October Old-Time Week

October Old-Time Week

October 11—16, 2020

October Old-Time Week celebrates the rich music of Appalachia. Workshops meet 9 a.m. to noon, with an afternoon cultural session each day and afternoon one-shot workshops. Presentations from master artists, evening jam sessions and much more fill out the week. Stay for the dance Friday night and the Old-Time Fiddlers’ Reunion, a celebration of West Virginia fiddlers. Saturday’s Reunion events include performances by West Virginia’s master fiddlers, a flatfoot dance contest and instrument vendors.

Tuition Guide: $490/week if paid before September 1. $530/week if paid after September 1. 

(+ Room & Board or other available options.)
Housing for October Old Time Week is available at the Graceland Inn and Conference Center as well as in the city of Elkins (https://augustaheritagecenter.org/lodging). Meal cards for the week may be purchased online  when you register, or you  may also purchase meals individually as desired at the Dining Hall.

Register Here!

At October Old-Time Week 2020, you will sign up for your particular instrument and level and will get instruction from several workshop leaders over the course of the week. On Friday, we will combine classes of instruments of the same level (i.e., beginning banjo and beginning fiddle) so that participants can get instruction on how to make the best music possible with other people. The full schedule will be released soon, but here is a run-down of the teachers who will be working with the various levels:

Beginning Fiddle: Erynn Marshall and Emily Schaad
Intermediate Fiddle: Tricia Spencer and Erynn Marshall
Advanced Fiddle: Emily Schaad, Tricia Spencer and Howard Rains
Beginning Banjo: Ben Townsend and Rachel Eddy
Intermediate Banjo: Carl Jones and Brad Kolodner
Advanced Banjo: Brad Kolodner and Ben Townsend
Guitar: Howard Rains and Carl Jones
Dulcimer: Sarah Kate Morgan

Rachel Eddy, Coordinator– Banjo

Rachel Eddy

Rachel Eddy is a native of West Virginia who grew up in a musical family steeped in the traditions of Appalachian music and dance. Now based in Washington, D.C., Rachel is known throughout the world as both a dynamic, emotionally powerful performer and an engaging, thoughtful teacher. Rachel’s soulful singing and multi-instrumental finesse—including fiddle, banjo, guitar, and mandolin—may be heard on numerous solo and collaborative recordings as well as at dances and jam sessions, where Rachel is dedicated to fostering community and sharing a love of music with others.

Rachel’s performances, workshops, and festival appearances have featured both a creative range as a soloist and an energetic engagement with fellow musicians part of various ensembles, including the Ken and Brad Kolodner Quartet, the Early Mays, and a European tour with Uncle Earl. Rachel has shared a passion for music at the Alabama Folk School, Augusta Heritage Center, Common Ground, Kauffman Kamp, Nashville Fiddle and Banjo Camp, Sore Fingers, and many others. While living in Sweden from 2008-14, Rachel invigorated the Swedish old-time scene and inspired dozens of people to take up Appalachian music and dance. Always up for new artistic challenges, Rachel is collaborating on the soundscape for, and performing in, the Indiana Repertory Theatre’s 2019 performance of Amber Waves.

Ben Townsend– Banjo

Ben Townsend

As a member of The Fox Hunt, Old Sledge, The Iron Leg Boys, The Hackensaw Boys, and now as a solo performer, Ben has traveled across the country and around the world spreading his unique take on West Virginia regional old-time music. Born and raised in Romney, West Virginia, multi-instrumentalist Ben Townsend has studied Appalachian traditional music extensively. He is also a successful engineer, whose label, Questionable Records, has released popular traditional albums, as well as albums of music from genres across the board. Ben’s most recent record, Deep End Sessions, Volume 3: Ben Townsend and Friends, has recently been nominated for a Grammy Award in the Best Folk Album category.

Erynn Marshall–Fiddle

Erynn Marshall is a fiddler well-known nationally and beyond for her traditional music. She learned the nuances of old-time fiddling from visiting 80-95 year-old southern fiddlers and wrote a book about them called Music in the Air (WVU Press). Her tunes are becoming common repertoire in fiddle circles and she is also a sought-after teacher. Erynn performs at festivals and music camps around the globe with husband, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, Carl Jones. Their new CD is called Old Tin. Erynn has won 1st place fiddle at Clifftop and Mt Airy Fiddlers Conventions, recorded nine albums, and appeared in five films.


Watch Erynn in action with the Galax Bogtrotters:

More videos:

Maple on the Hill – Erynn Marshall & Carl Jones: https://youtu.be/RCEeo28J_bI

Tune Tramp – Erynn Marshall & Carl Jones: https://youtu.be/AcBeopkCJsw 

Carl Jones– Guitar, Mandolin

Carl Jones is an American songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. Born in Macon, Georgia, Carl presently lives in Galax, Virginia. He studied music near Muscle Shoals, Alabama and was influenced by seeing Roy Orbison, Steve Goodman, and Mac Macanally record there. Carl is widely respected for his instrumental talents and original songs about the joys and tribulations of day-to-day life in the South. Carl’s songs have been recorded by The Nashville Bluegrass Band, Kate Campbell, Rickie Simpkins with Tony Rice, and others. His song Last Time On The Road was on the grammy-award-winning album Unleased by the Nashville Bluegrass Band. In the 1980’s he played mandolin with James Bryan, Norman and Nancy Blake as part of the Rising Fawn String Ensemble. Today he tours the world with his wife, fiddler Erynn Marshall. Carl is known for his fine musicianship, charismatic teaching, sense of humor, and powerful songwriting. He has recorded on a couple dozen recordings including his original songs CD “Traveling Star” and Norman Blake’s “Original Underground Music of the Mysterious South.”


Watch Carl Jones & Erynn Marshall in action:

More videos:

Greasy Creek – Erynn Marshall, Carl Jones with Kim Wheeler: https://youtu.be/QerZ4eIakuI

Last Time on the Road– Carl Jones (grammy nominated song) & Erynn Marshall: https://youtu.be/Uwci8UrOQLU

Howard Rains– Fiddle, Guitar

Howard Rains is an artist and fiddler from Texas, now living in Kansas. He comes from a musical and artistic family and his two obsessions are painting and playing traditional American fiddle music. He is the fourth generation to play on the same fiddle that was made for his great-grandfather and learned his finger-picked guitar style from his dad. The New York Times has said, “Rains has established himself as an authority on old Texas-style fiddling.” Howard plays rare, old tunes learned from friends, family, mentors, and old recordings. As much known for his painting as his fiddling, Howard has focused much of his work on documenting living traditional musicians in watercolor in his unique style.


Tricia Spencer– Fiddle

Tricia Spencer is a Kansas fiddler who grew up learning the tradition of old-time fiddling knee to knee from her grandpa and grandma, Vernon and Iona Spencer.  While growing up, she and her family traveled through the midwest where she learned from the fiddling greats like Pete McMahan, Cyril Stinnett, Lyman Enloe, Dwight Lamb, Amos Chase, and Lucy Pierce. Tricia is multi-instrumentalist and is highly sought after as a performer, dance fiddler, and instructor. She is also an artist and makes complex designs in pen and ink and collaborates with her husband, Howard Rains.


Emily Schaad– Fiddle

Emily Schaad has been playing and teaching music for nearly her whole life. With a background in classical music and public school music education, she went to North Carolina to earn an MA in Appalachian studies, learning from well-known fiddle masters. She is known for a complex and powerful fiddling style and has taken first place in numerous stringband and fiddle contests, including the Appalachian Stringband Festival in Clifftop, WV. Emily currently performs with old-time stringband Old Buck, conducts youth orchestras, teaches fiddle and violin and is working toward a doctorate in music education. www.oldbuckmusic.com

Brad Kolodner– Banjo

Baltimore-based clawhammer banjoist Brad Kolodner represents the next generation of Old-Time musicians pushing the boundaries of the tradition into uncharted territory. Regarded for his delicate touch, expressive style, and original compositions, Kolodner has rapidly gained national attention for his unique approach to the banjo. Awarded the 2016 IBMA Momentum Award for Industry Involvement, Kolodner is helping to lead the charge as a performer, teacher, DJ for Bluegrass Country Radio and Radio Bristol, jam leader, community builder and ambassador for Old-Time and Bluegrass music. He regularly performs across the country in a duo with his father Ken Kolodner, a world renowned hammered dulcimer player and with the acoustic roots quartet Charm City Junction.

Sarah Kate Morgan– Dulcimer

The music of Sarah Kate Morgan embodies her respect for old time Appalachian music and her creative approach to arranging. Backing traditional Appalachian melodies and haunting old time tunes with fresh harmonies and a progressive drive, she lends a new feel to old tunes, while accompanying pure and heartfelt vocals with the unpretentious sound of the mountain dulcimer. Folk, Americana, and Old-Time roots are brought to the forefront at live shows, where only Sarah Kate and her dulcimer can be found behind the microphone, creating a subtle yet powerful sound that brings the relevant music of the past to today’s audience.

Sarah Kate started her musical journey at 7 years old and has fallen in love with old time Appalachian music through the years. A native of East Tennessee, Sarah has incorporated the
rich musical heritage of the area into her music. At 18, Sarah placed 1st at the 2012 National Mountain Dulcimer Championships held in Winfield, KS. year later she went on to become a finalist in the 2013 International Acoustic Music Awards. She recently graduated from Morehead
State University in eastern Kentucky with a degree in Traditional Music, Appalachian Studies, and Arts Entrepreneurship. You can find her living in a little hippie camper on a farm in Olive Hill, Kentucky, playing lots of music, dabbling in instrument restoration, and calling the occasional square dance. Find her at www.sarahmorganmusic.com

Other projects…
Sarah Kate also performs as a regular member of the Michelle Canning Band (https://michellecanning.net/), supports Kentucky songwriter Jasmine Fouts on bass, calls square dances, and runs an afterschool program in Haldeman, Ky focused on traditional music, dance, and fostering mental health through creative expression.

Watch Sarah Kate in action:

Click here to see the Dance workshops offered this week!
Click here to see Arts, Craft & Folklore workshops offered this week!
Click here to see the Folk Arts for Kids! workshops offered this week!
Click here to see all mini courses offered this week!