HGG11 Overview

Hey all – I’ve managed to snag enough photos from Warburtons, Morgans, Pease and Facebook to present this quick overview of the key segments.  In the weeks to come, once more photos are in, I’ll concentrate on some of the different activities.

Start to finish of the official 11th Harp Guitar Gathering went thusly:

Friday afternoon: Registration at Quinnipiac University (pronounce it anyway you like; it’ll be wrong).  Other than a few students, we had the run of the entire Law School building (courtesy of host John-don’t-quit-your-day-job-Thomas) –  a great location!

We had a nice catered private dinner upstairs in the Faculty Commons room.  It had these amazing “cones of silence” built into the ceiling where 2 people could whisper across the room to each other.

We then headed downstairs to the Grand Courtroom for an Open Mic (Joe Morgan ran the P.A., Claude Laflamme is playing his brand new Pellerin).  We resisted the urge to sit in the judge’s chairs to pass verdicts on the performances…

The next morning, Dave Powell started off our Saturday presentations with harp guitar fiddle tunes and more (on a fancy new Tonedevil).  Incidentally, we announced that Dave and his brother Tone will be hosting HGG12 in Idaho next year!

Next, Pete Bradshaw demonstrated arranging and performing classical music for the steel-string harp guitar.

I next presented “The Complete History of Super-Trebles” (literally).  The audience was flabbergasted by this surprise early ’80’s photo of John Doan.  Similarly, no one had guessed that John was the mystery harp guitarist on last month’s blog.

Lunch: We had all expected a rainy weekend, but it turned out to be a spectacular day, so most of us ate outside.

Meanwhile inside, we had open mic lunchtime entertainers up above in a projecting balcony (Stacy Hobbs, looking like he’s in jail, and probably not the first time).

Diners could watch (or not) the proceedings above….

After lunch, the always fascinating luthier panel (Michel Pellerin seated and Alistair Hay speaking)

At the conclusion, SB demo’d each new instrument (this is Michel’s new one for Claude)

And finally: the return of Andy McKee!
But not before a well-earned hazing with a surprise Trip Down Gathering Memory Lane photo montage.

Saturday night’s concert brought (well-deserved) standing ovations for Andy Wahlberg, Muriel Anderson, Andy McKee and Stephen Bennett – before SB led us all in the grand finale.

Back at the hotel, all you-know-what breaks loose in a series of impromptu jam sessions.  This is what makes all the work worthwhile.
Andy sings “Cows With Guns,” inspiring the Highest Harmony Note contest (he won).

Sunday morning found us back in the main room for a Round Robin (I missed too much of it; SB said Steve Farmer’s performance [above] was fantastic).  During the second half, the attendees broke off into smaller groups for Player Workshops with Muriel Anderson, Pete Bradshaw and Dave Powell.

The “New Arrangement” presentation – with Andy, SB, Muriel and Claude – was just fantastic.   You’ll hear more about it later…

As you presumably saw 2 blogs ago, we next headed to Rocky Top for the final Sunday afternoon concert (view from its back porch)

The gorgeous student center was a good setting for us (though a tad noisy).

Our indispensable, not-so-behind-the-scenes staff: Linda Morgan, Jaci Rohr & Nancy Bennett

John Thomas introduces Andy McKee, who started the show (before racing to the airport to catch his flight back home to his new 1-month old).
More concert pics (of both shows) to come!

Sunday night saw us relaxing (boy, did I relax) at a fantastic gourmet pizza dinner party at John & Dorothy Thomas’ home.  Bruce Labadie, do not post any video or you’re dead meat! (and so is my professional career)

Next: Open Mic Night

To the 11th Harp Guitar Gathering Blog Table of Contents

  1. Ken Bonfield Says:

    It appears much fun was had. No surprise. I wish I coulda, but life got it in the way.

  2. sb Says:

    It was a very good time! Thanks for posting, Gregg!

    I love that at this point, the 11th Gathering, we can easily think of dozens and dozens of harp guitar folks who weren’t in attendance, including some of our regulars – and yet we still had a good turnout. This was not true when we started 11 years ago. Maybe between all of us attendees at the first Gathering, we could have come up with some more names, but not like we can today. Meaning, of course, that the instruments are spreading! New players of the harp guitar are turning up every day.

    It’s a good thing!

    Best,
    sb

  3. Jay Koelzer Says:

    Thanks Gregg for all the pics and “local color” as we used to say in Journalism. Speaking as a desperate wannabe who’s hopefully about to change his status all this stuff is a lifeline. I’m really looking forward to next year!

    -jay

  4. Phil Rowens Says:

    Doesn’t seem to be a Gibson in the bunch. At least not in the pics.

  5. Gregg Miner Says:

    Phil, I think you’re right. Steve Farmer left his at home, no Tom Shinness or others. Funny, because more people OWN Gibsons than Dyers (they just don’t play them).

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