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What People Are Saying About CCMC


When I registered for camp I thought it would be a blast. Playing music all day. Becoming a better player. No worries. It ended up being at least twice as fun as I expected. You guys have an excellent recipe and you deliver it with skill and love. This is probably what heaven feels like.

—Daniel Reed, Boise, ID

CCMC is a fabulous way to spend a family vacation.

One year I checked it out on my own and had a great time. The next year I went with my wife and we had a great time. This past year (2007) we brought our two older children—ages 21 and 18—and all of us had a ball. If I had to do it over, I’d skip straight to step three.

Our daughter went primarily to learn guitar, but had a lot of fun taking singing and percussion classes. Our son took the percussion class with his sister (if only they had done that when they were younger, they might have spent more time beating on drums and less beating on each other) and they had a great time together. My son also took slide guitar, and spent time exploring the river, whittling, and compensating for the sleep deficit incurred by late nights at the campfire. It was a perfect week for the four of us.

—Jeff Magill, Palo Alto, CA

The encouragement I received at CCMC helped me believe that I too could play music. The classes honed my skills so that I gained confidence in my playing. A whole week just to focus on yourself and your music, surrounded by supportive people—that's my idea of an amazing time. Plus, it's just plain fun! I'm very grateful for what CCMC has brought to my life.

—Pat Hohstadt, Garberville, CA

Expect to laugh, expect to cry, expect to learn something, expect to make some of your “best-est” friends. But don't expect to sleep much—you might MISS something!

—Stacey Erdman, Half Moon Bay, CA

Camp has made a huge difference in my life. I’ve connected with a wonderful community of musicians, learned several new genres of music, and am now playing bass (a new instrument) professionally up and down the West Coast. The joy of connecting with other musicians has changed my life profoundly.

—Lisa Burns, San Jose, CA

Camp's pretty amazing . . .an experience not easily put into words. All I know is that I'm still benefiting from a class I took there in 14 years ago.

—Greg Spear, Bonny Doon, CA

A week at CCMC made me realize that every musician is on a continuum of skill and talent, and each person's musical gifts are unique.

—Rick Palkovic, Davis, CA

As an aging intermediate guitar player trying to resurrect my skills, learn new ones, and write some of my own material, I have now had two different but quite memorable CCMC experiences. In both I've felt welcomed and included by campers and teachers alike. There are just so many great opportunities to make and enjoy music all week, from jam circles and classes, to events like the coffee house, campfire, dance, and student and teacher concerts. It's been a thrill to play with others, and incredible to have them join in and share one of my own tunes. Standing in an a capella circle and picking out old favorites to sing and harmonize on is another amazing experience. It's like being on another planet to be able to spend a week away from the world with other kindred souls just for the love of music.

—Sheridan Malone, Ukiah, CA

More Testimonials…


CCMC is a family made up of music and friendship.

—Amy Liggett, Los Angeles, CA

CCMC has opened all kinds of musical doors for me! And now when I go to a concert, I usually find folks I've jammed with.

—Topher Gayle, San Jose, CA

Before I went to CCMC, I spent most of my time around business colleagues. Now I spend most of my time around musicians. I'm happier this way.

—Alex Lapidus, Foster City, CA

I played guitar and sang for years, but had pretty much given up on music before I attended my first CCMC, because I thought if I wasn't making a living at music, I must not be a “real” musician. At camp, I saw people with stickers on their guitar cases that read “Real musicians have day jobs.” The whole scene really affected me. I went home and started a monthly jam session at my local arts center that's been going strong now for nine years. More than 50 local musicians have participated at some time or another. Several people met through my jam session and started musical partnerships and jam sessions of their own. Now I do about 30 shows a year, have recorded two studio-quality CDs, and also perform for Mimi Farina's Bread and Roses music outreach program. I have also played for the sick and dying, and at memorial services. CCMC gave me the inspiration that got me started.

—Jayme Kelly Curtis, Boulder Creek, CA

Isn’t it funny how an event that seems terrible at the time may put you on a path that changes your life for the better? Like the time my guitar was stolen, and I went to Gryphon to check out guitars.

As I entered the store I passed a stand with many brochures. One caught my eye—it said “music camp.” I thought, “That sounds like fun,” so I decided to give it a try. Camp was full and I was put on the waiting list at #33. Since I was starting to get cold feet—I didn’t know a soul who was going—I was relieved. A few months later, however, I got in, and even though I was scared sometimes to the point of panic, I went.

I know it sounds corny, but music camp changed my life. I had always loved music and dabbled in it on my own. But when I came to camp and met so many kindred spirits, it was like coming home. I knew I was meant to play music. During camp, I had a meltdown—suddenly bursting into tears for no apparent reason. I realized later that it was because I was experiencing joy for the first time in many years.

At camp I tried many different styles of music, searching for my niche. One of the great things about camp and the wonderful community of people is that it offers a safe environment in which an adult can be a beginner. In general our society doesn’t offer that luxury, except to children. Because of that I was less afraid of trying new things. I even took up a new instrument! I’ve been playing the fiddle for three years now and am having the time of my life. I play in two bands, take lessons, and jam regularly with friends in our homes and at festivals. I am happier than I have ever been.

—Gail Reese, San Jose, CA

My first year at camp, I knew no one and chose to attend alone because I was already a big fan of one of the instructors, Catie Curtis. And as trite as it may sound, that first CCMC literally changed my life. The circle of friends I developed in the subsequent years at camp and beyond, and the passion for music that grew from those experiences, opened new doors in my world. Although I don't actually play music as much, my camp experiences helped me expand my love for live, acoustic music. I have met and become friends with many musicians through the years, some of whom I met at camp as instructors or campers and some who I'd never heard of but went to check out their local show...and lots of in between. Attending shows and supporting independent musicians—even becoming a part-time, volunteer roadie for some!—brings much joy and pleasure to my life. I am sure that without my CCMC experience, the peace and passion I've found in, through, and for music would not be what it is today.

—Heather Stewart, San Mateo, CA

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