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Songwriting for Guitarists

Level: All

Verlon has been quoted as saying that he “doesn’t teach songwriting so much as he inspires songwriting”. Writers of any and all skill levels will befit from Verlon’s shared experience of 35 years as a professional songwriter. From concept to “nuts and bolts” construction, Verlon will guide you in the craft and delivery of a brand new creation that you can be proud of.

This workshop will explore the crossfade of songwriting and guitar: Guitar as a songwriting tool - and vice versa; songs as a means of finding new territory on your instrument. Rhythm, groove, technique, etc. combined with rhyme-scheming, structure (or not), idea mining, and general tricks of the trade will be part of this study on how to say what you want to say and sound good doing it.

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About Verlon Thompson

Songwriters seem to flourish on the fertile Oklahoma plains. Woody Guthrie, Roger Miller, Leon Russell, J.J. Cale and Jimmy Webb. Add Verlon Thompson to that list.

Thirty years as a professional songwriter and traveling troubadour serve as credentials. As a solo performer, and as the trusted sidekick of Texas Americana songwriting icon Guy Clark, Verlon has viewed the world from stages everywhere from Barcelona to Binger (his hometown in Oklahoma).

Along the way Verlon Thompson compositions have been recorded by Jimmy Buffett and Alan Jackson, Anne Murray, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Kenny Rogers, Randy Travis, Del McCoury, Sam Bush, Trisha Yearwood and many more.

Equally important in his songwriting and live performances, Verlon's guitar work cannot go unnoticed. His guitar can be heard on recordings by Restless Heart, Pam Tillis, and many more, including, and especially Guy Clark.

Verlon has co-produced Guy Clark's Grammy nominated cd "Cold Dog Soup" as well as "The Dark", "Workbench Songs" and "Somedays the Song Writes You".

As the in-house musician for Genuine Human Productions (genuinehuman.com) Thompson scores themes and background music for documentaries and special film projects.

Verlon Thompson is currently on the road. Or in the studio. Or writing in his bunkhouse on the river in Tennessee....but never far from the fertile plains of Oklahoma.

Verlon Thompson picked on his Mom's mandolin, his Uncle Kenneth's guitar, his Aunt Bessie's piano, his Cousin Elmer Dee's lap steel and any other instrument he could get his hands on. Early songwriting inspiration came from Merle Haggard, Lefty Frizzell, Buck Owens and Roger Miller. Verlon became a Nashville resident and staff writer for Loretta Lynn's publishing company, Coal Miners Music. After that, he signed with CBS Songs, which later became EMI Music, one of the worlds largest publishing houses. Good fortune continued through the 90's with cuts by Joe Diffie, Billy Dean, Suzy Bogguss, Pam Tillis, Trisha Yearwood, Beth Nielson Chapman and more. Today he's found working on the road with Guy Clark and has found a new musical world in the theaters, small clubs and folk festivals. "Poetic listeners" he once called them; a little more in tune with the fine art of lyric and melody. www.verlonthompson.com

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