It seems that God doesn’t want a banjo in our band. The signs are very obvious.

On Wednesday morning we happily loaded the musical gear out of the Mississauga Stage West hotel and into our rented van. The show the night before was delightful. All hands were on top shelf as we rolled west along Dixie and on to that ribbon of misery, the 401. We had gone no more than 2 kilometres en route to Port Hope when a man in a SUV sped up side by side with us and gestured strongly for us to pull over. He looked like a trusting soul so we complied. When both vehicles came to a stop on that narrow, unsafe strip of no man’s land he came running towards us.

“Your banjo just fell off the roof of your van”, he sympathetically declared.

It was then that one of us (how kind of me) realized that he had placed the poor creature up there while loading and neither of us had seem it prior to departure.

So, dear friends, the banjo is no more – kaput, roadkill, falttened, pancaked, completely plucked and rendered eternally useless. In a matter of seconds she was passed over by a multitude of wheels and unmistakably trampled. Yes, she will duel more more.

Get this: that was our second banjo crisis. The last one got destroyed a month ago en route from Ft McMurray by the gentle handlers at West Jet.

Now I’m sure, dear fans, that some of you are crying as you read this disturbing news. Like us you probably can’t get her last moments off your mind. We therefore ask that you join us in our grieving by sending us condolences, poems, jokes, odes or any other fitting tributes. We need closure in a bad way.

She was a marvelous little plucker. May she rest in pieces.


  1. Paula & Clarence says:

    We were truly saddened to hear of the loss of your beloved banjo. We know just what a valued member of BWATOF she was. To be taken from us in such an unimaginable way is truly heart-breaking.

    And although no amount of shopping at Mark’s Work Wearhouse could ever fill the void left by the loss of such a beautiful little plucker, may it comfort you to know that we share in your grief and sorrow.

    Paula & Clarence


    • hi, i just wanted to let you know that my daughter sam would love to sing with you, she loves your music,and can sing, i just saw that you will be in sherwood park in august, we will be at the show!!!!i love your music a little piece of home!! if she could sing salt water joys with you it would make my life!!!!!! i have two daughters they both sing but my youngest has the nerve to sing in public!!!!.she is a big fan!!!!and so am i!!!! see you at the show!!!

  2. Bruce Bourque says:

    OMG. What a sad, tragic, moving story, Wayne. I’m after going through a box of Kleenex already. May I please communicate my sincere condolences to you and your band-mates. I remember Anne-Jo so fondly. She was the pluckiest of your many (continually more) banjos. I feel moved to poetry, even, and when I saw the word ‘plucker’ in your blog, for unknown reasons the form that came to mind was the limerick. Being not long out of bed on a lazy Sunday morning, my imagination is not at its best, and I can’t get it off the limerick track. But the only two words that loom on my mental limerick-writing screen are Nantucket and plucker. I’d better not write anything until I”ve had a few more cups of tea and woken up a bit, lest the obscenity police come banging on the door. For now, again, on behalf of myself and the missus, digga ding ding ding. xoB

  3. Bruce Bourque says:

    Wait … wait … it’s coming.

    Line 1 – On the roof of the van they tucked it

    Okay, that’s a start.

  4. Bruce Bourque says:

    On the roof of the rental they tucked it
    But the 401 wind quickly sucked it

  5. Cheryl Fortier says:

    Was checking your site to see if you would come back to Ottawa, when I read your blog. How very sad to lose her. My condolenses to one and all. Never easy to say goodbye, particularly when you had the same experience a month earlier.
    Think you are mistaken about God not wanting you to play the banjo – just the Devil at work, making you forget to put her in the van and letting the other going through bagage.
    After all “Music is well said to be the speech of Angels”. Not sure who said it, but it seems true.

    You were truely missed this year in Ottawa. Will you be here in 2013?
    There is nothing better than the sound of music and laughter – Buddywasisname is exactly that.
    Thank you for the wonderful times over the years.
    All the best,

  6. I was thinking that if the airline mangled your bango, you could write a tune sort of like the “United Breaks Guitars”, but Buddy WhatsisName and the other Fellers don’t do Country, do they 😉 ?


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