Ned Song Camp sings out

good singerBarbara Lawlor, Nederland.     It was a camp designed to help beginners learn how to write songs, and, eventually perform them. It ended up being so much more.

The First Annual Nederland Song Camp took place from Thursday, July 17, to Sunday, July 20, when everything they learned and felt and created came together in a free public concert at Wild Bear Eco Arts Lounge.

Nederland musician and song writer Darryl Purpose decided in the beginning of the year that he loved Nederland, loved the mountains, and loved music, and he wanted to share all of his loves with others. About four months ago he announced that he was offering a camp for people who wanted to learn how to write songs, or how to fine-tune them.

It was a four-day event with room and board and excellent mountain adventures.john

Purpose put the announcement on Facebook and almost immediately had responses. Participants arrived in time for some nice weather.  One of their first assignments was to write about the Somewhere Else wall at the Carousel of Happiness. Purpose says he can’t wait to read those.

The campers hiked to Arapahoe Peak. They pedaled the bike path in Boulder and enjoyed a farm dinner in Longmont. And while they walked and rode and ate they talked music and songwriting. A guitar seminar gave the campers a chance to play a song and receive feedback. They put on a concert at the Littletree in Longmont.

Three of the nine participants came from California, one from Texas, one from New York, and the rest were from Colorado. Purpose says, “We figured it out as we went along. Since it was the first one for all of us, we learned together.”

Some of the campers were total beginners, never having played before, but they always felt comfortable with the group. “It was so great, I will do it at least once a year,” says Purpose. “We will only get better and better.”

listening to music

On Sunday evening, the campers took the stage. The camp teachers also took the stage while the audience relaxed in an evening filled with never-before heard music, new words, and new voices.

Songwriter, teacher, and writer Paul Zollo has written “Song Writers on Song Writing,” which enabled him to interview many legends in the music industry. He often gives workshops out of his studio in North Hollywood.

kelly grebe and ember eich

“Darryl and I met in Los Angeles and wrote songs together, about 20, which are getting radio play and which include nine new songs for the next album.”

   The performers, with four days of experience and education behind them, took the stage with confidence and poise and sang their words and hearts out. All of them felt the magic of the mountains and added a little magic of their own to the experience.


Barbara is a reporter for The Mountain-Ear.

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