Mary Z. Cox | A Secret Life Of Banjo

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United States - Florida

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Country: Bluegrass Country: Old-Timey Moods: Solo Instrumental
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A Secret Life Of Banjo

by Mary Z. Cox

Hear the secret voice of old time banjo. Even if you've never liked banjo music before--you just may change your mind. 15 banjo instrumentals you'll want to listen to more than once.
Genre: Country: Bluegrass
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Swannanoa Tunnel
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2:58 $0.99
2. Golden Slippers
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2:22 $0.99
3. Andrew Jackson, Go Back Home
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2:24 $0.99
4. Old Town Band
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1:51 $0.99
5. Snake Charmer's Daughter
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2:57 $0.99
6. Old Molly Hare
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2:03 $0.99
7. Sandy Boys
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3:19 $0.99
8. Sally in the Garden
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3:13 $0.99
9. Soldiers Joy
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3:13 $0.99
10. All Through the Night
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1:30 $0.99
11. Hunchback Whiskey
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2:49 $0.99
12. Wayfaring Stranger
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2:12 $0.99
13. Cock-a-doodle-do
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3:02 $0.99
14. Pikes Peak
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1:27 $0.99
15. Angeline
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3:27 $0.99
Available as MP3, MP3 320, and FLAC files.


Album Notes
"Stand out tunes include Mary's take on Swannanoa Tunnel, an old English work song made popular by Bascom Lamar Lunsford, along with two original tunes, Andrew Jackson Go Back Home and Hunchback Whiskey, that she plays on her Wunder Hunchback fretless gut string banjo. Mary also has the enviable ability to take an old chestnut and make it hers, a la her double-tracked version of Golden Slippers...along with Soldier's Joy and Angeline."
--Don Nitchie/Banjo Newsletter May 2004

ALSO AVAILABLE--Banjo tab book with simple tabs, playing hints, and historical and personal notes on 15 tunes on this CD. Please visit my web page or email me to order.

Mary Z. Cox's warm, laid back, banjo is featured on her five CDs. (Vintage Banjo, Walkin' That Banjo Home,Dulcimer Fandango& A Secret Life Of Banjo & Banjo Dreamin' Suwannee Nights) She's the 2004 winner of the Tommy Thompson Memorial Old Time Banjo Contest(Florida Folk Festival), 2003 Florida Old Time Banjo Champion,and the 2002 Florida Old Time Mountain Dulcimer Champion. She plays string band dance music and duets with her husband, Bob, and records with friends and family.

Her tabs, articles, and MP3s have been published in Banjo Newsletter and Studio Magazine. She is a regular performer and workshop host at the Florida Folk Festival and takes great delight in helping others discover their banjo style.

Mary Z. is a third generation Floridian and received her first banjo when she was twelve. Her granddad was a professional banjo player, and his father was an old time fiddler from St. Joe, Missouri. His Dad was Cyclone Thompson who rode the Pony Express.


to write a review

Wick Smith

The Clawhammeer CD I've been looking for
If you like clawhammer banjo, and especially if you ave ever tried to play that style, this is a CD you really should get. Almost uniquely, it is a CD of solo banjo and Mary Z Cox is one of the masters. In the way that some bluegrass banjo players can amaze you with how fast they can play, this artist astonished me with how rhythmically slow she could play and how few notes she needed to create a beautiful melodic line.

John Harrington

Great stuff! A banjo lovers must have.

Dawn Koster

This cd knocks my socks off every time I listen to it! Mary Z Cox is crazy on that banjo and she's my hero. You should buy this cd for yourself and one for every one of your friends, family members and co-workers!

Roger Kirchofer

Mary's CDs are all Great and Can't wait for more Cds and Tab books Of hers.

C. Aaron McNeece

The best thing about this CD....
Besides the really great clawhammer banjo picking, the best thing about this CD is that all the tunes are transcribed on a companion tab book. Who would have thought that you could play All Through the Night clawhammer style? And make it sound like it belongs?

Phil O'Flaherty

I love this CD. It's not what I was expecting from a recording of banjo instrumentals. It's charm is found in the warmth and mellowness that I've never heard from the banjo before now. Mary Z. Cox plays with skill and depth of feeling. I love every track but "Snake Charmer's Daughter" is a howl; "Andrew Jackson, Go Back Home" and "Sally in the Garden" rip my heart out. Something new is revealed with every playing. If you've had a hard day and the noise of the city is getting you down, this music will wash over you with its joyful honesty like a cool brook on a hot and dusty day.


Just get it, any one of these songs is worth the cost of the CD and supporting such musicians. When that one song connects with you the joy is timeless, simple, and chalked full of that universal understanding. All her CD's have at the least 4 jewels in them. Not one lyric and just an essential exposure.

Matthew Brasel

This CD is great Banjo playing!
This is one of my favorite banjo CDs. I like OT Banjo solos rustic and yet refined and this is it. Wayfaring Stranger is my favorite track.

Jael Kahn

Beautiful and unique banjo--my favorite ever!
I love this CD and I'm a big fan of Mary Z. Cox's banjo music. How can she get so much music out of just one banjo?
This is clawhammer banjo at its best--clear and fascinating arrangements, with roots in traditional music. The majority of old time banjo players sound like sewing machines, but not this one. I can listen again and again and everytime I hear something new. My favorites on this CD are: Suwannanoah Tunnel, Golden Slippers, Andrew Jackson, Go Back Home, Snake
Charmers Daughter, Old Molly Hare, Hunchback Whiskey and Angeline. I was listening to this in my car one evening when
it began to snow, and Suwananoah Tunnel was playing and I got the chills from the beauty of it all.

Bill Eckles

I love this record!
Great banjo tones, wonderful relaxed rhythms, everything that I want to hear in a solo banjo CD. Beautiful songs, including the originals. Mary Z. Cox gets to the heart of what is essential in these tunes without cluttering them up with excessive showmanship or playing at a frantic pace. Great stuff!
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