The Banjo Man

Cliff Langston

The Banjo Man is a short documentary about Ricky Payne and his unwavering love for the banjo that is set in the heart of the southern United States. Enjoy the lush scenery and the various sounds of the instrument while Ricky reflects on his favorite memories and accomplishments.

Behind the scenes of The Banjo Man

The Banjo Man was shot in about 2 and a half hours on a Saturday afternoon. Originally, all of the footage was supposed to be set in the woods, but the sky that day was super blue and the clouds were well defined. I made a last minute call to shoot some of the footage in an open field in order to capture those rich colors. I began the day by capturing a high quality audio recording. I used a three mic setup consisting of two Sennheiser e835’s pointed at the body and neck of the banjo, and my RØDE Video Mic Pro with DeadCat was used as a third mic to capture a more ambient sound from a few feet away. Once I felt like we had captured the right amount of audio, we moved between three different locations and filmed Ricky playing the Banjo at each spot. I made sure to always have my Video Mic Pro with me so that I could sync everything up in post. The Video Mic Pro excelled the most with Ricky’s interview portions. I’ve seen others use a Video Mic Pro for outside interviews, so I trusted that it would work well for me also. I filmed the main video with a Nikon D750 that was mounted to a Glidecam HD 2000 for stabilization, and my wife shot the behind the scenes footage with a Nikon D610. The only lens I used was a Tamron 17-50mm lens which gave me plenty of options for my shots. I edited everything together using Adobe Premiere Pro CS5.5, Adobe After Effects CS5.5, and Adobe Audition CS5.5. Red Giant’s Magic Bullet Looks was also used for color grading.


Johannes Weber
Millstone Media Production
Stacey Lambert & Jarrad Cody