Chuck Levy

 

Chuck's Music Videos

Welcome to Banjourneys

Hello Friends,

Welcome to my online music hut.  Take a look around, set a spell, give me a holler.  My Banjourney has led me to all sorts of interesting people an places, from Ohio and Illinois, West Virginia, Virginia, North and South Carolina, to Mars and back, to The Gambia and Senegal, and home to Gainesville, Florida.  Along the way I have picked a bunch of banjos, a few fiddles, and an akonting or two as well, and some stories to tell.  What about you?

Chuck's Social Networks

Past Dates

Friday, September 30th, 2016

A Roots Music Variety Show - 9 pm
644 W Call St
Tallahassee, FL 32306
850-644-6710

Ken Waldman hosts the Corn Potato String Band, Farank Lindamood, Chuck Levy and others for an evening of poetry, dance, and music.

 

Friday, May 27th, 2016

Florida Folk Festival
U.S. Hwy 41
White Springs, FL 32096
386-397-4461

Part of the 2016 Florida Folk Festival.  Details to follow.

Saturday, April 23rd, 2016

Chuck Levy at the High Springs 40th Anniversary Pioneer Days - 4 pm
110 NW 1st Ave High Springs, FL
High Springs, Forida
USA
(352) 275-4190
Price: Free

Friday, March 18th, 2016

Suwannee Banjo Camp
O'Leno State Park, 410 S.E. Oleno Park Road
High Springs, FL 32643
352 375 1004

SBC offers serious instruction for all levels of skill and experience in bluegrass, clawhammer, old-time fingerpicking and other banjo styles, as well as full-time tracks in fiddle and guitar, with extraordinarily accomplished and talented performers and teachers. Our program features hands-on classes, demonstrations, and two big faculty concerts, and still leaves lots of time for jamming!  Come a day early for our extra day, for our program of less formal activities (demonstrations, open mic, band scramble, and jams) and hang out with the Faculty! Suwannee Banjo Camp takes place at beautiful Cerveny Conference Center in Live Oak, Florida.

2016 Faculty

  • Bluegrass Banjo: Scott Anderson, Janet Beazley, Ned Luberecki, James McKinney, Alan Munde and Tony Trischka
  • Old-Time Banjo:  Cathy Barton Para, Mac Benford, Paul Brown, Adam Hurt, Brad Leftwich, Chuck Levy and Ken Perlman
  • Camp Fiddler: Bobby Taylor
  • Camp Guitarist: Stephen Mougin
  • Guest Faculty: Susie Coleman (guitar); Terri McMurray (banjo uke); Dave Para (guitar); Tom Piazza (novelist);  Niki Portmann (bass); snd Mickey Abraham (Mandolin)

The entire staff participates in our faculty concerts held on Friday and Saturday evening (videos from past SBC Faculty Concerts).

Staff-led jams are held following each faculty concert centered on bluegrass,  old-time and singing.

Check-in for the regular Camp Opens 12 noon, Friday March 18; the first class is at 3:00 PM Friday. Camp ends following lunch at 1:30 PM, Sunday March 20.

Check-in for the Extra Day opens 3pm on Thursday, March 17; dinner is at 5:30 pm. The program begins about 7pm that evening and continues through the morning of Friday, March 18.

Friday, March 11th, 2016

Melrose Contra Dance
Fish Camp Cutups play the Melrose Dance - 7:30-10 pm
301 State Road 26
Melrose, Florida 32666
USA
Eleta Sucsy Tel: 352-473-7761
Price: $5

Caller:  Bob Nicholson

Band:  Lloyd Baldwin, Chuck Levy, Marion Lasle, Jarrod Ridgway, and Richard Hardy

Friday, February 12th, 2016

Melrose Contra Dance
Polliwanna Crackers play the Melrose Contradance - 7:30-10 pm
301 State Road 26
Melrose, Florida 32666
Price: $5

The Polliwanna Crackers  are Paula Bradley, (Guitar, Banjo, and Banjo-Uke), Bill Dillof (Banjo, fiddle, Guitar and Harmonica), and Chuck Levy (Banjo and Fiddle)

Friday, September 11th, 2015

Stephen Foster Old-TimeMusic Weekend - Registration begins at noon
Stephen Foster Folk Cultural Center State Park
White Springs, FL 30296
1-877-635-3655
Price: https://www.floridastateparks.org/park-events/Stephen-Foster

Hello Friends,

 Hope you all had spectacular Independence Days, filled with sparkle and delight.

I am thrilled to announce that registration is open for the Stephen Foster Old-Time Music Weekend, September 11-13 at The Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park White Springs, FL https://www.floridastateparks.org/park-events/Stephen-Foster

We have a truly terrific line-up for 2015:  We have two-time Grammy winners Cathy Fink and Marcy Marxer, the Dynamic Duo of Beverly Smith and John Grimm, Saint Augustine’s Mighty Tommy Bledsoe, Celtic and Old-Time fiddle marvel Aisha Ivey, Florida State Fiddle and Banjo Champ, Chuck Levy, and Florida Masters Ron and Carole Whisler (Just in Time string band).

 We offer classes  (two levels of fiddle and banjo, as well as guitar, singing, and some uke), concerts, workshops, one-on-one tutorials, jams, good fellowship, a little mayhem, with a high likelihood of fun.

Thursday, March 26th, 2015

Suwanee Banjo Camp
Cerveny Conference Center, 11057 Camp Weed Place
Live Oak, FL 32060
352 375 1004
Price: go to www.suwanneebanjocamp.com for registration, more info

Suwannee Banjo Camp dates for 2015: March 27-29

Come study 5-string banjo with some of today’s best players and teachers. Our program features hands-on classes, demonstrations, and two big faculty concerts, and still leaves lots of time for jamming with your fellow banjo enthusiasts.

SBC offers serious instruction in clawhammer, old-time fingerpicking, and bluegrass banjo styles. In addition, we offer introductions to both minstrel banjo and the west-African banjo ancestor known as akonting (ekonting) If you don’t have your own ekonting, contact us ahead of time and instruments can be provided.

Note: Clawhammer and old-time fingerpicking together are often referred to as old-time banjo.

Fiddle & Guitar Tracks

SBC also offers full-time tracks in fiddle and guitar! For more information, click on the Classes menu item.

The SBC Extra Day

Come a day early, take in some low-pressure activities and hang out with the Faculty! For more information, click on the Extra Day menu item.

Location

Suwannee Banjo Camp now takes place at beautiful Cerveny Conference Center in Live Oak, Florida. For more info, click on the “Our New Location” menu item, or visit the Cerveny Conference Center website.

Class Sessions

SBC offers eight class sessions over the course of the weekend — two on Friday, four on Saturday and two on Sunday. Each session is one hour and fifteen minutes long.

Orientation

Orientation takes place on Friday afternoon prior to the start of the first class.

2015 Faculty

  • Old-Time Banjo:  Paul Brown, Bob Carlin, Adam Hurt, Mark Johnson, Brad Leftwich, Chuck Levy, Terri McMurray and Ken Perlman
  • Bluegrass Banjo: Scott Anderson, Janet Beazley, Gerald Jones, Ned Luberecki, James McKinney, Alan Munde and Tony Trischka
  • Camp Fiddler: James Leva
  • Camp Guitarist: Danny Smith

Faculty Concerts

We have two faculty concerts at SBC — one on Friday and the other on Saturday evening. During the course of SBC you’ll have an opportunity to hear our entire staff in concert. To get the idea of what to expect, here is a selection of videos from past SBC Faculty Concerts.

Jams

Staff-led jams at different levels are held following each faculty concert for bluegrass and old-time banjo. We also feature jams for vocalists and other specialized interests.

Starting and Ending Times

Check-in for the regular Camp Opens 12 noon, Friday March 27; the first class is at 3:00 PM Friday. Camp ends following lunch at 1:30 PM, Sunday March 29.

Starting and Ending Times for Extra Day

Check-in for the Extra Day opens 3pm on Thursday, March 26; dinner is at 5:30 pm. The program begins about 7pm that evening and continues through the morning of Friday, March 27.

 

Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

NOV 26 Cane Boil and the Longleaf Pine Youth Fiddle Contest - 9am-4pm
Morningside Nature Center, 3540 E University Ave
Gainesville, FL 32641
(352) 334-2170

Join us as we press sugar cane and boil the juice into syrup.

Traditionally, cane boils were a time for friends and neighbors to gather for work and for play. Honoring that tradition, we invite you to enjoy the cane boil and kick up your heels with the sounds of the Youth Fiddle Contest from 10 am to 12 noon.

Accomplished local musician Chuck Levy will perform and judge the fiddle contest.

Fiddlers wanted! Complete contest rules and registration forms are available online at http://www.friendsofnatureparks.org/
www.cityofgainesvilleparks.org

Friday, September 12th, 2014

Stephen Foster Old-Time Music Weekend - noon
Stephen Foster Folk Cultural Center State Park
White Springs, FL 30296
1-877-635-3655

Hey friends of Stephen Foster,

I am super excited to announce our line-up for the 10th Annual Stephen Foster Old-Time Music Weekend, September 12-14 at the Stephen Foster Folk Culture State Park, in White Springs, Florida. Our guest band is the Camp Chasers: Whitt Mead, Hilarie Burhans, Kellie Allen and Pete Peterson. They will be joined by Aisha Ivey, Bill Dudley, Chuck Levy, and other faculty to be announced. Come join us for a weekend of instruction on guitar, fiddle, banjo, and vocals, plus jams, concerts, and general mayhem.

http://www.campchasers.moonfruit.com/

Call Reserve America at 1-800-326-3521 to reserve your camping space.
For more information & registration. contact
The Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park, P.O. Drawer G
White Springs, Florida 32096
Telephone: 1-386-397-4478;Toll Free: 1-877-635-3655,Fax; 1-386-397-4262

Also contact Jim Strickland (mrethnic1@gmail.com) or Chuck Levy (levyce@aol.com)

Thursday, June 5th, 2014

Midwest Banjo Camp - 4 pm
320 S. Main Street
Olivet, Michigan 49076
USA

Midwest Banjo Camp X will take place on June 6-8, 2014 at the Olivet College Campus in Olivet, Michigan, with an extra day on June 5.. Come study old-time or bluegrass banjo with some of today's best players and teachers in both styles. Our program features hands-on classes, demonstrations, two faculty concerts, and still leaves lots of time for jamming with your fellow banjo enthusiasts.

MBC offers eight class sessions over the course of the weekend -- two on Friday, four on Saturday and two on Sunday. Each session is one hour and fifteen minutes long. There are staff concerts on both Friday and Saturday evenings; over the course of the weekend you'll have the opportunity to hear our entire staff in concert. Rounding out each evening program are staff-led bluegrass and old time jams at a variety of skill levels.

Classes

Midwest Banjo Camp is committed to offering highly specialized classes with subjects tailored to the expertise of our faculty. Most of our classes are "hands-on," meaning that teachers have a set of skills or a tune or two in mind to impart, and that students should have their banjos in hand during class.

Once you've registered for MBC, you may attend any class you wish at any time throughout our program. You do NOT have to pre-register for any track, class, or teacher. The questions on the registration form regarding interests and levels are only there to help us plan our program. They do NOT commit you to pursue any particular level, style, or instrument. Here is a list of popular classes in previous years:

Old Time
  • Intro to Round Peak Clawhammer
  • How to Play with Fiddlers: Concepts & Strategies
  • Wade Ward's 3-Finger Chording Style
  • The Clawhammer Styles of Fields & Wade Ward
  • Intro to Syncopation, Clawhammer Style
  • The Fundamentals of Drop and Double Thumbing
  • Grandpa Jones Songs & Tunes
  • Mastering the Mechanics of Good Tone
  • Western North Carolina Fiddle Tunes for Clawhammer
  • That Old-Time Rhythm
  • The "Chuck"and Other Rhythmic Space Fillers
  • Exploring Cumberland Gap Tuning
  • Banjo Pickin' Girls: Songs from the Coon Creek Girls & Cousin Emmy
  • Round-Peak Retrospective: Contrasting Creed, Jarrell, & Cockerham
  • Can That Tuner: Learn to Tune & Change Tunings by Ear
Bluegrass
  • Fitting in at a Jam: Hearing & Following Chord Changes
  • Intro to Melodic Bluegrass
  • Essentials of Single String
  • The Essential Earl: Licks & Techniques
  • Tone Color & Acoustic Special Effects
  • The Banjo Style of JD Crowe
  • Don Reno Techniques & Tunes
  • Blues Banjo: Improvising Over a Three Chord Harmony
  • Roll Logic: How the Rolls Work
  • Rock 'n' Roll, TV Themes & Other Stuff You Ain't Supposed to Play on Banjo
  • Scruggs-Style Picking in the key of C
  • Up the Neck Scruggs-Style Backup
  • Intro to Jazz Improvisation
  • 3rds & 6ths: Playing Melody & Harmony Together
  • Walking Basslines, Texas-Swing & "Stride" Bass as Approaches to Backup
  • Picking it Solid: Achieving Clarity, Punch, & Timing:
  • From Bluegrass to Western swing: A New Slant on Bluegrass Chord Progressions

 

Levels and Tracks for Bluegrass & Old-time Banjo

All students at MBC are free to take any class at any time. You canmove among levels, move freely between old-time and bluegrass, take classes in different instruments, and generally create a program that works best for you. We now offer four levels or "tracks" for both bluegrass and old-time banjo: Novice, lower intermediate, upper intermediate, and advanced. Here is how we define our levels:

Novice track:

The novice program is designed primarily for true beginners: banjoists who have been playing a few months or less, or who have not yet learned even the most basic mechanics of either fingerpicking or the clawhammer stroke. If you already know these basics, we recommend diving into either the lower intermediate or even the upper intermediate programs. Even if they are a little over your head, you'll still be taking home vital advice and mental images that will guide your growth on banjo for years to come.

Lower Intermediate Track:

Our lower intermediate track is for students who are beyond the novice stage but still need a lot of technical help on a variety of fronts -- such as efficient left hand and right hand techniques, building up speed and power, achieving good timing, basic song and tune arranging, and so on. Estimated minimum playing experience required: 6 months to 2 years.

Upper Intermediate Track:

The upper intermediate track is for students who can play pretty well at a basic level, but are looking to increase their repertoires and playing efficiency, and expand their horizons. It is also designed to help your playing sound more authentic and professional. Estimated minimum playing experience required: 18 months to 3 years.

Advanced Track:

The advanced track is for those who can already play up to (or close to) speed, but who are looking to grow further as musicians through learning from some of the world's best players. Estimated minimum playing experience required: 3-4 years and up.

Pre Camp

The Pre-camp is a low pressure way to ease into your weekend of intense banjo-immersion. On Thursday evening June 5 and Friday morning June , our instructors will host jam sessions, offer demonstrations, and generally be available for mingling with students. The "Pre-Camp Program" is optional for both students and staff. However, most of our staff and well-over half our students generally participate.

There is an extra tuition charge for MBC students who wish to take part in pre-camp events; there is also a charge for lodging at the Olivet dorms on Thursday night, and for signing on to an Olivet meal plan that covers meals from Thursday dinner through Friday lunch.

Demos: During Our “Pre-Camp”, many of our class sessions are devoted to demonstrations. Demos are round-robin presentations or mini performances that address a theme, combined with explication and Q&A sessions. Somewhere in between hands-on classes and demos are those classes labeled "demo-instructional." Following are a few examples of the kinds of demos we might offer:

 

  • Progressive Approaches to Bluegrass
  • All "Earl" all the time
  • Banjo-Fiddle Duets
  • Singing with the Banjo
  • Black Banjo Styles & Influences
  • Old-time Fingerpicking
  • Blues on the Banjo
  • Tunes you Don't Expect to Hear on Banjo
  • Playing in a Band: Concepts & Techniques
  • Fiddle Tunes on Banjo
  • Vocal Harmonies
  • Bill Monroe Tunes on Banjo

 

Thursday, April 10th, 2014

Suwannee Banjo Camp - 4 pm
O'Leno State Park, 410 S.E. Oleno Park Road
High Springs, FL 32643
352 375 1004

The Suwannee Banjo Camp has just moved to the Cerveny Conference Center at Camp Weed near Live Oak, Florida. Come study 5-string banjo with some of today's best players and teachers. Our program features hands-on classes, demonstrations, and big faculty concerts, and still leaves lots of time for jamming with your fellow banjo enthusiasts.

SBC offers serious instruction in clawhammer, old-time fingerpicking, and bluegrass banjo styles. In addition, we offer introductions to both minstrel banjo and the west-African banjo ancestor known as akonting, or ekonting (if you don't have your own ekonting, contact us ahead of time and instruments can be provided).

Note: Clawhammer and old-time fingerpicking together are often referred to as old-time banjo.

Our old-time banjo staff for 2013 includes Greg C. Adams, Bob Carlin, Cathy Fink, Adam Hurt, Mark Johnson, Walt Koken, Chuck Levy, & Ken Perlman

Our bluegrass instructors this year are Scott Anderson, Janet Beazley, Gerald Jones, Alan Munde, Alan O'Bryant and Pete Wernick.

SBC Also offers full-time instruction in old-time fiddle and guitar.

Our principal fiddle instructor for 2013 is Clare Milliner.

The principal instructor for our brand new guitar program is Danny Smith.

For more information on our staff, see instructors' bios.

Starting and Ending Times: Registration for the regular Camp Opens 12 noon, Friday April 11; the first class is at 3:00 PM Friday. Camp ends following lunch at 1:30 PM, Sunday April 13.

Starting and Ending Times for Extra Day Registration for the Extra Day opens 3pm on Thursday, April 10; the program begins c. 5:30 pm on that day with dinner and continues through the morning of Friday, April 11.

General Program

Class Sessions. SBC offers eight class sessions over the course of the weekend -- two on Friday, four on Saturday and two on Sunday. Each session is one hour and fifteen minutes long.

Orientation. Orientation takes place on Friday afternoon prior to the start of the first class.

Faculty Concerts. We have two faculty concerts at SBC -- one on Friday and the other on Saturday evening. During the course of SBC you'll have an opportunity to hear our entire staff in concert.

Jams. Staff-led jams at different levels are held following each faculty concert for bluegrass and old-time banjo. We also feature jams for vocalists and minstrel banjo.

Classes

Our camp is committed to offering highly specialized classes tailored to the expertise of our faculty. Almost all of our classes are "hands-on," meaning that teachers have a set of skills or a tune or two in mind to impart, and that students should have their banjos in hand during class. To give you a better idea of what we're about, here's our 2013 Schedule.

Note: Once you've registered for camp, you have complete freedom to attend any class that you wish. You do not have to sign up in advance or make any special arrangements to attend the classes of your choice. You do not have to stick to any particular genre, track, or level, but are free to make class selections as you please.

Old-Time Banjo Program

We offer four levels or tracks of instruction in old-time banjo: Novice, lower intermediate, upper intermediate, and advanced.

Novice track: The novice track in old-time banjo is for students with well under a year's playing experience. Recognizing that novices have unique learning requirements, we offer a systematic course of instruction that starts from scratch, and which is designed to impart both needed skills and effective practice-attitudes.

Lower Intermediate Track: The lower intermediate track is for those players who are above the novice level but are still in the process of mastering basic techniques. The focus here is overwhelmingly on acquiring the skills you'll need to grow as a player. Our best guess is that students who have been playing between nine months and two years will feel most comfortable here.

Upper Intermediate Track: This track is for students who have been playing at least two years. Classes in this track are not necessarily technically demanding, but they generally require that students have considerable familiarity with the instrument.

Advanced Track: These challenging classes give our instructors the opportunity to offer students the full depth of their expertise and experience.

Bluegrass Program

We offer four levels or tracks of instruction in bluegrass banjo: novice, lower intermediate, upper intermediate, and advanced.

Novice track: The novice track in bluegrass banjo is for students with well under a year's playing experience. Recognizing that novices have unique learning requirements, we offer a systematic course of instruction that starts from scratch, and which is designed to impart both needed skills and effective practice-attitudes.

Lower Intermediate Track: The intermediate track is for those players who are above the novice level but are still in the process of mastering basic techniques. The focus here is overwhelmingly on acquiring the skills you'll need to grow as a player. This track is for students who have been playing between nine months and two years.

Upper Intermediate Track: This track is for students who have been playing at least two years. Classes in this track are not necessarily technically demanding, but they generally require that students have considerable familiarity with the instrument.

Advanced Track: These challenging classes give our instructors the opportunity to offer students the full depth of their expertise and experience.

Old-Time Fiddle Track

Although this is primarily a banjo camp, we offer a full time Appalachian-style fiddle track with considerable appeal to serious fiddlers. Clare Milliner is our primary fiddle instructor. Some classes will also be taught by three of our banjo instructors -- Adam Hurt, Walt Koken and Chuck Levy -- who are also expert old-time fiddlers.

N

ew!! SBC's Guitar Track

We've offered some guitar instruction at SBC for several years, but now for the first time we've put in place a full-time program in guitar. Our principal instructor in the program is bluegrass guitarist Danny Smith; other guitar instructors will be announced later.

Demos

Some sessions during the Extra Day are devoted to demonstrations, or demos. Demos are essentially presentations or mini-performances combined with explication and Q&A sessions. They are similar to the kind of round-robin events called "workshops" at many Folk or Bluegrass Festivals. Following are a few examples of the kinds of demos we might offer:

  • Old-time finger picking styles
  • Unusual Tunings
  • Banjo-duets
  • Playing Behind a Fiddler
  • Singing with the Banjo
  • Fiddle Tunes on Banjo

Suwannee Banjo Camp

The Suwannee Banjo Camp has just moved to the Cerveny Conference Center at Camp Weed near Live Oak, Florida. Come study 5-string banjo with some of today's best players and teachers. Our program features hands-on classes, demonstrations, and big faculty concerts, and still leaves lots of time for jamming with your fellow banjo enthusiasts.

SBC offers serious instruction in clawhammer, old-time fingerpicking, and bluegrass banjo styles. In addition, we offer introductions to both minstrel banjo and the west-African banjo ancestor known as akonting, or ekonting (if you don't have your own ekonting, contact us ahead of time and instruments can be provided).

Note: Clawhammer and old-time fingerpicking together are often referred to as old-time banjo.

Our old-time banjo staff for 2013 includes Greg C. Adams, Bob Carlin, Cathy Fink, Adam Hurt, Mark Johnson, Walt Koken, Chuck Levy, & Ken Perlman

Our bluegrass instructors this year are Scott Anderson, Janet Beazley, Gerald Jones, Alan Munde, Alan O'Bryant and Pete Wernick.

SBC Also offers full-time instruction in old-time fiddle and guitar.

Our principal fiddle instructor for 2013 is Clare Milliner.

The principal instructor for our brand new guitar program is Danny Smith.

For more information on our staff, see instructors' bios.

Starting and Ending Times: Registration for the regular Camp Opens 12 noon, Friday April 11; the first class is at 3:00 PM Friday. Camp ends following lunch at 1:30 PM, Sunday April 13.

Starting and Ending Times for Extra Day Registration for the Extra Day opens 3pm on Thursday, April 10; the program begins c. 5:30 pm on that day with dinner and continues through the morning of Friday, April 11.

General Program


[cathy barton para class]



Class Sessions. SBC offers eight class sessions over the course of the weekend -- two on Friday, four on Saturday and two on Sunday. Each session is one hour and fifteen minutes long.

Orientation. Orientation takes place on Friday afternoon prior to the start of the first class.

Faculty Concerts. We have two faculty concerts at SBC -- one on Friday and the other on Saturday evening. During the course of SBC you'll have an opportunity to hear our entire staff in concert.

Jams. Staff-led jams at different levels are held following each faculty concert for bluegrass and old-time banjo. We also feature jams for vocalists and minstrel banjo.

Classes

Our camp is committed to offering highly specialized classes tailored to the expertise of our faculty. Almost all of our classes are "hands-on," meaning that teachers have a set of skills or a tune or two in mind to impart, and that students should have their banjos in hand during class. To give you a better idea of what we're about, here's our 2013 Schedule.

Note: Once you've registered for camp, you have complete freedom to attend any class that you wish. You do not have to sign up in advance or make any special arrangements to attend the classes of your choice. You do not have to stick to any particular genre, track, or level, but are free to make class selections as you please.

Old-Time Banjo Program

We offer four levels or tracks of instruction in old-time banjo: Novice, lower intermediate, upper intermediate, and advanced.

Novice track: The novice track in old-time banjo is for students with well under a year's playing experience. Recognizing that novices have unique learning requirements, we offer a systematic course of instruction that starts from scratch, and which is designed to impart both needed skills and effective practice-attitudes.

Lower Intermediate Track: The lower intermediate track is for those players who are above the novice level but are still in the process of mastering basic techniques. The focus here is overwhelmingly on acquiring the skills you'll need to grow as a player. Our best guess is that students who have been playing between nine months and two years will feel most comfortable here.

Upper Intermediate Track: This track is for students who have been playing at least two years. Classes in this track are not necessarily technically demanding, but they generally require that students have considerable familiarity with the instrument.

Advanced Track: These challenging classes give our instructors the opportunity to offer students the full depth of their expertise and experience.

[Paul Brown Class]

Bluegrass Program

We offer four levels or tracks of instruction in bluegrass banjo: novice, lower intermediate, upper intermediate, and advanced.

Novice track: The novice track in bluegrass banjo is for students with well under a year's playing experience. Recognizing that novices have unique learning requirements, we offer a systematic course of instruction that starts from scratch, and which is designed to impart both needed skills and effective practice-attitudes.

Lower Intermediate Track: The intermediate track is for those players who are above the novice level but are still in the process of mastering basic techniques. The focus here is overwhelmingly on acquiring the skills you'll need to grow as a player. This track is for students who have been playing between nine months and two years.

Upper Intermediate Track: This track is for students who have been playing at least two years. Classes in this track are not necessarily technically demanding, but they generally require that students have considerable familiarity with the instrument.

Advanced Track: These challenging classes give our instructors the opportunity to offer students the full depth of their expertise and experience.

[Tony Trischka Class]

[Alan Munde Class]

Old-Time Fiddle Track

Although this is primarily a banjo camp, we offer a full time Appalachian-style fiddle track with considerable appeal to serious fiddlers. Clare Milliner is our primary fiddle instructor. Some classes will also be taught by three of our banjo instructors -- Adam Hurt, Walt Koken and Chuck Levy -- who are also expert old-time fiddlers.

[fiddle class 2012]

New!! SBC's Guitar Track

We've offered some guitar instruction at SBC for several years, but now for the first time we've put in place a full-time program in guitar. Our principal instructor in the program is bluegrass guitarist Danny Smith; other guitar instructors will be announced later.

Demos

Some sessions during the Extra Day are devoted to demonstrations, or demos. Demos are essentially presentations or mini-performances combined with explication and Q&A sessions. They are similar to the kind of round-robin events called "workshops" at many Folk or Bluegrass Festivals. Following are a few examples of the kinds of demos we might offer:

  • Old-time finger picking styles
  • Unusual Tunings
  • Banjo-duets
  • Playing Behind a Fiddler
  • Singing with the Banjo
  • Fiddle Tunes on Banjo

[demo photo]

Jamming

Creating successful jams in a camp with so many banjoists takes skill and planning. To make things run as smooth as possible, we have Camp fiddlers, guitarists and a number of other guest musicians on hand to assist at our various scheduled jams. Then we try to fulfill your preferences by offering various jamming options:

  • Slow jams for relatively inexperienced players (and for others who prefer relaxed tempos)
  • "How to Jam" workshops for those who can play pretty well but just don't know how to play with others.
  • Intermediate jams: well-known tunes at moderate tempos.
  • "Intermediate & Up" Jams: for the slightly more adventurous. Instructors will may push tempos a little
    and suggest somewhat more demanding tunes, depending on the skill level of attendees.
  • Vocalists jams: for folks who like to sing (and pick at the same time)!!
  • Minstrel jams: Based on the mid-19th century minstrel-banjo repertoire.

Our Extra Day Program

The "Extra Day" is a great, low pressure way to ease your way into Suwannee Banjo Camp; it helps you get to know both the instructors and your fellow banjo enthusiasts in a relaxed atmosphere.

On Thursday evening April 10 and Friday morning April 11, our instructors will host jam sessions, offer demonstrations, and generally be available for mingling with students. Also on the program is a Student Open Mic, in which students can perform as soloists or in randomly assigned ensembles (some people call these "band scrambles").

Saturday, September 21st, 2013

Square and Contra Dance with the Sawgrass Swampcats - 8-11 pm
516 NE 2nd Ave,
Gainesville, Florida
USA
Price: $8, $5 for those under 21

Chuck Levy leads the Sawgrass Swampcats, an old-time no strictly traditional string band featuring Mike Stapleton, Annie McPherson, Bill Paine, and Dave Cook,

Friday, September 13th, 2013

Stephen Foster Old-Time Music Weekend - 1pm Friday September 13-1 pm Sunday, September 15th
Stephen Foster Folk Cultural Center State Park
White Springs, FL 30296
1-877-635-3655
Price: $199

Featuring the Bow Benders: Erynn Marshall, Kenny Jackson, Carl Jones, and Bobb Head with Chuck Levy and Fay Baird as well as additional faculty to be announced.  

Concerts, Jams, Classes in Fiddle, Banjo, Guitar, Singing, Mandolin and Bass!

Call Reserve America at 1-800-326-3521 to reserve your camping space.

For more information & registration. contact

The Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park, P.O. Drawer G

White Springs, Florida 32096

Telephone: 1-386-397-4478;Toll Free: 1-877-635-3655,Fax; 1-386-397-4262

Also contact Jim Strickland (mrethnic1@gmail.com) or Chuck Levy (levyce@aol.com)

http://www.floridastateparks.org/stephenfoster/Events.cfm

Friday, June 28th, 2013

Music Camp - 2 pm Friday-11 am Sunday
410 S.E. O'Leno Park Road
High Springs, Florida 32643
USA
3523751004
Price: $150

will be teaching banjo at Sparrow Music Camp, June 28-30th.

https://sites.google.com/site/flmusiccamp/

The other instructors are Aisha Ivey, Steve Hodges, Sharon Hartmann, Mickey Abraham, and Mary Allgire.

Workshops Offered
We are currently offering the following workshops:

Fiddle (other instruments wishing to learn fiddle tunes are welcome in fiddle classes)
Irish
Scottish
Scandinavian
Old Time
Swing
Bluegrass

Mandolin
Irish
Old Time
Bluegrass

Guitar
Irish
Old Time
Bluegrass
Swing

Bouzouki
Irish

Tenor Banjo
Irish

Improvisation (all instruments welcome)

Clogging

Old Time Banjo
Clawhammer
2-finger picking
Minstrel

Sparrow Music Camp is dedicated to teaching and preserving traditional music. The 2013 camp will be
June 28-30th, at O'Leno State Park in High Springs, Florida. Workshops, concerts and jams with our
amazing teaching staff will make this a memorable experience.

Campers will have the option of staying in bunks in the cabins (included in the fee) or reserving camping
spots through the park (in addition to the fee). There are also motels nearby:

Alamo Motel, High Springs 386 454-1248
Cadillac Motel, High Springs 386 454-1701
Comfort Inn, Alachua 386 462-2414
High Springs Country Inn 386 454 1565


Meals are also included in the fee, starting with dinner on Friday and ending with breakfast on Sunday. Vegetarian options will be available. Please let us know of any specific dietary needs.

If you have other questions, please don't hesitate to ask: sparrowmusiccamp@gmail.com

Friday, September 7th, 2012

Chuck Levy at THe Stephen Foster Old-TIme Music Weekend
Stephen Foster Folk Cultural Center State Park
White Springs, FL 30296
1-877-635-3655

Please mark your calendars for the Stephen Foster Old-Time Music Weekend (formerly the Suwannee Old-Time Music Weekend) September 7-9.  This event takes place at the Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park in White Springs, Florida.  This year we are featuring the Orpheus Supertones.  In addition, Chuck Levy will be on staff.  Our Florida Masters are Greg Allen and Bob Murphy.

Sunday, June 3rd, 2012

Advanced Banjo 2: Chuck Levy, Instructor
Mars Hill College
Mars Hill, North Carolina 28754
usa
1-866-MHC-4-YOU
Price: $539 for a double, $649 single, $394 commuter

This class is designed to expand repertoire and technique, with attention to accompaniment to fiddle tunes, distinct banjo tunes, and also songs. We will explore how to create rhythmic and melodic variations, how to breakdown and build up tunes, and how to match fiddle dynamics on the banjo, and how to play with another banjoist.  We will visit the diverse styles of masters such as Ola Belle Reed, George Gibson, Lee Hammons, Fred Cockerham and Loudon Wainwright III.  Other topics will include tunes in less common tunings and keys, two-finger up-picking, and how minstrel and African down-stroke techniques and fretless banjo techniques inform clawhammer choices. Finally, we will look at how different banjos and banjo set-ups produced different voices.  This class will be taught primarily by ear; audio and video recording are highly recommended. However, tablature will be available for most of what we cover as well.  On occasion, some video and audio files may be referenced, and may be available to those who bring laptops or jump drives. Learn more about Chuck and his music at www.banjourneys.com or email him at levyce@aol.com

Friday, May 25th, 2012

Ferrets of the Mall at the Florida Folk Festival
U.S. Hwy 41
White Springs, FL 32096
386-397-4461
Price: $20 per one day, $40 for whole weekend

Aisha Ivey has won the Southeast United States Scottish Fiddle Championship for 6 years in a row and she also won the award for 'Best March' at the National Scottish Fiddle Competition in 2010. She also has won awards for her Irish, Scandinavian and Old-Time fiddling and she currently teaches The Old-Time Ensemble at Florida State University. She is the President of The Florida State Fiddlers Association. Aisha has recorded several CD's of her own and with other musicians and has been chosen as a session player on many others.  She is known for her brilliant, evocative playing across a variety of styles.

Along the banks of the historic Suwannee River in White Springs, Florida, folk artists have gathered to celebrate Florida’s land, people and diverse cultural heritage. Since its humble beginning in 1953, the Florida Folk Festival has not only grown to become Florida’s most prestigious cultural event, but also named “Florida’s Best Cultural Event.”  In 2011, the festival was recognized by the Southeast Tourism Society with the honor of being a “Top 20 Event” in the southeastern United States. 

Friday, April 27th, 2012

Ferrets of the Mall play the Tallahassee Old-TIme Dance - 7:30 for Dance Instruction. 8 pm start
2nd Floor Ballroom, Tallahassee Senior Center, 1400 N.Monroe Street
Tallahasee, Florida
USA
(850) 421-1559
Price: $8 for Adults, $7 Seniors over 55, $5 for Students, $3 for Kids

The Ferrets Play with Susie Rudder calling.

The Ferrets of the Mall are Chuck Levy, Aisha Ivey, and Aaron O’Rourke.  The Ferrets brings together three prominent musicians in their own rights who combine to create a new old-time/Celtic trio.

 

Florida banjo Champion and prize-winning fiddler Chuck Levy is equally at home on 5 and 6 string banjos (five strings plus a short string), whether fretted or fretless, playing clawhammer and minstrel styles. Adam Hurt has described Chuck’s playing as “Intricate and engaging, but also consistently clean and tasteful throughout, a sort of ideal combination many players seek but few achieve”, in a review of Chuck’s first CD, Scratching and Clawing.  Banjo Newsletter selected his second CD, Banjourneys, as one of the best recordings of 2009.  Chuck’s mastery has been recognized by Gold Tone, which has developed a 6-string banjo, the OT-6, to Chuck’s specifications.  Chuck scholarly work into the African origins of the banjo has been featured in the Old-Time Herald and in the upcoming book, edited by Robert Winans.  Chuck directs the Stephen Foster Old-Time Music Weekend with Jim Strickland, and the Suwannee Banjo Camp with Ken Perlman.

 

Aisha Ivey has won the Southeast United States Scottish Fiddle Championship for 6 years in a row and she also won the award for 'Best March' at the National Scottish Fiddle Competition in 2010. She also has won awards for her Irish, Scandinavian and Old-Time fiddling and she currently teaches The Old-Time Ensemble at Florida State University. She is the President of The Florida State Fiddlers Association. Aisha has recorded several CD's of her own and with other musicians and has been chosen as a session player on many others.  She is known for her brilliant, evocative playing across a variety of styles.

 

Aaron O’Rourke is nationally recognized dulcimer champion having won the2010 World Picking Federation Dulcimer Player of the Year and the 2010 National Mountain Dulcimer Championship.  He has recorded two solo CDs and one with the Aaron O’Rourke Trio, which have generated praise from likes of David Grisman, Dulcimer Players News, and the World Picking Federation.  Aaron’s master extends to the guitar as well, where he draws on a rich pallet of chordal colors with spot-on rhythmic sensibility.

 

Saturday, April 14th, 2012

Fort Cooper State Park 1st Annual Bluegrass and - 10 am -4 pm
3100 Old Floral City Rd.
Inverness, Florida
USA
352 726-0315
Price: $6 in advance, $7 at the door

Join us for our 1st Annual Bluegrass and Oldtyme Music Festival taking place on Saturday, April 14th.  Enjoy crafts, antique autos, great food and music by Foggy Creek Band, Arnold Messer & Lonesome Highway, Chuck Levy & Ferrets of the Mall, & Tuck Tucker. 

 

Advanced tickets can be obtained at the park or from park volunteers.  Hosted by the Friends of Fort Cooper.

 

Down load our flyer! 1st Annual Bluegrass & Oldtyme Music Festival (PDF - 0.61KB)

 

Fees: Tickets are $7.00 at the gate; $6.00 in advance. Children under 12 - FREE.

Contact: For more information, call 352-726-0315.

Directions: Fort Cooper State Park is located just off US 41, on South Old Floral City Road, two miles south of Inverness.

Friday, March 16th, 2012

Suwannee Banjo Camp - noon
O'Leno State Park, 410 S.E. Oleno Park Road
High Springs, FL 32643
352 375 1004

Suwannee Banjo Camp, March 16-18th (with an extra day on March 15th for those who want to come early).  Our camp takes place at O’Leno State Park on the beautiful Santa Fe River in High Springs Florida.  The river actually disappears, flowing underground to reemerge miles away.  Each year the camp seems to get better, with plenty of chances to learn, to share and to dive deep into the river of banjo.  Our world-renowned instructors cover a wide territory of banjo, from traditional and more modern styles of bluegrass, through clawhammer and up-picking old-time styles, and including minstrel, parlor (classical) banjo and even the African ekonting (akonting).  We also have wonderful old-time fiddle track, plus classes in guitar, banjo set-up and more.

 

Our Instructors:
Old Time Banjo - Greg C. Adams, Cathy Barton Para, Mac Benford, Paul Brown, Mark Johnson, Brad Leftwich, Chuck Levy, & Ken Perlman
 
Bluegrass Banjo - Scott Anderson, Janet Davis, Gerald Jones, James McKinney, Alan Munde, & Tony Trischka
 
Old-time Fiddle - Erynn Marshall

Friday, March 19th, 2010

Suwannee Banjo Camp 19-21 2010 - March 19th noon-March 21 1 pm
O'Leno State Park, 410 S.E. Oleno Park Road
High Springs, FL 32643
352 375 1004
Price: $315 'till 12.15; $335 after
Fellow Banjoists and Banjo Enthusiasts Come study 5-string banjo at the Suwannee Banjo Camp with some of today's best players and teachers. Our program features hands-on classes, demonstrations, and a big faculty concert, and still leaves lots of time for jamming with your fellow banjo enthusiasts. The dates are March 19-21, 2010, and the place is the same as it has been the last few years: beautiful O'Leno State Park in High Springs, Florida. SBC features instruction in both bluegrass and "old-time" banjo (that is, clawhammer and old-time fingerpicking). We also offer instruction in old-time fiddle and ekonting (an African ancestor of the banjo). Our bluegrass banjo staff consists of Scott Anderson, Janet Davis, James McKinney, Bill Keith, and Tony Trischka Our old-time banjo staff features Cathy Barton Para, Mac Benford, Paul Brown, Adam Hurt, Brad Leftwich, Chuck Levy and Ken Perlman. Will also are repeating our African Roots program with master ekonting player, Sana Ndiaye, of Senegal. In addition, we have a fiddle track with instructors Paul Brown, Brad Leftwich, Adam Hurt, and Chuck Levy To sign up for the 2010 camp, to check faculty bios, or obtain other information about us, go to our website http://www.suwanneebanjocamp.com. Discount for Early Sign-Ups: We offer a discount for registering early. The cut off date is Dec. 15. Look forward to seeing you next March! Yours, Chuck Levy and Ken Perlman Directors

Friday, December 4th, 2009

Suwannee Old Time Weekend - December 4th, noon-December 6th 1 pm
Stephen Foster Folk Cultural Center State Park
White Springs, FL 30296
1-877-635-3655
Price: $225 for the weekend, $180 exclu
The 5th Annual Suwannee Old Time Music Weekend December 4 - 6, 2009 A Celebration of Old-Time Music At The Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park White Springs, Florida The weekend features workshops taught by nationally renowned musicians: Mac Traynham – Intermediate/Advanced Banjo Three time winner of banjo contest, Appalachian String Band Festival, Clifftop, WV. (Southern Mountain Melody Makers) Shay Garriock – Intermediate/Advanced Fiddle 1998 senior old time fiddle winner, Appalachian String Band Festival, Clifftop, WV. (Carolina Catbirds) Jenny Traynham – Old Time Guitar and Singing (Southern Mountain Melody Makers) As well as homegrown talents: Chuck Anton, Greg Allen, Lloyd Baldwin, and Chuck Levy Bucksnort Barndance Reunion Friday Afternoon Florida Masters Concert on Friday night. Tom and Kay Van Treese Gail Gillespie and Dwight Rogers Instructors Showcase Concert, Saturday night Post concert jams at the historic Telford Hotel in White Springs. ~:~ For more information contact: Chuck Levy, levyce@aol.com or Jim Strickland, mrethnic@msn.com Call Reserve America at 1-800-326-3521 to reserve your camping space. The Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park P.O. Drawer G White Springs, Florida 32096 Telephone: 1-386-397-4478 Toll Free: 1-877-635-3655 Fax: 1-386-397-4262 http://www.floridastateparks.org/stephenfoster/Events.cfm

Saturday, November 14th, 2009

Chuck Levy in Concert - 7 pm
41 M.L. King Boulevard
Savannah, GA 31401
912 232 1511
Price: FREE!
Chuck Levy Levy will draw upon his field work amongst the Jola people of Senegal and Gambia as well as his visits with elder and contemporary musicians in the United States to present an evening traditional music. Chuck will play the akonting (ekonting), an African 3-string banjo ancestor, fiddle, and 5 and 6 string fretted and fretless banjos.