an awesome book for beginners with a lot of songs for practice. It allows learners to play at their choice speed and elegance. This banjo book explains in an easy way the tools, tips, and tunes needed to jam in bluegrass style.

The bluegrass Jamming on banjo will teach practical strategies on what step to take at your debut jam, how one can play tunes in a unique and improvised way every time you play, and ultimately, how you can play up to thirty-one bluegrass jam requirements.

The book is endowed with some unique features similar to 200 vintage photo illustrations, spiral binding, the inclusion of an educational CD containing up to 197 MP3 tracks that may be played on your personal computer, and so forth.

Bluegrass Jamming on Banjo book with CD 2

The Bluegrass Jamming on Banjo books will teach you the way to improvise by making your personal tunes. Not only that you’ll be exposed to the strategies of playing melodies and include your personal role in the 31 classic jams.

Bluegrass Jamming on Banjo books will educate you on the following using an easy and easy-to-follow method:
  • Tips on how to lead a song
  • The jam etiquette
  • How you can start your break
  • The way to jam on songs you are not familiar with
  • The methods to read a tab
  • Structure of bluegrass songs and many more

Bluegrass Jamming on Banjo book with CD features

You’ll also learn to make up your own tasteful licks and fills and everything you’ll need to march fearlessly into your first bluegrass jam.

What is a Banjo?

A banjo is a stringed instrument that has between 4 to 6 strings, equipped with a thin membrane that stretches over the mount or space which helps it with resonation. The frame or cavity is normally circular in shape and is named the head.

Some Facts About Banjo

  • The banjo is a musical instrument that was invented by West African living in the Caribbean in the seventeenth century
  • The traditional banjo’s body was made from a gourd while a wooden stick was used for its neck
  • The origin of the word banjo is still uncertain and it stays a topic of debate. Based on the Oxford dictionary, the origin comes from the Portuguese word often called bandore while others claim that the word originated from the Kimbundu word known as mbanza.
  • The 4-string plectrum banjo has been featured in several musicals similar to Hello, Dolly! Cabaret and Annie
  • Banjo music isn’t limited to folk and rock music, others kinds of music could be performed on this fantastic instrument. Some renowned professional banjo player like Bela Fleck plays classical, jazz as well as R&B on the Banjo
  • Similar to other string instruments there are numerous ways a banjo could be played. The standard style includes the player picking the string in an upward motion with the use of the fingers while using the thumb for the downward motion. The Clawhammer approach can be known as frailing. These methods employ the use of down-picking almost exclusively.


There are various kinds of banjo books available on the market they usually differ based on the author’s preference. This Banjo book shopping guide has definitely exposed you to the required information you’ll want to know before buying a banjo book.

These extensive and eye-opening reviews of the perfect Banjo books contain major information you have to know regarding the banjo, the banjo books, and one of the best banjo books to get as a beginner, intermediate, or professional who needs to enrich his/her knowledge and playing abilities.

Bill Hood

Bill Hood

My name is Bill, and I am a musician and music enthusiast who has a deep love and passion for anything and everything stringed that moves my soul. It is an honor to be a part of the team at our website dedicated to stringed instruments, and I look forward to sharing my passion and knowledge with our readers as well.

Strings Kings
Strings Kings