"Bill Pere embodies the link between music and science" --
The New York Times
Songwriters from 4 states from Vermont to Florida gathered for a weekend in the woods, overlooking Billings Lake in North Stonington, CT. Three days of intensive master classes , good meals, and good company proved to be a refreshing, renewing, and inspiring time for all in attendance. Below are some photos and comments from attendees.
___Great weekend. We had some talented people in various stages of their development as songwriters. Everyone enjoyed the new relationships we were able to build and the things we learned from each other. I thought the sessions were extremely informative, and definitely improved our understanding of the basics of our craft. I strongly recommend that anyone who has the opportunity to attend one of these events in the future certainly do so. Anyone who is not a member of Connecticut Songwriters should seriously consider joining. – Jim Hendricks, singer-songwriter, Connecticut
___I had a great time. It was a productive weekend and I think we would all agree. What's interesting is that despite our varied backgrounds and experience, we all came away with some valuable experience. Also, I found the sessions on creativity, business, and Myer-Briggs to be as helpful as the songwriting sessions. Overall, I came away inspired and see the experience as a valuable step on my journey as a songwriter. I'm sure I'll be seeing you at CSA events over the course of the year. – Gary DeMichele, Singer-songwriter, Connecticut
___Thank you for a very special weekend. The setting was beautiful, the hospitality fantastic, the accommodations were very good and the food was great. However, the best came with the very knowledgeable and helpful instruction along with the honest and productive critiques and advice. Everything exceeded my expectations. It was a very worthwhile weekend.Ü Thanks again for the opportunity to attend and your efforts to make it so successful. – Art Meister, singer-songwriter Essex, CT
___ I have never been captivated by a textbook like I was by this one and
when I saw that Bill was conducting a songwriters retreat in Connecticut,
I knew this was an event I definitely wanted to attend.
___It was an eye-opener and provided invaluable tools on effectively honing a songwriter's skills. I realized the areas where I can significantly improve; having this retreat provided more options for me to utilize. Most importantly it pushed me to be and do better as songwriter and artist. I really do wish the retreat was longer; the setting was ideal, and the relationships formed reflected a musical bond that was natural. Its really up to me. I have the choice - more choices I see now. Thank you isn't enough BIll & Kay. But thank you. – Melissa Ternier, singer-songwriter, Stamford CT
___It was a blast and we had pizza and pillow fights and ghosts stories and… well maybe not ghost stories, but it was a lot of fun and man did I learn a ton of new stuff about writing good songs and making my songs even better.
I went there to get help with my lyric writing mainly. I wanted to learn how to write more easily and with some purpose and I think I got some good ways of doing that. There sure was a lot to write down and talk about!
It’s a great idea because we were really isolated from everything else – you know – school, the Mall, boyfriends, girlfriends, and we had to really concentrate on writing songs. Bill and Kay sure know their stuff too. It’s a humbling experience to play a song in front of a bunch of strangers and then, have it dissected and analyzed. But that’s what I went there for. Mom and Dad paid good money so I could get good advice and not to have someone say – Great Job – I can get that from Grandma plus a pinch on the cheek.
Bill was a great teacher (you should check out his book called The Songcrafters’ Coloring Book) and he taught us cool ideas like prosody, semantics and phonetics. I never really think about a lot of this stuff when I sit down to write a song and it’s probably why my head feels like it’s gonna explode when I am trying to finish a song. But I sure will use it now because it really makes sense and I hate feeling like I’m looking for something in a dark closet when I’m writing (ha that’s funny, a dark closet…).
I also got a cool vocal lesson from Kay (Bill’s wife). I need to learn how to really make my words be understood and she had some fool-proof techniques for making the words come out right!
We also did some collaboration which was fun – want to do more. It was a weekend well spent – new friends, new ideas, new songs to come! – Darryl Gregory, singer-songwriter, Sandy Hook, CT
( See here what others have said )
Check out these samples from the book
Bill Pere is widely regarded as one of the top songwriting analysts and critiquers in the industry today