About Presentations of THE GOLD RUSH BANJO

CHRIS AND OLD TIME BANJOEmail to book a performance of THE GOLD RUSH BANJO: nevadamusic.com@me.com

THE GOLD RUSH BANJO-an intimate disquisition upon often the lost or forgotten mining songs of the early far West—California and Nevada and the instrument that early western minstrels played. The sound of THE GOLD RUSH BANJO provides a unparalleled window into the past! THE GOLD RUSH BANJO features CW on a genuine 1860s flush-fret minstrel banjo played in the historical style.

Mirroring the migration of mining culture from California eastward to the Nevada, THE GOLD RUSH BANJO program’s colorful songs come from California during the 1850s and then Nevada after 1860. The stories and songs offer a rare glimpse into western American mining culture. Anyone interested in the banjo or American music will find THE GOLD RUSH BANJO fun and educational!

THE GOLD RUSH BANJO performance works best in a medium to small size room–perfect for museums, smaller theaters, libraries, town halls, etc.. If you are considering a large hall–opera house–note the comments in “About the instrument” pertaining to the structure of minstrel shows. A These instruments tend to require retuning and are not terrible loud–unless amplified in any venue larger than a parlor they are a prop. Think about hiring local old-time musicians if what you need is background music at your event. THE GOLD RUSH BANJO performance is entertaining (particularly given that all the songs were originally designed to be humorous)…but it is also designed to be educational for a listening audience who are interested in the gold rush.




CW Bayer has presented historical programs on gold rush music since 1999—including performances at the California Trail Interpretative Center, The Oregon Trail Interpretative Center, Gold Rush Days in Old Town Sacramento, the Gold Hill Hotel lecture series, not to mention numerous book shops, coffee houses and whoopteedoos.


“Hey so I teach high school and a class called the American West. One of my favorite assignments is to make the kids take a gold rush song from a songbook I found and place it in historical context and then perform it. Your banjo tracks make it super easy to sing the tunes, many of which kids just don’t know. Making students love history is so much easier when they see real people practicing history through their passions. Thanks for being a super history hero and making my job tons, tons, tons more fun.” Lindsey Morris, teacher, Cottonwood High School in Salt Lake City UT