Southern Ground Takes Nashville

If musical talent and food weren’t enough to lure attendees to Nashville’s Riverfront Park for the eclectic Southern Ground Music and Food Festival this past Friday (9/21) and Saturday (9/22), perhaps the beautiful weekend weather was.

The ‘No Re-entry’ tickets locked in guests for the music and food festival where the Zac Brown Band served as the late night main stage house band. The group shuffled through signature tunes with John Mayer, Sheryl Crow, Gregg Allman, Alan Jackson and Dwight Yoakam.

Playing before the headliner guests were some of music’s finest artists including David Gray, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, and Amos Lee. Perhaps the one transcendent aspect about the diverse lineup was a common support for Zac Brown’s Camp Southern Ground designed for children with neurobehavioral disorders, for which the festival was a benefit.

Food aspects of the event offered credentialed VIP or Pit access for price premiums, while Stage Box seats treated the elite to stage-side four course meals with beverages. For the general masses, food trucks including Cookie, Zac Brown Band’s mobile kitchen, were available for additional charges alongside beverages from sponsors LandShark and Jack Daniel’s.

Highlights included Mayer, the last minute roster addition, who rested his voice throughout both evening appearances. Instead, he relied on guitar skills while Brown sang a mashup between Stevie Wonder’s “Isn’t She Lovely” and Mayer’s “Neon,” among others. Mayer also accompanied Yoakam, who delivered two hits “Fast As You,” and “Guitars, Cadillacs,” for his Saturday evening performance with the band.

Additional artists on the bill included The Wheeler Boys, Vintage Trouble, Holly Williams, Los Lonely Boys, Dugas, The Lumineers, Levi Lowrey, Clay Cook, Blackberry Smoke,The Jerry Douglas Band, John Driskell Hopkins & Brighter Shade, Michael Franti & Spearhead, and Nic Cowan.


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Eric T. Parker oversees operations and contributes editorial for MusicRow's print magazine,, the RowFax tip sheet and the MusicRow CountryBreakout chart. He also facilitates annual events for the enterprise, including MusicRow Awards, CountryBreakout Awards and the Rising Women on the Row. [email protected] | @EricTParker

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