I Hear Banjos from Mike Mitchell

I hear banjos… is that anything like ‘I see dead people?’ Does it suggest some medical intervention may be required?

Just kidding, of course. I Hear Banjos is the name of the first single from Mike Mitchell’s upcoming album with Turnberry Records. Mike wrote it with the members of the Anderson family of western Pennsylvania who make up the band Echo Valley.

Mike says that the session started out as a songwriting lesson on Zoom, and turned into a very practical exercise as they took a chance occurrence and made it into a song.

“When we started the write that morning, there was a whole lot of banjo music coming from the room next door to where the other band members were. I asked them about that, and was told, ‘its our brother’s banjo lesson time.’ So, when the there’s two banjos in the room next door, and you can’t concentrate on anything else, you write about what you know!”​​

The song follows the three verse story form often seen in country music, where the narrative unfolds in three separate vignettes. First we hear from someone who isn’t necessarily thrilled to be listening to banjos all the time, then a telling of how much banjo picking is heard near Mitchell’s home in Floyd, VA, and finally we finish with a brief history lesson on the ol’ five string.

Mitchell is supported on the track by Joey Mosley on guitar, Jake Mosley on mandolin, Tray Wellington on banjo, and Jason Moore on bass. Mike takes the fiddle and lead vocal, with Jesse Smathers and Jesse Brock singing harmonies.

I Hear Banjos is available now from popular download and streaming services online. Radio programmers are invited to contact Turnberry Records by email to get a copy.

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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.