Monroe-Style Mandolin Camp

international bluegrass music museumThe International Bluegrass Music Museum is hosting two Monroe-Style Mandolin Camps this month. The first camp runs September 8-10 and the second one September 15-17, 2006. The camps feature some great instruction from Mike Compton, Skip Gorman, David Long, Red Henry, Chris Henry, and Butch Waller. Registration is limited to 40 students in each camp allowing for a lot of personal attention from the instructors. A mandolin competition as well as a tune-writing showcase will also be held at each camp. The cost of the camp is $400 per student for three days of instruction and includes two nights at the Hampton Inn, and admision to the camp concert.

Each camp offers a Saturday night concert that is open to the public. The first of these concerts is to be help September 9th at 8 PM. The concert takes place at Woodward’s Cafe right next to the museum in the RiverPark Center Complex. This concert features Mike Compton, Skip Gorman, David Long, Red Henry, and Chris Henry.

The second camp concert will be held September 16th at 8 PM. This concert takes place at the Owensboro Symphony Recital Hall, also in the Riverpark Center Complex, and features Roland White, Mike Compton, Butch Waller, Skip Gorman, and David Long.

Guitarist Tom Ewing, author of the Bill Monroe Reader and himself a former Bluegrass Boy, will perform at both events. Other luminary guest artists are expected to attend, coming from across the country to take part in this historic event. After each concert, the public is invited to meet and greet these mandolin masters in person and get to know the campers who are coming from thirty states and abroad to attend these camps.

Seating is limited to 100 at each concert and tickets are $20. You can purchase them at the IBMM gift shop or at the door. Advance reservations can be made by calling the museum at (270) 926-7891.

I spoke briefly with Red Henry about the camp event. Here’s what Red had to say:

I don’t know if the word has gotten around yet, but Frank Wakefield is in the hospital for a triple bypass, and had to cancel his scheduled appearance as an instructor at the camp. (The operation is complete, and I understand that Frank is doing okay.) So Mike Lawing hired our son Christopher to fill his spot– a well-qualified choice, too. Chris picks up where I leave off, as far as the Monroe mandolin playing goes, and has taught at the prestigious Augusta Heritage Week as well as other mandolin camps.Chris has just released a great CD, “Monroe Approved,” featuring highly original Monroe-inspired material and some little-known Monroe tunes, all backed up by an all-star group of Nashville bluegrass players. Also, as an instructor for the Murphy Method, Chris taught our Bill Monroe-Style Mandolin DVD, where he teaches several classic Monroe tunes literally note-by-note.

This Monroe-style camp will be an unprecedented opportunity for mandolin players to learn, ask questions, and immerse themselves in an atmosphere of Bill Monroe’s mandolin playing. For example, as part of my own instruction material, I’m bringing with me an assortment of Bill’s mandolin breaks from live shows in the 1960s, featuring some nearly-incredible mandolin licks which Bill never played on his records.

Looking forward to the camp–