“Jim Chayka is the best banjo player you never heard of – but that’s starting to change.” (California Bluegrass Assoc. Newsletter, Jan 2009)
San Francisco banjoist Jim Chayka is regarded as a driving, creative, and versatile player firmly rooted in the tradition of Earl Scruggs and JD Crowe, but also well-versed in the fingerboard explorations of contemporary banjo. Jim’s skills as a songwriter, composer, and performer helped 49 Special win the prestigious 2009 RockyGrass Band Competition, which featured two of his original songs. In 2010 he worked as Musical Director and banjoist with Michelle Shocked, performing throughout the US and Europe on her 2010 Roadworks Tour. In 2011, Jim formed the San Francisco-based band SUPERMULE, featuring a cast of skilled and intrepid musicians from the jazz, bluegrass, classical, and funk scenes. In addition to his accolades as a performer, Jim is an accomplished banjo instructor who has been featured at music camps and workshops throughout California.