2017 Folk Boot Camp at Studio Bell
Songwriting and guitar classes are $150.
The vocal Become Part of the Performance Choir! Choir! Choir! session is $20.
Boot Camp registrants are given a discount of 10% on Festival tickets.
The 12th annual Folk Boot Camp at Studio Bell (850 4 St. SE), presented by the Calgary Folk Music Festival and the National Music Centre, is a three-day workshop series July 25 - 27 2017.
Folk Boot Camp is a unique opportunity to learn from the Festival’s favourite guitar heroes, songbirds and songsmiths. Glean new songs, arrangements, vocal techniques and instrumental skills for three consecutive days with the same instructor among the Centre’s collection of rare and curious keyboards.
Folk Boot Camp is geared towards musicians with a basic grasp of their craft who want to supplement their own studies with coaching from some of the world’s finest musicians.
Guitar Town, Population: You.
July 25 – 27 10 am – 1:00 pm
A gutsy roots-rocker with a big molasses-drenched spill of a voice, she was gifted her with her first electric guitar at 12 and tutored by her rock band-playing aunt. Lightfoot made a tentative foray into solo performance in 2011 with a debut album. Not yet comfortable with fully loosing her octave-spanning, note-bending powerhouse of a voice and showing off her bluesy guitar chops, it took some time as a member of the alt-country Dinner Belles to settle into her musical power. With her sophomore album, Every Time My Mind Runs Wild, she slips the leash of "quiet and polite" entirely, wielding her red Gibson SG with consummate swagger and a voice that is more than a match for it.
Lightfoot’s class will teach the construction of a simple guitar solo, utilizing open tunings, fingerpicking and playing in a band setting. Students will learn about different genres of music featuring the guitar and will write their own musical piece in small groups and perform for the class.
The focus will be balanced between technique and performance and Lightfoot will play musical examples to gain insight into technique and performance.
Class level/requirements: You must have experience with basic chords on the guitar and some knowledge of open chords plus rhythm and timing and preferably have an interest in songwriting or singing…but this is not a must.
Bring An open mind plus an electric guitar and amplifier or an acoustic and a capo if you have one (she’ll bring some too), note books or song books if desired. Also bring three favourites: a song that features fingerpicking, guitar solo and current song...and have a digital copy of these to bring, or they can be looked up on Youtube.
July 25 – 27 10 am – 1:00 pm
Basia Bulat’s delicate folky vibe was charming and fresh in 2007 with her first full-length album as a young autoharp-wielding singer-songwriter. In the last 10 years Bulat has grown into a bolder, stronger artist who is willing to jump off emotional and artistic cliffs to push her music forward. The irresistibly catchy melodies, wide-eyed vulnerability, and purity are all still there, but with her newest album, Good Advice, Bulat continues on the trajectory that made her 2013 Juno- and Polaris-nominated album Tall Tall Shadow so widely celebrated. Her emotionally bare songs are layered with some far-out vintage organ sounds. But her clear vibrato voice, open-heart and love for classic pop songwriting remain at the core of her work. With little bit of darkness and a whole lot of light, multi- instrumentalist Bulat has is willing to go where she needs to take her music to new and even deeper places.
Basia’s class: will cover song forms and lyrics of interest to the group and ways to find your own style while reflecting influences. Participants will develop confidence in their own voice and style. She’ll spend some time on song forms common in pop, folk, blues, etc - and where they come from...but the main focus will be finding each person's own unique voice, stories and songwriting.
Class level/requirements: You should be able to play a few chords on the instrument of your choice (i.e. guitar/piano/laptop beats/etc) and be ready to perform your lyrics and music in front of others. The emphasis will be on developing your own voice, your own style and working on technique without letting it take over your vision. It will be 50 % technique and 50% performance. Part of the workshop will be a 'songwriter's circle' which will involve sharing work and critiquing work of peers. Bring: songs you’ve written, ideas you’ve always dreamed of turning into songs, examples of songs you love, notebooks, an instrument and an open mind.
Lyrics and Melody Only
July 25 – 27 10 am – 1:00 pm
The palette of folk and roots music is a broad one, but when you boil it down to its essence — beautiful songs built on strong, lyrical stories — there are few artists who better personify that current folk tradition than Toronto’s Donovan Woods.
Woods weaves magic out of the most minimal of ingredients, delivering poignant, whispery vocals over spare guitar work to create haunting melodies and memorable musical vignettes. Woods’s reputation as a stellar songwriter is solid — his compositions enjoy vibrant lives beyond his own guitar and microphone and have been recorded by a bevy of artists and also featured in a number of television shows and major motion pictures.
Woods’s class will help you examine the power of lyrics and what makes them work: Why are good lyrics so good? Why are bad lyrics so bad!? You’ll gain a better understanding of what makes a song lyric work and feel satisfying.
Class level/requirements: A desire to write your own songs and an ability to play a few guitar chords or notes on another instrument. The focus will be 80% technique.
Bring: An instrument if you have one and some songs you’ve written that you’re comfortable performing in front of the workshop and one example of a song with lyrics they really love.
Choir! Choir! Choir!
Become part of the performance
July 25 and 26 only
2:00 – 5:00 pm
Choir! Choir! Choir! is an experience, more than a show or a gig. Choir! started as a weekly event at Clinton's Tavern in Toronto, where anyone with $5 could show up and sing along. As word and YouTube videos spread, they begin taking the show on the road. The onstage setup is simple: usually just an acoustic guitarist and somebody waving their arms (the conductor). The audience does the heavy lifting. No audition required. EXCEPT for this unique performance when they will create a performance choir to join them on the big stage. Could this be you and all your friends?
Their sessions will prepare you to perform in the BIG choir on stage live the evening of July 26 at Canada Far and Wide:Grands Esprits at the Jubilee Auditorium.
Bring: your voice, a love of singing and a desire to join the big choir.