Flanked by interactive faculty at a northeastern banjo camp, the BRC founder proudly shows-off his Vega VIP banjo built in Nazareth, Pennsylvania, in 1975. Unbeknownst to most 5 string aficionados, the Martin Guitar Company manufactured Vega banjos from 1970 through 1979. Note the classic “C.F. Martin” decal photographed on the back of the Vega VIP peghead.
The BRC Archives contain all the serial numbers of these unique Vega-Martin banjos, as such data are generously available from the family-owned Martin Guitar department of history.
From its early Boston beginnings, the Vega Banjo Company made many splendid and now vintage instruments, including the Earl Scruggs signature model that he endorsed in the 1960′s. After its Martin Guitar era, the Vega brand name ownership was sold overseas, and the instrument line fell into obscurity. Kudos to Greg Deering who rescued the Vega brand name from extinction in the early 1990′s and restored it to greatness. The two legendary musicians in the camp photo are banjo godfather Tony Trischka and Grammy award winner Eric Weissberg.