Country Blues => Saturday Night Fish Fry => Port Townsend Country Blues Workshop => Topic started by: Slack on August 04, 2003, 01:41:24 PM

Title: Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Slack on August 04, 2003, 01:41:24 PM
Greetings All,

Just a quick note to start the topic in case anyone wants a place to post.

What a grand time!  I keep thinking the workshop cannot get any better - year after year!  Superb faculty (in increasing numbers), great classes, great afternoon and evening workshops and entertainment - the particpants concert was even a standout - (relatively speaking  ;) ). Great work Bruce, Although I'm sure there was a hitch or two - I did not hear of any - very smoothly run and great flexability shown in handling the Armstrong tributes.

The Weenie house was great this year - what a hang out! - the wit, bullshit, laughs, jokes, smart-ass comments, dumb-ass comments, food, coordination, alcohol consumption, cooperation, morning walks to town and just plain good company were.... simply superb.  Really great that Johnm, Ari, David Evans, Lightnen' (Mr. Party in-a-box!) and other faculty dropped in often and stayed late!

Thanks all for the *fantastic* time!

OK, back to staring at the wall and other attempts at work - this reality stuff is brutal today.

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: kid reno on August 05, 2003, 07:54:26 AM
Hi Guys,
I want to thank all the weenies for making my return to Pt. Townsend great.  I too really enjoyed the faculty that hung out at the weenie house and felt that we had concerts every night.  Great food, drink, but mostly the company.  
I came home sleep deprived, overweight, and with very sore fingers.  I must haave had a great time.  A special thanks to my roomy Front Page for letting me share his space.
On the flip flop,

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Johnm on August 05, 2003, 03:12:33 PM
Hi all,
I'd just like to extend my thanks for all the hospitality the Weenies showed everyone who came by their primary domicile (whether on staff at P.T. or not).  For old-timers like me who know how bad the food service can be, it is a great improvement over the past to be able to have delicious dinners in good company, but for newcomers like David Evans, Paul and Judy Luis Watson, and others, I'm sure it made a special difference to be able to walk into such a welcoming situation.
Music and teaching were really fun for me at camp this year (though I didn't have a tremendous amount of energy for heading up to 204 in the evening).  Having Lightning, Ari , and John Dee back made things a lot of fun and just juiced up the general level of musical energy.  There really was too much for me to take in, but that's okay, such abundance means there is "something for everyone".  It is great to see how quickly people are picking up things in classes now.
Apart from the music and teaching, though, it was tremendous fun, as John D. said, good and bad quips, we may remember the best and some of the lame ones, too ("Lock and load!).  And the walks kept my energy up all week.  A great time.
All Best,
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Bill Roggensack on August 05, 2003, 11:28:34 PM
Well - it was another great year at PTCBW. Kudos to Bruce Reid and his able right-hand gals, the ubiquitous JoanG and the lovely BonitaZ. Also, thanks to JohnM, PeterM and all the others who helped Bruce put the program together. I wish I could do it all over again in about a month so I could sit in on all the other classes that held interest for me - Stgeve and Del's classes on guitar duet playing, Ari's Blind Blake sessions, Lightnin's ramble through the obscure and divine, and maybe even some of the blues singing classes (God knows I could use the help, if for no other reason to crack the secret of learning lyrics!). I arrived home pretty tired, but that will pass. Unlike some of my more sensible 'aging' colleagues, I refused to succumb to the urge to be in bed before midnight. I have Jed to thank for sending Heric to room with me - I'll blame all my late night indiscretions on him and Lightinin'. It was a treat to have Kid Reno in attendance, and despite a bit of friendly bickering between us homies, I think we got on at least as well as the 'Odd Couple'. That's my story and I'm sticking to it!

First - the classes. I pretty much stuck to Rich Del Grosso's mandolin classes in the morning and John Miller's late afternoon recap, and floated around in the after-lunch time slot. I caught David Evans on Tommy Johnson one day, and made jambalaya on another. Rich did a superb job with his choice of material, hand-outs, and excellent teaching technique. I was ready to absorb at exactly the level he hit, and four classes has given me a wealth of new mando material to build on. As usual, John Miller's classes were a treat - some very cool songs, and in particular, my personal thanks for covering athe Robert Belfour material. I've had a chance to listen to his new album, and I agree with your assessment that "What's Wrong With You" is a much stronger outing. I clearly have my work cut out to master all (or at least some) of the materilal I've collected on MD.

Then - the concerts. I thoroughly enjoyed the Ari/John concert on Tuesday evening, and I got the whole thing (minus the final tune) on MD with a recording that sounds pretty good. There was some truly beautiful playing that night, and Ari's dry humour was icing on the cake. I also enjoyed the Participant's Concert - there were actually some pretty decent  performances (especially 10 year old Jonah doing Skip James - watch out David Jacob-Strain!). A trip to the Public House on Friday night allowed DougT and me to catch two sets of the Yes Yes Boys - I particularly enjoyed the clarinet/sax work of Craig Flory.

Next - the 'events'. It was great to get together with everyone, and to once again have the opportunity to stay on Officer's Row - deep thanks to BruceR and JedP for making this happen. There were some truly great meals whipped up at Weenie Central, and I was really pleased to see so many faculty members taking advantage of this 'service'. Everyone pitched in with the prep and clean-up, so mmany hands made light work. Where else could you score 'all you can eat' BBQ salmon and halibut, gourmet hamburgers, jambalaya, grilled pork chops, corn bread, collard greens, and Greek salad all on the same menu. PeterM and JoanG - thanks for all the fresh produce, especially that mutant onion! David Evans, Ari and Andy Cohen became kitchen regulars - frequently entertaining us with their renderings at all hours of the day, including breakfast. Some of the story telling around that table brought tears to my eyes. JohnM - I've already gotten pretty good mileage out of your 'Hindenburg maneouver' story! Another highlight was Lauren and Ed's cocktail party - a real success with a professional bar tender and all. But the highlight for me was the entertainment - first, a Mexican band, then Lightnin' Wells with his ukelele repertoire. My next favoirite event was the Weenie chorus lending authenticity to Lightnin's verson of 'Cecelia' (not the Paul Simon tune). And I will finish up my list with Lightnin' and PeterM leading the pack into a couple hours of hillbilly and Louvin Brothers tunes - albeit at 2 in the morning!

Finally - the regrets. I wish I had slept more. I wish I had drunk and eaten less. And I wish I wasn't such a lousy liar!

In closing, I think that word of Howard Armstrong's death took a bit of the shine off the week since so many of the faculty and students knew and loved Howard. He will always stand as an example to me of how one can live life to the fullest. If there was ever a self-actualized man, it was William Howard Taft Armstrong. The CENTRUM memorial service on Friday afternoon was both fitting and touching. FYI, PBS is running 'Sweet Old Song' in encore on August 12, 2003 at 10 PM EST (check local listings). This film premiered on July 30, 2002 and is well worth watching. Here's a link to Howard's obit in the New York Times:


All for now,

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: frankie on August 07, 2003, 03:44:37 PM
I had a good time at Clifftop this year, but missed you guys sorely.  Strangely enough, I did manage to get something of a Country Blues fix while I was there:  I ran into Nate Layne, who can sing eerily like Clarence Ashley and knows tons of Mississippi Sheiks and Papa Charlie Jackson songs.  I also met a guy named Todd Cambio, who happens to build amazing replicas of Stella 12 strings under the name Fraulini.  I talked PT up to him - maybe he'll make it out there...  

He had one 12 out there with him - a Francesca model (jumbo body).  Poor guy was walking it around the camp looking for somebody who was interested in that kind of thing.  All the old-time guys kept giving it the hairy eyeball - then he stumbled across me.  I can't play any Leadbelly or Blind Willie McTell to speak of, but it sure was fun to play (and, to my credit, I recognized exactly what it was as soon as I clapped eyes on it!).  He's a player too - with a nice touch and a really nice guy.

Anyway, I'm gonna see Ari over the weekend, so I'll try and get as many good stories out of him as I can!
Title: Re:Clifftop (was --> PTCBW Decompression)
Post by: Bill Roggensack on August 07, 2003, 03:52:15 PM

Tell us more about Clifftop. There was a rumour going around the PTCBW could be moved back to late June in 2005. It is being held a week later in 2004, starting the first week of August.

Will that make it easier for you to return to Port Townsend? Maybe as faculty? Hint, hint .....

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: frankie on August 07, 2003, 04:16:08 PM
Well, I guess I spent most of my time chasing my kids around the camp...  Still, there was a lot of amazing music to hear, even if I didn't get to play as much as I would have liked (which is a lot more than I could have realistically expected, admittedly).  I entered the banjo competition for the first time and while I didn't place, I did get lots of support from people who are kind of my heroes:  Walt Koken, Marvin Gaster, Pete Peterson.  I played a banjo version of Muddy Waters "I Be's Troubled".  It was fun, but I'm sure that I disqualified myself because it's not a traditional tune.  You can hear an early version of it here:


I think I play it a bit better now, but it should give you an idea.

As for PTCBW next year, I'm thinking that we'll forego Clifftop next year and make PT the big vacation.  I'm not sure if we'll bring the kids, but I'd love for Kim to go - her fiddling is really starting to take shape.  It'd be nice if Suzy Thompson was there again (hint, hint, hint!).

Anyway - gotta go get the chillens in bed!
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: frankie on August 07, 2003, 04:20:40 PM
Plus - enough about Clifftop...  I wanna hear more about PT!
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Slack on August 08, 2003, 10:47:16 AM
Hey Frank, good to hear from you!

The blues banjo sounds great, I would have voted for you! ;)

PT was packed with activities and has been the last few years, which I think is great but has the disadvantage of limiting playing together.  I was getting up at 7:15am and going to bed around 1:30am (although one night I had to retire at 12:30 in order to recover from staying up till 3:30 the night before).... and I regret missing those 6 hours each day!  We were supposed to have a Weenie SC meeting on Monday at 11, the dead day,  couldn't get to it!

I enjoyed Andy Cohen, a varied Repertoire - a vaudvillian (if that is a word) songster, effusive, high energy and very funny.  Brought a 50's Epiphone hybrid (archtop guitar with a flat top!).. that he liked a lot.  

I enjoyed David Evans.  He had no one show up in is first class, but by Wed. had 25-30 in his afternoon workshop.  He gave informal scholarly talks and he is a great player.  Played a very modern looking Dobro reso, which was really a contrast to the old , very country style of playing.... but lots of variation in his playing and the clanging Dobro reso suited his style perfectly - he was great!  

I enjoyed Lightin' Wells, (party in a box!) - great last minute addition. His NC drawl, evil grin and wicked laugh were infectious.  Superb Uke playing of some great old and funny songs, (he plays everything as far as I can tell) = one great time.   There were several others that were itching to play during Lauren's happy hour - the Uke ruled!

I really enjoyed JohnM's and Ari's intmate evening concert.  Swapping songs in very relaxed fashion -- JohnM's arrangements and originals contrasted with Ari's perfectly executed classics made for a great evening.    I tell ya, there are a lot of quick, dry wits and smart-a's at PT - but I think I'm safe to say that no one can hold a candle to the lightening quick wit of Ari on or off the stage!  The deftness with which he flushed a drunken harp player - was a thing to behold.  

.... more later.  I've got a few photos to post (who has time to take photos!), which I'll do this weekend. Will also try to figure out how to do a different background in the photo gallery (no guarantees) as it is tough to read..

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Slack on August 08, 2003, 12:00:41 PM
...also.  Encourage Ted to do PT, he would find much enthusiasm for his Stella 12 Strings.  Steve James was gushing about his Ralph Brown stella 12- string - I did not see it or here it up close, but they are supposed to be top rate.  http://www.hlmusic.com/ralphBowngtrs.htm

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: uncle bud on August 08, 2003, 12:36:00 PM
Hi All (Hiya Frank!),

As others have eloquently stated, it was another great year. It just seems to keep getting better, much to our collective astonishment. Bruce Reid did a great job taking it up yet another notch and I presume is still getting some well deserved rest in California (where you will soon all be forced to speak in Austrian accents). Wife Bonnie and right hand gal Joan Greene were also superb and deserve kudos.

If I can be presumptuous I would say the Weenies did a good job as well, from feeding many faculty at the main house over the week, to the blues buddies program, helping out Andy Cohen with Honeyboy Edwards, making sure John Dee Holeman was getting any rides or help he needed, shuttling faculty like Robert Lowery to and from the Fort, into town, around the grounds during the workshop, even providing instruments to performers for the festival (LWood's tricone for Lowery, Repp's 12-string for Ari to play a Leadbelly tune). There were also numerous miscellaneous errands for Centrum and even medical attention from our favorite mando-plucking plastic surgeon for a kid who walked into a tree. I'm sure I'm forgetting more.

I didn't get to do as much playing as I'd have liked because of my ongoing battle with tendinitis but with careful pacing, ice, and Advil, I was able to play through the whole week in all the classes I attended without difficulty. Resting the hand forced me to miss some of John Miller's late repeat classes and I regret that, though was thrilled with his songster class on Joe Callicott, Stack O' Lee, and Robert Wilkins. Calicott's version of Frankie and Albert was one of the highlight's of the week for me. Thank you John.

I did classes with John, Ari, David Evans and Lightnin' Wells. Would have liked to have checked out Steve James and Del Rey's duet class and checked out Robert Lowery. He's a character, quite funny, and always looking for someone who's playing music.

It was great to meet John Heric, another very fine Weenie and a talker and wit to give FrontPage a run for his money. John, I didn't get to see you off when you dashed out on Friday but now that you're living in the area I trust we'll see you next year.

The concerts at the festival were very strong. Cephas and Wiggins were better than I've ever heard them. Phil in particular was blowing the shit out of his harp. Maybe daughter Martha's presence cranked things up.  :)  Robert Lowery, Ari, Del and Steve, John Miller, Andy Cohen and more put on very strong sets. It was fun to meet Andy, who competes with Lightnin' Wells in the party-in-a-box category, though I think Lightnin' has more tunes and a better accent.  ;)  The only downers at the concert were Honeyboy, who was dropping beats, bars and everything else all over the place and is IMO just too old to play in a group or duet setting. I think he could pull off a solo set where no one had to follow him. The audience was nevertheless very sympathetic and could have been ugly.

The other downer was the gospel set. Unlike the years I've been attending PTCBW, the workshop's gospel choir did not perform at the festival but was given an 11:00 am slot at the chapel. I imagine a lot of people missed seeing them because of that. Cora Jackson brought in her regular singers and rhythm section instesd for the festival slot. Frankly, they weren't very good, certainly nowhere near good enough to bump the choir. The style of gospel was far to pop for me -- at one point I turned to Slack and said aside from the religious lyrics, this could be a Lionel Ritchie tune. Thumbs down. It seemed many agreed with me as I watched people stream out of the hangar during that set, which normally garners standing ovations.

So, thanks to all weenies for a great time, and lastly kudos to Jed for the housing arrangements which seem to get more complicated each year, even without computer crashes.

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: uncle bud on August 08, 2003, 12:41:17 PM
Another highlight:

John Miller: "Look! I'm at a bluegrass festival!" (falls like a drunk to the floor).

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Rivers on August 08, 2003, 05:38:19 PM
Sounds wonderful, thanks for all the reviews. Reno Kid you made it there this year eh? Like the new handle, sorry I missed you.

Congrats to all, I hope it made some bucks and will keep going so I can have a shot next year. I'm playing pretty good these days but the Port T Contry Blues (& latterly BBQ) workshops gave me a shot I can't get anywhere else.

Tell me did Andy Cohen bring his dulceola and regale you with Washington Phillips tunes?
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: frankie on August 08, 2003, 06:37:30 PM
...also.  Encourage Todd to do PT, he would find much enthusiasm for his Stella 12 Strings.

That's basically what I was telling him. Clifftop is cool, but not exactly the right setting for a Stella 12 string tuned down to C...

Here's a couple of pictures that he sent me of guitars in the works.  A jumbo Stella 12:


and a small body 12 (think Barbecue Bob):


He's also thinking about making a jumbo bodied six string.
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Slack on August 08, 2003, 08:16:06 PM
That's basically what I was telling him. Clifftop is cool, but not exactly the right setting for a Stella 12 string tuned down to C...

Yep, an odd duck in the land of Dreadnaught.  

Cool looking guitars, really like the looks of his small body.(I've got the specs on a Stella 12 - and one day I shall build one. )

Probably the most interesting guitar at PT was Heric's Mauer - wow, very upscale appointments, 00 size and a very distinctive sound - great clarity/separation and it has miles of sustain.

Tell me did Andy Cohen bring his dulceola and regale you with Washington Phillips tunes?

Hey Rivers,

Andy played his dulceola at the introductory session only (or the only time that I was aware of) - "What are they doing in Heaven today?" and had the crowd join in, really a very moving thing to do, it was great.  As a result of some column written about WP and the dulceola (I've forgotten the blues writers name), he found out that his keyboard dulceola is not what Washington Phillips played  - as you cannot hear the keyboard action/hammer pounds on WP's recordings - which would be apparent if he were playing a keyboard instrument.  So the WP dulceola is still a mystery.  Andy announced he was selling a CD called "Dulceola Favorites" -- and I thought he was joking! (it sounded like good parody to me!?)... ah well, you learn something every day.

JohnM also had a religious songs day and taught "What are they Doing in Heaven Today", very cool, capoed high at the 6th fret makes a guitar sounds very dulceola like.  Great tune.

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Slack on August 09, 2003, 10:05:04 AM
Here is the article that I believe Andy was talking about, from the 12-29-02 Austin American Statesman - very interesting read.


Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: uncle bud on August 09, 2003, 11:03:38 AM
When Andy and Honeyboy first arrived and we were helping them unload the car, Andy pulled out the dulceola, which is smaller than I expected, sat down on the steps to the Bricks, and started playing boogie woogie. Boogie woogie dulceola.
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: waxwing on August 09, 2003, 05:09:59 PM
Hey all, new member here. Also recovering from PT. My second year, and a notch up on the first. Some of you may know me from the Woodshed and maybe Bob and Woody's forum. Some one there just emailed me this forum. Great. Really more of what I'm after. Some of you might recognize me from Ari's morning class or John M's afternooner. Long silver hair and ancient discolored Stella with a large real tortoise inlaid pickgaurd swooping under the strings. I've got a Sov 12 with the same style pickgaurd that I'd wager is a tad more interesting than that Maurer mentioned above. Showed it to Gordie Bushaw and a few others. "The real deal" said Ted Howard (the guy who won the Santa Cruz). It's really fun to play and hear all the different guitars, each with it's own character, and to hear other folks play mine (far better than I am capable of at this point). I'm hoping next year to set up a night when we can all bring our vintage guits to 204, maybe the big room opposite the 'Jook', and really see all of what shows up.
So reading this thread it seems like you weenies go to a different camp than the rest of us. I stayed on the second floor of 225, with an incredible view of the Cascades, Puget Sound, and the beach arching out to the lighthouse. Last year I was fortunate enough to hook up with ths band that comes down from Sitka, Belly Meat. These guys are some serious players and jammers. The thing that impresses me most about them is how much they love each other. I guess living in San Francisco makes me a little jealous of the small town on an island comraderie they have. But, talk about chops. Lee on guit (usually brings a fine sounding Trojan) Gary on harp, Ernie on bass and Ted on mando. Ted's wife Julie added some piano and I was thrilled to play my washboard for their perf of Step It Up And Go.
Another highlight for me was singing a duet of Java Jive with Del when John and Heidi, the Java Gypsies, arrived late with the espresso truck one afternoon. I even remembered the tag "A slice of onion..." when she blanked. What a gal.
Having started a tradition of late Friday night salmon last year we decided to be a little more organized this year. Gary and Ernie(a pro fisherman) found a dockside fish mart, and that afternoon I saw Gary fillet and butterfly an 18 lb white king in about 10 minutes. We bought a little gas grill some veggies and that night treated everyone to BarBQ salmon, veggies and my signature grilled hearts of romaine. Unfortunately by the time we cleaned up, everyone else had crashed so we were left to jam with ourselves. Made it to John M's saturday class though.
There was so much to try to take advantage of. I got a class in with David Evans and one with Steve Cheseborough. Both great. The jugband class looked like a lot of fun but, sadly, I wasn't a part of it.
Hope to meet some of you guys (or maybe I have already) next year. In the meantime, this looks like a great site.
All for now.
John C.
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Slack on August 09, 2003, 05:37:06 PM
Welcome JohnC, glad you found the site!  I think I know who you are, even though there are lots of folks with long gray hair - so good description.  Sorry I missed your Soverign 12 string, and you missed the Maurer -- did you have a chance to check out Gordy's parlor Maurer?  Very cool.

Your 2nd year and planning on the 3rd?, great to hear, sounds like you are hooked on PT - I think most weenies are in the 5 - 11 year cycle.  It may sound like a different camp as we rebelled against the cafeteria (although I heard it was an improvement this year) and the no dorm playing rule (which has since changed) about 5 years ago and so we now rent housing.

Again, welcome.  If you have any pics, feel free to post them.

slack (aka JohnD)
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: waxwing on August 09, 2003, 05:52:35 PM
Hey slack, thanks. Did see Gordy's Maurer, and his incredible mint koa Sov 6. That's a story that I wish would happen to me. Both have so much character. To me, it is one of the wonders of the blues community that so many of these old guits are being cared for. I feel incredibly lucky to have found the guitars I have, and really get such a connection to the music from playing them. I particulatly enjoy hearing others play them. You can bet I'll bring as many as I can squeeze into my '71 VW Squareback next year. I assume everyone here put in a vote for an extra day next year?
Is there somewhere on this forum that I can find instruction on how to post a pic or two?
All for now.
John C.
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Slack on August 09, 2003, 06:17:17 PM

Yes, I think most voted for the extra day, most of us go 1-3 days early anyway.  If you have PT pics, there is a "Gallery" button at the top of the page and then select "Upload Picture", you'll be prompted to choose a albumn (select Port Townsend 2003) and then there is a "Browse" Button that will allow to to selelct a photo off of your hard drive.  If you want to uplaod a pic into a message just selelct the 'Browse" button at the bottom, select the photo as an attachment and it will display in the message body.

Hope that helps,

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: waxwing on August 09, 2003, 07:42:52 PM
I wish I did have some pics of PT. My partner, Gre, had the digital on her trip to Phoenix. Well, I did give it to her for her Bday. I thought you were inviting pics of guits. I checked out the Galleries and noticed you are far and away the primary contributor. I'll try to help you out in the future. How 'bout a gallery of member's guits?
All for now.
John C.
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Slack on August 09, 2003, 10:06:21 PM
Hi JohnC,

Yes, well, I'm the administrator and this forum has been up only since May - it is pretty green, so many of those contributions are just trying to get stuff moved from the old Yahoo Groups and build a little content.

Yes!  A gallery of members guitars is a great idea, we've got plenty of guitar nuts around here, so you are welcomed to start one.

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: uncle bud on August 10, 2003, 08:59:53 AM
Hi JohnC,

If you're the guy who lent Ari the National then I know who you are and we went to a lot of the same classes this year. I'm the guy with the distinguished hairline (read balding) playing a Larrivee with my left leg propped up on a footstool for tendinitis reasons. Glad the workshop has found another repeat customer. I'll be voting for an extra day as well (haven't sent in my evaluation yet). One consideration that will be strong for the organizers is the increase in cost. It could push the week out of some folks' price range, even if it is a steal at the current price. I know Bruce was concerned about this when I spoke to him about it. Fingers crossed.

Someone came up with the idea (Jeff?) of an extra day of workshop but a cascading schedule for faculty - i.e., they would still only teach four days, some starting on Monday, others starting on Tuesday, perhaps some with a split week etc. This would a) not put increased teaching demands on faculty and b) open up the schedule a bit for those who are torn between taking class X or Y on a given day. Worth a thought, and I may add it to my evaluation.

Welcome to the board!
Andrew --> has no cool old guitars  :(
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: waxwing on August 10, 2003, 02:03:46 PM
Hey Uncle Bud,
That's me. Ari likes that guit because the action is very easy and the intonation is spot on. Not only am I lucky enough to own such a guit but I also have an incredible luthier here in San Francisco. Gary Brawer is the go to guy for touring pros in a hurry but in between he enjoys working on old guits. He built out the saddle and compensated for each string. He also has one of only two PLEK machines in the states. This is a CNC fret dressing machine that gives the lowest action possible without buzz. Check out the web site at:


And not all that expensive as it saves quite a bit of labor.

Interesting idea about the cascading workshops. I sure would like a chance to feel like I was missing less. Yeah, PT is a steal. Most of the folks I talked to were up for another day. Had been for years.

I use a footstool, too, but settled on my guit case in classes. I have Carpal Tunnel issues, which turn out to be somewhat whole body/posture related, as well. A great chiro has really helped me out with myofascial release massage. Kinda like Rolfing. I'm pretty much over it now and PT was quite a test.
All for now.
John C.
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Walker T on August 11, 2003, 01:52:35 PM
Blues Buddies- I just wanted to thanks all of you who helped out with the Blues Buddies program this year. A pleasure. Peace, Walker
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Bill Roggensack on August 11, 2003, 02:35:53 PM

It's good to have you aboard. If I've got you pegged right, we talked on the Keystone Ferry on Sunday morning (with some harp guy playing faeries and shipwreck songs in the background). DougT and I heard all about the 'Sitka Boys' from Sandy (the gal from Queen charlottes who we gave a ride to Vancouver). It sounds like we'd better have a meeting of the minds next year!

Title: Re:Ref.# 12`Dulceola (was--->PT Decompression)
Post by: Bill Roggensack on August 11, 2003, 03:31:37 PM

I had the opportunity to spend about two hours with Andy one evening during which time we disassembled the ducleola so that I could look at the mechanical contraption in detail (you know how us engineers are - we want to know how it works, not how to play it!). While doing that, and consuming a glass of BlackBush, we had a great discussion about Wahsington Phillips (one of my favorite singers) then went down at least 30 other rabbit trails, including American politics.

Check out US Patent nos. 719,641 and 857,380, which were the basis for the Boyd Brothers short-lived business manufacturing dulceolas.

I also got a mini-concert as Andy demonstrated the many features and limitations of dulceola by playing snippets of a wide range of musical styles. So of course, I had to buy 'Dulceola Favorites' - it kind of grows on you, and after listening to it, I told Andy that it made me think of what elevator music might have sounded like at the turn of the last century. In retaliation, he wrote a dedication of the CD booklet that reads something like: "To FrontPage - my main Weenie man". I shall treasure this obscure recording, and put it on some time when unsuspecting friends are over to the house, just to see their reaction.

Andy added 'colour' to the kitchen every morning as he regaled anyone who would listen with his songs and stories. I especially enjoyed some of his talking blues.


Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: uncle bud on August 11, 2003, 06:21:34 PM
Blues Buddies- I just wanted to thanks all of you who helped out with the Blues Buddies program this year. A pleasure. Peace, Walker

We were glad to help out again.

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: waxwing on August 11, 2003, 07:26:08 PM
 Hey FrontPage, I figured you were one of these weenies. Sandy had said she was getting a ride with some guys who rented a house. When I found this forum I figured you were here. Cool. You guys should definitely invite Belly Meat over for some Jammin', and they would really like to swap riffs with some of the profs, too. These guys are also not all that happy with the cafeteria fare. We ate several dinners down town. I think Gary and Ernie tried to bail on the meal plan but if you're in the dorm you gotta pay for it even if you don't eat it. I almost brought my ceramic smoker/BarBQ ( Vintage Japanese, not one of those modern "Green Egg" things. Although it does have modern internals-kinda like an N/RP cone in a vintage Duo). I'd have to build a box on my roof rack to carry it, wouldn't want to have to leave behind any guits. Lee wants me to bring my '61 Fender Princeton, too (I told him it's not prewar). Might have to put new shocks on, though. Hey, I certainly don't mean to be pushy. You guys seem to have a full house and an even fuller table. Maybe we could be neighbors. Are there other houses available on Officer row, and how much does it cost (i.e. how many folks would it take) to rent one? I'm really just pipedreaming here, don't know if those guys would be into it or not. They live kind of a subsistence life in Sitka, and most have college age kids. I somehow spared myself the kids but certainly have known the lifestyle. Anyway, whatever happens, I'm glad I found you guys and look forward to swapping tunes (and guits) with y'all.
All for now.
John C.
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Bill Roggensack on August 12, 2003, 09:04:07 AM

The housing saga is a long and complicated one which is best explored off-list. I suggest you contact Jed Pauker (Weenie's Operations Manager, who can be found at jed@jed.net) - you will probably have to go to voice to get the full picture. Weenie has always wanted the ranks of his faithful to swell to full conference status (32 persons) and it sounds like with you, Belly Meat, Sandy and a few others, we could be getting close. It's not too soon to start getting organized for 2004!

During my dorm dwelling years, I always viewed the price as being a room with free (optional) meals. That made the restaruant alternative easier to accept. All-in, PTCBW remains the finest and most economical vacation I can imagine. And by leaving my wife at home, I avoid the lost time and extra expense of daily shopping trips (aside from a couple of dozen CDs!).

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Buzz on August 14, 2003, 10:25:45 PM
What a past couple of weeks! A great PT , no question about it.
I miss all of you pals, and the music we shared. And the Conmemorativo, and the food, and walks.

Slack, that was a great idea to get us moving for walks to town each morning.  Kept the joints gliding, and got the minds going. A cuppa and a walk and we were there for the Mando class!
The housing was great. Thanks , Jed. Great sleep, great food. Having John Miller and Ari join us for grub and gab was a real highlight for me. I enjoy their friendship a lot. And the stories, John, of Lester Flatt and his player who"don't suspect nothin'" is hilarious. I guffaw when I try to rememeber it!
HAving David Evans play old Delta tunes on his Reso as we prepared food, ate, or chatted was a totally cool, full immersion kind of experience.

Rich Del Grosso is  a superb teacher: prepared, patient, experienced. He covered a tremendous number of keys and tunes, lots to work on. A real asset to the faculty.And he mixed so well. It showed during the last concerets--he sat in with everyone, and they sat in with him. I agree with Andrew: the best Cephas andWiggins have ever sounded to me, and , IMHO,
they were juiced by Rich, and did they groove--Ragged and Dirty was goose-bumps quality for me, so tight, and so good. They were real good. Phil has some great licks, and is better and better. John had me worried  for a couple summers, but , he showed me that he still has some awesome talent, speed, vocal range, repertoire. I really admire him and Phil for there work.
I realy would like Rich to be invited back. And Phil and John, of course.

Ari and John Miller were so great in the lounge that nite, I agree with FP and Slack. The varied styles you pointed out, Slack, were so great with each other. The technical ability and tone and all was so great to hear and experience.
I never get tired of hearing them play, and playing together is a treat. They  are Weenies, by God, and must return!

I never laughed so hard in my life, as when I heard Lightnin' do Cecelia and the tune about the captain. I never thought I would play tunes on my hand whistles, either. That's what a couple of those wicked
Russell Hibbert Margaritas will do for you: a nice warm buzz, and here comes the tunes! Lightnin' was a real hoot, and I loved his ukelele repertoire. His cassette is great. I am going to learn more uke stuff too, and more mando. I really want him back again too. His guitar class was great, and he could teach a class on classic uke tunes, even slide.Terrific repertoire, even country and weestern.

Kudos toBruce, Joan, and Bonnie, indeed. I agree with all of you who wish them well and congratulate them on a well -run workshop and festival.
They worked tirelesslyfor all of us and the faculty, and the result was splendid for all. Thanks, Bruce and Joan and Bonnie.

Some strange thing has happened to my MDs: not one will play back any sound, just some faint hiss. Old ones from last year work fine. Seems that my record feature is on the blink. I will try it again...could be I screwed up--wouldn't be the first time or last. Oh, Well! So...Slack, can you buy some Mds and copy me all 4 of Rich's Tues, Wed, Thurs, Fri mando classes, and all of John Millers classes?
I will send you a check for the MDs and all the effort. I am playing the music Rich gave us, but I do need the tunes and all.

What a great time I had, and it sounds like we all had. I love PTCBW! I love all you guys and gals too! Great fun.
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: waxwing on August 14, 2003, 10:41:42 PM
Thanks much, FP. The lads from Sitka are, indeed, interested. I'll contact Jed. I'm looking forward to the posibilities of exercising my culinary skills almost as much as my musical ones. Well, not really, but some.
Ugh, I dropped right back into an overload of work. Way too much stress, which can only be released by that killer R. Balfour lick in E. Maybe I'll get those few changes down tonight. What with various life logistics I've hardly had a chance to go back over much so far. So much to digest and work on.
All for now.
P.S. After I posted I noticed your post Miller. Thought I'd say Hi, we being both SF Bay Areans. I live over in the SF Mission District. If that was you with the Sears Duolian, I was the guy who asked you about it at the end of John's class on E grooves. I'd love to get together sometime and finger that a bit. You could try out my '30 'O'. Trade some tunes and some PT stories. I work in Alameda so some early evening thing would be easy for me. Any other weenies nearby? I didn't notice many folks from the bay area on the roster. By the way, I have MDs of all John's classes, which you are welcome to borrow. The E groove class is a little windy but you can hear almost everything through it. That breeze was so refreshing that afternoon, and John was somehow inspired, bouyed up by it. What a fun class. I'm so glad I got a recording of John's "What a pain in the Ass!" about using tapes. Ha! Well, give me a ring, I'm in the roster.
Really all for now.
John C.
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Sandy on August 15, 2003, 12:31:54 PM
Greetings Weenies:  I got this web page address the other day from Front Page...AKA Bill...gotta try'n keep that straight.  Much fun to check out everyone's comments about the week.  It was my first time and I loved it.  I've stopped trying to describe the experience to my friends and family.  I just smile and say it was great and take out the memories and polish them up just for myself.  
Not being nearly the blues guitar player that most of you are the experience, classes and jamming were all very much learning stuff for me.  I particularly loved my classes with George Rezendes learning slide guitar.  Now have my Washburn tuned to open G and am working at it every day.  I keep the Larrive in regular tuning so I can practice what I learned from John Cephas...a really really fine teacher.   ;DBy next year I should have improved at least a bit.  The goal was to shake me out of my 15 year guitar rut and get happy about learning again.  The PT week picked me up by the feet, shook me up twirled me around and I might never get this grin off my face.  
I got to play in the jug band with Steve....too much fun...and sing in the gospel choir (about 60 strong) with Cora....we were GREAT!!!!  (If I do say so myself) too bad so few got to hear us on Saturday morning.   And jamming late into the night with the Sitka boys....(John from San Fran included in that lump as well as all the others in the dorm)...was SUCH a highlight.  From a woman's point of view they were all complete gentlemen musicians...a plus any way you look at it.  (not to mention brilliantly creative in the "kitchen" or lack thereof.)
Unless something terribly untoward happens between now and then I can't imagine missing next year.  Jed, I would love to talk to you more about participating with the group.  My email address is sandra@qcislands.net and I'll keep up with going's on via this site.  
It was so great to meet everyone....
Cudo's to the organizers....I actually did tell them all that in person...and I must say...I did love that the Java Gypsy's were so dependable.  Gotta have my daily fix.
Take care all....Sandy.  ;D
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Slack on August 15, 2003, 01:16:05 PM
Welcome Sandy!

Know what you mean about getting out of that 15 year guitar rut, PT is the place to do it!

Very glad you joined us.

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Sudsbury on August 19, 2003, 10:52:48 AM
Los Weenos,
Great to hear from some "new" folk - welcome Sandy, John C. et al.
What a year at PT!! ;D  My second, and now a definite lifer.  So many positive comments to make - the list is too long.  But I can't remain silent on the wonderful culinary skills on display in Weenie Central. Yummy thanks to Miller, Uncle Bud, Shelley, FrontPage and all others who sliced and diced, washed and dried, etc.  Pity I don't drink Tequila, as it seemed to add even further to the kitchen conviviality  ;)
I thought that this year John M. outdid himself with his lessons, which is quite a feat.  Thanks for the intro. to Joe Calicott who was new to me (OK, OK, so I'm just a beginner) - love his Frankie and Albert, and am practicing hard.  His religious songs session was innovative, fun and moving.  Thanks for putting in so much effort every year John - it  shows.
I was really thrilled that Ann (my sig.other) made it out for the last couple of days - it blew her away, so I now have free rein for years to come! (Even after she discovered the 26 CD's that I had somehow accumulated).
Loved the party animus added by Lightin' and Andy Cohen. Always a treat to be around Ari, John M, Phil Wiggins (missed his cooking this year).  David Evans (who's book I'm now into) added fascinating knowledge.
The largest possible Thanks to Jed for doing the weeniehousen and accounts, and particularly for providing such great accomodation for our Conjugal Visit. Long may your hard drives turn Jed. And to all the Weenies, muchos gracias for the laughter, music and warm friendship.
Bruce, Bonnie, Joan and unsung others at Centrum - three cheers!  You pulled it off and put on just a great show.  Thank-you.
p.s. Do we have firm dates for next year yet?
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Noflatpick on August 22, 2003, 10:26:15 PM
I had a ball in my first year at Port Townsend.  Met a bunch of fine people, drank a fair amount of beer and even learned some new stuff on the guitar. ;D

I was upstairs in 225 (noisy end) with the Belly Meat boys, John C., John the Canadian and the rest of the maniacs.  End of the hall, number 75, right by the shitter. :P  Played music every night 'till the wee hours.  Some fun!  Had the pleasure of partaking in the 3:00am Friday night/Saturday morning salmon feed.  A gastronomic delight.

Hey JohnC.  I was the guy who talked to you about us both missing the ferry to Keystone last year on Saturday evening.  You were the first car bumped and my wife and I were right behind you.  Did you ever get that washboard tuned? ;D ;D

Hey Sandy:  I was in George's beginner slide class with you.  I was the guy sitting by the window who showed you my finger picks with the holes in them.  Pro Picks.  Glad you had a good time.  I had a blast.

I'll definitely be back next year.
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: waxwing on August 23, 2003, 10:13:21 AM
Hey NFP,
Glad we could show you a good time at your first PT. That's what the Sitka lads did for me last year at my first, and if they'd let me, I'd sign up for life. So much great music to learn, and so many great people to meet.
I didn't think anyone saw the tuner gag at the show (poor timing on my part), or did you hear us talking about it in the dorm?
I made the Sunday morning ferry this year, and ran into Sandy and, as it turned out, a couple weenies. Too bad the ride wasn't long enough for a good jam to break out. 'Course, my fingers were pretty tired and sore at that point.
I'm pretty new to this board myself, but welcome. Good to hear from you.
All for now.
John C.
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Noflatpick on August 23, 2003, 12:29:14 PM
JohnC:  Yeah, I heard you talking in the dorm about the tuner on the washboard and also saw you put it to the test in the show.  It WAS damn funny but, like you say, I don't think many people caught on.
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: uncle bud on August 23, 2003, 12:32:24 PM
Welcome aboard Noflatpick. Now that you've had one year at Port Townsend, you are doomed to repeat it, year after year.  ;D
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Slack on August 23, 2003, 01:03:33 PM
Yes, welcome NoFlatPick!  I agree with UB, after the first year my annual budget went something like:

Port Townsend

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Buzz on August 24, 2003, 06:15:38 PM
Ditto me, Slack! I check the mail even now for the announcement of PT 2004!

Say, thanks John C for the offers of listening to your recordings, and think we should try to get together.
We are leaving town on the 26th and wont really be back til Sept 22. Let's get together after that!

Slack, I think I need copies of all the classes of Rich  DelGrosso and John Miller to go thru at my own slow pace. Any chance you could spring for 10 MDs and copy them for me? For a hamburger today I will gladly repay you on Thursday!
Back to the MAndo,
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Bill Roggensack on August 25, 2003, 09:33:51 AM
Miller wrote:

> For a hamburger today ...

I hope that tasty little feller is made from Alberta beef!

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Slack on August 25, 2003, 09:39:01 AM
I've emailed Miller and given him grief for not testing his equipment.   Wimpy indeed! ;D
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Bluesapprentice on August 26, 2003, 07:57:20 PM
Hey Wennie Cambell!

Thanks for the email and the invite to join this board.

Are you THE WENNIE or is  everybody from weenie house refered to as weenies?  Sounds like you wennies have optimised the PT experience.

It was my first time, had a blast, spent most of my free time at organised events or in 225 lower lounge.  Went to 225 upper once but did not get around to any other jams.  Caught Ari & John M in the longe trading songs. Wow! That was my favorite event of the week.

Drank too much, did't get enough sleep, but I DIDN'T gain weight, dorm food ya know.

Hey Waxwing, I too would be interested in inhabiting/gastronomicalizing (did I just make up a word?) on officers row.  If you are persuing this off list would you keep me and others interested informed.  Maybe start a separate thread just for the subject.  There is probably no lack of interest among repeat attenders (pun intended).

By for now,  Ken A

Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Slack on August 26, 2003, 08:57:32 PM
Welcome Ken A!

There is a Weenie Campbell - but no one has ever seen him.  We've devoted our lives to figuring out who he is  and where he comes from.   ;D

(Hopefully, someone will write up the history of Weenie Campbell -- Frontpage?)

Yes, we like to optimize, as mentioned -  housing is complicated and difficult (State Bureaucracy), Jed is the guy to talk to.  There is clout in numbers though - a "conference" of 30 rules.

cheers and glad you made it.
Title: Re:Port Townsend Post-soak/Decompression
Post by: Bill Roggensack on August 26, 2003, 09:04:11 PM
Slack offered 'hopefully':

> Hopefully, someone will write up the history of Weenie

I am somehwat familar with the legend of Weenie Campbell. And as it happens, despite the fact that Weenie is currently on tour in blues-starved rural Romania, I have been able to arrange a telephone interview. So if anyone has questions for or about Weenie, I'll try to get the answers.

Man, I hope he doesn't do a no-show because these international conference calls are tricky to set up.

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