The 30A Songwriters Festival kicks off today in South Walton, FL. Held in multiple venues along a stretch of the historic Highway 30A, the festival has become one of the most respected songwriting festivals in the country since its inception in 2010. This year, the four-day festival boasts a lineup of over 175 artists, including John Prine, Dr. John, Robert Ellis, Chely Wright and the Secret Sisters.
We’re headed down south to join in on the fun, and below you’ll find seven artists we’re looking forward to catching this weekend.
Parker Millsap’s The Very Last Day was one of our favorite albums of 2016, thanks to his heartfelt songwriting, stellar voice and knack for incorporating blues and gospel into his music. Recordings can’t do justice to his live shows, though, which show Millsap to be a true force of nature.
Nashville transplant Caroline Spence is well known around town for her agile voice and Patty Griffin-esque songwriting. Her excellent forthcoming album Spades & Roses (out March 3) should earn her plenty of attention, both in Nashville and beyond.
Sarah Potenza first came to national prominence as a contestant on The Voice, but the Providence-born artist is a far cry from your typical reality show contestant. Armed with a voice that could rival Bonnie Raitt’s and a deep reverence for the genre, Potenza is one of the most interesting young blues artists currently making music.
It’s no secret that we’re huge John Prine fans here at American Songwriter. At 70, he’s as spirited a performer as ever, and, unlike some of his legacy artist peers, is still putting out great new music. Speaking of, here’s hoping he recruits a guest or two from the festival lineup to perform tracks from 2016’s duets album For Better, or Worse.
Before East Nashville became a brand name, Todd Snider was its mayor. With his most recent album Eastside Bulldog, Snider marked his territory to fun, raucous results, and hearing those songs on the live stage is sure to be a good time for all.
Nashville’s Nikki Lane is keeping outlaw country alive. Her forthcoming album Highway Queen is her best yet, and should cement her status as the rightful heir to icons like Wanda Jackson and Loretta Lynn.
This supergroup of Robert Ellis, Jonny Fritz and Corey Chisel doesn’t get together for too many performances, so don’t miss this one. Fingers crossed this reunion performance means we can expect new music from the trio soon.