Top Ten Songs Featuring a Banjo

The banjo has been a staple of western music since the nineteenth century. It is mainly known for its high presence in bluegrass and, to a lesser extent, country music. Note: As I mentioned on my list about the pedal steel guitar I am not a devoted fan to country music or bluegrass as I am to rock and roll. Most of these songs are country rock songs, with the exception of the song Genius in France, which I added for a little weirdness. Therefore I encourage all banjo players who are on the site to add what they think are the best songs with a banjo. And even if you're not, feel free to vote and add to this list.
The Top Ten
1 Dueling Banjos - Eric Weissberg & Steve Mandell

Love this song! It's from the movie "Deliverance".

2 Foggy Mountain Breakdown - Flatt & Scruggs

Ah, yes, I forgot about Earl Scruggs. I feel terrible about that. Thanks for adding this to the list.

3 Midnight Flyer - Eagles

Bernie Leadon was a great banjo player. Another song with a notable use of banjo is Journey of the Sorcerer, the theme from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.

4 Squeeze Box - The Who

The song features a banjo solo in the middle. It's the last thing you'd expect on a Who song.

5 Gallows Pole - Led Zeppelin

Jimmy Page added a banjo part. Listen carefully to the right channel, and you will hear it.

6 Take Me Home, Country Roads - John Denver
7 Bluebird - Buffalo Springfield

The banjo comes in at the end, after all the other instruments have dropped out.

8 I Am a Pilgrim - The Byrds

Roger McGuinn played banjo on this one. He first started learning banjo in 1957. That explains why he uses fingerpicking whenever he plays guitar. He learned it on banjo first.

9 Cumberland Blues - Grateful Dead

Jerry Garcia played banjo here. He was notorious for playing the banjo all his life and was well versed in bluegrass.

10 Listen to the Music - The Doobie Brothers

You can hear the banjo throughout most of the song.

The Contenders
11 Take It Easy - Eagles
12 Money - The Lovin' Spoonful

Jerry Yester (the band's new guitarist at the time) played the banjo.

13 Southern Nights - Glen Campbell
14 All You Need is Love - The Beatles
15 Hello Mr. Banjo - The Lonesome Pine Fiddlers

A bluegrass song with a conversation between a man and a banjo. It's cute.

16 Stone - Faces

Rod Stewart apparently played the banjo on this one. You can hear it most prominently in the intro.

17 The Air is Getting Slippery - Primus

You can't beat the superb banjo solo in this song, especially the live version at Woodstock '94.

18 Stop! Stop! Stop! - The Hollies

Lead guitarist Tony Hicks plays the banjo on this song. They ran the banjo through a tape delay unit, making it sound more like a balalaika than an ordinary banjo.

19 Say You Love Me - Fleetwood Mac
20 East Bound and Down - Jerry Reed

I can't believe I didn't think of this sooner. The banjo pretty much sets the pace for the whole song.

21 Old Man - Neil Young
22 You Ain't Goin' Nowhere - Bob Dylan

Specifically referring to the version on Greatest Hits Vol. II. Dylan's friend Happy Traum played the banjo. They didn't use any other outsiders in the recording sessions.

23 Genius in France - Weird Al Yankovic

The banjo comes in at the 6:32 mark, when the song spontaneously turns into a bluegrass style two step. It's not a large portion of the song, but it sticks out enough that I think it's worth mentioning.

24 Bring Back That Leroy Brown - Queen

This one was technically done on a banjo ukulele. I'm not sure if it's considered part of the banjo family.

25 Born Lonesome - Cadillac Sky
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