1931 Vega Vegavox III Tenor Banjo
It’s always a treat when we get a Vega Vegavox III tenor banjo in stock and this example from 1931 is one of the nicest examples Gryphon has ever had. In their 1928 catalog Vega described this instrument as the “most beautifully voiced banjo in banjo history,” which might be stretching it a bit. But there is no denying this a great sounding banjo. Vegavox banjos have an appealing, clear tone with plenty of volume that is still capable of a great deal of subtlety. It’s also a very nice looking instrument that is flashy without being trashy.
On this particular Vegavox, the inlay at the 12th fret, the one Vega designed to show the owner’s name, is engraved “K. L. Binford.” Binford was a songwriter best known for penning “In My Hideaway,” a song published in 1932 and included in the Bing Crosby short film “Sing, Bing, Sing” released in 1932/’33. There’s no other documentation linking this Vega Vox to Binford, but it’s not a common name and the timing certainly lines up.