Mandolin

with Caleb Klauder
ABOUT THE CLASS

My goal of this class is to look into the early styles of old time and bluegrass mandolin as related to the fiddle. We will find a clear melody for a tune or a song and give it lift with the right hand, focusing on the pick and shuffle technique. I will teach a selection of fiddle tunes and focus on the nuances of picking, as related to old time fiddle bowing. Verlin Clifton played mandolin with the Camp Creek Boys and we will talk a bit about his rhythm playing, and I will demonstrate some other options for backup and rhythm playing. We will talk about getting great tone from both the right hand and the left hand.

Prerequisites: Students should have a good feel for scales and arpeggios and have put some time into using the pinky finger on the 7th fret. Class will be taught aurally and there will be no sheet music or tab so please bring a recording device.

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Caleb Klauder is known to the Mandolin community for developing a unique style to follow the old time fiddle. He will teach a melody of fiddle tunes, and how to get tight with the fiddle, focusing on the rhythm of the fiddle bowing. Mandolin double stops, tremolo and chord variations will also be demonstrated as methods to backing up old time tunes. He will also spend time talking about and demonstrating old time bluegrass solo styles in the manner of Bill Monroe, Ira Louvin and Joe Val focusing on the lyrical and melodic direction. Caleb is founding member of Foghorn Stringband which has defined a peculiar, hard-driving Pacific Northwest ensemble style, anchored in the mantras of old-time, but unafraid to bend the rules. Klauder, who plays fiddle and guitar in addition to mandolin, has a unique eight-string style which is thoughtful and robust, and, tellingly, built heavily on fiddle and banjo styles as much as on classic mandolin technique.

Lead and Harmony Singing

with Reeb Willms
ABOUT THE CLASS

Have you ever experienced the magic of singing harmony with others? Do you like old time and country duets? Do you simply like to sing? Through a wonderful repertoire of songs we’ll spend our class times practicing concepts of lead and harmony singing: building confidence by first spending time learning the melody, then finding the tonic and building a chord, and adding baritone and tenor parts. We will give special attention to lyrical and melodic phrasing, listening to each other and practicing to learn more about what makes a song or singer stand out and pull at our heart strings. Bring a song notebook, a writing utensil, and a recording device if you like. Let’s sing!

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Reeb Willms hails from the wind swept Eastern farmlands of Washington. Her musical family and rural upbringing are are on display with every note she sings. If you can’t resist the high lonesome sound of a classic old time and country-bluegrass singing, this is the class for you! Reeb will handpick a couple of her favorite songs and the melody and harmony parts, talk about the sweet nature of duet and ensemble singing, give some tips for finding harmony parts, and maybe even a few technique tips about getting better tone and projection out of your voice.

Fiddle

with Sammy Lind
ABOUT THE CLASS

I like to teach fiddle by jumping right in and teaching tunes. With old time fiddling, the bowing is probably the most important factor. There is a lot of syncopation in old time fiddling rhythm, so this will be the focus of every tune. I’ll start by teaching tunes that have a repetitive bowing pattern throughout both the A and B parts and we’ll move on to other tunes that vary slightly in their patterns. After a few tunes are learned in this way and certain bowing patterns are recognized, it should be easier to hear these rhythms in other tunes and will prove helpful for learning new tunes.

This class will focus on tunes from the Fauquier County fiddler, John Ashby. His playing is ever- inspiring to me and I always go back to his three amazing LPs from the 1970’s on County Records when I need a good fix of real old time fiddling. Another major fiddling influence on my playing is a fiddler named Garry Harrison from southern Illinois. He made it his life’s mission to preserve the fiddle traditions of southern Illinois, visiting senior fiddlers (as he referred to them) along with his brothers and a few childhood pals (like Chirps Smith), collecting tunes and adding some fire and attention to the players’ lives who had all but retired their musical talents. Garry is also known for his original fiddle tunes such as “Boys, Them Buzzards Are Flying”, “Dull Chisel”, and “Red Prairie Dawn” among countless others. He once told me he wrote a tune every day! I will teach a few of the tunes he collected as well as some of his originals.

Students must be comfortable with the fiddle and have a general knowledge of what “old time” fiddle is and have a few tunes they feel comfortable leading in a jam session or playing for a square dance. Also, students must be open to “cross-tuning” the fiddles to get that authentic “old time” sound. Many students find a recording device really helpful, so bring an audio and/or visual recorder if one will be helpful later for personal use and not too distracting to the student or others in the class.

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Born in Minnesota, Stephen “Sammy” Lind has established himself as one of the most critically acclaimed old time fiddle players in the country. Co-founder of the Oregon based Foghorn Stringband, Stephen has traveled the world playing and teaching a vast repertoire of tunes from Appalachia and the Midwest.  His playing reflects tremendous respect and passion for all the fiddle players and old recordings he has spent countless hours learning from.

Bass

with Nadine Landry
ABOUT THE CLASS

This upright bass workshop will emphasize providing a solid rhythm for jams and band settings. Participants will get to practice good left and right hand techniques while familiarizing themselves with the finger board. Sure there’s gonna be lots of 1-5 but we’ll work on incorporating and understanding bass runs too!

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Nadine Landry’s roots lie in the rural backroads of Acadian Québec, and her high lonesome vocals have delighted audiences the world over. Her earth-shaking bass playing is the rumbling backbone of the Foghorn sound. Nadine Landry was born and raised in a musical family on the Gaspe Peninsula on the east coast of Quebec. Equally comfortable on guitar and upright bass, she has leant her talents to various bands ranging from old time to honky tonk to swing and Cajun. Described as deeply passionate and powerful, her voice has been capturing the hearts of fans across North America, Ireland, England, Scandinavia and Australia.

Fiddle

with Tatiana Hargreaves
ABOUT THE CLASS

This class will focus on finding your own voice within old time fiddle styles. We will start by closely examining individual fiddle styles from classic fiddlers such as John Dykes, Cuje Bertram, Manco Sneed, John Lusk and Emma Lee Dickerson, learning not just the tunes but also zeroing in on what makes each fiddler’s playing unique to them. What musical and cultural influences led them to sound the way they sound? What musical and cultural influences make our playing different today? We will explore these questions and experiment with melodic and rhythmic variations, and by the end of the week hopefully have a better idea of ourselves and our fiddling.

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Over the past eight years, Tatiana Hargreaves has been on the forefront of an up and coming generation of old time, bluegrass and new acoustic musicians. Since releasing her first solo album “Started Out To Ramble” in 2009, Tatiana has toured with musicians such as Dave Rawlings, Gillian Welch, Laurie Lewis, Darol Anger, and Bruce Molsky. From placing first at the Clifftop Appalachian Fiddle Contest to her bluegrass fiddling on Laurie Lewis’ GRAMMY-nominated album The Hazel And Alice Sessions, Hargreaves shows a musical fluency that flows between old time and bluegrass worlds with ease. In Tatiana’s most recent project, she joins forces with clawhammer banjo innovator Allison de Groot (Molsky’s Mountain Drifters).

As an educator, Tatiana draws upon her performing experience as well as her academic background to combine history with musical technique and stylistic commentary, engaging her students with more than just the tunes. She currently teaches bluegrass fiddle at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and has taught at music camps such as Augusta Heritage Center’s old-time week, The Swanannoa Gathering and the Rockygrass Academy. She has also presented about the history of old-time and bluegrass music at academic institutions such as Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina and El Institute Superior del Arte (ISA) in Havana, Cuba. To learn more about Tatiana’s teaching, visit her teaching page.

Website

Banjo

with Jake Blount
ABOUT THE CLASS

Participants will study a variety of historical approaches to banjo-playing. We’ll study downstroke techniques from Odell Thompson, up-picking techniques from Etta Baker, and more as time allows. These are useful tools for supporting the melody in solo performance, and for supporting the fiddle player in an ensemble. The banjo occupies a unique place between the rhythm and melody instruments of a string band. These workshops will provide participants with useful ideas for how to engage that flexibility and give each tune and ensemble just the rhythm and texture it needs.

The Banjo Style of Odell Thompson: Participants will learn a tune or two from banjo player Odell Thompson of Mebane, NC. Odell often performed as a duo with his fiddling cousin, Joe Thompson. In their tradition, the banjo was viewed as the lead instrument, and the fiddle followed. Odell led the tunes boldly, providing a strong rhythm while accenting the contours of the tune. We’ll learn some of his favorite tricks, and discuss his overall approach.

Etta Baker’s Up-Picking Style: Etta Baker is perhaps best known as a skilled Piedmont blues guitarist; however, she also played the banjo. Given that many blues guitarists of Baker’s generation claimed to have learned from banjo-playing relatives, her unique up-picking style may represent an important crossover point for old-time and blues music. Participants will learn a tune as she played it.

Participants should be familiar with the basic clawhammer “bum-ditty” stroke. Tunes will be taught exclusively by ear, so a recording device is recommended. Fretted banjos will fare better than fretless ones as we journey into fingerstyle material.

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Jake Blount is an award-winning banjoist, fiddler, singer and scholar based in Washington, DC. He has studied with modern masters of old-time music, including Bruce Molsky, Judy Hyman (of the Horse Flies), and Rhiannon Giddens and Hubby Jenkins (of the GRAMMY-winning Carolina Chocolate Drops). Although he is proficient in multiple old-time styles, he specializes in the music of Black and Native American communities in the southeastern United States, and in the regional style of Ithaca, New York. In 2016, Blount became the first Black person to make the finals at the prestigious Appalachian String Band Music Festival (better known as Clifftop), and the first to win in the traditional band category.

Blount has shared his music and research at the Smithsonian Institution, the Old Songs Folk Festival, and Berklee School of Music, as well as numerous other venues and institutions. He teaches fiddle and banjo privately, as well as at camps like the Augusta Heritage Center’s Old-Time Week, the Ashokan Center’s Old-Time Rollick, and Earful of Fiddle Music and Dance Camp.

Banjo

with Adam Hurt
ABOUT THE CLASS

Join us as we interpret old-time fiddle tunes — focusing on the repertoire of Southwest Virginia — in a melodic clawhammer banjo style, which can quite faithfully capture the original fiddle settings’ nuances of melody and timing while still honoring the rhythmic core of more traditional clawhammer approaches. Our case study arrangements will be designed to sound good whether played solo or with other musicians and instruments, and in assembling them we will consider melodic and rhythmic detail in ways that can be used to enhance your repertoire beyond this workshop. Participants of various levels will find these arrangements accessible, challenging in productive ways, fun to learn, and gateways to better knowing the old-time instruments and their music.

To get the most out of this workshop, you should have good facility with the drop-thumb technique and already know a handful of tunes in more than one tuning. All material will be taught by ear in the traditional manner, so please bring a recording device. Fretted banjos will be better suited to this material and style than fretless banjos, and a capo may come in handy.

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Deemed a “banjo virtuoso” by the Washington Post, Adam Hurt has fused several traditional old-time idioms to create his own elegantly innovative clawhammer banjo style, having been introduced to the instrument at age eleven in his native Minnesota. A respected performer and teacher of traditional music, Adam has played at the Kennedy Center, conducted banjo and fiddle workshops at many venues around the country and abroad, and been featured on the cover of Banjo Newsletter. Since moving south in 2002, Adam has placed in or won most of the major old-time banjo competitions, including three first-place finishes at Clifftop, and he has claimed several state banjo and fiddle championships.

Guitar

with Phil Jamison
ABOUT THE CLASS

In an old-time ensemble the guitar plays a crucial role by providing a solid rhythmic base in support of the fiddle, banjo, and vocals. If you know a handful of basic chords and can hold on to a flat pick, then you are ready for this class. Topics will include: boom-chuck rhythm, chord choices for fiddle tunes and songs in the common keys of C, G, D, A, and E, bass notes and runs, keeping time, tuning, learning to listen, different right-hand techniques to achieve a variety of rhythmic patterns, and putting it all together to play rock-solid, back-up guitar in an old-time string band. Bring a tuner, capo, flat pick, and extra strings.

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Phil Jamison is a nationally-known dance caller, old-time musician, and flatfoot dancer. He has called dances, performed, and taught at music festivals and dance events throughout the U.S. and overseas since the early 1970s, including more than thirty-five years as a member of the Green Grass Cloggers. His flatfoot dancing was featured in the film, Songcatcher, for which he also served as Traditional Dance consultant. From 1982 through 2004, he toured and played guitar with Ralph Blizard and the New Southern Ramblers, and he also plays fiddle and banjo.

Over the last thirty years, Phil has done extensive research in the area of Appalachian dance, and his recently-published book Hoedowns, Reels, and Frolics: Roots and Branches of Southern Appalachian Dance (University of Illinois Press, 2015) tells the story behind the square dances, step dances, reels, and other forms of dance practiced in southern Appalachia. Phil teaches traditional music and dance at Warren Wilson College in Asheville, North Carolina, where for twenty-five years he served as coordinator of the Old-Time Music and Dance Week at the Swannanoa Gathering.

Afternoon Enrichment

with Mac Traynham & Andy Buckman
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTORS

Mac Traynham is an accomplished fiddler and banjo player as well as a fine guitar player and singer. Influenced by well known and obscure musicians of the past, Mac has developed a hard-driving style of playing which keeps the rhythm going strongly and delights dancers! He teaches at numerous music camps and has won many ribbons from various Fiddler’s Conventions.

Andy Buckman has played clawhammer banjo and sung in church since childhood. He has performed and recorded with Mac and Jenny Traynham, the Reed Island Rounders, and the Wolfe Brothers, and has taught at numerous workshops. His music is rooted in the playing of Wade Ward, Abe Horton, and Harold Hausenfluck. Andy teaches both fretted and fretless banjo in traditional Blue Ridge clawhammer and thumb lead styles.

Mac Traynham and Andy Buckman
Video

Staff Musician, Guitar

Beth Hartness
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Raised on a tobacco farm in Caswell County, North Carolina, Beth Williams Hartness taught herself to play the guitar at age twelve to accompany her singing. She eventually developed her own unique finger-picking style. Beth was a founding member of the Charlotte, NC Folk Music Society. She has been a member of numerous prize-winning bands at Clifftop and other fiddlers’ conventions. Her playing is featured on various recordings of old-time music, including The Young Fogies II. For the last decade, Beth has been performing with Adam Hurt throughout the United States as well as in Australia and the United Kingdom.

Staff Musician

Andrew Small
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Multi-instrumentalist Andrew Small has performed with artists ranging from Sierra Hull and Mandolin Orange to the North Carolina Symphony. A native of eastern North Carolina, Andrew now lives in Floyd, VA where he serves as Director of the Handmade Music School and also tours with the group Bill and the Belles. Singing and performing on mandolin and fiddle with his wife Ashlee Watkins, their band the New Macedon Rangers are regular performers for Friday Night Jamborees at the Floyd Country Store. Andrew has won numerous blue ribbons from fiddlers’ conventions around the Southeast for his old-time fiddling and in 2015 was named the Bluegrass Mandolin Champion of Australia. He holds a Masters Degree in Double Bass Performance from Yale University.

Andrew Small

Staff Musician: Guitar, Vocals

Ashlee Watkins
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Ashlee Watkins is a singer and multi-instrumentalist originally from Newcastle, NSW. Described by fiddler Bob Herring as having “it”, her powerfully unadorned vocals possess a timeless quality that evokes an uncommon emotional poignance. She has been awarded a number of blue ribbons from fiddlers’ conventions around the southeast for her folk singing and old-time banjo playing, and her band the New Macedon Rangers has been awarded blue ribbons in both old-time and bluegrass band categories. Now making her home in Floyd, Virginia, Ashlee also performs as a member of Jackson Cunningham’s string band Nobody’s Business.

Staff Musician

Gina Dilg
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Gina has been steeped in the traditions of the music from the southern Appalachians and the Southwest since she was a young child. Raised in a family of musicians, she developed an affection for the bright, energetic music of these traditions. She is a strong fiddler, and plays with her husband Jason Dilg as a duo, and with the band Joe Thrift & The Yeehaw Ramblers. Gina also loves flatfoot dancing, and can be found giving workshops and dancing with the regulars at The Floyd Country Store.

Gina Dilg

Staff Musician

Joseph DeJarnette
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Originally from Madison, Virginia, Joebass discovered old-time music through 78 rpm records which he began collecting at age 6. Eventually he traveled to Brooklyn, NY, and spent a decade playing music full-time throughout the US and internationally, concluding with over two dozen shows on the 2009 Bob Dylan/Willie Nelson tour. He now lives back in Virginia where he runs Studio 808A, a “band and breakfast” recording studio that specializes in traditional music. He has taught in the JAM program (Junior Appalachian Musicians), Music Lab Floyd, The Carnegie Hall Neighborhood concert series as well as festival workshops around the world. He runs sound at the Swannanoa Gathering, CROMA and Rockbridge old-time music weeks and in 2015 he was selected to become coordinator of the Old-Time Music Week at the Augusta Heritage Center. At Studio 808A, DeJarnette has worked with many master Appalachian musicians in the studio such as Alice Gerrard, Bruce Greene, Eddie Bond, and Gerry Milnes, up and coming young traditional musicians such as Anna and Elizabeth, as well as more mainstream acts such as Lake Street Dive, Sxip Shirey, Curtis Eller and Rhiannon Giddens.

Joe DeJarnette

Staff Musician

Dylan Locke
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR

Dylan Locke owns the Floyd Country Store and is Founder and Executive Director of Floyd Creative Studios. He has produced culturally-diverse arts programs and outreach in western Va. for over 25 years, including the innovative Music Lab for K-12 youth at the Jefferson Center in Roanoke.

Dylan Locke