Worthington News

Songwriter workshop touches on key elements of music industry


Nine of the region's top professional singers-songwriters will present a one-day songwriting workshop from noon to 6 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 25, at the McConnell Arts Center and Natalie's Coal Fired Pizza and Live Music in Worthington.

Instructional sessions will be held at the MAC, followed by a faculty concert at Natalie's, 5601 N. High St.

Open to songwriters of all ages, experience levels and genres, the Columbus Songwriting Workshop will explore key elements of crafting and performing original music, including lyrics writing, storytelling, creating appealing grooves, basics in business, networking, using social media and how to accept and receive criticism.

"We have an unbelievable pool of songwriting talent in this city," said Columbus-based singer-songwriter Chris Shaw, who founded the workshop last year with his brother and fellow touring songwriter, Andy, and father, Jim, a retired Columbus-area music teacher.

Jim Shaw retired as a music teacher with Grandview Heights City Schools and is now an artist-in-residence in the Reynoldsburg schools.

"He was one of the main inspirations for us to do this," Chris Shaw said.

The sons want to carry on their father's positive attitude toward musicians, wanting to bring them together to collaborate and grow, they said.

"It is all about breaking down barriers and helping each other," Chris Shaw said.

Chris Shaw also found inspiration in a pair of song-writing workshops he and his brother had attended in Colorado. The Song School is a five-day seminar held annually in Lyon, Colo.

"We learned from some of the most accomplished songwriters in the business," he said. "We got to thinking that we would like to bring the same energy, knowledge and expertise to our hometown."

In addition to the Shaws, the workshop faculty includes BeJae Fleming, Eric Gnezda, Jesse Henry, Matt Monta, Bill Patterson, ERoc Rollins and Jasey Schnaars.

Registration is available at the McConnell Arts Center, both online and in person. Presale fees are $45 for adults and $35 for those ages 17 and younger. Day-of-event fees are $50 and $40, respectively. Registrants will receive a $15 dinner voucher at Natalie's.

The Greater Columbus Arts Council is a co-sponsor.