Banjo, Mandolin, Guitar movement
- Jeffrey J. Noonan
A loose association of instrument manufacturers, music publishers, professional performers, teachers, and amateur players dedicated to promoting the banjo, mandolin, and guitar (BMG) as solo and ensemble instruments for the concert hall. The movement coincided with the spread of mass production and mail order magazines in the music industry and remained closely tied to music publishers and instrument manufacturers. Rooted in the activities of Samuel Swaim Stewart, a banjo manufacturer, music publisher, and creator of Stewart’s Banjo and Guitar Journal (1882–1901), the movement coalesced as other publishers and manufacturers imitated him with magazines promoting the fretted instruments. While early manufacturers and magazines focused on the banjo, the mandolin eventually became the principal instrument of the movement. The guitar generally played a supporting role in BMG ensembles. BMG magazines supported the industry with promotional reviews and direct access to consumers while the industry supported the magazines with advertising. Initially centered in the northeast, the BMG movement expanded nationally and internationally....