First Annual Martha’s Vineyard Songwriters Festival Scheduled for Sept. 18 & 19

Posted in News on August 19, 2009

Country and Pop Collide at Inaugural Event

The inaugural Martha’s Vineyard Songwriters Festival will inhabit the famous East Coast playground September 18 and 19. Staged at hotspots in Vineyard Haven and Oak Bluffs, MA, the festival will combine pop and country BMI hit makers in exclusive live music lineups and intimate settings, adopting the overwhelmingly successful approach of the perennially popular Key West Songwriters Festival.  Advance tickets for each show are $25. Admission for both nights of performances is also available in advance for $45. To purchase tickets, visit

The eclectic list of performers includes pop songwriter and scorching “Bette Davis Eyes” vocalist Kim Carnes; witty troubadour Scotty Emerick, whose compositions include Toby Keith’s “As Good As I Once Was,” “I’m Just Talkin’ ‘Bout Tonight” and “A Little Too Late,” all of which he co-wrote with Keith; promising UK pop singer/songwriter Lucie Silvas; revered country poet Hugh Prestwood, whose songs include Randy Travis’s “Hard Rock Bottom of Your Heart,” Alison Krauss’s “Ghost in this House” and Trisha Yearwood’s “The Song Remembers When”; young southern singer/songwriter Natalie Hemby, who in addition to boasting three songs on Miranda Lambert’s new album including the first single, composed “The Bees”—recorded by Lee Ann Womack and featuring Keith Urban—which has generated substantial buzz on and off Music Row; alt-pop singer/songwriter Daniel Tashian, who co-wrote “The Bees” with Hemby; New York-based Jeff Cohen, the co-writer behind cross-genre successes including Big & Rich’s “Holy Water,” Evan & Jaron’s “Crazy for this Girl,” and more; Nashville tunesmith James Slater, composer of Martina McBride’s “In My Daughter’s Eyes” and more; beloved Key West singer/songwriter Scott Kirby; Chris Barron, former front man for alt-rock group the Spin Doctors (“Little Miss Can’t Be Wrong” and “Two Princes”); and five-time BMI Country Songwriter of the Year Paul Overstreet, the pen behind standards including Randy Travis’s “Deeper than the Holler” and “Forever and Ever Amen,” the Forester Sisters’ “I Fell in Love Again Last Night,” The Judds’ “Love Can Build a Bridge,” and many more.

  • Scotty Emerick
  • Paul Overstreet
  • Kim Carnes

  • Scott Kirby
  • Natalie Hemby
  • Jeff Cohen

The event is designed to introduce top BMI pop and country songwriters not only to a wider audience, but to one another as well. While attendees soak up performances from the composers behind the hits, the performers will take advantage of the retreat-like setting and establish new creative partnerships with unmitigated hit-making potential.

The first annual Martha’s Vineyard Songwriters Festival is sponsored by BMI, Southwest Airlines, Mansion House, Key West Songwriters Festival, Fury Key West,, Plum-TV and Storme Warren, host of Headline Country, which airs on GAC.

  • Lucie Silvas
  • Hugh Prestwood
  • Chris Barron

  • James Slater
  • Daniel Tashian


8-10:30 p.m. / Katharine Cornell Theatre / Vineyard Haven, MA
Advance tickets $25 -

Performances by:
Jeff Cohen
Lucie Silvas
Natalie Hemby
Scott Kirby
James Slater
Daniel Tashian
Hugh Prestwood

8-10:30 p.m. / Union Chapel Theatre / Kennebec Avenue / Oak Bluffs, MA
Advance tickets $25 -

Performances by:
Paul Overstreet
Scotty Emerick
Kim Carnes
Chris Barron



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