Exploring Entertainment in Florida's 850 & Beyond
or the past 13 years, the 30A Songwriters Festival has attracted thousands of dedicated live music fans from around the country to hear original songwriters spanning many genres of music perform their songs. The beach resort towns along Highway 30A on the Gulf of Mexico feature 30 venues presenting over 200 songwriters and 300+ solo, band and in-the-round performances throughout the weekend of January 13 – 16, 2023.
30A Songwriters Festival will celebrate its 14th year with performances on the main stage at presenting partner Grand Boulevard’s Town Center in Miramar Beach with headline performances by renowned artists LYLE LOVETT, GIN BLOSSOMS, RICKIE LEE JONES, STEVE EARLE, YOLA, AND MORGAN WADE.
The festival welcomes for the first time to 30A AMY GRANT, TOM RUSH, BRIAN VANDER ARK (THE VERVE PIPE), the BLACK OPRY REVUE, BETH NIELSEN CHAPMAN, and JOHN CRAIGIE.
Returning to perform two shows each throughout the weekend are songwriting legends JOHN PAUL WHITE (The Civil Wars), SHAWN MULLINS, KATHLEEN EDWARDS, TINSLEY ELLIS, DARRELL SCOTT, ADIA VICTORIA, CHUCK PROPHET, LIVINGSTON TAYLOR, ABE PARTRIDGE, LILLY HIATT, JOHN FULLBRIGHT, SARAH LEE GUTHRIE, PAUL THORN, AND JAMES MCMURTRY.
An Additional 100+ Artists Will Be Announced Over the Next Few Weeks—Stay Tuned
We are pleased to announce the following confirmed artists: Hayes Carll, Glenn Phillips, Jeffrey Steele, Pat McGee, Bob Schneider, Abe Partridge, Cousin Curtiss, Mary Gauthier, Dan Navarro, Mark Erelli, Jonathan Byrd, Peter Holsapple & Chris Stamey, Will Hoge, Don Dixon & Marti Jones, , Nicole Chillemi and the Jazz Legacy Project, Amanda Platt & The Honeycutters, Griffin House, Gretchen Peters, Kim Richey, Amy LaVere & Will Sexton, Will Kimbrough, Leigh Nash, Garrison Starr, Michael Tolcher, Mary Bragg, Tim Easton, Kalen & Aslyn, Cooper Carter, Crys Matthews, Florence Dore, Adrian Carter, John Lowell, Heather Mae, Charlie Mars, Michael McDermott, Leslie Mendelson, Amy Rigby, Danielle Howle, Side Pony, Darden Smith, The Kennedys, Pat Byrne, Levi Lowery, Certainly So, Eddie 9V, Tall Pines, Meaghan Farrell, Jesse Lynn Madera, Danni Nicholis, Certainly So, Alice Peacock, Hannah Miller, Sammi Accola, and Goldpine.
Lyle Lovett has broadened the definition of American music in a career that spans 14 albums since his self-titled debut in 1986. A singer, composer, and actor, the four-time Grammy award-winning musician fuses elements of country, swing, jazz, folk, gospel and blues in a convention-defying manner that breaks down barriers. This January, Lovett will take to the mainstage at Grand Boulevard to perform a career-spanning set ranging from early hits like “If I Had a Boat” and “Cowboy Man” to selections from 2022’s 12th of June.
Gin Blossoms’ fusion of melodic rock, folk, and country elements helped pave the way for the modern rock of today. Their five-time platinum breakthrough New Miserable Experience contained instant classics like “Hey Jealousy,” “Found Out About You,” and “Allison Road” and established them as one of the great songwriting bands of their generation. Renowned live performers, playing over 100 tour dates a year, Gin Blossoms will treat the 30A audience to a string of singalong hits like “Til I Hear It From You,” “Follow You Down,” and “As Long As It Matters,” as well as cuts from their latest release Mixed Reality.
Rickie Lee Jones charmed two sold-out audiences at last year’s festival and she returns in 2023 to play the headline stage as well as a special evening night club performance. Her acclaimed memoir Last Chance Texaco released in 2021 is “as rich and colorful as Jones’s best lyrics,” writes The New York Times. The two-time Grammy winner, known for her haunting voice that ranges from deep yearning to late-night sultry, first appeared on the Los Angeles scene in the mid-1970s penning instant classics like “Chuck E.’s In Love,” “Danny’s All-Star Joint,” and the seminal album, Pirates.
Steve Earle needs little introduction. One of America’s most gifted living songwriters, the three-time Grammy winner has released twenty-two albums and amassed one of the most beloved songwriting catalogs of all time during his four-decade career. Multi-platinum successes “Copperhead Road” and “Guitar Town” are just the tip of the iceberg. Earle’s songs have been recorded by such music legends as Johnny Cash, Emmylou Harris, Carl Perkins, Waylon Jennings, Vince Gill and Joan Baez. Throughout his career, Earle has also become a novelist, a film, TV and stage actor, a playwright, a short story author, a record producer and a radio host. His latest release, Jerry Jeff pays tribute to legendary outlaw singer-songwriter Jerry Jeff Walker.
Morgan Wade is taking the world by storm with her acclaimed debut album Reckless (Produced by Jason Isbell + the 400 Unit guitarist Sadler Vaden and Paul Ebersold), hit singles “Wilder Days” and “Run,” and a sold out cross-country tour. But Wade didn’t start writing to be a sensation, for critical acclaim, or massive concert tours. She wrote to speak her truth, to save her own life – and perhaps throw a rope to others who are struggling. Wade has a voice The FADER lauds is “like a jagged blade, sharp enough to draw blood but lustrous under the light” while The New York Times declares “she sounds like she’s singing from the depths of history.” Wade’s 30A debut is your chance to see a major star on the rise.
Yola achieved breakout success with her critically acclaimed debut album Walk Through Fire in 2019. Hailed as a Black British genre fluid rising star, she landed four Grammy nominations including Best New Artist for her unique blend of Americana and classic R&B and established herself as one of the best live performers on the scene. Her anthemic new album Stand for Myself is a sonic mix of symphonic soul and classic pop tracing a musical thread to Yola’s most eclectic musical inspirations. Yola made her acting debut as Sister Rosetta Tharpe in Baz Luhrmann’s 2022 biopic Elvis.
The 30A Songwriters Festival production team transforms amphitheaters, town halls, restaurants, theaters, bars and covered patios into unique music venues with state of the art sound systems ranging in capacity from 75 to 750 seats indoors and 6,000 outdoors.
The 30A Songwriters Festival is co-produced by Russell Carter Artist Management and the Cultural Arts Alliance (CAA) of Walton, and net proceeds from the Festival support the CAA’s mission to advance the Arts in Walton County, Florida.
Russell Carter, President of Russell Carter Artist Management and Festival Co-Producer points out “2023 marks the 14th year of producing the always sold out 30A Songwriters Festival. It began as a small event and grew quickly into a premier one-of-a kind musical showcase for world-class songwriters. Our goal is to curate a Festival that presents the very best touring songwriters and performers whether they are hot off the heels of an emerging artist award (Morgan Wade) or going strong in the sixth decade of an influential and heralded career (Tom Rush). We want our audiences to experience musicians representing diverse genres of music – jazz, blues, country, folk, Americana, rock – with just two stipulations – they have to write their own music and they have to be really great at it!”
“The 30A Songwriters Festival is not only the premier songwriters festival; it is the singular event that brings together thousands of music fans, hundreds of artists and nearly every South Walton neighborhood to support and celebrate the Arts; the energy it generates is unmatched,” said CAA Executive Director and Festival Co-Producer Jennifer Steele. “The Festival is also an important part of the CAA’s vision to make Walton County a creative place. It thrills us to be able to welcome artists like Lyle Lovett, Yola, Morgan Wade, and the Black Opry Revue to our market for the first time, along with returning favorites like Rickie Lee Jones, Kathleen Edwards and Steve Earle. Year 14 is one you won’t want to miss!”
Festival Weekend Passes are currently available at www.30asongwritersfestival.com. VIP tickets that include premium seating on the lawn at Grand Boulevard for the headline shows on Saturday and Sunday afternoons along with access to the VIP tent serving complimentary food, beer, wine and cocktails are also available. For a full description of each ticket package including VIP mainstage and transportation packages for groups of 2 up to 12, visit www.30asongwritersfestival.com.
The 30A Songwriters Festival is presented by Grand Boulevard with additional support from Visit South Walton and the Florida Department of State Division of Arts & Culture. Lodging partners include 30A Beach Girls, 360 Blue, Alys Beach, Courtyard Marriott, Hibiscus, Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa, Hotel Effie, Hyatt Place, Ocean Reef, The Pearl Hotel, Rosemary Beach Inn, and WaterColor Inn.
Music Venue Partners include Grand Boulevard (headline stage), The St. Joe Company (WaterColor Lake House, WaterColor BoatHouse, Fish Out Of Water (FOOW), Havana Beach Bar & Grill at The Pearl Hotel and The Pavilion at Watersound Town Center), Alys Beach (Caliza), Bud & Alley’s, Seaside (The REP), Rosemary Beach Town Hall, The Bay, North Beach Social, The Shops of Grayton, Raw & Juicy, The Big Chill (formerly The Hub), AJ’s Grayton Beach, LaCo, Hibiscus Coffee & Guest House, The Wine Bar at WaterColor, Beach Camp Brewpub, Old Florida Fish House, Red Fish Taco, Hyatt Place, Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa, Hotel Effie, Beach Happy Cafe, Central Square Records, and Grayton Beer Taproom.
The 30A Songwriters Festival is presented by Grand Boulevard with additional support from Visit South Walton and the Florida Department of State Division of Arts & Culture.
About the Cultural Arts Alliance of Walton County
The Cultural Arts Alliance of Walton County, Inc. is the officially designated local arts agency that advances the arts through leadership, advocacy, funding, programs and education. As the creative core of our community for 30 years, the CAA provides accessible opportunities for all forms of art, every variety of maker, all levels of learners and art lovers. Through support for and presentation of creative and educational programs and services, the CAA strives to connect the people of Walton County to a broader view, critical exploration and answers only the Arts have the power to provide. Members of the CAA receive a 10% discount off weekend passes and admission to an exclusive performance on Wednesday, January 12th. Call (850) 622-5970 to become a member and take advantage of the discount. www.culturalartsalliance.com.
About Russell Carter Artist Management
Russell Carter Artist Management is a full-service artist management firm that has worked with national recording artists since 1990 currently including Indigo Girls, Shawn Mullins, Susanna Hoffs, Matthew Sweet, Abe Patridge, and Sarah Lee Guthrie. Prior to forming RCAM, Russell Carter practiced entertainment law in Atlanta for ten years. He is a board member of the Cultural Arts Alliance of Walton County (CAA) in Florida. RCAM, based in the 4th Ward in Atlanta, books, promotes, and co-produces the 30A Songwriters Festival with the CAA and co-produces the Opelika Songwriters Festival in Alabama with the Sound Wall.
About Grand Boulevard
Grand Boulevard is the shop, dine, play and stay Town Center located on Northwest Florida’s Beaches. Based on the prominent mixed-use architectural model, Grand Boulevard offers a dynamic lifestyle experience with convenient access to a multitude of exclusive shopping and dining options, entertainment, professional services, corporate offices and lodging. Grand Boulevard is a Howard Group and Merchants Retail Partners property. For more information visit GrandBoulevard.com..