***News: Chris Ballew announces the Caspar Babypants Song-A-Day*** For the entire 2011 year, Chris will be putting some form of song bits or fragments or ideas of notions or completed tunes at his Caspar Babypants website. These will be free and he will try to post one per day.
We continue our study of the heavily modded instruments of Chris Ballew, lead singer of The Presidents of the United States of America. Today’s instrument is the 3-string tenor banjo that Ballew has used for many years, even pre-dating his time with the Presidents. He tunes this to a C# or D power chord, just like his other 3-stringers.
The banjo head was painted black many years ago and is showing much wear now. Ballew added glow-in-the-dark “star” stickers to go along with the black background. Legend has it that during his college years, Chris would play this banjo at silent movies and would stuff christmas lights inside the banjo to make the whole body glow.
Fans will instantly recognize this as the banjo that Ballew is holding on the front cover of the second President’s album. The banjo was used on the song, “Tremolo Blooz” from the Pure Frosting album.