Teens and adults rock on at Valley rock'n'roll boot campPosted: Updated:
I saw Guns 'n Roses videos and I was like 'Slash is so cool," admits Savannah Engelking. She hopes to one day play the guitar like Guns 'n Roses superstar Slash.
Savannah picked up the instrument about seven months ago. To help perfect her skills, the 13-year-old signed up for a rock boot camp in Scottsdale. She says, "They made me feel comfortable when you got on the stage and they were real instructive."
Neil Zaza, one of the co-founders of the rock boot camp, explains, "What we're doing is giving an opportunity to experience a live music situation where you can get into different bands. You can interact with the players take in master classes and roundtables."
An internationally-acclaimed guitar virtuoso, Zaza says he wanted to give musicians a chance to not only work with some of the best in the business, but to take the skills they have learned and perform a live concert for family and friends at the end of the two-day camp.
"There's a lot of people that have a lot of talent, but they haven't had the opportunity to get into an environment like this and you don't have to be a teen, you can be 35 years old," says Zaza.
One of those bigger kids wanting to join in the fun was Kevin Kocis. "It really struck a chord and I thought what an opportunity to hang with my son for the weekend and have a little fun myself," he admits.
Kevin has been playing the guitar for five years and after just a couple of hours in the camp he was doing things he didn't think possible. "I primarily play acoustic. So here I'm playing a lot of electric so it's taken me out of my comfort zone, but it's been great."
Grant Ferguson, the other man behind the rock boot camp, says, " We find that people are going to get the most out of rock boot camp if they've been playing for about three months maybe six months on their instrument."
Ferguson is an avid player himself. He believes this camp could be the training ground for those looking to take their music to the professional level. "Our heart felt desire is to see people pursue what they love and I think if you're able to make a living at it then I think you achieved a level of success that a lot of people would envy."
So whether you are looking to be a famous rocker or just pick up a new hobby, Savannah and Kevin both say this is the place to rock on. Savannah explains, "You're going to meet other musicians and see what it's like. You know people so that so that if you ever going to form a band you could be, 'Hi I need a drummer."
Kevin adds, "I think when people see the performance at the end of this they're going to invite more people to share this experience."
If you want to learn more about the rock boot camp, .