2. Advanced Beginner
Classes & Teachers
Week 1: July 8-14, 2018
Cary Black has worked with Howard Alden, Ernestine Anderson, Petula Clark, Dan Hicks, Kathy Kallick, The Kingston Trio, Laurie Lewis, Rose Maddox, Mollie O’Brien, Mark O’Connor, and Ernie Watts, as well as many of the brilliant musicians in the CCMC community. In 2016 Cary played on the soundtrack of Jerry Seinfeld’s Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, in the episode featuring President Obama.
Beginning Upright Bass (level 1–2) Starting with some basic roots and fifths, we’ll lay the foundation for playing effortlessly, accurately, and dynamically in various styles. We’ll investigate timekeeping, how to use passing tones and bass runs, and get an introduction to walking bass, while focusing on active listening and ensemble skills.
Blues Bass Survey (level 3–4) Starting with classic country and urban blues, we’ll go on to study the role of the bass in a variety of other blues-influenced musical styles including bluegrass, jazz, R&B, pop, rock, and country music. Standard blues forms and progressions, blue notes, blues scales, riffs, turnarounds, walking patterns, syncopation, and a variety of grooves will be featured.
Music ran in the family bones, and Barry Crannell was no exception. After spending some time with rock, folk, bluegrass, and Celtic music, Barry discovered songwriting in 1996. The next year, he won the Kerrville Emerging Songwriters Contest, and was a finalist in the Wildflower and Napa songwriting contests. His lyrics are simple and to the point, and make use of the ridiculous to the sublime, giving romance the heart it deserves, and making fun of the more tender moments of life. Barry is a sought-after accompanist; his playing has been described as “clean,” “elegant,” and “sparkling.”
Beginning Fingerpicking (level 2) This is an introductory class, or for those of you who've created your own style. We’ll work on giving definition and specific patterns to your playing, work through chord changes, and maintain tempo without breaking stride.
Applied Fingerpicking (level 2–3) OK, now what? Let’s give your fingers a little exercise in singling out notes you really want to hear, and playing them at the right time. Stepping out of patterns and being selective is one of the joys of fingerpicking. We’ll connect chords with runs, and play different rhythms while staying in time.
Marla Fibish is one of the prominent voices of the mandolin in Irish music, bringing a musicality to the tradition that is not often heard on the instrument. A dynamic performer and a sought-after teacher, Marla teaches private students and classes, online at Peghead Nation, and has been a staff instructor at many music camps, including the Mandolin Symposium, the Swannanoa Gathering, and many others.
Beginning Irish Mandolin (level 1–2) Learn to play some sweet Irish tunes and how to make them sound Irish. We’ll work on basic technique in the context of the music, and make sure you’re all set to build your speed and styling as you advance. We’ll get good and foundational, doing exercises to get the rhythm and flow going, and then applying what we learn to play a few simple jigs, reels, polkas, and waltzes.
Accompanying Folk and Celtic Songs on the Mandolin (level 3) We’ll explore ways to accompany yourself and others, creating harmonic and rhythmic frameworks using open chord positions that leverage the sweetness of the mandolin. We’ll look at melodic styles of accompaniment, ensemble playing and taking solos, emphasizing musicality over complexity. Come with a song or two you might like to work on.
Amy Friedricks is a veteran song leader and has been known to be the last one standing at many a jam. A versatile multi-instrumentalist, she teaches guitar, ukulele, acoustic and electric bass, and has been on the teaching staff at CCMC, Puget Sound Guitar Workshop, Moab Folk Camp, and many other music camps and ukulele workshops. Amy was the bassist/vocalist for The Quarry Persons, a Beatles tribute band, and the Dandelion Jazz Quartet. She regularly performs with an eclectic mix of musicians showcasing a range of styles including Americana, Celtic, klezmer, and swing.
Beginning Guitar (level 1) We’ll start slow and get you started on a musical journey that will change your life. Just a few chords and strums in your hands and you'll be playing and singing fun classic songs.
All You Need Is…Three or Four Chords! (level 2–3) Unlock the secrets of the chord patterns in hundreds of songs. Expand your repertoire with gems from the world of folk, rock, bluegrass, blues, and country. Lots of playing and singing in class will get your ears and fingers ready for any jam. All instruments welcome.
Topher Gayle is a versatile multi-instrumentalist. He plays a variety of stringed instruments and hand percussion, and enjoys playing many styles of music. He’s especially fond of funny songs. Topher is in a number of bands in the San Francisco Bay Area, has toured with contra dance bands on both coasts, and is in demand as an accompanist for singer/songwriters. He’s often asked to lend his compositional and arranging skills, and excellent ear for harmony vocals. He’s taught at CCMC, PSGW, and Rocky Mountain Fiddle Camp, among others. From his home in Santa Rosa, California, he teaches a range of technique, theory, and workshop topics, and has published several instructional books. In all his classes, Topher emphasizes the fun to be found in playing music. He’s also a skilled luthier, especially known for his Mandonator, an adaptation of the resonator mandolin.
Instigator Wondering which class is right, how to get involved in a jam, or who to ask about something? Ask me! I'll help you get the most out of your camp experience and maximize your fun. Want to try playing at the coffeehouse, but are a little scared? I can help you turn it into a Good Thing! Let's jam!
Chris Grampp has played jazz, blues, rock, and traditional music in bands and as a soloist for many years in the Bay Area. He has studied guitar with Tuck Andress, Warren Nunes, and Davis Ramey, and has written lessons for Acoustic Guitar magazine. He has taught for many years at CCMC, the Puget Sound Guitar Workshop, and music festival workshops.
Advanced Leads (level 4–5) Learn strategies for soloing over swing, blues, rock, country, and pop tunes. We’ll cover scales and modes, dynamics, phrasing, and building solos from melodies. All instruments are welcome.
Swing Band (level 3–5) Each day we’ll form bands and play through classic swing tunes. We'll go over rhythmic groove and tempo, separation of parts (bass, chords, vocal, and solos), intros and outros, and more. All instruments welcome.
Paul Kotapish plays mandolin and guitar with Wake the Dead and the Hillbillies from Mars, and has toured and recorded with Kevin Burke’s Open House, the Hurricane Ridgerunners, Euphonia, and many others. Paul’s playing is rooted in the vintage rural music traditions of Appalachia, Ireland, and beyond, but it also embraces pop idioms like rock and country. By day, Paul is managing editor for the San Francisco Classic Voice, and he is a former editor and writer for Acoustic Guitar and Strings magazines. Learn more at guitarfish.net.
Cool Hooks and Hot Songs (level 3) Most of my favorite rock ’n’ roll songs feature catchy guitar hooks (melodic riffs) that work as introductions and recurring instrumental motifs. We’ll learn a bunch of songs with signature hooks from a range of bands of different eras: the Temptations, the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, the Who, the Police, Tom Petty, Crowded House, Neil Young, Nirvana, and beyond. As we learn these fun licks, we’ll build confidence playing single-note lines and chord melodies, and work our way up and down the fingerboard.
Instrumentalist I play mandolin and guitar in a range of styles including old-time, bluegrass, country, Celtic, folk, pop, rock, and blues, and I’m willing to try just about anything. I’ll be available to lend support to classes, performances, practices, and musical hijinks of all sorts.
Margo Leduc is a much-sought-after vocal coach in San Francisco and Los Angeles. She coaches artists under contract with Sony Music, Capitol Records, and many other labels. Margo views the singer as a whole person—not just a set of vocal chords. Lessons with Margo are about hard work and heart, correcting technical problems and nurturing the creative artist within. Margo performs extensive session work, supports corporate clients, and is a voting member of the Recording Academy. Her powerful, expressive, and sumptuous voice lends itself to any style or setting.
Chant & Connect Singing (all levels) Go deep within and find your inner singer. Find your center—your True North. This class is designed to help you find the deep places where your music and artist live and connect with the essential singer in yourself.
Blindfold to Freedom Singing (level 2 and up) Singing blindfolded can propel you to a new place in your singing and self-expression. Sing with less self-consciousness and begin to let go of what holds you back from free expression. Learn from your own experience and from watching your classmates. It’s invigorating and different from anything you’ve tried before.
Rachel Manke has been called one of the brightest stars in the ukulele universe, and loves sharing her astounding technique and beautiful singing with audiences young and old. She’s appeared on stages that range from the Ashokan Uke Fest and Funky Frets Uke Fest to Garrison Keillor’s “A Prairie Home Companion.” Rachel started in the late ’90s on a $25 Hilo soprano and came to the uke world via the founders of the Ukulele Hall of Fame Museum. She first studied with Joel Eckhaus, directly learning from the well-known student of the famed Roy Smeck. Ever since, she’s continued to learn and perform, and is now a respected teacher as well. She has a penchant for Tin Pan Alley, old-time music, and is a master of the old-school uke chord solo flourish.
Beginning Uke: Forgotten Mainland Ukulele Pioneers (level 1–2) There are some players in the first few decades of the last century who made some wonderful music on our little ole instrument. We'll learn their stories and songs from their repertoire. Amaze your friends with your uke history knowledge.
Intermediate Uke: Roy Smeck Chord Solos (level 3–4) Known as the Wizard of the Strings, Roy Smeck was a popular vaudeville performer who had an astounding technique and approach to our tiny ukulele. We'll learn some of his chord solo arrangements and some of his flashy/tricky right-hand techniques.
Carol McComb is a vocalist, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist with over 40 years of performing, recording, and teaching experience. She wrote a best-selling guitar instruction book and has taught thousands of people to play guitar and sing in her workshop series at Gryphon Stringed Instruments in Palo Alto. She is a frequent contributor to Acoustic Guitar magazine and has taught at several music camps around the country. Carol was a member of the popular California-based band the Gryphon Quintet, and has toured with both Linda Ronstadt and Joan Baez. She is currently one half of the duo Kathy and Carol. In 2023, Carol joined the fabulous staff at Peghead Nation as their song accompaniment teacher.
Beyond Boom-Chuck (level 2–3) If you’re tired of doing the same old rhythm for every song, this is the class for you. Learn how to vary your rhythm within a song with lots of new strums, right-hand patterns, runs, and fills. Good for both flatpickers and fingerstyle players.
Heavenly Harmony Singing (level 2–5) After covering the building blocks of harmony theory, we’ll discover what makes those stellar harmonies you love so memorable by learning exact transcriptions of duets and trios from a wide variety of sources including traditional and urban folk, country, bluegrass, and rock and roll.
Joe Newberry is a powerful musician and an award-winning songwriter. A frequent guest on “A Prairie Home Companion,” he sang on the 2016 Transatlantic Sessions tour, and at the Transatlantic Sessions debut at Merlefest in 2017. Joe plays in a duo with mandolin icon Mike Compton, and also performs with the dynamic fiddler April Verch.
Clawhammer Banjo (level 2–4) This multi-level class will share techniques to get the most out of your playing, including finding the music on the second fret, open notes, and the fifth string; slides, and hammer-ons.
Fingerstyle Guitar (level 3) Tracing musical DNA from Doc Watson, Merle Travis, John Hurt, and Maybelle Carter, this class will have your fingers doing the walking. Great for picking and for accompanying singing.
Del Rey started playing guitar when she was four years old. Rags, blues, and tunes of the early 20th century are her specialty, even as she writes new music to add to the tradition. She’s taught and played all over the world, and brings her distinctive fingerstyle approach to guitar and ukulele to her teaching DVDs on Homespun, including Boogie-Woogie Guitar, The Music Of Memphis Minnie, and Blue Uke. She has fashion sense that would make Minnie Pearl smile. Her albums can be found at www.hobemianrecords.com.
Blues Was the Start of It All (level 3) This repertoire class will focus on influential early 20th century blues tunes. We’ll listen to multiple versions of a tune—for example, W.C. Handy’s “Beale Street Blues” by a brass band (W.C. himself), a pop singer (Marion Harris), and a dark-souled hillbilly (Doc Boggs)—then we’ll try it ourselves. Open to all instruments and singers.
Piano Blues for Guitar (level 4–5) Guitar players steal from piano players and vice versa. We'll play some of the most-rustled motifs: moving in 10ths and octave bass runs, boogie woogie internal motion, and other stimulating piano ideas. Cow Cow Davenport, Jelly Roll Morton, and Albert Ammons are some of the inspirations for the tunes. You’ll need good finger mobility and strength for this class, as you'll be maintaining bass notes and partial chords while picking a melody. For fingerpickers who can maintain a quarter note bass while picking a melody, this class will be taught by ear (no tab).
Valerie Rose is a versatile fiddler who plays a variety of styles, including Irish, Scottish, Balkan, English, Swedish, and old-time. She performs with Celtic band The Gallowglasses, and plays for Irish set dancing with Western Shore, for contra dances with Stringfire!, and for Balkan dancing with Zabava International. She also sings, arranges, and conducts, loves to jam, and is an enthusiastic and supportive teacher.
Instrumentalist Valerie is happy to provide fiddle leads and backup for classes, performances, and jams.
Irish Ensemble (level 2-4) All instruments welcome, including fiddle, mandolin, flute, pennywhistle, guitar, harp, mandola/bouzouki, accordion, tenor banjo, concertina, bodhran, and vocalists. We’ll put together a performable set of music featuring dance tunes, traditional ballads, pub songs, singalongs, waltzes, and more. If there’s interest, we’ll also discuss topics such as playing in an Irish session and techniques for arranging and harmonizing Celtic music.
Steve Seskin has written seven number-one songs, including the Grammy-nominated “Grown Men Don’t Cry,” recorded by Tim McGraw, and “Don’t Laugh at Me,” winner of NSAI Song of the Year and Music Row magazine Song of the Year. Other chart toppers include “I Think About You,” recorded by Collin Raye, and “All I Need To Know,” recorded by Kenny Chesney. “Don’t Laugh at Me” was recorded by Peter, Paul and Mary and became the impetus for the Operation Respect project, a curriculum designed to teach tolerance in schools. Steve enjoys performing at school assemblies and writing songs with kids in support of this program. Steve is also an active keynote speaker and songwriting teacher for the West Coast Songwriters Association, the Nashville Songwriters Association International, the Swannanoa Gathering, and the Song School at Rocky Mountain Folks Festival. He has also been the director of the Kerrville Songwriter’s School since 2012. As an artist, he recently recorded his 20th album, Some Sunsets.
Beginning Songwriting (level 1–2) How to jump-start your creativity and never face the dreaded writer's block! (As Picasso said, “Inspiration does exist but it likes to find you working.”) We’ll explore writing lyrics that have that magical combination of imagery and emotion, and creating a melodic journey that keeps the listener's attention.
Advanced Songwriting (level 3–5) What to change in a song and why? There's a powerful way to tell every story; we'll explore how to find it. This class assumes that you've written some complete songs and have some knowledge of theory. Bring in two “finished” songs you’re willing to work on a bit more. Through critique and rewriting, we'll learn from one another.
An explorer of the rich treasury of American roots music—bluegrass, jug band, country blues, wwing jazz, and vintage country music—Cyd Smith has blended these sonic ingredients into her own unique brew of songwriting and guitar playing. She is an explorer of the unexpected, lyrically, harmonically, and melodically. She is a treasured teacher at music camps for adults throughout the country, including Augusta Heritage Festival, Puget Sound Guitar Workshop, and many others.
Intro to Swinging Guitar (level 3, with uke audit track) Let’s swing, brothers and sisters! It’s not that hard—we’ll learn a few moveable chord forms that make you sound like a swingster, and then we’ll spend a lot of time playing and getting familiar with the all-important swing feel. To take this class, you should be comfortable changing chords in whatever style of music you already play. Uke players are welcome to audit this class; uke charts will be provided.
Gentle Music Theory (all levels) Are you music-theory phobic? Do you long to understand the numbers people throw around in jam sessions? Scales, chord progressions, weird chord formation…all this and more will be explained in a caring, relaxed-as-possible environment. All instruments welcome.
Jack Tuttle grew up in a musical family in rural Illinois and began playing guitar at age 5. While in his teens, he immersed himself in bluegrass and added banjo, mandolin, and fiddle to his instrumental repertoire. He began teaching full-time at Gryphon in 1979 and has taught thousands of students over the years, including his own talented children. Jack is also the music editor for Fiddler magazine and has written twelve instruction books. He has performed at many notable events including A Prairie Home Companion, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, Strawberry Music Festival, and Merlefest.
Intro to Flatpick Guitar (level 2) We'll cover the basics of using a flatpick and developing a solid skill set for playing rhythm guitar, including bass runs. By playing songs, we'll learn pick mechanics as well as proper left-hand technique.
Bluegrass and Country Flatpick Guitar Leads (level 3–4) We'll cover how to develop melody-based solos with interesting embellishments and some improvising. Learn skill-building exercises for both the left and right hands to improve speed and accuracy.
Born in the Czech Republic and now based in California, U.S. Mandolin Champion Radim Zenkl has worldwide credentials, including guest appearances at prestigious music institutions such as the Berklee College of Music in Boston and Sibelius Academy in Helsinki. He’s taught at more than eighty music camps over the last thirty years.
Pennywhistle (level 1–2) No experience necessary. We'll cover basic techniques such as hand positions, breathing, overblowing, good tone production, tonguing, vibrato, scales, and ornamentation, and learn a new tune every day. Bring your pennywhistle in the key of D or buy one at the camp store. Intermediate–advanced students are welcome too and will be given individual assignments.
All Things Mandolin! (level 3–5) Master the fretboard so you can play in all 12 keys using all 7 positions. Scales, arpeggios, chord forms, backup rhythms, cross-picking, and detailed tips on how to practice an improvisation to play better solos.
2. Advanced Beginner
Week 2: July 15-21, 2018
Lissy Abraham is a Bay Area singer/songwriter and a CCMC founder. She was the lead vocalist and bass player in the Ballistic Cats, a roots rock band.
Instigator As Instigator, Lissy helps set the friendly, supportive tone that pervades the CCMC experience. She’ll lead a daily slow jam, help people with similar musical interests find each other, get jams rolling, help students find classes that fit their needs, and provide information and encouragement.
Kathy Barwick has been a performing and recording artist in the bluegrass, traditional Irish, and folk music fields for 40 years. She’s also taught private and group lessons on guitar, banjo, dobro, and acoustic bass, and is a sought-after music camp instructor. Kathy was a regular columnist for Flatpicking Guitar magazine, making her an in-demand instructor. Music camp credits include two stints at Steve Kaufman’s Acoustic Kamp, the California Bluegrass Association and the American River Acoustic Music camps on both dobro and guitar, CCMC, and many others. Kathy’s unique approach to crosspicking was featured in Acoustic Guitar magazine in January 2012. Kathy’s approach to teaching focuses on providing students with the tools to learn melodies by ear, create their own arrangements, and, ultimately, improvise. Kathy’s ability to break down both technique and theory in the service of playing traditional music has resulted in many “aha” moments for her students.
Bluegrass/Country Lead Guitar (level 3) Using a modified CAGED approach and the basic major scale, we’ll find simple melodies in multiple places on the guitar neck. Additional concepts may include ideas to dress up open and closed position melodies, including slides, pulloffs, double stops, crosspicking, and phrasing variations.
Introduction to Dobro for Guitar and Banjo Players (level 2–3) If you play guitar or banjo and have always wanted to explore the dobro, this class is for you! I’ll bring a few nut extenders to alter your guitar for steel playing; you bring your fingerpicks and steel.
Caitlin Belém grew up in a house full of music in northern Wyoming. She fell in love with the fiddle at a young age and and continued to learn, playing saxophone and guitar, and singing through private lessons, school groups, and with her parents. She’s explored many genres, from Brazilian bossa nova and samba to Cuban son, to American jazz, blues, and swing. She’s performed in diverse venues, from thousand-seat concert halls to living rooms to TV and radio. Caitlin plays regularly with the Brazilian/Latin band Maracujá, the swing/folk duo Modern Bygones, the Basque ensemble Ospa, and The Fireants. She is currently pursuing a graduate degree in Ethnomusicology at the University of California, Berkeley.
Social Dance Comfort (all levels) This survey of popular social dance styles—two-step, waltz, swing, and blues—will focus on the lead/follow connection, musicality, and rhythm. You'll get more comfortable partner dancing—and have fun!
Repertoire Around the World (level 3) We'll learn songs and tunes from around the world, possibly including: Brazilian, Cuban, Quebecois, Basque, Cajun, klezmer, and more! All instruments welcome; come prepared to sing.
Tim Connell has created a sophisticated and original global style on the mandolin. Widely regarded as one of the top North American interpreters of the Brazilian choro style on the mandolin, Tim has his own unique voice on the instrument, described in a Mandolin magazine cover story as “fiery and energetic, soulful and evocative.” Tim’s latest releases include June Apple, a nationally noted album of bluegrass fiddle tunes with guitarist Eric Skye, and MandAlone, a collection of original solo mandolin arrangements including his popular arrangement of “Here Comes the Sun.”
Mandolin Skills for Jamming (level 1–2) Chords, melody, and solos—the three tools you need to have fun at CCMC’s great jams! This class will be as hands-on as possible; first you’ll get the tools, then we'll play the songs together so you get lots of practice with new melodies and chord fingerings.
Introduction to Brazilian Choro (level 3–4) A Brazilian cousin of Dixieland and ragtime, choro has experienced a revival in the last few decades in Brazil and increased popularity here in America, thanks to the fact that it prominently features the mandolin. We'll learn to play a few classics of the choro repertoire. Sheet music and mandolin tablature provided.
Paul Elliott is an extremely versatile and respected West Coast fiddle player. He’s performed with The Good Old Persons, John Reischman, Michelle Shocked, Alison Brown, Buell Neidlinger, and many others. His recording credits span film, television, and radio, and a long list of recordings including Scott Nygaard’s No Hurry on the Rounder label.
Instrumentalist Paul is a fiddler comfortable playing bluegrass, jazz, alt/indie folk, old-time, country, and just about anything else. He’ll be available to lend support to classes, performances, practices, and general music-making.
Patrice Haan is a harper, singer, songwriter, composer, and wordsmith, devoted to the healing presence of listening. She’s most familiar in the camp community for romantic and complex harmonization of jazz standards with Tony Marcus in the Oakland-based duo Leftover Dreams, as well as playing therapeutic music with Healing Muses, a Bay Area nonprofit that provides music for healing in local hospitals. She’s recorded three albums of original music—lush, melodic collections for harp, piano, and voice.
Growing Your Ears (level 1–4) How big can they get? Let’s use daily exercises to focus attention, improve vocal blend, hear harmonies, enhance your ability to appreciate lyrics, and match rhythms and feels.
Duets (level 3–5) Take one singer and one guitarist, and learn how to use the guitarist's tools in support of the singer, while the singer responds and communicates with the instrumentalist. Co-taught with Tony Marcus.
Sylvia Herold brings to CCMC a deep enthusiasm and knowledge of jazz, swing, and folk songs. Researching songs and developing guitar arrangements fuels her artistic passion. Her performing credits include the popular swing trio Cats & Jammers, Euphonia, Hot Club of San Francisco, and Sylvia Herold & the Rhythm Bugs. Sylvia currently performs with the Celtic Grateful Dead band, Wake the Dead, and her jazz combo, the Sylvia Herold Ensemble. She is a popular guitar and repertoire teacher at Puget Sound Guitar Workshop, California Coast Music Camp, British Columbia Swing Camp, Colorado Roots Music Camp, Lark in the Morning, and the Ashokan Center.
Swing Guitar Repertoire (level 3–4) We’ll cover easy-to-medium swing songs that folks love to jam on. We’ll take it slow and focus on the mechanics of changing chords efficiently and driving the rhythm. Once we’re in the groove, sing or play a solo!
Country and Pop Guitar (level 2–3) Sing and play a selection of classic country and pop songs of the ‘50s and ‘60s. Learn bass runs, honky-tonk motifs, and the innovative chord changes of the ‘60s. You’re ready for this class if you’re comfortable with first-position chords.
Classical. Brazilian. R&B. Jazz. Afro-Cuban. Pop. Rock and Roll. Funk. Folk. Ed Johnson’s mastery of so many different styles, coupled with a passion for harmony vocal and horn arrangements, all factor into a magical blend of vibrant, original contemporary jazz that has won fans and airplay worldwide. As a vocalist, Ed is frequently compared to Ivan Lins, Milton Nascimento, Kenny Rankin, and Michael Franks. As a guitarist and bandleader, critics often cite the sounds of Airto and Flora Purim. Ed has seven recording projects to his credit, in addition to producer credits for numerous artists. He currently performs and records with his Brazilian jazz ensemble Novo Tempo, as well as with the Americana roots band Cabin Fever NW.
Beach Boys Harmony Retrospective (all levels) The impact of Brian Wilson’s stunning vocal arrangements on pop and rock music is evident to all who love lush vocal harmony. Come sing as we break down these fun songs spanning the Beach Boys history.
Brazilian Fingerstyle Guitar and Repertoire (level 3-5) The hypnotic melodies and rhythms of Brazilian music are at your fingertips! Learn the basics of playing samba, bossa nova, choro, baião, and more. We’ll break down the intricacies of the standard right-hand comping patterns used in this music, and learn beautiful chord progressions from the best of Brazilian repertoire.
Bay Area music veteran Steve Kritzer is an award-winning singer-songwriter, entertainer, multi-instrumentalist, instructor, and jam leader. A “man of many musics," Steve moves effortlessly between originals, Irish, bluegrass, country, classic rock, big band swing, and traditional folk. He's an accomplished guitar, ukulele, banjo, and mandolin player, and has taught at CCMC many times. Steve’s relaxed, personable style on stage and in the classroom makes him a popular callback at festivals, concerts, coffeehouses, and teaching camps from California to Ireland. When not teaching, recording, or performing, he’s his “own grandpa” to his 13-year-old daughter.
Diving Into Fingerpicking (level 2) Let’s use those fingers instead of a pick! Start with a basic bass note/strum with thumb and fingers. Move into Travis picking with an emphasis on alternating thumb bass, then into fingerstyle accompaniment for popular folk, pop, and rock songs. Learn how to use fingerpicks and to read basic tablature.
Fingerpicking on Steroids: Make One Guitar Sound Like Two (level 2–3) More advanced fingerstyle arrangements with an emphasis on bass runs and fills for accompaniment. We'll learn some songs from tablature and how to fit in solos with the picking. We'll explore using the capo for alternative chord voicings and multiple guitar arrangements.
With her mom as her harmonizing music partner, Janet Lenore became a performing singer/songwriter by the age of 15. It wasn’t long before she started expanding her skills with the mandolin, banjo and ukulele. Janet taught her first guitar classes while still in high school and now teaches ukulele as well. She has twice taught guitar and ukulele classes at the Puget Sound Guitar Workshop (PSGW) and has presented workshops at the Napa Valley Ukulele Festival (St. Helena), the Ukiah Uke-Fest, the Mendocino Ukulele Festival (Fort Bragg), Smoldering Uke (Carmel), Burning Uke (Felton), and Ukes On the Loose (Healdsburg). Janet regularly co-leads the Alameda Uke Club and the Bronco Billy’s Jam (Fremont), and has lead jams at the Berkeley Uke Club and at the Kate Wolf Festival. Janet served on the California Coast Music Camp (CCMC) Board of Directors for about 15 years, and she continues to manage CCMC’s annual Winter Retreat and the Palo Alto Festival of the Arts Webster Street stage. Her most recent recording is the ukulele-based “Pie and Other Tasty Treats.” Janet is a patient and supportive music instructor who keeps in mind how hard it can be to learn new stuff.
Beginning Guitar/Baritone Ukulele (level 1-2) We’ll start with playing one-chord songs, but soon move on to songs with two to four chords. We’ll learn strumming patterns and best practices for holding a pick or moving toward fingerstyle. The focus will be on how to make chord shapes, and how to easily move from chord to chord. Start your music-making voyage!
Jamming with a Flatpick (level 2) Ever wonder how everyone in a jam “just seems to know” what chord is coming up next? Learn some predictable patterns (we’ll also look at some songs that gleefully break the rules too!), and explore cool bass runs that add zip and help you move from one chord to another. Songs will be drawn from Americana, new folk, blues, and folk-rock catalogs.
Tony Marcus has found joy playing many styles of music. He’s played bluegrass with mandolin legend Frank Wakefield, jug band music and blues with Geoff Muldaur, fiddle tunes with the Arkansas Sheiks, string swing with Cats & Jammers, big band jazz with the Royal Society Jazz Orchestra, weird old Hawaiian and hokum with R. Crumb and the Cheap Suit Serenaders, and honky tonk country with Rose Maddox, to name a few. Playing music has taken him from Japan to Ireland, and from Alaska to Florida in the USA. He currently performs with Patrice Haan in the vocal duo Leftover Dreams and with the country band Crying Time.
Swing Band Lab (level 3–5) OK, so you’ve gained some skill on your instrument of choice. Playing in a group requires other tools. What does it take to form a swinging band? It involves heavy-duty listening and thinking of yourself as part of a whole. We’ll work on riffs, call and response, and how to create a powerhouse rhythm section.
Duets (level 3–5) Co-taught with Patrice Haan (see her course description).
Peter McLaughlin is an acclaimed acoustic guitarist, songwriter, vocalist, performer, recording artist, and music instructor in Tucson, AZ. He plays many genres and styles, specializing in acoustic flatpicking and fingerpicking techniques. He’s toured and recorded with Chris Brashear, Todd Phillips, Laurie Lewis, Tom Rozum, Jody Stecher, Perfect Strangers, The Sonoran Dogs, Junior Brown, Flying South, Titan Valley Warheads, and The John Coinman Band. In 2013 Peter was inducted into the Tucson Musician’s Museum. He is the 1988 National Flatpicking Guitar Champion.
Getting Started with Flatpicking (level 2) The focus of this class will be on bluegrass and folk rhythm guitar styles, and backup for fiddle tunes, bluegrass songs, and other standards. We'll spend time developing good timing, optimizing acoustic guitar tone and volume, and hearing and developing simple melodic solos.
Advanced Flatpicking Techniques (level 4–5) We’ll explore developing bluegrass flatpicking guitar solos, adapting fiddle tunes to guitar, crosspicking methods, playing leads out of chord positions, left-hand positions (including using the whole neck), band dynamics, improvisation, and ways to improve timing and tone. We’ll also discuss some “master” flatpickers and their styles.
Brian Rice began his orchestral career at age 15, playing percussion with the Northwest Michigan Symphony. After attending Interlochen Arts Academy and heading to Oberlin Conservatory, Brian had an epiphany: There's a whole world of music beyond the classical and jazz of his youth! Brian has since established himself as an expert on Brazilian music as well as other worldly genres. Brian recently performed with Brazilian master Danilo Brito at the Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, and the Savannah Music Festival, and has guest taught at universities across the U.S. and in Brazil. Currently Brian teaches the samba and Afro-Cuban ensembles at UC Davis, co-chairs the Brazilian focus at the California Jazz Conservatory, and is co-founder and Artistic Director of the Berkeley Festival of Choro. Brian’s percussion is heard on over 70 recordings. He regularly performs around the Bay Area with Wake the Dead, Cascada de Flores, and the Berkeley Choro Ensemble.
Samba Pagode (all levels) Samba is the national music of Brazil and is one of the most lovely and infectious styles of music to play. In this ensemble class, we'll learn to play traditional samba percussion, and learn several songs from the samba style called pagode (pah-GO-gee). This music also employs the cavaquinho and guitar, but the percussion will get you moving and the beautiful melodies (sung in Portuguese) will transport you to Rio de Janeiro.
Choro Pandeiro (all levels) The pandeiro is an unassuming tambourine that possesses an amazing range of sounds and rhythmic possibilities. It's considered the national percussion instrument of Brazil and is used in choro (sho-ru) music and samba, frevo, coco, and many other styles. We’ll focus on playing choro and accompanying this beautiful instrumental music. Good lightweight pandeiros will be available for use and for purchase.
Jennifer Scott is a Vancouver-born vocalist and jazz pianist specializing in jazz, blues, and world music. She is considered one of the most important jazz artists working in Canada and the United States today. From sold-out concerts in San Francisco to exclusive local club performances, Jennifer’s performance experiences have been varied. Jennifer has appeared at jazz festivals all across Canada and the U.S., appearing with such jazz luminaries as: Tommy Banks, Don Thompson, Jon Batiste, Kenny Wheeler, Skywalk, and Hugh Fraser, to name a few. She has numerous ongoing musical projects, including performing as the pianist/vocalist for San Francisco–based Novo Tempo, a Brazilian/jazz fusion group, and is a founding member of Crossing Borders, an international jazz group that performs and records music from the heart. Crossing Borders has released two CDs and performed at Kuumbwa and the Monterey Jazz Festival. Jennifer continues to perform at festivals worldwide and has two new recordings: Live at Samson Winery and Music for Bigs and Smalls. Her duo recordings and concerts with bassist/husband René Worst are critically acclaimed. Jennifer is in demand as an educator and clinician in the U.S. and Canada, and has taught and created many workshops and college courses.
The Evolving Singer (all levels) This technique class will combine breath work, movement, vocal exercises, and a beautiful, varied repertoire to try out our new tricks.
Vocal Jazz/Blues Performance (level 3–5) Using an overview of the jazz/blues standard—and not-so-standard—repertoire, we’ll explore nuances and techniques that make both genres exciting and enriching for singers.
Cosy Sheridan first appeared on the national folk scene in 1992 when she won the songwriting contests at the Kerrville Folk Festival and the Telluride Bluegrass Festival. She has been on the road ever since, playing clubs, concert halls and coffeehouses across the country. Her song “My Fence and My Neighbor” listed at #4 on the folk radio chart in 2018, her 2014 release “Pretty Bird” was listed in Sing Out! magazine’s Great CDs of 2014. Cosy was a guitar student of legendary fingerstyle players Eric Schoenberg and Guy Van Duser. She teaches classes in songwriting, performance, and guitar at workshops and adult music camps across the country, and is the founder of Moab Folk Camp in Utah.
Songwriting (all levels) Let’s write a song in a supportive community of songwriters. We’ll start a song and workshop it through the week. We’ll try in-class writing, individual attention, and the sometimes miraculous discoveries that are made within a group. We’ll experiment with how to tell our story, and the various tools we can use to bring our songs out into the world.
Performance and Stagecraft (all levels) Who is your performing self? Can you find a way to take charge of the stage and be in the moment? Is it something you can practice? Come sing or play a song and we'll work together to help you become more comfortable and more effective in your performance.
Daniel Ward grew up in New Mexico, exposed to a wide variety of musical styles, including Mexican mariachi, Spanish flamenco, world music, and jazz. By the time he completed a degree in classical guitar and composition, Daniel was also playing electric jazz, flamenco guitar with dancers, percussion, trumpet, lute, and world beat music. As a guitarist, he toured with Dance España, Maria Benitez, Yjastros, and Ottmar Liebert and Luna Negra In 2009 he moved to Hollywood, and fell in love with the ukulele. He has become a premier ukulele performer known for his command of Latin and world styles, and performs and teaches at festivals across the U.S. and abroad. Daniel contributes lessons to both Ukulele and Acoustic Guitar.
Breaking Bad…Habits (level 1–2) Discover how easy it is to play the uke when you properly align your body and hands. Learn simple warm-ups and drills, fingerpicking, and strumming, and how it all fits together—while playing a bunch of songs.
Holding Down the Uke Groove (3–5) Whatever style you play, the rhythm is the magic that keeps the music afloat. We'll explore a few different strumming styles and discover what makes them work.
René Worst, an internationally known bass player, has established himself as one of the most influential and leading jazz voices in North America for several decades. He attended the UBC School of Music and Douglas College jazz program, and was voted Bassist of the Year by the BC CARAS Tribute to West Coast Music for the four years that the awards were given. René was co-leader of the now-legendary fusion band Skywalk, which has six CDs to their credit. He has toured Canada with jazz legends Chet Baker, Gene Bertoncini, and Joe Pass. On the international scene, he has toured the former Soviet Union with Paul Horn. He is also the bassist with Brazilian band Novo Tempo and multi-disciplinary ensemble Crossing Borders; both bands have toured extensively throughout the U.S. and Canada. He is a virtuoso on both string and electric bass. René has recorded and performed with numerous jazz greats, including Jack Sheldon, Tommy Banks, Herb Ellis, Freddie Hubbard, Ernestine Anderson, John Faddis, and Don Thompson, to name a few, and has recorded and produced seven CDs for musical partner Jennifer Scott, one of the top jazz artists in Canada, including the highly acclaimed Emotional Girl. He has also been featured as a session player on recordings by Jennifer Love Hewitt, David Bowie, Aerosmith, and Poison, to name a few. René has released a duo album with pianist Miles Black called Two; it has received much critical acclaim. René’s studio work include jingles, album projects, and movie scores. As a noted producer, René has helmed recordings for Sandy Foster, Megan Fanning, Skywalk, and Crossing Borders. This year, René released the Jennifer Scott CDs Live at Samson Winery and Music for Bigs and Smalls as bassist and producer, and was featured on new releases by Ed Johnson and Hans Staymer. He also released a second duo CD, El Escorial, with pianist Miles Black.
Beginning Bass (level 1–2) We’ll learn a tune a day in friendly keys and play along with the artist. We'll cover basic techniques (holding, tuning, fingering, plucking). All basses welcome.
Groovin' Bass (level 3–5) We'll cover a variety of grooves, cool tricks, and improv. We’ll also work on soloing.