Axe grinders in session

Published 5:45 pm Saturday, February 16, 2013

Duncan L. Wood, an accomplished guitarist taught once-removed by the “world’s greatest,” will lead acoustic jams at the store he co-owns, DnD Music, once a month beginning in March.

Following the success of its sessions for bluegrass musicians, a music store in the Western Branch section of Chesapeake plans to hold regular jams for acoustic players beginning next month.

Duncan L. Wood, owner of DnD Music with Danielle Gerard, said he recognized the need for a separate jam for a variety of genres — as long as they’re played acoustically — due to many musicians being excluded from the bluegrass sessions, held the third Saturday of every month.

“Anything that’s outside of a fairly narrow style of song is not really approved of” by the bluegrass crowd, Wood said.

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He said that he and Gerard, who record and perform together as the Duncan and Daniel Band, found this out the hard way when they were asked to do a song, which turned out not to be bluegrass enough.

“We were practically kicked out,” Wood said. “They got upset because we played by ourselves; they didn’t keep up with what we were doing.”

The acoustic jams will be held the first Saturday of the month, starting in March, from 3 to 5 p.m.

They will be led by Wood, an accomplished guitarist in pretty much all styles who was taught by two guitarists who in turn were schooled directly by “the world’s greatest guitarist,” the legendary Andres Segorvia.

“He was the most impressive guitarist and he had a lot of influence on the guitarists who taught me — they were some of his best students,” Wood said. “My training was one step removed from the greatest guitarist that ever lived.”

Thankfully for most other string pickers, one need not be quite as spectacularly dexterous on the fretboard to attend DnD’s jams.

Although Wood said that many participants are higher-level, and thus able to share new skills with beginners, the ability to manage a chord or three is all that’s required.

Wood said he and Gerard value providing a free venue for the community to come together and share music.

“The reason is to get people to start sharing with each other, and then hopefully influence them on their road to learning,” he said.

Musicians are asked to bring their guitar and their capo, and a plate of food “would be most welcome,” Wood said.

The bluegrass sessions have been going about six years, he added, and the acoustic jams, if successful, will “probably continue for as long as we’re here.”

DnD is just off Interstate 664 at 3304 Taylor Road.