1962 RB-250 (FON 100698) “The Gene Parsons”
1962 RB-250 (FON 100698) “The Gene Parsons”

1962 RB-250 (FON 100698) “The Gene Parsons”


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SKU: 100698 Categories: , Tags: , , ,


1962 Gibson RB-250 banjo with FON of 100698, formerly owned by Gene Parsons of the Byrds.  Information pulled from Julien’s Auctions.  Text read as

A 1962 Gibson RB-250 five-string banjo commonly called a “Bowtie” banjo, owned and played by Gene Parsons of The Byrds. The banjo has a “Flat Head Tone Ring,” which was given by Earl Scruggs. It also has a pair of original “Scruggs Pegs” and the very first experimental strap-actuated StringBender ever installed on a banjo. The neck has been repaired. Serial number 100698. Comes with a letter of authenticity from Parsons and a hardshell case.

The following is in the letter accompanying the banjo:

  • Prior to Gene Parsons’ ownership, it belonged to Bob Watford when he played with the Kentucky Colonels.  He also played it with Marty Robbins, Bill Monroe, and Rick Nelson.
  • Parsons bought from Watford in 1965/6
  • Parsons went to Earl Scruggs around that time and got a flathead tone ring for it.  Parsons kept the archtop ring.
  • Parsons played the banjo on records by the Byrds, the Everly Brothers, and solo album “Kindling”
  • Parsons played the banjo in the Albert Hall and Carnegie Hall
  • Banjo has a rare pair of original Scruggs Pegs on it
  • Banjo has the first experimental Strat actuated StringBender ever installed on a banjo
  • Neck was broken during a crash.
  • Clarence White said one of the best Gibson banjos he’d ever heard after the tone ring was switched out for a flathead.

Additional information








RB Regular Banjo



Tone Ring

Archtop, though converted to flathead with a ring acquired from Earl Scruggs




Gene Parsons