What we're about
Let's get together with fellow folk/bluegrass/acoustic fans and help us raise the roof! IF YOU LIKE TO SING AND/OR PLAY AN INSTRUMENT, WE WOULD LOVE TO MEET YOU!!!
Folk-singing or "song circles" come in many shapes and sizes. The basic idea is for a group of singers and those who play folk instruments (i.e. anything “unplugged”: guitars, banjo, ukulele, mandolin, harmonica, spoons, tambourine/shakers, etc.) to gather together to sing and share music in a supportive environment. The group uses “Rise Up Singing” and "Rise Again" by Peter Blood and Annie Patterson, A SING OUT! Publication. It’s an informal gathering to connect with other musicians or those interested in music. Attendance is completely open - anyone can participate. Children who are patient and mature enough to follow along are welcome. Groups can be leaderless, and there is no formal membership or dues. Expect the group to grow over time and form other groups in the area. To help us get off to a good start, here are a few unwritten rules. The first rule is to HAVE FUN! BE SUPPORTIVE in your comments!
Foster respect and appreciation for each person’s contribution. Choose words that will build confidence. Words like “Nice song” or “Good job” or some other encouraging response should be offered when the song is done. Respect the person choosing a song or leading a song. It’s amazing to see a person improve over time as confidence begins to grow.
LISTEN TO EACH OTHER. The space is acoustically LIVELY! The most important element of making music isn’t actually creating sound. It’s listening. Avoid playing or singing so loudly that people nearby can’t hear the others clearly.
COMMUNICATE: Song leaders should tell us what you expect of the group. For example: “I’ll sing the chorus first, so that you can learn it more quickly” or “this is a Capella”. When leading a round or a zipper song, plan ahead as to how many verses you want it to run.
COME PREPARED. Bring a copy of “Rise Up Singing” and/or "Rise Again" by Peter Blood and Annie Patterson, a SING OUT! Publication. If you have a song you wish to teach, bring about 10 copies for the group. Know where to start the song so that you won’t run up against the top or bottom-out of your vocal range. Select a tempo that fits the song. Briefly tell the group some background about the song, who wrote it, when, why it was written, or why you selected it.
SONG CIRCLE STRUCTURE: A typical gathering consists of a sing-around, a break, and a “jam.”
SING-AROUND: We sit in a circle to give everyone an opportunity to participate. The sing-around has a format of “play, pick or pass”:
PLAY: Each person in turn has an opportunity to teach or lead a song;
PICK: to request a song of the group or an individual (without coercion)
PASS: simply pass to the next person.
BREAK: This is a good time to meet others and build community. After the sing-around there is break, starting with announcements. This includes the locations of the next few Song Circles, and upcoming folk events of interest to the group. The host may announce the closing time (please respect this). People bring snacks or beverages to contribute to the table.
JAM: Singing is more spontaneous. After the break, we stop taking turns, but continue making music. You can still lead a song or make a request, but you may have to be more assertive about it. The emphasis is to choose songs with good choruses or refrains that allow everyone to sing along.
Above text was cobbled from: http://genewilburn.com/song-circle/ and