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  • This Month's Live Streaming Guitar Lessons: TUESDAY AUGUST 6TH - USING CHORD TONES AS SEEDS FOR SOLOING. Improvising can be intimidating - but here's a simple trick you can use to spark soloing ideas. By using the chord tones, you can create simple "seed" ideas that can be expandaded into much larger musical ideas. TUESDAY AUGUST 20TH - BEING A SINGER/SONGWRITER WITH ROB HARRIS. Ever dreamed of playing your own songs at a songwriters night? or perhaps playing guitar at a local restaurant? Rob Harris is a master of this and he will be dropping by to talk about crafting your own songs and building gigs. SPECIAL EVENT: MONDAY AUGUST 26TH - THE BOUTIQUE GUITAR SHOWCASE. These are some of the rarest and fascinating instruments in the world. We'll be showing these amazing instruments live from Gruhn Guitars in Nashville Tennessee. Watch LIVE on our Guitar Gathering YouTube Channel. It's going to be a great month! Learn all you can!
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DianeB

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Ssshhh! Don’t blow my cover. It’s Monday night, and I’m spying at Steve Kaufman’s Acoustic Kamp at Maryville College, south of Knoxville. I’m at the evening concert in the gym and I’ve got a man on the inside. Special Agent D9 is from back home. He’s embedded, and I’m disguised as a volleyball coach. We must thwart their diabolical plot to kidnap all the k’s in the English language. My god, I’m totally surrounded by flatpickers. Not a whammy bar in sight, but so far, so good. Wait, what’s that? Someone’s pointing this way from the stage! I hear shouts: “There’s a Krenzie in the audience! A Krenzie? Where? In the back row! There she is! Get her! Get her!…”

… ”Owwww! Diane! Wake up! The show’s about to start!” 

Uhh, what? Oh, Chuck, it’s just you. They were about to get me.

"Huh? Who was about to get you?"

Never mind. Ever heard of Walter Mitty?

Deadline approaches, so here I am in my Knoxville hotel, bleary-eyed from 600 rainy miles (in two days) and now 3 hours of stunning acoustic Americana at the Kaufman Kamp with my pal Chuck. Today was their first day. Never mind my imagination, they are a great bunch of guitar nuts like us. Tomorrow afternoon we get under way with a welcome session and guitar show and tell display. I don't know how many are registered, but my impression from the Gathering Facebook page is that we have a lot of first timers. That's good.

Just 200 more miles to go. And I gain an hour. Yeah! I'm having another cinnamon danish. This week is only going to get better.

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Between Knoxville and Cumberland County, Interstate 40 West drops like a bobsled run for several hundred feet through the mountain ridges south of Oak Ridge. In bad weather it can be excruciating. But today, on a brilliant clear morning with the sun at my back, it was exhilarating. On a Harley? It would have been a religious experience.

I arrived at Trevecca early enough to help Steve and his assistant Jordan wrangle the stage units into place. Paulette and Timothy set up the store and the reception table. Dave White unloaded the boxes with our registration kits -- about 80 of them, nice nylon shoulder bags holding our schedules and a few goodies -- and I scanned the name tags. Most, maybe three fourths, are first timers. Canada and the U.K. are well represented. Even Australia.

By 3:00 the watermelon was in the platters and the ice in the buckets as folks started to arrive. It's so good to see familiar faces: Mark, Andy, Steve, Pat, Dwayne, Keith, Justin. There's Ian, from England, just done touring Memphis! We set up our guitar show and tell display on the stage: a dozen instruments with a brief printed story to go along.

Most of the gang is still traveling; only about a third of the group arrived today. We wrapped at 5:00 to take the night off. So much for the pickup notes. Tomorrow it's full tempo. And I have a song to practice. Hoo boy, here we go.

IMG_1892.JPG

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Posted (edited)

Great to see you again Diane.......and I got my long overdue hug!  

Excited to be back at the Gathering after a three year hiatus. Not only a three year disappearing act from the Gathering but also my guitar journey & destination! Time to get back on track and what better way than attending a customized, focused & concentrated music agenda orchestrated by the "One & Only" STEVE KRENZ!!

Edited by Popeye
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So nice of you early arrivers to help with setup! I was just breezing into Nashville at about 5:00 thanks to some epic traffic jams, so I didn’t have time to get over to Trevecca.

Bright and early tomorrow though, and looking forward to Collin’s workshop! I’ll probably go to the coffee shop on campus in the morning if I can get out the door fast enough. (Anybody know when they open?) oh well... if I’m too early you might find me parked under a tree waking up my guitar.

Here’s to a great week!

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Posted (edited)

Update: looks like it opens at 7:00 AM during the week, 7:30 Saturdays. It’s called Nineteen|01, a Coffeehouse & Market, in the Bud Robinson building which I think is right next to the dorms.

 

***Correction - it opens at 8:00 during summer hours. Patiently awaiting my caffeine now! 😬***

 

Edited by colder

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Thanks Diane.  Wish I could have made this year, will be there next year for sure.  Looking forward to your posts.  It's cool to invent a new "gang, sect, whatever....", I am a darn tooting guitar toten' Krenzie!  Fred H, Texas

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Timothy Krenz took up his post in the back at the video camera. Paulette handed the latest arrivals their totes and name tags. Steve checked his audio on stage. The rehearsal hall buzzed with the chatter of introductions: where are you from, what do you play? So many new people, I thought, it's wonderful, but where did they all come fr--

"Diane?"

"Yes?" A new face. White lanyard. I squinted to read his name tag.

"I'm Eric. 'Sonicfreq' on the forum," he explained, smiling.

"Oh my gosh! You're that Eric!"

"Thank you for answering my questions about the Gathering. You were very helpful."

On stage a familiar Brent Mason Tele sounded the starting bell to Gathering Number 10, and with Steve's good morning, we were off and running. Our morning workout: improving your strumming. Next up, a masterclass by fingerstyle artist Russ Barenberg. He had something to offer everyone, from beginner to advanced. My take away was "pay attention to pick direction".

After lunch in the student center we divided up for our workshops. I went to Collin's fingerstyle class and the blues sessions with Mike Pachelli. Collin buried me quickly (!) but in Mike's blues jam we took turns soloing with his drummer and bass player, and our classmates comping for us. That was too cool.

Greg, Ian, Barbara and I had an early dinner at M. L. Rose's and returned to Trevecca in time to relax a while. I had the loft to myself to practice a bit, then listened in as Greg and Ian rehearsed their showcase duet. Our evening concert was an Acoustic Night: Collin Hill, Van Larkins, Phil Keaggy, and Russ Barenberg -- sweet, dazzling, poignant, percussive, jaw dropping.

And the thumbpick and the flatted fifth were the first day.

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Thanks.  Listening to Collin in the loft is cool, sat in there with him last year.  What a night it must have been for the acoustic sounds.  Thank you for posting.

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Wow! I’m feeling that Guitar Gathering feeling... a combination of buzz from all the fun we are having, that feeling of a brain that’s still got a large backlog of guitar things to process with lots more still to come, and feeling like you want to rush home/back to the dorms/back to your room to practice more!

A binder full of handouts to work on, a notebook full of pearls of wisdom notated in teaching sessions, a perfectly set up guitar, and more plans to do it all again tomorrow. We have a tour of Columbia Studio A? B? in the morning and a full afternoon of Gathering goodness, then for some Jack Pearson’s birthday bash in the evening at 3rd and Lindsley at night. 

What are the highlights so far? All of it, I guess...?? Hah! 

Ok, back to those handouts!

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Of all the theories about who founded Nashville, my favorite is that it was the early explorer Nash Rambler.

Oh, the Gathering? Just two days in and we're getting punchy already. It was an early start for me, finding a quiet spot to review theory a few minutes. I'm sure to be tested this afternoon. Steve led off with a workshop on basic fingerstyle patterns. I hope Collin was able to keep up. We covered some things my tutor has worked with me on, so I was happy. This morning's masterclass was led by Van Larkins, the Aussie fingerstyle wizard. My classmates and I have been impressed by how accessible and explanatory these sessions are. Russ and Van had tips for players of all levels. Looking ahead, Steve announced there were 7 spaces remaining for this year's Fall Fingerstyle Retreat.

After lunch, Debra and I sat to bask in the warm sunshine and chat on this beautiful, mild summer day. It was a blissful change from the oppressive heat of the past two years, and we were both relieved to talk about something other than music for ten minutes.

"Diane! What are you doing here?" Steve teased as I arrived for the advanced theory class. "You can spell chords!"

"I still need help," I said, pulling up a chair. He filled up the board with seventh chords.

"Finally, there's the fully diminished seventh. Now," he began, as Andy entered, "Andy! What's so special about this chord?" They grinned at each other. Steve had his back to me. Silence. I let the question hang in the air for: one, two, three--

"All the intervals are the same," I answered. Steve wiped an imaginary tear from his eye.

Tim Calhoun brought a new topic to us: home recording. He explained that now most recordings in town are tracked individually in home studios. The artists pass sound files around via Dropbox, and someone like Tim polishes the mix until it's ready to master. One the plus side, you can cut and paste the best bits together. On the minus side, the artists aren't in the same room and can't play off each other in person. Afterwards he led the afternoon blues jam. Greg was cooking.

I should take a minute here to mention the sessions that I didn't attend because I can't be in three rooms at the same time. Greg Voros had his guitar setup and maintenance class, and Pat Lindgren led the beginners jam, which was very popular. Kim McLean taught a well received class in songwriting. Jonathan Allen led a session in hymns and worship music, while Rebecca Frazier led the bluegrass/flatpicking jam. Meanwhile, Collin has been teaching fingerstyle, Mel Deal is back for the jazzers, and Paulette Krenz is teaching basic music theory and replenishing our supply of guitar socks. This afternoon wrapped with Steve's Lesson on listening for I-IV-V changes.

Tonight it was Hattie B's chicken for dinner, and Johnny Hiland and his band for the evening concert. You can only feel good in the company of Johnny. And when he plays, you have to hold on to something; it's dizzying. He had a new tune tonight, different from anything I'd heard him play before. And Thom Bresh stopped by for "Nine Pound Hammer".

As we said goodnight after the show, I had the simple joy of thanking each member of the band. And Johnny. And Thom. Sometimes I can't believe my luck.

And the secondary dominant and the chicken picker were the second day.

IMG_1907.JPG

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What she said, except 8 of us went to Corky's for BBQ Ribs for dinner!

Monday- Time Jumpers at 3rd & Linsley.

Tuesday- Visiting family in Nashville area and Registration & Watermelon at Trevecca!!

Wednesday- Workshops......Warm-up with Steve, Blues session & Song Writing class and jam session. Visiting with Greg Voros and gleaning guitar tech information from the master. Great Acoustic concert with three outstanding artists, Collin Hill, Van Larkin & Phil Keaggy. They all knocked it out of the park!

Thursday- Finger Picking with Steve, Home Recording session, Song Writing II, Visiting with Greg Voros again....Great guy and friend. Jam session and playing and singing in front of fellow gathering friends that are very supportive of everyones playing! Fun time for all!

After two days, my brain cells are floating around with musical notes, songs, guitar music, song writing notes, Blues Sessions, Home Recording information, more song writing and song critiques, 12 barre blues , finger picking, theory, jam sessions, acoustic playing and the electrical overload of Johnny Hiland! WOW & WOW backwards.

Tomorrow Columbia Studio A and more workshops! I can't even think about Saturday yet....................? 

Thanks to all the hard work by Steve Krenz and family. These are world class friends and Guitar family! Thanks to all the Gather participants and fellow guitar players.......everyone is so friendly and helpful. This is like a little oasis in life where there is no negative, no hurting and no pain, just fun and music! This is awesome!

Don't keep saying, "Next Year"! Make plans to attend. You won't regret it.

Take care.

Mike

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15 hours ago, DianeB said:

Of all the theories about who founded Nashville, my favorite is that it was the early explorer Nash Rambler.

Oh, the Gathering? Just two days in and we're getting punchy already. It was an early start for me, finding a quiet spot to review theory a few minutes. I'm sure to be tested this afternoon. Steve led off with a workshop on basic fingerstyle patterns. I hope Collin was able to keep up. We covered some things my tutor has worked with me on, so I was happy. This morning's masterclass was led by Van Larkins, the Aussie fingerstyle wizard. My classmates and I have been impressed by how accessible and explanatory these sessions are. Russ and Van had tips for players of all levels. Looking ahead, Steve announced there were 7 spaces remaining for this year's Fall Fingerstyle Retreat.

After lunch, Debra and I sat to bask in the warm sunshine and chat on this beautiful, mild summer day. It was a blissful change from the oppressive heat of the past two years, and we were both relieved to talk about something other than music for ten minutes.

"Diane! What are you doing here?" Steve teased as I arrived for the advanced theory class. "You can spell chords!"

"I still need help," I said, pulling up a chair. He filled up the board with seventh chords.

"Finally, there's the fully diminished seventh. Now," he began, as Andy entered, "Andy! What's so special about this chord?" They grinned at each other. Steve had his back to me. Silence. I let the question hang in the air for: one, two, three--

"All the intervals are the same," I answered. Steve wiped an imaginary tear from his eye.

Tim Calhoun brought a new topic to us: home recording. He explained that now most recordings in town are tracked individually in home studios. The artists pass sound files around via Dropbox, and someone like Tim polishes the mix until it's ready to master. One the plus side, you can cut and paste the best bits together. On the minus side, the artists aren't in the same room and can't play off each other in person. Afterwards he led the afternoon blues jam. Greg was cooking.

I should take a minute here to mention the sessions that I didn't attend because I can't be in three rooms at the same time. Greg Voros had his guitar setup and maintenance class, and Pat Lindgren led the beginners jam, which was very popular. Kim McLean taught a well received class in songwriting. Jonathan Allen led a session in hymns and worship music, while Rebecca Frazier led the bluegrass/flatpicking jam. Meanwhile, Collin has been teaching fingerstyle, Mel Deal is back for the jazzers, and Paulette Krenz is teaching basic music theory and replenishing our supply of guitar socks. This afternoon wrapped with Steve's Lesson on listening for I-IV-V changes.

Tonight it was Hattie B's chicken for dinner, and Johnny Hiland and his band for the evening concert. You can only feel good in the company of Johnny. And when he plays, you have to hold on to something; it's dizzying. He had a new tune tonight, different from anything I'd heard him play before. And Thom Bresh stopped by for "Nine Pound Hammer".

As we said goodnight after the show, I had the simple joy of thanking each member of the band. And Johnny. And Thom. Sometimes I can't believe my luck.

And the secondary dominant and the chicken picker were the second day.

Thanks to our intrepid reporter @DianeB !

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Great recaps. Thank you Diane. I couldn’t make it this year but the way you are describing it, i feel like I am there...

Tom

 

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Today's theme was improvisation. A few days before we started, Steve's plans for a tour of the Gibson factory fell through, so he had to scramble for a morning program. He arranged for a visit to Curb Studio and a return to historic Columbia Studio B and the Quonset Hut. We listened to stories from our raconteur host, who was an engineer in its heyday. Yes indeed, Patsy Cline stood right there on 'Crazy'. Goosebumps.

Our schedule crimped, we had to dash back to Trevecca in time for lunch and our afternoon workshops. For me, it was more on chord substitutions with Steve.

The entire congregation reassembled for a session on improvising over "Stand By Me" with Steve and Dino Pastin. Our UK delegation contributed a great little solo line and our boys cooked up a fun lesson on the fly. Finally, we all piled on stage, guitars in hand, for the group picture.

We adjourned early to a have a little down time. Fatigue is showing on some of us. A large contingent hit 3rd and Lindsley for Jack Pearson's Birthday Bash. Terrific. But Dave, Keith, Collin and I bailed out before the finale; we were fading. If only we could take the weekend off and start it up again Monday, but no, the finish line approaches.

And the ii-V-I and the hallowed ground were the third day.

IMG_1917.JPG

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Once again, kudos to our "Krenzie Reporter", Diane!  Job well done and appreciated, thanx from "hotter than heck" Texas!

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It is Saturday. For me, it's the most emotional day of Gathering week. One last drive to campus on a gorgeous summer morning. I parked and pulled my electric guitar case from the car. "Okay, Judi," I said, patting her case. "You're back in Nashville, where I found you. Let's do what we came to do."

Another scheduling glitch, another quick key change. Our guest workshop leader had to cancel at the very last minute. In his place, Steve walked us through his chart of All the Chords You Need to Know. It can't be an easy trick to offer 80 students of all skill levels a useful takeaway, but he pulls it off, every time. Perhaps it slipped his mind -- I doubt it -- but Steve didn't announce the dates for next year.

Now for the real fun: the Student Showcase, when our fellow students take the stage and show us what they've got. They give it their all and it's pure joy to watch and listen. We had classical, folk, traditional, novelty, sacred, and someone even slipped in a country rocker. Pat brought some of her jam mates to the stage to lead the house in a play along finale. Steve and Paulette, beaming with pride, bade us farewell.

Soon the room was a cacophony of sliding chairs, snapping cases, and goodbyes. We signed Steve's Memory Book, traded phone numbers, shook hands and hugged each other to the door.

I opened the back of the car and made room for Judi. "You were great, baby," I said, giving her another pat. I sat behind the wheel, and let the tears run for a minute. A couple of tissues later, I drove off, waving so long -- for now -- to Trevecca.

And my guitar brothers and sisters were the final day.

IMG_1921.JPG

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Posted (edited)
On 6/13/2019 at 10:53 PM, DianeB said:

Meanwhile

Thank you Diane and Mike for sharing your experiences these last few days. With wit and humor your daily  journalism has been the final thing I read before I turn off the hotel room lamp for another blissful rest each night here. Joyful reminders of each fascinating and invigorating day at the Guitar Gathering , launch my slumbering dreams of tomorrow. It’s a blitz, as I look back in reflection. The workshops ( how often does one get to jam with professional guitarists, I ask slack-jawed, and gather up bits of wisdom from them in the process) the instructional classes, the world class entertainment, the graciousness, encouragement and humor of Steve Krenz - these are all there for the  wide-eyed attendees .....myself included. Yet as I reflect on all those moments there, awaiting departure to home, my greatest takeaway is the people themselves. Experienced or novice, this is a unique and joyous opportunity to see old friends and make new ones in our guitar community. I met Popeye ( Mike) who is largely responsible with his hard work alongside Steve to relaunch the new Gatherings. I met Colder who has given so many positive contributions to the forum community. I met two wonderful gentlemen from my corner of the states, the northwest, who got waylaid in Denver in-route and lost a day of activities but still found enjoyment in the remaining days of activities. These are just a few-the  list goes on. I reconnected with old friends from the previous years I attended , as if it was just yesterday, catching up on  things in their lives. And then there is the warmth and support of the entire Krenz family that just inspires me to be the best person I can possibly be, much less musician. It is the people , folks, who complete the package at the Gathering.

In all of this, my greatest highlight this year was finally meeting someone whom I have known for a decade through the forums as a musical kinsman,  Ian D from the UK. We have collaborated, along with others,  on numerous song compositions in the subsection of Song Composing Collaborations which Ian created on the previous student site. To finally meet this charming , witty Brit was a joyous moment for me and I confess to stealing as much of his time and good vibes as I could over the next several days. One can never find greater satisfaction in life, I believe, than the comfort and joy of family and good friends  . May we meet again Ian, my brother.

in final thought to our forum friends, someday plan to come to Nashville and share some remarkable days and collect some lifetime memories at Steve’s Guitar Gathering . And thank you Steve and family for all the hard and at times arduous work in preparation and overseeing this event , making our stay with you one of our live’s treasured moments. With gratitude....

Greg

 

 

 

Edited by gotto
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Posted (edited)
On 6/15/2019 at 3:16 PM, DianeB said:

Perhaps it slipped his mind -- I doubt it -- but Steve didn't announce the dates for next year.

 

 

 

I've been toying with the 2600+ kilometer road trip (vs flying) to next years Gathering 2020 and staying in the dorm,

but the wife also tossed out there that she's "not staying in a 'dorm' , if we're going to Nashville next year .. especially if it's lined up with NAMM again."

for some reason she loved NAMM day 

that would put it in July 9-11 range.. 

crossing my fingers..

 

Edited by Eracer_Team-DougH

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Nope, it didn't slip my mind (as slippery as my mind is during conference week!).

I inquired about next years dates but Trevecca is holding off on setting dates for anything next summer for a few weeks due to some building renovations scheduled on campus and they aren't sure how they are going to effect everything.

Rest assured, I'll be bugging the events coordinator at Trevecca and as soon as they commit to something I'll let you know.

- Steve 

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Kudos to @DianeB for her day by day reporting of the conference. The only energy I could muster at the end of the day was to turn down the covers and fall into bed. Highlights for me were:

  • The meet and greet - It was wonderful to see old friends once again and to meet newcomers. Since most on the forum don't use their real names, it was great to finally link a face and real name to a forum ID.
  • Just before turning in on Tuesday, Collin walked me through his fingerstyle lessons for the week. He is as talented an educator as he is a guitar player.
  • The fingerstyle concert at the conclusion of day one was wonderful. Collin, Van Larkins, Phil Keaggy, and Russ Barenberg were terrific. I had long wanted to meet Russ Barenberg - the tone that he gets out of his guitar is truly inspiring.
  • Closed out day one with Collin and friends (Antonio, Forest, and Van) at ML Rose's. We didn't close the place down, but were still out way past my bed time. 🙂
  • Day two was filled with great workshops - including a very helpful one by Steve that focused on hearing chord changes.
  • Day three included one of my favorite workshops - Steve and Dino Pastin on improvisation.
  • Day three ended with Jack Pearson's Birthday Bash at 3rd and Lindsley - the music was awesome - the drunk women dancing in front of us, not so much.

It all happened too fast and was over too quickly. I am already looking forward to next year!

Photo below with Russ Barenberg

IMG_1638.JPG

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1 hour ago, Dave White said:

Day two was filled with great workshops - including a very helpful one by Steve that focused on hearing chord changes.

Sounds like a great topic for a Live Lesson...

Bryan

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@DianeB, thanks for making the commitment to keeping everyone posted, it’s hard to find time. As I mentioned to you, I have always waited eagerly for the daily updates to see what you were all up to.

Well, this year I attended and it was the experience of a lifetime!

i can’t begin to describe everything, I’d be here for hours. However, the highlights where:

1. The people: what an amazing group of friendly, supportive people from all over and with a common interest.

2. Steve’s sessions: he was on great form and kept us well entertained with his great wit while he educated us in the way we all know he can.

3. The private evening concerts: the four acoustic players seemed to bend the rules of physics to coax jaw-dropping sounds from their instruments. Johnny Hiland, his band and his guests were on fire, what a priviledge to watch them.

4. Great workshops and jam sessions led by awesome people.

5. Getting to meet my great forum friend @gotto for the first time after knowing him for a decade. We spent lots of time together and he graciously drove me around because I was nervous about driving on the ‘wrong’ side of the road. 

6. Playing live on stage in Nashville with Greg!!! Unfortunately, my nerves got the better of me and I messed up (sorry Greg), but I did it.

7. Going to the Grand Ole Opry with Diane after the conference closed, such a delight, and being treated with another amazing/dazzling guitar display from Nashville duo ‘Striking Matches’ who drew a standing ovation from the Opry crowd. ( @Steve Krenz you should consider getting Striking Matches on your show, they were amazing at the Opry).

Sadly, it’s all over now and I’m on my way home. A huge thank you to Steve, his family, team and all the contributors. This is clearly a massive undertaking to organise and deliver and we all appreciate it enormously.

Finally, thank you to my dear friends for your warmth and company.

ian

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Hey Dave, I am a fan of Russ also.  Had the privelege of taking lessons with him last year at Swannanoa.  We are so lucky that Steve can bring in such great players.  Loved his set at the acoustic session....just him and his guitar.  Great to see you again. Pat

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