The Banjo Special is a unique concert performance experience featuring Brian Taheny, Chris Coole, Arnie Naiman and Chris Quinn,and brings together four of Canada’s best  players and takes the listener on a journey that follows the path the banjo has taken since the early 1800s.  From it’s roots as an African gourd instrument, into America and the early minstrel shows, old-time country music, rural blues, bluegrass and all the way to Ireland.
Through two previous  recordings  Arnie Naiman and Chris Coole  have established themselves as two of the finest old-time clawhammer players on the scene today. Their playing styles are both complimentary to each other and yet individually unique

Brian Taheny, from Sligo, Ireland, is a tenor banjo player whose flurries of triplets, blue notes and rhythmic twists are technically demanding on the player and captivating to the listener. 

Picking with the drive of a piston, bluegrass banjo player Chris Quinn is schooled in the traditions of the style and yet, is willing to step outside the boundaries of expectation.

On The Banjo Special, the listener will find some music that is familiar and some that is unexpected. Coole, Naiman, Taheny and Quinn clearly show that the banjo is being played with range, repertoire and soul. It’s in good hands!

The Banjo Special banjos on stage at Hugh's Room for the 16th annual concert

The recording of The Banjo Special from Merriweather Records  featuring clawhammer, old time styles, bluegrass, and Irish tenor banjo music