Acoustic Blue Grass Music Camp in Dallas

Just got home form 3 intensive days of music camp all arranged by these folks. This camp did not have uke workshops but the uke was well represented at the jams! I took this opportunity to explore the mandolin. It was great fun and I learned a great deal in spite of fingers that bled from the steel stings (just kidding – almost!).

A last minute change to the instructor line-up proved to be my favorite and an incredibly valuable time for me at the camp. Dave Waser of the local band Beatlegras stepped in to handle the vocal harmony class. He invited me to sit in on the last day of class (I think he was enamored with my ukes). There were only 6 of us in the class and we we learned how to blend our voices, create harmony and did a fine job of singing some great tunes in 3 part harmony. Dave is a great guy to work with and the workshop was a lot of fun.

That said, I don’t want to minimize the mandolin classes

As a rank beginner I got an amazing amount of understanding of the instrument (your fingers will bleed) and the way a mando works is very logical compared to some other instruments. The instructors were great. We had both Gerald Jones and Tim May as instructors and they both gave freely of their knowledge and help.

I met some wonderful new folks, saw a few that have been skirting around the uke community for awhile and best of all met and listened to a couple of teenagers that are already great players that I’m sure we will be paying top do;;ar to hear perform in the near future – Ruby on fiddle and Lucas from Corsicana on guitar, mandolin, fiddle and whatever other instruments he decides to play! I met Lucas about 1 1/2 years ago at the Old Time Music Festival in Palestine, TX. He was quite the gentleman and helped my mom and me get our booth broken down and our car loaded with our instruments and other goodies from our mobile “store”. He has really developed into a great player and is fearless in jamming with just about anyone!

This was a super event for Dallas and Gerald is already planning to host it again next year!

Gerald arranged a fabulous line-up of talent as instructors. Here is the line-up:

  • Brad Davis – Guitar
    Marty Stuart, Earl Scruggs, Sam Bush, John Jorgenson, Billy Bob Thornton
  • Tim May – Guitar / Mandolin
    Crucial Smith, Patty Loveless, Charlie Daniels, Eddie Rabbit
  • Jim “Texas Shorty” Chancellor – Fiddle
    Five-time World Fiddle Champion, Mark O’Connor, Porter Waggoner
  • David Talbot – Banjo
    Grascals, Dolly Parton, Reba McEntire, Tony Rice, Kenny Chesney
  • Terry Baucom – Banjo
    Boone Creek, Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, IIIrd Tyme Out, Lou Reid
  • Gerald Jones – Banjo / Mandolin
    Roanoke, Texas Shorty, Red Steagall, Mark O’Connor, Hank Thompson
  • Wil Maring – Songwriting
    Winner of the Chris Austin Songwriting Contest at Merlefest
  • Robert Bowlin – Fiddle / Guitar
    Bill Monroe, Osborne Brothers, Kathy Mattea, Tom T. Hall