Rock Camp provided a forum for students between the ages of 11 – 17 to work closely with area professionals on the fundamentals of rock music performance and recording. For five days, students and faculty worked together rehearsing, writing and arranging a short set of material for each band to perform in concert on the final day of each session. Bands were formed on the first day of camp in the following possible styles: Classic Rock/Blues, Punk/Hardcore, Metal, Reggae/Jamband, Alternative/Contemporary Rock, Electronic, Singer/Songwriter and Funk/Hip-Hop. Student placement was dependent on personal preference, level and necessity. The only requirements were that the student have 1) some facility on an instrument or voice and 2) the ability and willingness to work constructively with others.
Rock Camp’s mission was to offer a structured music program for students interested in contemporary styles that fall outside the scope of traditional jazz and classical camps. The camp offered daily music theory classes and instrument clinics as well as workshops on topics ranging from digital audio recording to live sound reinforcement. In addition, each band recorded one original song for the annual Rock Camp CD. There were concerts by guest artists throughout each week. Past artists included Jon Fishman (Phish), The Static Age, And Then There Were None, 5 Seconds Expired, IsWhat?!, Loverless, Vorcza, Tammy Fletcher, My Revenge and Seth Yacovone. Rock Camp operated on a community-based model, bringing together local musicians, bands, educators, arts organizations and businesses to provide a creative and educational outlet for students.
The camp’s beginnings date back to 2001, where it operated as part of the Vermont School of Popular & Classical Arts founded by Harry Schenawolf in Jericho VT. By 2002, the camp was under the direction of Greg Matses and in 2003 he founded Vermont Rock Music Camp. The camp ran sessions in Morrisville VT, Burlington VT and Lebanon NH between 2003 and 2014.