Latest Press

Mayor Rahm Emanuel's 2019 personal letter of congratulations to Michael.  Click here!

"Miles is Chicago's best kept secret...one of the leading lights of contemporary instrumental music." 
- Midwest Record

Newsletter

Representation

Michael is represented by

Siegel Artist Management

(570) 258-5700

ExistentialBanjo.com

10 LIVE VIDEO CLIPS with some of the world's greatest musicians--Darol Anger on violin, Corky Siegel on harmonica, Erkan Ogur of Turkey and many more. 

CLICK HERE

EXISTENTIALBANJO.COM

New Releases

A-sides CD

Fingerstyle guitar with Darol Anger on violin 

 

Two New Hal Leonard books

BOB DYLAN FOR BANJO

 

FIRST 50 SONGS
To Play on the Banjo 
(co-written with Greg Cahill)

 

CD's On Sale

 

 

 

In this video, that I just put up on you tube, I demonstrate this amazing instrument, The Hajuj.  It was built for me in Morocco by Zine Abedine.   He is one of the premier builders and players of the hajuj.  It is the central instrument in Gnawa music ensembles that play what is sometimes described as trance music.   It is a sacred tradition of the Berber culture.  In Gnawa music there is much singing and percussion as well accompanying the groove of the Hajuj.  

What is most amazing is that the right hand technique for playing the hajuj, closely resembles the right hand technique for clawhammer banjo.  The difference is that the Hajuj is at least 600 years old, and the banjo only registers, as a 5-string instrument, in the 170-year-old range.    So for that reason, the Hajuj (as a drum with strings) is one of the grand elder statesmen of the banjo world.  

But this fact and this instrument are largely unknown in the banjo world.  Enjoy.  

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