Sunday, January 05, 2014

Fake it till you make it! (workshop Jan. 18 at Clayville)

Jam session tips for beginners —

If you have a dulcimer, or a guitar, banjo, fiddle or any other musical instrument you haven’t touched in years – or one you got for Christmas or picked up at a craft fair but haven’t learned to play yet – the Clayville Pioneer Academy of Music offers free workshops called “Fake It Till You Make It: Getting to Know Your Instrument and Playing in a Group” at Clayville Historic Site, on Illinois 125 at Pleasant Plains.

And we always have our "academy jams" from 10 a.m. to noon the first Saturday of every month. Most of us were beginners ourselves very recently, and we especially welcome beginners.

Each two-hour "Fake It Till You Make It!" workshop session will focus on basic jam session etiquette; how to learn a tune by hearing where the notes and chords are on a dulcimer; how to get the most out of online videos; and how to use the “three-chord trick” in order to play along with the group on songs you don’t know yet. While the workshop is designed especially for beginning mountain dulcimer players who want to learn how to play with other instruments, all instruments are welcome, and all skill levels are welcome. It's part of the Clayville Pioneer Academy of Music, and we're not about the fine points of technique as much as sharing our knowledge and making music with each other.

The first workshop will be from 10 a.m. to noon, Saturday, Jan. 18. Plans are to offer it again later in the year … updated schedules will be posted to the website at Pete Ellertsen of Springfield, who facilitates the sessions, has studied mountain and hammered dulcimer at the John C. Campbell Folk School, Western Carolina University, Common Ground on the Hill, Mike Anderson’s workshops and Winter Weekend in Chillicothe. Loaner dulcimers are available.

Clayville Pioneer Academy of Music

10 a.m.-noon, Saturday, January 18, 2014

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