Welcome from Rob Ickes
Hello to all my fellow dobro players and enthusiasts!
It’s been a long time coming but I’d like to invite you to join me at my upcoming ResoSummit, happening November 3-6, once again at the historic Scarritt-Bennett Center in Nashville, Tennessee.
It’s hard to believe but this will be my 14th ResoSummit and my first camp presented by Dreamcatcher Events. It just seemed this might be a good time to try something different. When Betty Wheeler and I started this in 2007, we liked the idea an artist-produced teaching weekend. I had taught at most of the bluegrass camps here and in Europe, and I just started thinking, what if I did one on my own? I think we’ve struck a chord. At this point it’s kind of like a family reunion. People bring their partners and their families and they get to spend their day around Nashville. The Scarritt-Bennett Center is very close to Music Row so we’re close to all that fun stuff. We get people coming from all over – Australia, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, literally all over the world – and they all love to come hang out in Nashville.
As always, ResoSummit will feature four days of workshops and concerts by our amazing faculty. There will be performances at Nashville’s famed Station Inn, plus a very special faculty performance on Sunday. We also offer daily optional activities sessions with choices ranging from informal performances and demos to one-on-one opportunities to consult with faculty, plus nightly after-hours jamming, luthier consultations, and a whole lot more!
It’s pretty intense, but we have classes for all levels. We have classes that are super advanced and also for people who are just starting out. There’s a LOT of learning going on, each faculty member brings in several teaching topics. Dobro is very unique, it’s still kind of an obscure instrument, so we can get really specific with our class topics. For example, I’ll do a class focusing on Mike Auldridge, who was one of the greatest players ever, or I’ll do a class that just focuses on right hand technique. Sometimes I think we get almost too intense – Dreamcatcher Events is going to bring a little more fun into our mix, so I’m looking forward to that.
I think we honestly hit on a great format right off the bat, but every year is a little different. There’s a different faculty, a different combination of teachers, different performances at night. All the classes are different every year. We’ve spoken to some of our favorite faculty members and they’re just raring to go, we’ll announce a full list closer to the event. We’re very excited to have the one and only Jerry Douglas join us as a special guest this year; he’s going to teach a master class on Sunday and then treat us to a performance that evening. Jerry has stopped by ResoSummit in the past, but this time he’s going to be a big part of the weekend.
From the beginning, one of our slogans has been ‘Education and Inspiration.’ We work hard during the day, but at night, we have these awesome concerts that feature our faculty members either with their regular band or in some sort of new musical setting. Being in Nashville allows us to call on some great local musicians to join us. People can let their hair down and just get inspired by the music. We’ve all got our noses to the grindstone throughout the weekend and then on Sunday afternoon, we have a faculty concert. Everybody’s saying goodbye, people are very emotional, they’re crying because they’re sad to leave, they love it so much. It always blows me away: the depth of what this weekend means to our attendees. They come from all over the world, they’ve learned a lot and made these great friendships. Nothing brings you together like playing music with another person. It’s a powerful thing.
ResoSummit creates that excitement that I felt when I was a kid in California going to Bluegrass festivals- a spot for like-minded people to gather and get excited about the instrument. People tell me, “It’s so tough because I don’t have anybody near me that plays…” and I’m like, “Dude, nobody has anybody near them that plays Dobro!!” That’s one of the reasons why this event is so special. ResoSummit isn’t about me – it’s about the instrument. This instrument, it reaches out and grabs you. Maybe it doesn’t grab as many people as the basic guitar, but when it does, it grabs you and it will not let you go. That’s the kind of energy and excitement that happens during our event.
You know, I learn a lot as well. I love hearing what the other faculty members are working on or what they bring to it. I’ve been playing forever and I love it because I still get my mind blown. It’s just so much fun to see how somebody else does it, to see what else is possible. We have the best players in the world teaching, some really cutting-edge players, so I get to learn along with everybody else. Good musicians never really stop learning and that gives your music life, it gives it energy. There’s always more to explore.
We’re just so excited to be back. It’s been rough, because we haven’t been able to do it for the last three years, so I think there’s going to be a lot of pent up energy that’s going to happen this fall. To have this event, where we all share our knowledge, where we get to learn and watch concerts and get inspired by great musicians doing their thing, it doesn’t get much better than that. I’m so looking forward to this year’s ResoSummit and I can’t wait to see you all there!