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49th Walnut Valley Festival

September 15 - 19, 2021

National Flat-Picking Championships
Winfield, KS

49th Walnut Valley Festival has been postponed
to September 2021 due to COVID-19 Concerns

All tickets previously sold for WVF 49 will be valid for entry in September 2021. Tickets are also currently available for purchase.

2021 Spring SONGWRITING Workshops

Juni Fisher - How Stories Can Become Your Best Songs - SATURDAY

Saturday, March 20, 2021 - 5pm to 6:50pm CDT

Multi-Award winning songwriter Juni Fisher welcomes you to fill your bag of songwriting tricks with powerful tools that transform life stories and fiction into heartfelt, effective songs. Through examples of lyrics that work, Fisher guides you through what makes the story song unique, and how to skillfully edit and place the perfect words in their rightful places. Instrumental knowledge is not required to write wonderful lyrics, nor is music theory. Her emphasis is placed in the art of taking the story from idea, through placement of impact points, to a complete, memorable story song. Story song methods, participants will learn, apply to writing other types of songs, and these will be discussed and dissected to improve your skills. Classes will be limited to 10 participants per session to allow time for questions and sharing of goals.

Fisher will share some songwriting prompts to spark your creativity and as an after-class bonus, workshop participants will be invited to follow up privately with Juni via email to edit and fine-tune a song they’ve written to a prompt provided in class, or to re-work something they’ve previously written and wish to improve.  

Maximum of 10 Participants

Please Note:  If both this class and the Sunday 6pm class fill up, a Sunday morning class will be added.

Juni Fisher - How Stories Can Become Your Best Songs - SUNDAY

Sunday, March 21, 2021 - 5pm to 6:50pm CDT

Multi-Award winning songwriter Juni Fisher welcomes you to fill your bag of songwriting tricks with powerful tools that transform life stories and fiction into heartfelt, effective songs. Through examples of lyrics that work, Fisher guides you through what makes the story song unique, and how to skillfully edit and place the perfect words in their rightful places. Instrumental knowledge is not required to write wonderful lyrics, nor is music theory. Her emphasis is placed in the art of taking the story from idea, through placement of impact points, to a complete, memorable story song. Story song methods, participants will learn, apply to writing other types of songs, and these will be discussed and dissected to improve your skills. Classes will be limited to 10 participants per session to allow time for questions and sharing of goals.

Fisher will share some songwriting prompts to spark your creativity and as an after-class bonus, workshop participants will be invited to follow up privately with Juni via email to edit and fine-tune a song they’ve written to a prompt provided in class, or to re-work something they’ve previously written and wish to improve.

Maximum 10 Participants

Please Note:  If both this class and the Saturday 6pm class fill up, a Sunday morning class will be added.

Chris Jones - Different Approaches to the Art of Songwriting - 11am SATURDAY

Saturday, March 20, 2021 - 11am to 12:30pm CDT

From the initial sprout of a new song to the end result, this workshop will explore different ways to get a new song to blossom.  I’ll demonstrate various songs, discuss their structure, talk about melody vs. lyrics (and in what order, if there is an order).  We’ll also address editing and revision, the pros and cons and techniques of co-writing, personal vs. general songs, and lots more.

Minimum of 5 Participants

Maximum of 20 Participants

Chris Jones - Different Approaches to the Art of Songwriting - 3pm SATURDAY

Saturday, March 20, 2021 - 3pm to 4:30pm CDT

From the initial sprout of a new song to the end result, this workshop will explore different ways to get a new song to blossom.  I’ll demonstrate various songs, discuss their structure, talk about melody vs. lyrics (and in what order, if there is an order).  We’ll also address editing and revision, the pros and cons and techniques of co-writing, personal vs. general songs, and lots more.

Minimum of 5 Participants

Maximum of 20 Participants

Chris Jones - Writing Songs for Bluegrass Music - 11am SUNDAY

Sunday, March 21, 2021 - 11am to 12:30pm

In this class we’ll discuss what makes a song a “bluegrass song,” (if there is even a right answer to that), how to head your writing in that direction,  add musical interest and variety to your melodies while staying within a genre, and ways to come up with different subjects for songs.

Minimum of 5 Participants

Maximum of 20 Participants

Chris Jones - Writing Songs for Bluegrass Music - 3pm SUNDAY

Sunday, March 21, 2021 - 3pm to 4:30pm CDT

In this class we’ll discuss what makes a song a “bluegrass song,” (if there is even a right answer to that), how to head your writing in that direction,  add musical interest and variety to your melodies while staying within a genre, and ways to come up with different subjects for songs.

Minimum of 5 Participants

Maximum of 20 Participants

Chris Jones - Writing Songs for Bluegrass Music - SUNDAY, 11am

John McCutcheon - Songwriting with John McCutcheon

Saturday, March 20, 2021 - Noon to 1:30pm CDT

With one of the most diverse catalogues of any working songwriter, John has written everything from “Christmas in the Trenches” to dozens of Grammy-nominated children’s songs to political anthems to symphonic works.  His Songwriting Camps at Highlander are sold-out every year.  He has a pragmatic, direct, and inspiring approach to writing that is sure to “up your game” as well as introduce you to methodologies that will open up new ways of thinking about how and why to write songs.   Skill Level:  As John’s approach is so unique, this is open to bother beginning and experienced writers.

Maximum 25 Participants

John McCutcheon - Writing about the Hard Stuff

Sunday, March 21, 2021 - Noon to 1:30pm CDT

When the times are tough, we often turn to music.  To soothe, to heal, to validate, to articulate your feelings.  Faith, politics, illness, death, grief, it’s all part of what makes us human.  Finding a way to write about these things that is not merely cathartic, but inclusive and healing, that’s the trick.  It’s part and parcel of what John has been deep-diving into for a couple of decades now.  Come share his insights, honed by what he describes as “having made every mistake…twice!”   Skill Level:  All Skill Levels

Maximum 25 Participants

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Office Hours

Post-Festival through May

Monday-Friday
9am-Noon; 1pm to 5pm

June through August 2nd

Monday-Friday
9am-5pm

August 3rd through September 7th

Monday-Friday
9am-5pm

Saturday
9am-1pm