By Anne Jardine
Steamboat Mountain Music Society
Duncan Bedford attended the July 5th Steamboat Festival with his artist wife Lee, helping her pack and unpack her wares for her Canyon Creek Pottery vendor display, and assisting her with sales all day. They left the festival grounds at twilight, skipping the last couple of acts because they had a long drive home to Nicholson, just south of Golden. Meanwhile, back at the festival, the Yamaha Guitar Raffle draw was made, and Duncans name was announced as the winner of the beautiful mahogany electric-acoustic guitar.
When the Bedfords returned home, they received the call from a festival volunteer letting them know that Duncan had won. Not wanting to drive back to Edgewater that night, he decided to claim his guitar at the Sunday Music Workshop the following day at the Edgewater All Saints Churchyard. His prize was presented to him at the workshop, where he was delighted to have his first lesson on the special features of his new guitar. He participated in the workshop and picked up a few new chord progressions and strum patterns. Duncan has some new tricks to practice, and a sweet new instrument to try them on.
While Steamboat Mountain Music Festival presents and celebrates music, it also has another important aspect supporting the development of musicians through Sunday festival workshops, and an annual bursary. This year, the Sunday workshops grew. In the first year, 2012, there was one workshop led by banjo virtuoso Chris Cool on a hundred years of great songs in conjunction with Edgewaters hundred year anniversary. The second year, 2013, workshops were offered by Red Girl on vocal harmony, and by 5 On A String bluegrass band, which taught about Bill Munroe and the evolution of the bluegrass tradition. This year, the workshops were three: The Cumberland Brothers on methods of tuning and blending vocals and instrumentals; a songwriting session with Rick Scott; and guitar techniques with John Cronin and Mac Walter.
The Steamboat Mountain Music Bursary is now open for applications. Musicians from the Columbia Valley of any age or stage can apply for assistance with courses, lessons, master classes, workshops or music camps. The deadline for applications is September 30th. Awards are announced by November 1st. Call 250-347-9860 for further information.