Banjo Craftsman Sells Instruments Around the World

By: Ashley Davidson
By: Ashley Davidson

In Glasgow Kentucky, almost in the middle of nowhere, a dream was born.

"The first one I ever made was out of a breakdrum. I was a teenager. It really didn't sound that bad. But it was too heavy."

Arthur Hatfield started playing the banjo when he was 14 years old.

"I just love the sound of it. No electirc insturments. It's all acoustic. You don't have any peddles or anything to do for you. You do it with your hands. There's no gimmicks."

For the last four years he's been crafting handmade banjos for people all over the world.

"I've sold in several of the states in the United States. I've got one in the United Kingdom, one in Japan, two in Canada and one in Alaska."

Hatfield has made about 50 banjos. He says it takes about a month to make one.

"Here's some necks. It's been sprayed and laid to wait for 15 days. It's going to Lexington."

He buys the rims then turns them in his shop to customize them. And he has a special saw to mark the spaces for the strings. Hatfield also repairs banjos made by major manufacturers.

"I build one of the best banjos I feel that there is. If I didn't think so, I'd do something to change it."

Hatfield plays in Arthur Hatfield and Buck Creek.

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