Last Fall, while trekking around the Everest region in Nepal I was inspired to design and build a 55th anniversary banjo as a benchmark since I first started building banjos in 1960.  The design I ended up using for this instrument is based on traditional Buddhist artwork that I was continually seeing on temples, monasteries, lodges, and even carved into countless granite boulders found along many of the mountain trails I went on.

The final result is the OME “Lotus” which features select curly maple and ebony woods; Megatone Flathead tone ring; hand-carved and hand-dyed heel, peghead and resonator; hand-engraved gold-plated hardware, and intricate abalone and mother-of pearl shell inlays.


The intertwining lines of the “Eternal Knot” inlay in the peghead is said to symbolize how everything in life is connected. The 1st and 12th fret inlays and the resonator carving represent the “Lotus” flower which symbolizes enlightenment, beauty, and clarity; and the 5th fret inlay depicts the traditional OM symbol.

As the recent devastating earthquakes has rendered the Nepali people in dire need of assistance, the OME Company is giving all of the profits from the sale of this Lotus Anniversary Banjo to help the earthquake victims of Nepal.  For more information on this visit