Our workshop program expanded in 2013 with two kinds of workshops: instrument-specific intensives, focused on playing hints and techniques (BYOI – bring your own instruments for these, please!); and seminars featuring conversations between performers and industry professionals. Workshops are led by Berklee College of Music’s American Roots Program students and faculty, as well as a few FreshGrass artists. All workshops are free with admission. Space is limited so register on the day of the event when you arrive at the festival – first come, first serve.

Bluegrass Band Rhythm – Saturday, 11am, B10.3 Theater

John Reischman & the Jaybirds, one of the acoustic world’s top-ranked mandolin players and composers, will demonstrate how instruments work together in a bluegrass ensemble, from the ground up.

So You’ve Made a CD – Now What? – Saturday, 12pm, B10.3 Meeting Room

Garry West, Compass Records co-founder, addresses the question that so many young artists are confronted with: what’s the next step? If you have a record you’re proud of, all the possible paths for promotion and distribution can be overwhelming. So, take a deep breath and soak in some advice from the best in the biz.

Mandolin Seminar – Saturday, 1pm, B10.3 Theater

Joe Walsh, Mandolin Principle of the American Roots Music Program at Berklee College of Music, will be joined by a special guest for this hands-on workshop. Bring your mandolin.

Bluegrass Music Theory – Saturday, 2pm, B10.3 Meeting Room

Theory classes might not be your favorite, but we will change your mind at FreshGrass this year. Berklee professor Matt Glaser will break down the rhythm, harmony, melody, structure, form, and texture of bluegrass music. No instruments are required.

Banjo Megajam – Sunday, 11am, B10.3 Theater

Bill Evans, Chris Pandolfi of The Infamous Stringdusters, and Nick Hornbuckle of The Jaybirds join forces for an epic tri-banjo megajam! Feel free to bring banjoes and learn the secrets of bluegrass’ most storied instrument.

What Makes a Band Work? – Sunday, 12pm, B10.3 Meeting Room

Dave Hollender, a professor in the Ensemble program at Berklee College of Music, will explain how different elements come together to make a band jive. No instruments are required.

Fiddle Seminar – Sunday, 1pm, B10.3 Theater

Matt Glaser, Artistic Director of the American Roots Music Program at Berklee College of Music, and some of his FreshGrass friends will teach a techniques workshop on the ol’ devil’s box. Bring your fiddle.

Luthier Activities – Saturday and Sunday, Fretboard Tent, Couryard C

Throughout the weekend, Steve Sauve of Sauve Guitars and Jason Verlinde of The Fretboard Journal will be on site to discuss the art of the lutherie. Stop by Courtyard C to meet Steve and Jason and learn more about the craft, Sauve Guitars, and The Fretboard Journal, a boutique magazine for guitar, mandolin, and stringed instrument players. These activities will be spontaneous so signup is not required.