Kevin understands that songwriting can be super tricky.  It’s a lot harder to write a hit song than it is to recognize an awesome tune when you hear it on the radio. His hope, while you’re here, is that you don’t put any pressure on yourself to write a new song, or finish an old one, but that you follow what inspires you, what moves you, and see where it takes you. There are 2 types of workshops offered: Beginners Class and Masters Class.

If you’re theme-oriented, here it is: Awareness ~ of what you’re writing and what’s happening between you and the listener.

For Beginners Only: How To Get Started

2017 Dates:  April 7–8

Ever thought about coming to one of these workshops, and then chickened out because you didn’t think you were qualified? This is the workshop for you. We’re going to start at the beginning and learn the basics. Rhymes, Rhythm, Melody, and Structure. There is no requirement to write a song, only to work on something. And it’s half-price too!  All day Friday and Saturday, ending with a songswap at Kevin’s house or a meet-up for the group at a local venue.

  • Simple Structures. The basic architecture of a song. The reasons for form, and how to find it.
  • Rhyme and Rhythm. How to decide on a rhyme pattern, and why we want to stick with it. How to discover the best rhythms to carry your words.
  • Song Bench. We’ll take a couple of our favorite songs apart and see how they work, and why they work so well.
  • Writing time. We will supply you with a puzzle or a task or a mission, if you need somewhere to start from. Otherwise, this is a time to just immerse yourself in your wild imagination. Whether you choose to be a part of a group, or a co-writer or two, Kevin will be making the rounds for one on one time.
  • Remember the listener. Songwriting is writing to be heard, not read. That changes everything.
  • Melody. The melody of the spoken word is the key. It’s not just what you say, it’s how you say it.

Master Class: Crank Up the Awareness

2017 Dates: TBA!

This is the workshop for you if you’ve been writing a while and feel like you need a tune-up, some new ideas, fresh perspectives, and a damn nice getaway. May in the Hill Country is unspeakably sweet, and our place is a great retreat, a place to give yourself permission to turn off the phone and dive in to your creative side. Stay tuned for news on our guest teachers for the May and October Workshops.

  • Cranking up our Awareness. How to make sure they are hearing what you think you’re saying.
  • Melody. It’s not just what you say, it’s also how you say it. The melody of the spoken word, and all its hidden meanings.
  • What makes certain songs so memorable. We’ll select a few killers, lay them out on the table and investigate. It’s like Anatomy Class with a little less blood.
  • Writing time, solo or in pairs or groups. Group or one-on-one with Kevin and guest teacher of the day.
  • Song breakdowns – we take a look at what makes certain songs work and not work
  • Making Movies. Using imagery to show the story. Why a picture really is worth a thousand words.
  • Allegory. How to pick one metaphor and stick with it. The art of the Parable. We’ll take a look at some good examples in song form.
  • Dr. Who’s Phone Box. Why can something as tiny as a song hold such vast  stories, pictures, emotions, and truths, all while making us wanna dance?
  • Performance discussion – If you are a performing musician or have dreams of performing some day, please ask our teachers about a performance session.  This session could include what should an artist do to prepare before the performance, how to pick the best songs for a show, tricks to use in tough audience situations and more.

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