Helmed by the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development, Tennessee Songwriters Week was established in 2019 to support music venues, celebrate songwriters with live performances in all genres of music, drive visitation and inspire travelers to experience the state's music stores, history, attractions and venues. During the first two weeks of February, more than 50 music venues are hosting qualifying rounds across the state from Memphis to Northeast Tennessee. Songwriters chosen to advance from the qualifying rounds will perform at one of seven pre-determined showcase events.
"We are so excited to be a part of a Tennessee music tradition of songwriters. A perfect fit with the history of Tennessee Music and the Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree,” said Jamboree President Kim Luton. "The Jamboree is sponsoring the judges for the event. And what a lineup of judges: Local Vanissa Braswell Murphy of Smithville, TN, who was the past Chair of the Music & Arts Department at the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire; Michelle Canning, Member of the International Bluegrass Music Association and a member of IBMA Songwriters Committee; another local from Smithville - Darrin Vincent of Dailey & Vincent, Grammy Award Winner and member of the Grand Ole Opry Winner."
The Harvester was selected as one of just fifty live music venues throughout Tennessee to host the qualifying rounds. Winners will advance to showcase events in Memphis, Franklin, Gallatin, Chattanooga, Knoxville, Gatlinburg and Johnson City February 19-25, 2023. Finalists selected at each will earn an opportunity to perform before music industry professionals in the competition’s last round, to be held at Nashville’s Historic Bluebird Cafe. “Hosting this event is an honor for the Harvester and the City of Smithville,” says Bert Driver, owner of The Harvester.
“The musical heritage of our area stretches back to the early 1800s, built on the folk traditions of England, Ireland, and Scotland brought to Appalachia,” he points out. “Because we're kind of an isolated geographical area, this uniquely American music was preserved for well over one hundred years and is now celebrated in our annual festival, the Smithville Fiddlers’ Jamboree.”
The qualifying round will be held February 2, 2023 beginning at 6pm at The Harvester in Smithville. For more information visit harvestertn.com, smihvillejamboree.com or tnvacation.com/songwriters-week.