Soulful singer-songwriter Keith Greeninger is returning to play the Sisters Folk Festival for the fifth time.

Greeninger has played Sisters Folk Festival with his band, with Dayan Kai, as well as solo shows. During all of those years, he has also taught at the Americana Song Academy at Caldera.

Greeninger spoke highly of his experiences teaching at Caldera ahead of the festival.

“I love being a part of people’s self-discovery and connecting and expressing themselves here, it is a really safe space to express yourself,” he said.

He works with a large demographic of students, including older people.

“It is great to see the new connection they find and having a balance of old and new,” he said.

This year, Greeninger will be teaching a course entitled “Writing From The Soul.”

“The course focuses on knowing the difference between story songs and songs that tap more into emotions and the soul. We try and sit in a space during the teaching that allows for you to focus on the sound and style of the song, even more so than the songwriting,” he said.

His second course, entitled “Writing Songs For The People And For Community Change,” focuses on how to write songs about what is happening in the world and how to create a change for a whole community through music.

“It is really a course in how to write songs that just speak the truth, in a way that everyone can see it, objectively,” said Greeninger.

Greeninger’s focus here is to invite the audience to see these things for themselves and let them choose their own opinion. He will be teaching these two courses throughout the week up at Caldera alongside David Jacobs-Strain and other instructors who are also all playing the Sisters Folk Festival the weekend after the song camp.

Greeninger has become a surrogate local in Sisters. He has played numerous shows outside of the Sisters Folk Festival over the years. He has done house concerts around Sisters and Bend as well as performances at The Belfry. Greeninger loves the community of Sisters, and it shows when he performs here.

“I love the sense of community that is at the core of the Folk Festival and every artist is invited in as one of its own. I feel very welcome and respected here. The people give you their undivided attention,” he said.

Greeninger also loves getting to work with the youth. He has returned nearly every year to teach at the Americana Song Academy for Youth, which occurs in March.

“It is wonderful to work with the youth and see how much the community keeps an open mind about the youth and the arts and the connection there giving the youth a safe space to grow and explore,” he said.

Greeninger has been a part of a number of young students’ lives for many years, getting to see them grow and flourish into adulthood.

“I get to see the young people I met while they were in school going out into the world with this brilliant confidence,” he said.

Greeninger will be performing at the Folk Festival alongside Dayan Kai, multi-instrumentalist and vocalist. The first time Greeninger played the Sisters Folk Festival was with Kai by his side, and they have been working together for many years.

“Dayan and I were invited back to the festival and were both adopted into the family,” said Greeninger.

Greeninger and Kai will be performing multiple sets over the weekend, as well as a combined set with David Jacobs-Strain and Bob Beach at the Village Green Stage, at 3 p.m. on Saturday, September 7.

“We are really good friends with Bob and David and we always leave a lot of space during our sets to just see what happens and don’t plan much,” said Greeninger.

Greeninger is in the process of finishing up his latest record, which is expected to be released in October. The record features the band he has worked with in the past, as well as Dayan Kai and some solo work. He is putting the final touches on it at his studio near his home in Santa Cruz, California.

Greeninger is looking forward to his return to this second home.

“I just want to thank the folks in Sisters for being so supportive of the arts and hope everyone enjoys the festival and performances as a celebration of that,” he said.