Lively workshops focusing on instruments and bluegrass techniques (known to break into legendary jam sessions) are a signature feature of FreshGrass.
This year’s workshop lineup is sure to set any Americana fan’s heart racing with sessions led by father and son fingerpickers Happy and Adam Traum, Darol Anger and Joe Walsh from Berklee College of Music’s American Roots Program, Mike + Ruthy, and Alison Brown with Jaroslav Prucha.
All workshops are free with admission. Select workshops encourage attendees to bring instruments. Space is limited, so register on the day of the event when you arrive at the festival – first come, first served. Workshops are located on the 3rd floor, above the museum lobby.
11am Vocal Harmony Workshop
Three-part harmony can be magic, so come give it a try! Experience the fun of finding your own part and raising the roof with a good group holler. Mike + Ruthy guide the group in the basics and experiments with some of their favorite intervals, balancing the obvious and the weird. This workshop is great for all experience levels: harmony ninjas and true beginners welcome.
12pm Banjo MegaJam with Greg Liszt
1pm Q&A with Alison Brown and Jaroslav Prucha
The banjo might just be as American as baseball, apple pie, and low voter turnout. But did you know that in the Czech Republic, the banjo was the instrument of choice for people protesting communism? Join Alison Brown and Jaroslav Prucha, master banjo builder and founder of Prucha Banjos in Prague, with Greg Liszt and Victor Furtado as they discuss the colorful history of the banjo in the Czech Republic and demonstrate several of Prucha’s exceptional banjos.
11am Step into the Spotlight
Taking a lead solo can be a daunting prospect for aspiring blues pickers. In this workshop Happy and Adam Traum demystify soloing ideas and develop them into a set of licks that can be easily transferred to many blues songs. The Traums will work in a few different keys and will also demonstrate how using a capo can help two guitars complement each other by occupying different sonic areas of the fretboard.
12pm The Mandolin Mashup
Led by Berklee College of Music’s Joe Walsh and his special guests, hear from the best as they tell stories, answer questions, and play great music.
1pm Fiddle Around
Darol Anger, associate professor of the American Roots Music Program at Berklee, brings together some of the best fiddlers from FreshGrass to discuss style, technique, and improvisation. Bring your instrument and expect to play.