The last time I visited Nashville before making the big move out here, I heard a lot of talk around town about this big festival held every year called Americanafest. This year, the festival began September 13 and ended on the 17. According to their website, this was “the must-attend event for anyone who loves the melting pot of Americana’s influences including roots, folk, country, blues, and soul-based music.” This festival brings together legendary artists along with the next generation of rising stars. It also brings together people from around the world as well as industry professionals. They hold panels, seminars, educational forums as well as an awards ceremony. However, what really makes this festival stand out is the amount of music performances held around the entire city of Nashville. It was almost overwhelming.
I made my list of venues I would try to cover but it was nearly impossible to get to all of them. Nearly all the well known music venues held their own event in participation with the festival. There were the official events through Americanafest but there were even more unofficial events participating in the festivities. You were watching all artists from different walks of life. The big artists like Brandi Carlile made an appearance. Legendary artists like Taj Mahal made his appearance as well. What caught most of my attention however were the plethora of incredibly talented up-and-coming artists.
I was invited to attend BMI’s private kick-off party at their building’s rooftop. It was the perfect setting joining together people of the music industry. There was BBQ, drinks, and of course, music. This is where I captured The Heavy Heavy’s performance. Shortly after, I made my way to Concord’s Americana From All Sides event at The Optimist. I caught performances from Bella White, Katie Pruitt, Logan Ledger, and Sierra Ferrell.
The Heavy Heavy
The following day, I was asked to cover Jrodconcerts Presents: The Americanafest Fiesta at The Space at 100 Taylor by Jaime Rodriguez himself. This event was carefully curated by Jaime with a group of extraordinary artists. He hosted performances by Brit Taylor, Dylan Hartigan, Grayson Jenkins, Lauren Morrow, Maggie Rose and many more. I gave myself a break from the excitement the next day to recharge.
The weekend came around and I was invited to attend the Black Oak Artists Second Annual Day Party at Dee’s Lounge where I caught performances from Hannah Miller, Genevieve Racette, Megan Palmer, The Rough & Tumble, Rachel Laven, Grace Pettis, Time Easton, Kirby Brown, Side Pony, and Melody Walker.
The Rough & Tumble
I ended the day at Riverside Revival in East Nashville where I caught performances from Amanda Rheaume and S.G. Goodman. On the final day of the festival, I made my way to The Basement East where I caught performances from Bre Kennedy, Jade Bird, Molly Tuttle & Golden Highway, Rissi Palmer, and Trousdale.
Each of these events offered unique talent. There was no moment in my personal experience that was dull or repetitive. Americanafest definitely lived up to its reputation and in my opinion is a testament to what Nashville has to offer.