Customer message: Ross... I've got an 05 Gold Star GF 85 which I've played for 13 years.... Really like the Gold Star. Looking to move up in quality but stay with Gold Star... what is the gold star, in your opinion, for around 2k? thanks, Jim
Hi Jim, Gold Star only has one model in production now. But you emailed at a good time. For the last two years Gold Star Banjos availability has not existed. There have been noGold Star Banjos while they worked with a new factory to get it up to their standards, which I know you know, are high.
What they have now is the new Bluegrass Album Banjo commemorative edition Gold Star GF 100-JD. These are all hand signed by JD Crowe. They have only had two shipments last fall (2017) and they sold out quickly, unfortunately the next shipment is scheduled in a couple months. I've played these banjos, I'm really impressed. I will embed a video.
If you decide to get one, I would pre-order, these shipments are not huge. They have probably made 50 so far. I kept one, number 10. They've been handpicking dealers and allotting them. I have three coming in and have pre-sold one. It's possible at some point they could ramp up production but Gold star has never consistently kept a steady flow of banjos in the 2000's. Ive been a dealer since 2003 and often customers have had to patiently wait for models to arrive. If you get a signed one, it could in fact become significant. Remember the old Earl Scruggs model in 1988 that Earl signed. It didn't seem like a huge deal back then, Earl was still playing and accessible. But here it is 2018 and I just had someone that called in boasting about his signed Earl Scruggs banjo, and that is not the first time. I feel that JD is one of the 3 main banjo great's from that era, if not 3, in the top 5, he is my top 3. I would get one of these and not leave it to chance.
If you call me I'm happy talk more about these, the tone is really good, a lot of bottom end, and the cosmetics are on a par with the 90's Gibson's and a step above the other imports as always. They sound better and look as good as the gold stars in production a few years ago. The owner of saga plays banjo and you have to assume he really wanted to impress JD. I know he is a big fan. Part of the reason it took so long was he was being very picky, pardon the pun.
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