Song Writing Retreat

‘To plant a thought’

A song writing retreat with singer songwriter & producer Tom McClung

An exceptional value, week-long retreat in the beautiful French countryside

Next retreat 2nd – 9th June 24

Now open for booking

8 places at just €650 per person with early bird discount

One week all inclusive accommodation and tuition

Note! Flights and travel are not included

Or email joe@studioalouette.com to reserve your place now

The song writing retreat will be held at Studio Alouette: a beautiful residential centre in the western French countryside.

The 150 year old renovated farm house is set in over 2 hectares of land just outside the idyllic, quiet, picturesque town of Confolens, Charente.

We will look after your every need leaving you to refine your skills away from the distractions of everyday life, with like-minded musicians.

Your hosts Tom McClung and Joe Woolf are two professional musicians who will deliver a relaxed and varied course to no more than eight people per retreat.

Introducing your tutor Tom McClung

Tom McClung is a songwriter, producer & multi-instrumentalist from Manchester, currently based in Nantes, France.

He writes and records under the moniker Francis Lung, playing almost all the instruments on his recordings as well as recording and mixing a large amount of his catalogue.

Tom also works as a session guitarist, saxophonist and drummer for artists such as Jonathan Bree, Lilly Wood and the Prick and Ben Gregory (Blaenavon).

He has released four EPs and two LPs on London based label Memphis Industries including the critically acclaimed ‘Miracle’ (2021). His songs have been featured on the BBC 6 Music playlist as well as being part of the soundtrack to the hit TV series ‘Normal People’.’

Get to know Tom with his Instagram here and hear Tom’s music here!

‘To plant a thought’ is a week exploring exactly what goes into writing, developing, and finishing the studio recording of a song. During the song writing retreat our participants will be encouraged to share their practices, engage with each other and collaborate to create the best possible versions of their work.

By the end of the week we will all be co-writers, co-producers, co-mixers, co-arrangers and session musicians on each other’s work, in effect giving each participant a view into the process from every seat in the studio.

Song writing retreat outline

  • Where do songs come from(& how do I know if I’ve found one)?
  • How do songs develop (& how do I know when to stop)?
  • ‘To demo or not to demo…’ (& do demos even exist anymore)?
  • How can I help you (the art of collaboration) ?
  • Basic tracking (there’s nothing basic about it..)
  • Overdubbing (& how not to overdo it)
  • Finished (the art of stopping)?
Meals at song writing retreat Studio Alouette

Song Writing Retreat Hospitality

Breakfast, lunch and dinner are all freshly prepared throughout the day and you are free to enjoy the grounds, dogs & outside areas throughout your stay.

Your song writing retreat accommodation is a carefully restored French Dortoir with large wet room & shower room. All bedding, towels, toiletries and laundry facilities are provided – all you will need to bring is a change of clothes, phone & tablet/laptop and your passion to create music!

Travel to our Song Writing Retreat

Studio Alouette is in Confolens, Charente in West France. We are most easily reached by flights from London and Manchester to Limoges Airport. We are able to arrange airport transfers from Limoges on the first and last days of the retreat.

Alternatively, you can drive and take the ferry or Channel Tunnel or the Eurostar to Paris and train to Limoges. See our main travel page for more details here.

Please note: Your travel is not included in the cost of the retreat and you will need to arrange your flights or ferry once you have reserved your space. Call or email and we will be happy to advise you of the best way to travel and what documents you will need.

What’s Included

Bed, breakfast, lunch and dinner

Limoges Airport to Studio Alouette transfer

Towels, toiletries and dressing gowns

Tuition and workshops

Wide variety of instruments and kit

Recording studio time with engineer

Recording at Studio Alouette Confolens France

What you need to provide

Flights to Limoges Airport

Passport, health insurance and GHIC card

Instrument if required

Couple of changes of clothes

Phones, tablets or laptop

Pyjamas!

See the links below for lots of information about our retreats

Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions by email, phone, What’s App, Messenger or smoke signals and we will get straight back to you.