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From 1910 thru 1921 dowels were marked with a stamp that included both Fairbanks Banjos and Made By the Vega Co. Thus almost all new models introduced from 1904-1921 carried the name until 1922 .The Vega catalog circa 1904-1908 unfortunately did not picture but described in detail the incredible Whyte-Laydie De Luxe model which is prohibitively rare or non-existent. 9, and the De Luxe) all of which continued the use of the Whyte-Laydies bracket band construction with un-perforated rims.Hayes seems to have been both a superb musician as well as quite an interesting character.The British publication, Banjo, Mandolin, and Guitar, ran a long and fascinating series of articles on him that ran from late 1960 well into 1962.However, totally ignoring the transition omits a big chapter of banjo history and skips some very interesting Vega Company information.
He had just returned from a very successful 9 month tour of New Zealand and Australia during which he attracted much attention playing his Vega 5 string plectrum Tubaphone De Luxe with two bass strings running the full length of the neck and played with a flat pick.Like the tenor banjo, it is almost always played with a flat pick.Being tuned in 3rds, its sound was much more mellow and thereby more conducive to playing chord melody style.Lacking any information to the contrary, it seems logical to assume that Hayes pioneered this version of the banjo and this playing style. Due to the dates they were produced, the two 5 string plectrums in my collection are listed in different groupings.As the earlier-mentioned Vega catalog attests, his instruments were made by that company. The top-of-the-line Tubaphone De Luxe model (S/N 59331) is found in the "Other Vega Banjos" group.
Many of those articles contained detailed information about his banjos. To these must be added the two examples in my collection which are examples of other models.