INFORMATION AND REGISTRATION
for the 2014 CSA Spring Songwriting Retreat
April 2014 -- dates to be announced
If you want to be at the front of
the list when slots are open for registration, let us know that you would
like to be notified
( firstname.lastname@example.org )
(The earlier you
register, the larger your discount will be, and you'll guarantee your place.
An additional discount applies for members of CSA, RISA, Songsalive, Indiegrrl,
The Songwriting Retreats have brought artists from 8 states and hundreds
of miles to what has been descibed by several as "Life-Changing!"
Come and find yourself transformed!
PHOTOS AND REACTIONS: (2010)
When: April, 2014
Where: Meyer Retreat Center at Camp Wightman, 207 Coal Pit Hill Rd,
Griswold CT (directions…)
(See more in the FAQ's below)
WHAT: A weekend of total immersion
into the world of songwriting, in a beautiful rustic setting that is
conducive to learning and creating new things. A window into your own
creative self like you've never had before.
You will get College Level Master Classes in all aspects of the craft and
business of songwriting, based on the groundbreaking concepts of "Songcrafters'
Coloring Book: The Essential Guide to Effective and Successful Songwriting",
plus real Level 3 critiques of your songs.
Guaranteed to give you practical and actionable tools and techniques for
helping you optimize your songs and take your writing to a new level.
This concentrated immersion in the songcrafting process will provide more
information in 2 days than you would get in several years of monthly CSA
meetings and workshops.
Good meals and 2 nights of comfortable lodging are all included, so
you do not have to think about anything but your music.
WHO: Conducted by Grammy Winner and author of "Songcrafters'
named one of the Top 50 Innovators and Guiding Lights of the Music Industry"
by Music Connection Magazine, and
Kay Pere, nationally
known vocal and creativity coach. (See
Bios for Bill and Kay )
The information and insight presented here was developed exclusively by
Bill in more than 30 years of working with thousands of songwriters,
including many of the
in the industry and is not available anywhere else. You will not find more
down-to-earth, practical, and well-researched information under any one
roof. Many of these techniques have never been presented before, anywhere.
Bill is widely known as one of the best songwriting coaches and critiquers
in the industry today.
There will also be sessions with nationally known vocal and
creativity coach Kay Pere. Bill and Kay have won numerous national
awards and are regular presenters at national songwriting conferences and
workshops from coast to coast. They collectively have more than 50
years of experience in the music business.
1. What level of writer or style of music is this
2. What are some of the topics that will be covered?
3. Will there be time for informal song sharing and
4. Will we have song critiques?
5. What have others said about the retreat?
6. What will the schedule be like?
7. What are the facilities like?
8. What are the sleeping facilities?
9. What are the meals like, and can dietary restrictions be
10. Can I bring food?
11. Does the camp have cell and internet service?
12. Can I go walking along the lake and trails?
13. What if there is snow?
14. Is the facility wheelchair/handicapped accessible?
15. How do I get there?
16. How do I register?
Floor Plan of the
1. What level of writer or style of music is
this suitable for?
The concepts presented here are designed to work across any style of
music, for any target audience. These techniques can be applied by any
songwriter, whether they are just beginning or whether they have been
writing for many years. The goal is to take whatever level you are at, and
elevate it to a new place.
2. What are some of the topics
that will be covered?
We will look at the four main groups of songwriting parameters: The
semantic, phonetic, prosodic, and music elements, and how to improve the
effect of each of these in your writing. We'll look at how each of these
affects an audience, and how you can make informed choices about how you
want your songs to be received.
In the area of song pitching and promotion, we'll look at the powerful
concepts of Ullage and the Four Faders, and how these can become part of
your songcrafting process.
We will look at Level-3 critiquing and Song Mapping, and how you can
learn to more objectively analyze your own songs.
We'll do individual mentoring, vocal and creativity coaching, and address any topic that
you want to have covered, in the time we have.
3. Will there be time for
informal song sharing and performing?
Absolutely! Workshops by day; Enjoying each others' music by night! Sound
system provided if needed.
4. Will we have song critiques?
Many of the examples used in the workshops will come from the songs that
you bring with you. And yes, we will do regular, in-depth critiques at your
What have others said about the retreat?
Check out the photos and reactions here:
6. What will the schedule be
A general overview of the schedule:
3pm - Workshop Session 3-5pm
Dinner – 5-6pm
Evening: informal song-sharing and individual mentoring/coaching
Morning workshop sessions 9:30-12:00
Free time (enjoy the camp, collaborate, mentoring) 1-2pm
Afternoon workshop sessions 2-5pm
Dinner – 5-6pm
Evening: informal song-sharing; individual mentoring/critiquing
Collaboration Session 9-11
Cleanup and departure 11-12
For some of the specific workshop topics, see the
table of contents
of Songcrafters' Coloring Book.
The precise topics will be determined by the group but will include
prosodic, sonic, semantic, and music parameters, collaboration, business
considerations, and brand promotion. There will also be workshops
on vocal technique and creativity coaching, led by Kay.
7. What are the facilities
Camp Wightman is a 260-acre camping and retreat facility owned and
operated by the American Baptist Churches of Connecticut.
It is a wooded, natural environment on Billings Lake. There will be no
traffic noise, no bright lights, no distractions other than birds and
wildlife. The camp entrance is almost 2 miles off the main road, into the
The retreat house is fully modernized, with kitchenette, 2 full baths,
individual thermostats in the bedrooms, and a central meeting room with
Just across from our retreat building is the dining hall where meals are
served, and a large program room which we will be using for some of the
There is also a first aid facility, and several other retreat houses for
The retreat building -exterior
The retreat building - interior
8. What are the sleeping
A typical bedroom
The retreat house has 4 bedrooms for the participants, each of which
sleep 3-4 people, so you'll likely have room mates. The beds are
comfortable. Each bedroom has its own thermostat.
The beds are made up with a fitted bottom sheet, a blanket and a pillow
and pillow case. You'll need to bring your own top sheet, and any other
covers/sleeping bag. Remember that although this is the first weekend of
Spring, it's still March and will likely be on the cool side.
In addition to the retreat house, we will be using the separate facilities
in the dining hall and the program hall.
9. What are the meals like, and
can dietary restrictions be accommodated?
The camp has an excellent food service (Kay and Bill have eaten more than 100 meals
there). Meals are tasty and filling, standard family fare.
IF YOU HAVE ANY DIETARY RESTRICTIONS: The camp will make every effort to
accommodate dietary restrictions like Vegetarian preferences, or food
allergies as long as we have that information by March 15. After that,
we cannot guarantee that they can meet your needs. Please get any food
restriction information to us by March 1.
10. Can I bring food?
The retreat house has a full kitchenette. Our meals are provided for all
of Saturday and for Sunday morning.
We will all bring something for a shared
Friday evening meal. (It was quite a banquet last time!)
You may bring additional food if you wish, and you can certainly bring
snacks to share.
NOTE: CAMP RULE and CSA RULE: Absolutely no alcoholic beverages permitted
on the retreat grounds.
Also, there is no smoking in any of the buildings.
11. Does the camp have cell
and internet service?
Most cell phones work at camp. Since we are in the woods, it depends on
your carrier, but you'll probably be able to find a working spot if not
right at the retreat house. There is a wireless internet network in the
dining hall and program hall.
12. Can I go walking along the
lake and trails?
Yes, you have free access to all 260 acres if you want to find some
inspiration in nature.
13. What if there is snow?
Hopefully, by this time in Spring, we won't have any, but, it is possible. As long as the Camp makes the road accessible, we will
hold the retreat, as we have indoor, winterized facilities. If the Camp
cannot make the road accessible, they will refund all payments. We will post
any relevant information on the website, and provide a phone contact for all
registrants to check on status.
14. Is the facility
Unfortunately, being in a rustic woodland setting and moving among
different buildings, the facility does not readily lend itself to
wheelchair/handicap accessibility. We are sorry about that. If you need very specific
information, contact us at email@example.com.
14. How Do I Get There?
Camp Wightman is located in North Stonington CT. If you are
driving, you will receive detailed directions in your registration package.
If you are using public transportation, the Camp is just a 5-minute taxi
ride from Foxwoods Resort Casino, which is a major destination. If you
get to Foxwoods, it's easy to get a taxi for the short ride over to the
camp. To get to Foxwoods, go to the Foxwoods website and at the bottom is a
link for "Getting Here". Foxwoods is 45 minutes from either
Bradley Airport in Hartford, or TF Greene Airport in Providence. It's
easiest to rent a car, from the airport, but there are also us connections from New York City
to Foxwoods. In CT, the best thing
is to call Foxwoods and ask the best way to get there from where you are. directions…
READY TO REGISTER?
e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org to
see if there are any open slots left.
Limited to 12 slots.
COSTS: Includes lodging for 2
nights, meals, all workshops.Note: If you have to arrive late or leave early, we
cannot make cost adjustments).
Member rate is for active members of
CSA, Songsalive, Indiegrrl, IndieConnect, RISA, IMC, LVC(if you are not a
current CSA member and would like to join, go
You may register online or by mail.
The cost for the 2014 Retreat will
be posted when registration opens.
To Register by mail. send check to: CSA, PO Box 511, Mystic CT
You must provide full contact info, including an e-mail address
REGISTER EARLY FOR MAXIMUM DISCOUNT AND TO RESERVE YOUR SPOT
(a) If the retreat is cancelled for any reason, you will receive a full
(b) If the retreat is held but you cannot attend, if you give advance
notice by January 1, 2014
you will receive a full refund. After January 1, 2014, payments are
However, if you cannot attend, you can transfer your spot to someone else,
as long as we know that right
away, so that your spot isn’t already given to someone on the waiting list.
You've got lots of time to plan ahead to arrange your schedule and budget
to take advantage of this opportunity.
Register early for maximum discount and to guarantee your
To order a copy of "Songcrafters Coloring Book" go
FOR RETREAT PHOTOS AND REACTIONS: (2010)
WE HOPE TO SEE YOU THERE.
Questions? E-mail info @ ctsongwriting . com