Workshops - December

Tame Your Inner Critic
Saturday, December 17, 1-3 pm pacific
Online workshop

One obstacle to the flow of any creative work is our personal troll, the inner critic – the quick-to-judge voice in our heads telling us that anything we've written is no good. The inner critic finds fault with everything, and likes to use the word "too" – too corny, too angry, too depressing, too rhyming, too . . . fill in the blank. These pronouncements block creative flow, leaving us feeling stuck, or stop us from writing altogether.

Through writing and discussion we'll explore ways to reduce the inner critic's power to inhibit us from expressing our truth in song. 2 hours, $30.

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Moveable 'Jazz' Chords for Guitar
Sunday, December 18, 1-4 pm pacific
Online workshop

Though a large number of chord shapes and voicings are used by jazz guitarists, there are a few essential shapes that are not difficult to play and are highly useful. These chords can be played anywhere on the neck, so the same shapes can be used in a variety of progressions in any key.

We'll learn a half-dozen moveable chords, and look at ways to use them to add color to your new or existing songs or to play jazz standards. For guitar players who can play standard open chords (C, G, etc.) and barre chords and would like to add some new chords to the mix. 3 hours, $40.

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Song Forms for Songwriters - January

We'll explore the variety and history of song forms used in folk, blues, country and pop music, and the function of various song parts (verse, chorus, bridge, refrain, etc.)

Each week we will explore a different form, listening to examples and placing the form in historical context. Participants will come away with a deepened understanding of song forms and a variety of forms to use in writing their own songs. $120

$30 discount when taken with Songwriting as Truth-Telling

Wednesdays, 3:30 - 4:30 pm PST - January 4 - February 8 (6 weeks)

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Songwriting as Truth-Telling - January

This class is dedicated to each writer developing their own voice and sharing their unique perspective. We'll write, share and listen to songs and explore songwriting as human communication and connection. Each participant shares a song each week, with the goal of trying to write a song each week. Cover, fragments, poems, and older songs are welcome, too. We'll listen generously and appreciatively, without critique, to create an inspiring, non-judgmental space in which to deepen songwriting practice. Songwriters of all levels of experience welcome.

Online Classes:

  • Tuesdays 4-6 pm, January 3 - February 7
  • Tuesdays 7-9 pm, January 3 - February 7
  • Wednesdays 6-8 pm, January 4 - February 8

All times Pacific. Classes meet on zoom. $180.

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About Matt Meighan

Matt Meighan lives in Portland, Oregon where he performs regularly and has taught his weekly Songwriting as Truth-Telling class since 2009. He hosts the annual Hidden River Songwriting Camp on the Long Beach, Washington peninsula each July and an annual week-long songwriting retreat in Donegal, Ireland.

Matt studied poetry at the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics (Naropa University) in Boulder, Colorado, where he earned an MFA in writing and poetics.