Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Renton, WA: Sartori Education Center

A little forum on songwriting for Sartori's Creative Writing Class, taught by a former guitar student. Came in ready to play a bunch of examples to illustrate various ideas, comparisons, etc., but was pleased to forgo such a performance-heavy approach in favor of honest discussion. Also enjoyed sharing my own notes from a songwriting master class with Texas legend Eric Taylor (so accomplished that he can get away with being a Texas songwriter and only having two names), lending my voice to his thoughts and observations as they resonated with me. Hope I get to see/hear some of the songs the class produces!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Leavenworth, WA: Icicle Arts Festival

As I told the audience at the performance where I served as a judge, I'm of two minds regarding songwriting contests: I appreciate and understand their role in the celebration of original music and as a means for some of gaining traction in the industry...but, at the same time, the very idea of comparing and rating songs along one particular continuum is tough to digest. So congrats to *all* Icicle Prize finalists for this accomplishment and for keeping at it: Ben Bonnema; Michael Carlos; Chelsey Craven; Michael Dickes (whose song has been most stuck in my head since); Rachel Lippert; Hannah Loeffelbein; Brian McMahon (2nd Place); Margee Peterson (Audience Choice); Andrew Thompson; Nadine Van Ness; Sandy Vaughn (3rd Place); and Beth Whitney (1st Place)--and student finalists: Marija Bosnar (1st); Chloe Grace Caemmerer (2nd); and Claire Seaman (3rd).

Also charged with sorting out this madness were my other co-judges: Dan Maher; Linda Waterfall; Andre Feriante; Andrew T. Miller; and Aimee Mell. Most of us gave workshops the day previous at the stunning Barn Beach Reserve, and all were treated splendidly by the Icicle Arts folk, who pulled of the whole thing smashingly. Indeed, anyone who wants to put me up on the Sleeping Lady grounds (even feeding me occasionally) is more than welcome to do so!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Richland, WA: Tumbleweed Music Festival

Over the years (this is #8) I've likely exhausted available positive adjectives for describing just how pleasant this event is, yet extreme pleasantness is what I have to report yet again. Fun as always to see friends old and new, roast fellow songwriters while emceeing the contest (and presenting the handmade-by-yours-truly trophy: congrats to Tracy Spring!), play a set of my own (that was a lot of folk assembled to hear it!), and hang by the river. And I modeled this years theme of "Paying Forward - Giving Back" with a stint on local TV ... and a performance of "Thanks to the Many" in the Sunday Evening Concert. Same time next year...?

Thursday, September 2, 2010

A Little of This, A Little of That...

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