February 1, 2016

BMI Announces Star-Studded Lineup for 21st Annual Key West Song Writers Festival

Event to benefit the BMI Foundation
in association with Visit Florida, Deep Eddy Vodka and the Monroe County Tourist Development Council.

NASHVILLE, February 1, 2016 - Broadcast Music, Inc.® (BMI®), the global leader in music rights management, is pleased to announce the initial lineup for the 21st Annual Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association’s Key West Songwriters Festival, presented by BMI. Set for May 4-8, 2016, the Key West Songwriters Festival will feature top country hit-makers alongside up-and-coming talent in the most iconic venues in the southernmost point in the U.S.

Proceeds from the Key West Songwriters Festival will benefit the BMI Foundation, a nonprofit that since 1985 supports the creation, performance, and study of music through awards, scholarships, grants and commissions. Sponsors include SunTrust Bank, Texas Roadhouse, HD Radio, Epiphone and the Texas Heritage Songwriters Association.

“This is a great opportunity for us to bring our songwriters and licensees together for five days of fun in the sun and once-in-a-lifetime performances,” says Mark Mason, BMI’s Executive Director of Writer-Publisher Relations. “Budding songwriter relationships and hit songs have come out of the Key West Songwriters Festival for 21 years now.”

The impressive list of performers for this year includes headliners RCA Nashville recording artist Jake Owen, Robert Earl Keen, Rhett Akins Band, Bob DiPiero, Al Anderson, Shawn Camp, Lori McKenna, Liz Rose, Wendell Mobley, Heather Morgan, James Slater, Even Stevens, Guthrie Trapp and the Mulekickers, Chuck Cannon, Bruce Wallace, Phil Barton, Randy Montana, Josh Dorr, Marti Fredriksen, Danny Myrick, Paul Jenkins, Jabe Beyer, Rick Farrell, Love & Theft and many more to come. The entire event is hosted by Sirius XM host Storme Warren, who will broadcast his morning show live from the Smokin’ Tuna Saloon.

“The Key West Songwriters Festival brings the best country songwriters to the most festive island venues in the southernmost States,” says Carol Dover, President and CEO of the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association. “We are thrilled to bring such a diverse talent line up to such a lively city as Key West, giving festival attendees the chance have a unique music festival experience.”

Attendees will have the chance to check out more than 200 songwriters playing more than 50 shows, free of charge. The SunTrust Kickoff Concert will feature the Rhett Akins Band, performing on the scenic Ocean Key Resort Sunset Pier, followed by free daily stages at the Southernmost Beach Resort, sunset show on the Pier House Resort beach, and a Main Stage Duval Street Concert featuring Sony Nashville artist Jake Owen. Shows will take place at the historic Sloppy Joe’s, the Green Parrot Bar and will be streamed live from Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville. Other shows include the NSAI “Bluebird at Blue Heaven” show, HD Radio’s late night jams with Guthrie Trapp and the Mulekickers at the Smokin’ Tuna Saloon, and a closing concert at the historic Casa Marina Resort.

Ticketed shows for the festival will include theatre shows at the San Carlos Institute, the Tropic Cinema, the Key West Theater, the Studios of Key West and Sunset Sail Shows aboard a Fury Water Adventures catamaran. Award-winning songwriter Robert Earl Keen will host two Bloody Mary Brunch shows at the Smokin’ Tuna Saloon, in partnership with Texas Heritage Songwriters Association.

For updates, follow @BMI on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook, and use hashtag #BMIKeyWest.

Tickets will be on sale mid-March. For a complete listing of sponsoring hotels, local businesses, participating songwriters and more, visit

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About the Key West Songwriters Festival
The Key West Songwriters Festival is the largest festival of its kind in the world. The event’s 1995 debut was small but memorable, featuring Mickey Newbury and Shel Silverstein. BMI stepped in as a partner and sponsor in 1996 and has helped it grow into both a tourist attraction and favorite of island locals. The festival revolves around five days and nights of more than 50 free shows, staged at an array of the island’s most popular drinking holes and hot spots, where live music introduces crowds to the faces, voices and stories behind the songs. Diverse lineups featuring more than 200 top songwriters deliver rare, “Key West-only” moments. More info available at

About BMI
Celebrating 75 years of service to songwriters, composers, music publishers and businesses, Broadcast Music, Inc.® (BMI®) is a global leader in music rights management, serving as an advocate for the value of music. BMI represents the public performance rights in more than 10.5 million musical works created and owned by more than 700,000 songwriters, composers, and music publishers. The Company negotiates music license agreements and distributes the fees it generates as royalties to its affiliated writers and publishers when their songs are performed in public. In 1939, BMI created a groundbreaking open-door policy becoming the only performing rights organization to welcome and represent the creators of blues, jazz, country, and American roots music. Today, the musical compositions in BMI’s repertoire, from chart toppers to perennial favorites, span all genres of music and are consistently among the most-performed hits of the year. For additional information and the latest BMI news, visit, follow us on Twitter @BMI or stay connected through Broadcast Music, Inc.‘s Facebook page.

Press Contacts
Lauren Branson, BMI 
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Katherine Harding, BMI
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