For the past two summers I have had the great pleasure of spending an evening at Wooten Woods. Â For those who may not know, Wooten Woods is Victor Wooten’s Music Camp, located outside Nashville, in the Tennessee woods. Â Victor holds several camps throughout the year ranging from weekend camps, to an intensive 3 week music and nature camp. Â Although the camp does have a bit of a bias towards bass, it is open to any instrument and musicians of all skill levels.
Wooten Woods is literally a camp in the Tennessee wilderness. Â At night you can hear all of the sounds of nature around you, and I canâ€™t remember the last time I saw so many stars in the sky. Â A renovated barn serves as the main hall for dining and performances as well as practice stations located upstairs in the loft. Â Other building on site include Dinahâ€™s Woodshed and a Geometric Dome which serve as classrooms, plus a Nature Pavilion, several sleeping cabins and a Bathhouse. Â There are also a few tents pitched for the campers who want the true nature experience. Â
Each time I went, it was during the 3-week session and I asked the attendees if they were going stir crazy from being stuck out there. Â On the contrary, everyone I spoke to said they were having the times of their lives. Â They were kept busy learning about music and nature, as well as other various group activities. Â It seems to me that Victor has this Bass Camp thing down!
Wooten Woods has such a great atmosphere to it. Friendly, kind, understanding and most certainly inviting. Â Going to a music camp can be a bit intimidating at first, but after 15 minutes or so I felt right at home, especially on my second visit. Itâ€™s no wonder so many top artists want to be a part of Victorâ€™s camp. Â On my last visit Christian McBride was there as a guest instructor, for my first visit if was Keb Mo. Â Sax great Jeff Coffin was there on both occasions as was Victorâ€™s brother, Roy â€œFuturemanâ€ Wooten. Â It was amazing to spend the evening with each of these top caliber musicianâ€™s, all of whom seem to love to share their knowledge and experiences with the group. Â
While my experience with Wooten Woods is limited to just two evenings, I can honestly see the appeal of the place. Â This past summer, as part of Roy Vogtâ€™s Bass Camp, I was fortunate enough to spend a week studying with Anthony Wellington, whom is a regular instructor at Wooten Woods. Â Add these two experiences together and I am seriously considering attending one of Victorâ€™s camps in 2015. Â