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Updates

Spring 2014

First of all, thanks to everybody who attended Mando Camp North/Fiddle Camp North this past weekend; it was such a blast, and an honor to be a part of such an intense learning experience. For those of you that couldn't make it this time, I highly recommend it for next year, and in the mean time check out Banjo Camp North in May, and Banjo Camp North - Fall Edition in September (all of which can be found on-line at www.mugwumps.com).

Secondly, for those of you that have been kind enough to come out and watch my Third Tuesday Jams at The Cantab, please note that there will be not a jam tonight as originally scheduled. Instead, the opener will be my former roommate and band-mate, Sam Stambler with his band The Damn Ramblers. Later this month please join us at The Cantab on Tuesday, April 29th: the two bands that Laura and I have been working with this spring in the Bluegrass Band Ensemble Class will be playing at 8:30 pm, opening for my Dad's band True Life Bluegrass (in which I play mandolin and guitar). And all three bands (the two new bands and True Life Bluegrass) will be playing our biggest show of the spring in Marlborough on Saturday, May 10th (details below).

Additionally, the Boston Bluegrass Union (BBU) will be hosting it's Spring Jam'n Weekend is coming up in less than two weeks. This event is incredibly reasonably priced for all of the instruction and jamming you can do in a weekend. A summary of the event is included below and you can get complete details, including the recently published schedule, at www.bbu.org/events/jamn-weekend/. Furthermore, I'm on the committee that organizes the Jam'n Weekends, so if you have any questions/comments/etc. please feel free to let me know.

Finally as a reminder, although I haven't been able to offer some of my basic classes lately (such as beginning mandolin or guitar), I am hoping to offer another round of Harmony Singing, Ear Training or possibly even the Band Ensemble Class later this spring (in May and June). At this point it looks like Thursday evenings starting at 8:30 or every other Tuesday will be the only possible time slots. If anybody is interested in attending such a class, please let me know which you'd prefer. And of course, if you don't see a class listed that you'd be interested in taking, please e-mail me at tonywatt@gmail.com

 

THIS WEEK'S JAM SESSIONS


Here is a listing of this week's jams, and more details can be found at the bottom of this e-mail, and on-line at www.tonywattbluegrass.com/jam_sessions/:

Wednesday - Level 4 - Intermediate Jam Session
- every Wednesday from 7 - 8:30 pm (for ALL instruments)
- repertoire: Old Joe Clark, I am a Pilgrim, Red Haired Boy, Nine Pound Hammer
- average tempos starting at 70 to 75 cpm (slow) and up to 100+ cpm

Wednesday - Level 5 - Int/Adv Jam Session
- every Wednesday from 8:30 - 10 pm (for ALL instruments)
- repertoire: Billy in the Lowground, Fireball Mail, Whiskey Before Breakfast, Wayfaring Stranger, Blackberry Blossom, Gold Rush
- average tempos starting at 70 to 75 cpm (slow) and up to 100+ cpm

Thursday - Level 2 - Beginner Jam Session
- every Thursday from 7 - 8:30 pm (for ALL instruments)
- repertoire: Old Joe Clark, I am a Pilgrim, Red Haired Boy, Nine Pound Hammer
- average tempos: starting at 60 to 65 cpm (slow)

Space is limited in the jam sessions, so please e-mail me at tonywatt@gmail.com if you're interested or have any questions.

 

UPCOMING WORKSHOPS & CAMPS

Spring Jam'n Weekend in Concord, MA from April 25th through 27th -- After two highly-successful BBU Jam'n Weekends at the historic Colonial Inn in Concord, MA, the BBU is hosting the first-ever Spring Jam'n Weekend. Just like the first two events, Spring Jam'n Weekend is an indoor "non-festival" where you can jam all weekend long or attend instructor-led jams and free workshops (with your paid registration). Spring Jam'n Weekend will be held April 25th - 27th, but the early-bird room discount at The Colonial ends on March 25th. I will be teaching multiple workshops and probably hosting jams, but I don't know the exact schedule yet. For updates please visit www.bbu.org/events/jamn-weekend/, and if you have any questions please e-mail me directly.

 

UPCOMING SHOWS

Southeast Expressway at John Harvard's on Thursday, April 24th -- My band, Southeast Expressway, will be returning to John Harvard's Brewery & Ale House in Harvard Sq. in Cambridge on Thursday, April 24th. We'll be playing from 9:30 until 11:30 pm, and it looks like opening for us will be Men in the Kitchen, one of the bands from our first round of band classes. There's no ticket cost for this show, so come on down and show your support. John Harvard's is located at 33 Dunster St. in the heart of Harvard Sq., and you can find them on-line at www.johnharvards.com/locations/cambridge-ma

True Life Bluegrass at The Cantab on Tuesday, April 29th -- My Dad's band, True Life Bluegrass, in which I play mandolin and guitar, will be playing the feature slot at The Cantab on Tuesday, April 29th. Opening for us will be the two new student bands that Laura and I have been working with this spring as part of our Bluegrass Band Ensemble class. Those folks will start at 8:30 pm and True Life Bluegrass goes on at 10. The Cantab Lounge is located in Central Sq. in Cambridge, and you can find more details at http://cantab-lounge.com/public_html/cantab_calendar.html

True Life Bluegrass in Marlborough, MA on Saturday, May 10th -- My Dad's band, True Life Bluegrass, in which I play mandolin and guitar, will be playing our biggest show of the spring as part of the Second Saturday Night Marlborough Music Series at the First Congregational Church (37 High St.) in Marlborough. We're really excited to hear the two bands who will be opening for us: the two new student bands that Laura and I have been working with this spring as part of our Bluegrass Band Ensemble class. Doors open at 7 pm, and the show starts at 8. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 Students with ID. The show is sponsored by The Coffee Loft, and they will have snacks and drinks for sale at the concert. Please check them out at 406 Lincoln Street in Marlborough, and for more information on the show call 617-548-0433.

 

UPCOMING CLASSES

Beginning Bluegrass Lead Flatpicking Guitar at Lexington Community Education -- Starting on Friday, May 2nd I will be teaching a five-session guitar course at Lexington Community Education held in the Lexington High School. The Beginning Bluegrass Lead Flatpicking Guitar class will meet from 6:30 until 8 pm on May 2nd, 9th, 23rd and 30th, and June 6th (with a make-up date of June 20th if necessary). This class is intended for those who have never played bluegrass lead guitar before, or who have been frustrated trying to learn before. In this course we'll learn how to read tablature (tab), how to play fiddle tunes and take breaks on vocal tunes (including carter style, crosspicking, and single-string soloing), and get an introduction to improvisation. Students do not need to have previous experience playing any style of lead guitar, or know how to read music. The cost is $75 ($60 for seniors), and further details can be found at http://www.lexingtoncommunityed.org/detail.php?q=MGUI

Beginning Bluegrass Jamming (for all Bluegrass instruments) at Lexington Community Education -- Starting on Friday, May 2nd I will be teaching a five-session bluegrass jamming course at Lexington Community Education held in the Lexington High School. The Beginning Bluegrass Jamming (for all Bluegrass instruments) will meet from 8 until 9:30 pm on May 2nd, 9th, 23rd and 30th, and June 6th (with a make-up date of June 20th if necessary). This class is geared towards beginner and intermediate musicians who are interested in learning how to play with other people. We will focus on the basics of bluegrass jamming such as keeping time, non-verbal communication and jam etiquette. There are no prerequisite songs, and you don't need to be able to play leads on your instrument, sing, or read music, but you should be able to play melodies and/or backup parts (i.e. guitarists should be able to switch between chords comfortably). The cost is $75 ($60 for seniors), and further details can be found at http://www.lexingtoncommunityed.org/detail.php?q=MBLU

Beginning Bluegrass Mandolin: Rhythm & Lead at Passim School of Music -- Starting on Monday, May 12th I will be teaching a six-session mandolin course at Club Passim's School of Music in Harvard Square. The Beginning Bluegrass Mandolin: Rhythm & Lead class will meet from 6:30 until 7:45 pm from May 12th through June 23rd with no class on Memorial Day (Monday, May 26th). This class is intended for those who have never played bluegrass mandolin before, or who have been frustrated trying to learn before. In this class we will learn the basics of bluegrass mandolin, both rhythm and lead, and students do not need to have previous experience playing (or even listening to) bluegrass, or be able to read music. The cost is $120 for Passim members ($140 for non-members), and further details can be found athttp://www.passim.org/school/beginning-bluegrass-mandolin-rhythm-lead-tony-watt

Intermediate Bluegrass Mandolin: Beyond the Basics at Passim School of Music -- Starting on Monday, May 12th I will be teaching a six-session mandolin course at Club Passim's School of Music in Harvard Square. The Intermediate Bluegrass Mandolin: Beyond the Basics class will meet from 8 until 9:15 pm from May 12th through June 23rd with no class on Memorial Day (Monday, May 26th). This class is intended for those who already know how to solo on at least one fiddle tune and know how to construct breaks to vocal tunes. In this course we will learn both instrumental and vocal tunes, soloing ideas, licks, etc, however unlike the beginner class this class will be driven by what the students want to learn. There are no prerequisite songs, and you don't need to be able to read music. The cost is $120 for Passim members ($140 for non-members), and further details can be found at http://www.passim.org/school/intermediate-bluegrass-mandolin-beyond-basics-tony-watt

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