Rock Camp 2019

ROBERT C. REED/HICKORY DAILY RECORD: Horizon lead singer Sarah Brooks does her version of the song "Pinball Wizard" by The Who.

On Friday, a group of young musicians will take the stage of the Drendel Auditorium to perform hits from the 1969 Woodstock festival.

To view more photos, scroll to the bottom of this article. 

When those musicians first came to the Hickory Music Factory Rock Camp on Monday, however, many of them did not know much about the iconic concert.

Rick Cline, who runs the camp, said he saw blank expressions on the faces of many of the campers when he said this year’s theme would be Woodstock.

“I know I wasn’t very familiar with Woodstock,” 16-year-old camper Sarah Brooks said. “I knew it was a music festival but I didn’t know much about it.”

The weeklong camp, which is for children between the ages of 11 and 18, provides the young musicians with the opportunity to immerse themselves in the music from the concert.

It also gives them the opportunity to test their own creative skills and learn more about playing in a band.

In addition to choosing a song from Woodstock to perform, each band will also perform another cover version of their choosing and compose a song of their own for the concert on Friday.

Brooks and her band, Horizon, chose “Pinball Wizard” by The Who. The song fit in with the band’s skill set and was a popular, recognizable song that would appeal to an audience, Brooks said.

The camp also gives some of the musicians a chance to try things they have not done before.

Holden Benfield, 14, said he’s played bass and guitar in the past but he is now the lead singer for his band, Ampstatic.

Benfield said it’s been a challenge performing Jimi Hendrix’s “Purple Haze,” but he believes he’s adjusting to it.

“…I’ve got kind of a deep voice and it’s really high so it’s not really in my range but I’m getting up there by, I’m screaming a lot of it, so it’s hurting my throat a bit,” Benfield said.

In addition to Horizon and Ampstatic, four other bands will be performing on Friday: Carolina Daze, HORSEPOWER, Zenith and 6th Sense.

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Kevin Griffin is the City of Hickory reporter at the Hickory Daily Record.

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