Banjo NewsLetter office moves to Wisconsin

Banjo NewsLetter, the print magazine dedicated to three finger and clawhammer banjo that was published from 1973 to 2021, has announced a move of their business office. They are not resuming publication, but the magazine and its rich archive of articles, reviews, instructional information, and tablature remains available online for $8.99 per year.

Founded in 1973 by Hub Nitchie and his wife, Nancy, in Maryland, Banjo NewsLetter was the first of its kind for bluegrass banjo players in the US. Hub was a banjo player himself, and wrote much of the copy initially, along with a small number of outside contributors. When he died in 1992, Nancy kept it going until their sons, Spencer and Donald, took over in 1994.

The two brothers managed the magazine successfully until 2021, when Spencer died from cancer at only 57 years of age. The prospect of assuming all aspects of the business alone proved too daunting for Donald, who was approaching retirement age, and faced with the rising costs of paper and mailing that had been upending the entire magazine industry. Publication was suspended in September of ’21, pending a search for a new owner. Failing that, BNL has remained an online resource of back issues and tablature ever since.

But now Spencer’s daughter Sofia has taken over the running of Banjo NewsLetter, and is moving the archive of print back issues to Wisconsin where she lives. She will also be working to ensure that print copies of all back issues will be available for purchase from the web site.

Banjo NewsLetter’s online resources include a searchable archive of all song and tune tabs available for sale, as well as a listing of all back issues with their contents, and the ability to order them. They also maintain a number of free tablatures and audio files, plus helpful information for anyone just starting to learn to play the banjo.

All this can be found online.

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.