Banjo (song)

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Single by Rascal Flatts
from the album Changed
Released January 16, 2012 (2012-01-16)
Format Music download
Genre Country
Length 4:16 (Album Version)
3:44 (Radio Edit)
Label Big Machine
Writer(s) Tony Martin
Wendell Mobley
Neil Thrasher
Producer(s) Dann Huff, Rascal Flatts
Rascal Flatts singles chronology
"Come Wake Me Up"

"Banjo" is a song written by Neil Thrasher, Wendell Mobley, and Tony Martin and recorded by American country music group Rascal Flatts. It was released in January 2012 as the first single from their eighth studio album, Changed. Rascal Flatts also performed the song live with Steve Martin at the Academy of Country Music Awards in 2012.


"Banjo" is an up-tempo in which the narrator invites his lover to escape with him to a faraway place that "ain't on the map". He tells her to "go-go-go / 'Til you hear a banjo."

Neil Thrasher and Wendell Mobley, both of whom have written several singles for Rascal Flatts, told Taste of Country that the line "'til you hear a banjo" came when Rascal Flatts' lead singer Gary LeVox was giving the two directions to his farm. Although they did not write the song at the farm, Mobley and Thrasher presented the idea to Tony Martin. The next time Mobley went to LeVox' farm, he presented LeVox with a demo of the song, and LeVox said that he would cut the song "right now".[1]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Roughstock 3.5/5 stars[2]
Taste of Country 3.5/5 stars[3]
Country Universe (C+)[4]
The 1-to-10 Country Music Review 5/10 stars[5]

Banjo received mixed reviews from critics. Rating it three-and-a-half stars out of five, Matt Bjorke thought that the band sounded "refreshed" and that the song itself was "well-produced".[2] It received an identical rating from Billy Dukes of Taste of Country, who criticized the song's lyrics but said that it "should be enjoyed for what’s on the surface".[3] Noah Eaton of Country Universe gave the song a C+, saying that LeVox "actually sounds like he’s enjoying the ride here", but criticizing the production for its "stereotypical stadium-rock histrionics" in the last verse.[4] Ben Foster of "The 1-to-10 Country Music Review" gave it five stars out of ten, saying, "the song will more than likely supply the group with another chart hit, and a high-volume set opener for their live shows."[5]

Chart performance[edit]

"Banjo" debuted at number 37 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs charts for the week of January 28, 2012, and became the group's twelfth number 1 hit for the week of May 12, 2012.

Chart (2012) Peak
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[6] 57
US Billboard Hot 100[7] 51
US Hot Country Songs (Billboard)[8] 1

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (2012) Position
US Country Songs (Billboard)[9] 33
Preceded by
"Drink on It"
by Blake Shelton
Billboard Hot Country Songs
number-one single

May 12, 2012
Succeeded by
"Over You"
by Miranda Lambert


Region Certification Certified units/Sales
United States (RIAA)[10] Gold 500,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone



  1. ^ Conaway, Alanna. "Rascal Flatts, 'Banjo' — Lyrics Uncovered". Taste of Country. Retrieved February 10, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b Bjorke, Matt (January 9, 2012). "'Banjo' single review". Roughstock. Retrieved February 10, 2012. 
  3. ^ a b Dukes, Billy (January 9, 2012). "Rascal Flatts, 'Banjo' – Song Review". Taste of Country. Retrieved February 10, 2012. 
  4. ^ a b Eaton, Noah (January 19, 2012). "Rascal Flatts — 'Banjo'". Country Universe. Retrieved February 10, 2012. 
  5. ^ a b Foster, Ben (5 February 2012). "Rascal Flatts – "Banjo"". The 1-to-10 Country Music Review. Retrieved 20 July 2012. 
  6. ^ "Rascal Flatts – Chart history" Canadian Hot 100 for Rascal Flatts.
  7. ^ "Rascal Flatts – Chart history" Billboard Hot 100 for Rascal Flatts.
  8. ^ "Rascal Flatts – Chart history" Billboard Hot Country Songs for Rascal Flatts.
  9. ^ "Best of 2012: Country Songs". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. 2012. Retrieved December 14, 2012. 
  10. ^ "American single certifications – Rascal Flatts – Banjo". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved January 10, 2014.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH