Award-winning instrumentalist, vocalist and
bandleader Cynthia Sayer defies all the banjo
player assumptions as she single-handedly
re-popularizes the 4-string banjo in jazz. Sayer
is celebrated as one of the top 4-string jazz
banjoists in the world today: soulful, edgy,
both contemporary and classic, with a playing
style that is all her own.
Praised for her “drive and virtuosity” by The
New York Times, Sayer rose to prominence as a
founding member of Woody Allen's New Orleans
Jazz Band, all the while exploring her wider
musical interests and playing with other
legendary jazz, popular and roots music artists.
Her eclectic, swing-based shows treat audiences
to the rarely heard range and versatility of the
4-string banjo, America’s original jazz
instrument, and her warm, engaging audience
connection wins hearts wherever she goes.
Cynthia appears regularly in concert and at
festivals internationally with her bands and as
a guest artist. She has played with Bucky
Pizzarelli, Dick Hyman, Les Paul, Marvin
Hamlisch, Wynton Marsalis, Marian McPartland,
Andy Statman, John McEuen (Nitty Gritty Dirt
Band), and many others.
A multi-instrumentalist, Sayer's banjo, piano,
ukulele and tenor guitar playing can be heard on
feature film and TV soundtracks, most recently
on ukulele in Woody Allen’s 2014 release, “Magic
In The Moonlight.” Sayer was inducted into the
American Banjo Hall Of Fame, played for two U.S.
Presidents (once at The White House), performed
with The New York Philharmonic, has received
several honors and award nominations for her
recordings, and is proud to be the subject of a
Trivial Pursuit game question.
Cynthia recently appeared on ABC TV’s “Word News
Now,” Fox 5 TV’s “Good Day New York,” the
national TV & radio show “Woodsongs Old-Time
Radio Hour,” returned to the popular
National Public Radio show, “Piano Jazz,” was
featured in Downbeat Magazine, The Wall Street
Journal, Just Jazz Magazine (U.K.), Jazz Journal
(U.K.), and was selected as one of the Top-10
Concerts in Pittsburgh.
Cynthia Sayer endorses Ome Banjos, GHS Strings,
Blue Chip Picks, and The Realist Banjo Pickups
by David Gage.
Cynthia Sayer is a rarity; a woman who plays
banjo with drive and virtuosity.”
— THE NEW YORK TIMES
"Cynthia Sayer almost made the applause meter
explode ... Her swingy playing catches you
from the start, and her sense of showmanship
is present at every second."
— LA DÉPECHE (France)
"Breaking the mold is New Jersey-born Cynthia
Sayer who plays hot, swinging jazz on the
plectrum banjo and performed with Woody
— PBS ARTS
"She's pushing the four-string banjo into new,
— FRETBOARD JOURNAL
"A dazzling evening, a capacity crowd...
Nobody wanted it to end."
— GUARDIAN NEWS (England)
"Nothing and nobody compares to Cynthia Sayer
... The concert hall went wild. The audience
cheered her as a star."
— SÄCHSISCHE ZEITUNG (Germany)
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