Guitarist Steve Howe will host the first Cross Styles Music Retreat, an event that takes place August 19 to 23 at Full Moon Resort in the Catskill Mountains near Woodstock, New York.
Guitar players of all ages, levels and styles are invited to join Howe and other guest instructors for this music camp; it represents a first for Howe, the Yes guitarist and former member Asia. After a full day of activities, evenings at the retreat will culminate with once-in-a-lifetime jam sessions.
“This year I’m getting back to doing some solo dates, and the Cross Styles Music Retreat is an extension of that,” Howe said. “I’ll be enjoying the different things the event will demand of me, as opposed to just doing shows. It’s a wider breadth of ‘guitarness,’ and it indulges me in my singular fascination — the guitar. Hopefully, my team and the audience can do a little mingling and learn more about each other.”
Throughout the Cross Styles Music Retreat, Howe will lead workshops that explore the development and technical aspects of his playing, writing, recording and performing. He also will perform selected pieces and discuss influences and experiences. A Q&A session and meet-and-greet are also planned. Howe will be joined by guitarists Ray Matuza and Flavio Sala, who will provide in-depth advice and analysis to explore and learn from.
“As I’m self-taught and don’t read music, I come at doing workshops from a different perspective than many who teach,” Howe said. “I’ll be bringing my experience to the fore through performances, interactions with campers, and daily master classes.”
The camp’s itinerary and guests — including fingerstyle and jazz guitar aficionado Ray Matuza, Italian classical guitarist Flavio Sala, and Martin Guitar’s Dick Boak — reflect Howe’s genre-bridging approach to the instrument.
Matuza brings more than 35 years as a performer, educator and writer to the Cross Styles Music Retreat. In addition to work with Howe, Ian McDonald (King Crimson, Foreigner) and others, he is a regular contributor to Fingerstyle 360 online guitar magazine, and an aficionado of fingerstyle and jazz techniques. Ray will offer workshops on finger exercises and scales, improvisation, practical use of harmony and chord construction, and methods of efficient practicing, as well as overseeing the daily jam sessions.
Sala, a internationally acclaimed classical guitarist, has toured and given master classes on four continents, and created and curates the annual International Web Music Talents competition. In his workshops, he will introduce techniques and fingering for classical and flamenco guitar.
Boak — author, guitar designer and archivist for Martin Guitar — will offer an interactive history of the 180-year-old guitar company. He’ll be showcasing several important examples of instruments in the evolution of Martin acoustic guitars, including some from Martin’s priceless museum collection and some of the prototypes from Martin signature model collaborations with Howe. His presentation will focus on Martin’s history, the development of the modern acoustic guitar, Martin’s historical contributions to the definitive acoustic guitar design, artist signature model collaborations, and on specific guitar shapes, sizes and tonewoods that lend themselves to particular musical genres.
Additional guest instructors for the Cross Styles Music Retreat will be announced soon. For more information and to reserve your spot, visit crossstylesmusicretreat.com.
Cross Styles Music Retreat offers a variety of pricing options, based on the variety of available accommodations. Packages are on sale now at crossstylesmusicretreat.com, and start at just $1195, including lodging, access to all workshops, seminars, gourmet meals, performances, and camp activities.
All activities will be held at Full Moon Resort in Big Indian, New York.