Posted 19 June 2010 - 04:02 AM
Today had a few magical musical moments.
It started harmless enough with our morning guitar workout. In the morning workouts we start with finger stretches, and finger exercises. Then yesterday we got into strumming, chords and closed out with spelling some chords.
Then Greg Voros taught his Guitar Setup and Maintenance workshop to a packed house while I taught one last group of group lessons.
The group lessons ended up being much more manageable this year. The smaller groups really helped create the environment that was safe enough for folks to really play and learn. It was tough saying no to those who wanted to be in all of them, but I'm glad we did. They ended up being much more personal and, hopefully, more helpful to the attendees.
At 10:30am we did a short improvisation class with me and my good friend Dino Pastin. It's hard to cover a big idea like improvisation in one class but I think we had a good musical time.
After a quick lunch, Jack Pearson from the Allman Brothers band had a tremendous Blues guitar workshop.
The attendees of the Guitar Gathering have made a believer out of Jack Pearson. Last year he did our conference not really too sure about who we are and what we are doing and now, he is our biggest fan. He was as wonderful as ever. Good, humor-filled, explanations of his technique. Questions and answers going back and forth.
He closed out his time with us with an old blues spiritual song that he sang on. That was definately MAGICAL MUSICAL MOMENT #1.
Music has a tremendous way of reaching right past your brain and right down into your soul. As he played, Jack was a simple, unassuming man in blue jeans singing and playing music up on a stage. And, for an all too brief moment, the music went right past our brains and went right into the inner workings of us.
After Jack finished we had a short break then the great Phil Keaggy came in and started. For about the first 30 minutes, I felt that everyone might have been a bit intimidated or something becuase our normally raucaus bunch, got a bit quiet. But soon enough, the jokes were going back and forth from the audience to the stage and things returned back to normal.
The conference had won over another one of our guest artists. Phil commented several times afterwards how much he enjoyed the spirit of learning and camraderie that he felt.
He finished up an amazing workshop, while we set up for the Blues Monster Jam.
I invited a few of my good friends on bass and drums and keys for the Blues Monster Jam. We jumped right into a good, driving E blues and within a minute or two Phil Keaggy comes back in the room. As we are playing, he comes up to the side of the stage and asks to play.
(I think I might put that on my resume. That Phil Keaggy asked me if he could play with my band.)
MAGICAL MUSICAL MOMENT #2
For about the next 10 minutes, Phil Keaggy played with us and blew the doors off with some amazing Blues. There were many, many cameras going at that moment so I'm sure it will appear on YouTube somewhere.
It was an amazing moment.
That's one thing that advanced players and those just starting out share - the common bond of enjoying making music. At times, playing music is such a party that even the advanced players just ask to play along. It's not about the event, it's about the music.
Phil had to leave, but the blues continued on. From there one by one of the attendees came up and played a few choruses of blues with our band.
Next week these wonderful people are going to be back in their daily lives, sitting at their desks thinking "You know, last week at this time, I was on stage in Nashville with a smoking blues band playing my heart out. - Living the dream."
We then went our seperate ways to get a bite to eat. Then we came back together for our official Guitar Gathering 2010 picture. We were also treated to individual photos that we can take home. I'm sure many will post these photos, in time.
Phil Keaggy closed out the day with an amazing concert.
If you are not here, we miss you. This conference carries the DNA of something very special and I'm thrilled to be a part of it.
Tomorrow will be our last big day.
Even as I am writing this, I hear the guys jamming in the next room. It's a thrill.
I realize that many of you are following the conference - wanting to be here, but other obligations have kept you away this time. Just realize that
we miss you here and look forward to you being a part of this someday when you can.
- Steve Krenz