Between the Waves Madison: A Special Thank You from Roy Elkins
Wow, Wow, Wow!!! WE RECENTLY concluded a wonderful week of music and events in Madison. It was the culmination of a year’s worth of really hard work and dedication.
I have read lots of posts and emails (all week)| and am grateful for all the thoughts, ideas and feedback – it looks like we are poised for a great future, thanks to your efforts, and the BTW Conference & Festival will only get better from here.
So – there are a lot of thank-yous in order. I will apologize up front if I have missed anyone. First, to three folks who really went above and beyond the call of duty:
- Mike Huberty, for his quiet and EXCELLENT work providing the technology for all the BTW Conference sessions, from multiple panelists to live music, Skype, and movie trailers (including the last-minute addition of The Avett Brothers.)
- Amber Swenor, for an incredible job on public relations. We had a ton of press placements, TV appearances, news and feature articles, etc. It was really impressive.
- Luke Jorgensen, who spent the better part of a year booking nearly 60 bands into 6 venues, complete with weather contingencies, outdoor tents, beer and food carts. He made the BTW Festival happen nearly single-handedly. With mind-boggling logistics to consider, this was a gargantuan undertaking. I would like to thank his bandmates in The Lower 5th as well, who all chipped in and lent a hand.
AMAZING CORE VOLUNTEERS
Your time and dedication over the span of the past year damn near chokes me up! It takes a lot of passion for the local music scene to come out week after week, month after month, to help create something out of nothing.
To: Steve Foldvari, Michael Bryant, David Jones, Vanessa Rodello, Rick Tvedt, Mike Huberty, Anthony Del Ciello, and Mary Elsner – your ideas, intelligence and sheer hard work are what brought this whole concept to life. I am not always the easiest guy to work with, and you stuck with me. Together, look what we did! THANK YOU!
AMAZING EVENT VOLUNTEERS
You gave up time away from your friends and family to help staff an unknown first-time event. By all accounts, you were kind and welcoming, helpful, thoughtful and great at troubleshooting when that was necessary. We had no idea what this whole thing was going to look or feel like – and you were the smiling face of it! I can’t thank you enough – and some of you stepped up at the last minute to make sure we had enough help at registration, selling T-shirts and festival tickets, etc.
To: Mary Elsner, Dawn Hans, Bob & Sue Elkins, Jan Moen, Vanessa Rodello, Kayla Sprindis and all the students who volunteered to make this happen. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. You let us focus on the sessions and the music, knowing that everything else was running smoothly.
You gave graciously of your time to coach and inspire young musicians and guide them through the conference. Wendy Lynn Staats, Tony Cerniglia, Greg Doby, Michael Massey, Phil Lyons, Andy Wallman, Cub Tracey, David Hecht, Pie Cowan, Aaron Konkol, Matt Laplant and Conrad St.Clair.
Kelly Rauderwink who created an FANTASTIC logo and image. Erik Kjelland created awesome posters and schedules. We are really lucky to have this kind of talent on the BTW team.
EverNancy Morany single one of you shared experience, expertise and talent that was greatly appreciated by not only the attendees, but other presenters as well. We have been getting tremendous feedback about all the sessions – that they were useful, meaningful, and applicable. THANK YOU for helping to make our inaugural BTW Conference a really special one – we are really grateful for your time, and your generous spirit. And we hope you’ll be back! Butch Vig, Kip Winger, Ben Sidran, Paul Broucek, David Spero, Craig Anderton, Martin Atkins, Marla Frank, Shah Evans, DJ Pain, Fett, , Dexter Patterson, Chris Taylor, Beth Kille, Jonathan Suttin, Sue Baker, Jim Reith, Michael Brandmeier, Ken Vandevrie, Matt Smith, Ty Christian, Randy Hawke, Sybil Augustine, Rick Tvedt, Ben Hans, Matt Scherer and Stephanie Elkins. Thanks to Buzz Kemper and Audrey Martinovich for hosting Jake Johnson and a few of the speakers for a listening session at Audio For The Arts.
Your passion and willingness to share your time helping songwriters was evident to everyone in the room. I have been fortunate to enjoy some cool moments in my career, but your session at this first Between The Waves Conference was awesome in the literal sense of that word. I love listening to great songwriters talk about their craft and you knocked us out with your authenticity, vulnerability and honesty about your path. Watching the crowd watch you was especially enjoyable.
Your honesty about your career path and your brilliant performances truly demonstrated to everyone there why you have succeeded in two completely different genres. I could think of no better way to close this conference other than you inspiring a room full of musicians who face all the challenges you overcame. Your message of perseverance was moving and remarkable.
You are the “reason for being” of the whole undertaking. Your commitment to the local music scene and the Madison community as a whole is striking and very, very special. Perhaps most heartwarming is your support and commitment to each other.
That said, the music was FABULOUS!! I took in many of the performances, including the Hip-Hop Showcase, The Metal Showcase, The Chick Singer Night, Songwriters in the Round, and the Youth Showcase. You are so, so talented, and I was bursting with pride, especially when I was able to show off your music to some of our out-of-town guests.
Without you this never would have happened. It takes a lot of resources to put on something like this. In a few years, I hope the event will have a significant economic impact on the community, and you’re helping us get there. THANK YOU!! Broadjam, NAMM Foundation, Sound Forge Pro, US Bank, Wisconsin School Music Association, The Les Paul Foundation, Musicnotes, Dane Arts, Adorable, Heid Music, Madison Music Foundry, Madison Arts Commission, Audio For The Arts, WORT, Gibson Brands, Media 22, Strategic Partners Marketing, 608 Sound & Light, Music Maker, Noon Thirty and Accent Management.
CITY OF MADISON
We live in a pretty special place. The City of Madison, its Alders and its Mayor and Karin Wolf – Arts Program Administrator took a chance on this event and on fostering a climate where musicians can make a living making music right here. Along with the great talent our city has to offer, you inspired me to get this event going; and this community of musicians deserves to have every economic advantage possible.
Well – we just had the post-mortem – looking at what needs to be changed/done better; what worked well, etc. And I’ll have a date for next year’s event very soon – some of this year’s speakers have already committed. So – stay tuned.