Winery Dogs Announce Dog Camp 2015 with Alex Skolnick and Dave Ellefson — Video

Mike Portnoy, Billy Sheehan and Richie Kotzen of the Winery Dogs have announced Dog Camp 2015, their second-annual immersive program for aspiring musicians of all ages and levels. It's set for July 27 to 31 at Full Moon Resort in Big Indian, New York.

This year's Dog Camp also will feature bassist Dave Ellefson (Megadeth) and guitarist Alex Skolnick (Testament, Rodrigo Y Gabriela).

Here are comments from the Winery Dogs and their Dog Camp guests:

Alex Skolnick: "I'm greatly looking forward to appearing as a guest instructor for my friends the Winery Dogs, guys who prove that serious players of their instruments can rock as hard as anyone. Having co-hosted a camp at Full Moon in the past, I know firsthand that it's a perfect location for combining the focus of a learning intensive with the fun of a vacation.”

Mike Portnoy: "We’ve all done clinics over the years, but it’s always been something that’s primarily centered around one instrument that each of us has typically done on an individual basis. Dog Camp is the first time any of us have hosted or participated in a true band camp. As a result of that, we’ve got some incredible surprises in store for everybody attending.”

Richie Kotzen: “What's interesting is to talk about music, concepts, objectives, reasons why you're playing the instrument, what you want to achieve, and how to get to that point, rather than talking about major versus minor scales. I love that feeling of sharing concepts with people. In The Winery Dogs, we all have various experiences that a lot of other people don't have. It's an opportunity to share that and grow; the feeling of moving forward and learning and experiencing something new. That's what excites me about Dog Camp. It's the creative process and creativity that make me want to do music, and I want to share that."

Billy Sheehan: "I want to emphasize that players should keep an eye on what we're doing and why during the performances. In between songs or mid-song, I want to stop to make a point about what's going on and why. The expertise of being able to play ensemble is a bit of a lost art with kids today. They don't do what we did when we were growing up. Right away, we just got in a band whether we could play or not. Now, kids want to get up to a level of expertise and then join a band."

You can check out Dave Ellefson's comments in the top video below.

Produced by Dreamcatcher Events, this vacation experience offers the opportunity to get up close and personal with music legends as campers attend instrument-specific clinics, learn songwriting mechanics and enjoy intimate performances and jam sessions.

Look for the daily itinerary for Dog Camp to be announced in the coming weeks. Registrations for Dog Camp are on sale now at

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