Songwriting Retreat with Darden Smith & Eliza Gilkyson
April 21-22-23, 2017
What if you took three days and gave yourself the opportunity to spend a weekend with Darden Smith and Eliza Gilkyson, two of Austin’s finest songwriters, hear them talk about their approaches to the craft, listen to your songs and work with you on ways to become a better writer? What if you could spend those days and nights listening while Eliza and Darden talk about creativity, collaboration, getting to the truth in your writing, and then get to share your songs with them and the other participants.
And what if you could do this at a beautiful hilltop site in the Texas Hill Country with amazing food, beautiful weather and a night sky full of stars?
(Ok, there’s no guarantee on the weather and stars, but just go with us on that one!)
Sounds pretty good, doesn’t it?
Here’s your chance to make it happen!
We will gather around 5:00 PM on Friday April 21st, eat dinner, talk songs and share stories. Saturday and Sunday will be filled with discussions on different approaches to writing, time spent with Darden and Eliza listening and giving advice on your songs, then gathering in a song circle for sharing and listening to each others’ work, and time to do some writing on your own or with a partner. Late on Sunday afternoon we end the weekend with final meal and a few more songs.
We encourage students to bring their songs “in any form or stage” to the workshop so they can woodshed with a pro and learn from and with other participants in the song circle.
Price — $995 (not including travel and lodging)
There are a limited number of rooms at Onion Creek Kitchens at Juniper Hills Farm, and we have contacts for other great places nearby.
Austin Music Hall of Fame member Eliza Gilkyson has discovered a natural bent for teaching and sharing what she has learned over the course of her 40-year career in music. Gilkyson’s bona fides include a second Folk Music Grammy nomination for 2014’s The Nocturne Diaries, Songwriter of the Year and Best Folk Artist awards at the 2014 Austin Chronicle SXSW Music Awards, and countless Folk Alliance and Chronicle Awards garnered over the years, including Best Songwriter, Record of the Year and Best Solo Performer. Her songs have been covered by Joan Baez, Bob Geldof, Tom Rush, Rosanne Cash and more, and have appeared in films, PBS specials and on prime-time TV. With more than 17 recordings under her belt she knows how to write songs. elizagilkyson.com
Darden Smith is a singer-songwriter, educator, and speaker with a 30-year career that continues to evolve and grow. He has released fourteen albums, toured extensively in both the US and Europe, had top-10 hits in the US and UK, written a symphony and scored contemporary dance works. Smith was the Artist-in-Residence at Oklahoma State University’s Riata School of Entrepreneurship (2011-2013) and his Be An Artist Program and Songsmithing workshops bring creativity and collaboration sessions to schools, and corporations and other clients. He is the founder and creative director of SongwritingWith:Soldiers, a program that pairs professional songwriters with wounded soldiers, to create songs based on the soldiers’ stories of combat and returning home. Smith’s 15th album, Everything, will released in April 2017 on Compass Records. dardensmith.com
MENUS FOR SONGWRITING RETREAT WITH
DARDEN SMITH AND ELIZA GILKYSON
Friday Welcome Dinner Buffet:
Fresh Fruit and Selection of Cheeses
Gorgonzola Cheesecake with Housemade Jam and Crackers
Ricotta Herb Stuffed Pasta Shells with Garlic Tomato Sauce
Pecan Crusted Trout with Salsa Verde Italiano
Feta Strawberry Arugula Salad with Berry Balsamic Vinaigrette
Key Lime Pie with Chocolate Almond Crust
Coffee-Espresso and Juice Bar
Lemon Rosemary Scones
Morning Glory Muffins (GF,DF)
Vegetable Quiche-Ham and Cheese Quiche
Fresh Fruit Platter
Italian Wedding Soup
Spring Vegetable Soup
JHF Garden Salad
Garlic Bread Knots
Anasazi Bean Soup
Potato Stuffed Poblanos with Succotash “Salsa”
Fish Tacos with Apple Lime Cilantro Slaw
Fresh Corn Flan
Arugula Melon Basil Salad
Coffee-Espresso and Juice Bar
Taos Potatoes and Eggs
Fruit and Yogurt Cups
Sunday Closing Supper:
Apples and Brie
Rosemary, Sage, Garlic Infused Roasted Chicken
Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes
Season Vegetable Sauté
Spinach Salad with Almonds, Grapes and Goat Cheese with Citrus Vinaigrette
Fontina and Herbs Biscuits
Chocolate Layer Cake with Fresh Strawberries
Iced Tea, Hot Tea, Coffee and Water provided at all meals.