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Tim Stafford

Rhino River Flatpick

& Songwriting Safari


  • Limited to 8 guests
  • 5 nights,6 days on Safari
  • Dumazulu traditional lunch and Cultural show
  • Elephant encounters
  • Daily game drives
  • Luxury accommodation – Rhino River Lodge
  • Daily guitar & song writing workshop sessions with Tim Stafford
  • Includes all meals, game drives, and workshop tuition
  • Big 5 Game viewing


Dates: January 26, 2018 – January 31, 2018
Instructor: Tim Stafford
Host: Wiam Otto
Cost: $3550 per person
Deposit: 50% Deposit to secure
Max number of Musicians: SOLD OUT


On this music safari we will be staying at the exceptional Rhino River Lodge in the heart of the Zululand kingdom of Kwa-Zulu Natal. This province boasts mountains, grasslands and some of South-Africa’s best beaches, and it is steeped in rich history and culture.

On our first day we will depart from the sea side town of Umghlanga and head to the Rhino River Lodge en route to the DumaZulu Cultural Village, where we will discover the fascinating culture and traditions of the Zulu people. We will enjoy cultural dancing shows, delicious African cuisine and presentations on the Zulu tribe of South-Africa, their history, customs and traditions. Watch as locals make spears, shields, baskets and clay pots. Peek into the world of the sangoma and have a one on one reading. Experience the rhythmic drumbeat and dance of Africa. Taste Zulu beer. Watch the throwing of the bones…

After lunch at DumaZulu we will be departing for the Rhino River Lodge which is a Big 5 safari lodge in Kwa-Zulu Natal. It is situated along the shore of the Msunduze River in the southern section of the Zululand Rhino Reserve. This 23,000 hectare private game reserve is located in the very heart of Zululand, 30kms North of the Hluhluwe Game Reserve. It’s in an area renowned for its African wildlife and rich cultural heritage. The private game lodge offers you an intimate safari experience, with excellent game viewing and luxury accommodation.

During this Rhino River Music Safari we will enjoy daily game drives in open air Safari vehicles, and spend the rest of the day getting instruction in Songwriting and Guitar playing from seasoned teacher, and professional performer Tim Stafford – an accomplished Singer, Songwriter, Producer, Guitarist, and respected member of the Bluegrass music community as founding member of the wildly popular Bluegrass band – Blue Highway.


Day 1: Breakfast and departure from the Holiday Inn Express in Umhlanga. Stop over at DumaZulu for a traditional lunch and Cultural show, followed by our arrival at Rhino River Lodge. We will then have our first session with Tim, followed by a relaxed afternoon Game drive which will officially kick off our Rhino River Flatpick & Songwriting music safari.

Day 2-5: Each day starts off with coffee and rusks which will be served. We will then head out on the game vehicle for our first early morning game drive.

Breakfast and lunch will be served upon our return, followed by our Master class sessions with Tim Stafford. This will be followed by an evening game drive, after which dinner will be served.

Day 6:  We will start the day off with an optional early morning game drive followed by breakfast at the lodge. Departure at 11:00 am and stop over at Ilala weavers before heading back to the Holiday Inn Express in Umghlanga.

During our workshop sessions we will learn a bunch of new songs and techniques; receive tips and pointers on how to practice and improve our playing, and how to make our playing sound better. Each student will give a performance of a prepared song during the day.

At night after dinner we will run through a constructive critique session of each student’s performance before turning in for the night. All of this, plus the added bonus of an intimate ‘bush performance’ by Tim will make this an unforgettable music safari workshop experience.

Tim will quickly be able to gauge the level of all the students and he will make sure that everyone has a rewarding learning experience. Tim is open to the interests of the group, and we can tailor make our sessions as we go along.

Tim will cover the following topics:

1. The Guitar in Bluegrass Music

Making a study of Rhythm and lead role

2. The Basic’s and why they are important

Tone, Technique, Taste, Tuning, Timing Tim will give detailed instruction and practical tips onhowto approach and practice the five ‘Ts’, in order to become a better player.

3. Songwriting

Tips and techniques:Tim will explain and give instruction on the four elements of a song, how to approach and apply these elements, and give tips and techniques on how to develop your ideas into songs.

4. The Hank Williams writing exercise

Rhino River Gallery