Deering Goodtime Americana Review: Great Banjo For Everybody! (2023)

Deering Goodtime Americana

Deering Goodtime Americana Review

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.
  • Banjo;
  • 16 Tension rods
  • 22 Frets

Deering Goodtime Americana Review

A Goodtime Americana banjo is made at Deering’s Spring Valley facility in California and features high-quality materials and excellent workmanship. As Deering’s first 5-string banjo with a 12″ rim, the Goodtime Americana delivers a much warmer tone and stronger bass response.

Adding a 12″ Renaissance head to the larger rim further enhances the fullness and warmth of the banjo, providing the banjo with both an aesthetic and a musical complement. Furthermore, this banjo features guitar-style tuners, a rock maple neck, nickel-plated hardware, and hardwood inlays.

There are two main differences between the Americana and the original Goodtime open-back: the Americana has a 12-inch head (the original Goodtime has an 11-inch head) and a new 12-inch rim with a thick three-ply wall. 

Deering Goodtime Logo

Want some fun read? Check these fun banjo facts!

Americana Design

Goodtime Americana features a wider Grand 12″ rim, giving the banjo a more distinct tone and enhanced bass response. The Renaissance head complements the Grand 12″ rim to further enhance the banjo’s sweet, warm sound. Featuring a scrollwork design, the Americana name, and the Goodtime logo on a beautifully engraved peghead.

In keeping with Goodtime’s long-standing philosophy of providing the best value American-made banjos, the Americana is the lowest-priced 12″ banjo available today and is distinguished by its distinctive natural blonde finish. A rock maple neck, nickel-plated hardware, and hardwood inlays are also included with this banjo in keeping with the rest of the Goodtime line.

Americana Banjo Body

Playability and Sound

A 12″ pot and Renaissance head make the Americana an ideal banjo for clawhammer players. It is with these new features that you will be able to obtain the pluck, cluck, and sound that you would need in order to master the clawhammer banjo.

In playing the Americana with an old-time style technique, you are reminded of banjos from the past, when larger rims were more prevalent, which makes the 12″ an excellent choice for playing old-time music. With a frosted top head, traditional 11″ banjos have a brighter sound and will cut more effectively.

Because the combination of the Grand 12″ rim and Renaissance head produces an exceptionally laid-back sound, the Americana lends itself very well to musicians looking to use the banjo as a backup instrument to vocalists or other instruments, rather than as a lead instrument.

Americana Playability

In terms of tone, you will immediately notice a rounded, bassier sound. You are definitely getting some extra body mass due to the larger rim diameter and thicker 3-ply size of the Americana. It has been recommended as a good instrument to accompany a vocalist or use as a singer-songwriter because it is not as snappy and in your face as a typical open-back. Don’t forget, it still has a very traditional banjo sound.

Today, banjos are used in a variety of musical genres, not just country and bluegrass. It is no secret that Deering is a leader in all things banjo, so the fact that they are also catering to the lower price point is an excellent opportunity for anyone interested in entering the world of the caper.

In addition to being sprightly and clear, the Americana takes advantage of its 12″ rim for tones that can be used with a sing-along or to produce rolls when needed. Compared to heavy and bulky closed-back models, these Goodtimes weigh less than two kilograms.

Americana Brief Features

  • Neck Wood: Rock Maple
  • Neck Shape: Comfortable “D” Shape
  • Stain: Natural Maple
  • Finish: Satin
  • Nut Width: 1 1/4″
  • Nut Material: Lexan Polycarbonate
  • Tuners: Sealed Geared Tuners
  • 5th String Tuner: Goodtime Geared 5th String Tuner
  • Frets: 22 Pressed In Nickel Silver Frets
  • Rim: 3-Ply Violin Grade Maple
  • Rim Diameter: 12″
  • Head: 12″ Renaissance Medium Crown
  • Tension Hoop: Beveled Steel Tension Hoop
  • Hooks and Nuts: 16 Flat J-Hooks with 9/32″ Nuts
  • Armrest: Goodtime Armrest
  • Hardware Plating: Nickel
  • Tailpiece: Deering Patented Goodtime Tailpiece
  • Finish: Hand Rubbed Polyurethane with Carnuba Wax Finish

Why To Go For The Americana

If you are a person that respects the older type of banjo sound, then this is the right banjo for you. Americana is a unique banjo that you can benefit from if all the points and features above suit your playing style.

With its really affordable price, every new and old banjo player can get it and have another instrument in their arsenal. We highly recommend it if you are after a new banjo.

8.7Expert Score
Deering Goodtime Americana Review

As Deering’s first 5-string banjo with a 12″ rim, the Goodtime Americana delivers a much warmer tone and stronger bass response.

  • 12" Rim Diameter
  • Great Design and Color
  • Old School Sound
  • Might have excessive bass


The Americana is really nice and sweet banjo. There is no doubt that you will be getting an amazing instrument since Deering Goodtime developer is one really known for creating banjos for a very long time. That shows us that they are serious about their work, and this banjo is no exclusion when it comes to the quality.

If you are having any questions about this amazing banjo, please let us know in the comment section below and we will be more than happy to answer you. Also, if you are having some extra questions, do not hesitate to reach out to Deering contact center as well.


Charles Steinhoff

Charles Steinhoff

Charles is here and I am guitar and ukulele enthusiast. Been playing these instruments for over 10 years now and I decided to share some of my knowledge and expertise with the world in terms of these stringed instruments and it's accessories.

Strings Kings
Strings Kings