The 25th annual Tin Pan South songwriter festival is more than halfway over. Thursday (March 30) featured a subdued round at The Bluebird Cafe with Big Yellow Dog writers Abe Stoklasa and Chris Gelbuda with Warner/Chappell writer Donovan Woods and Razor & Tie’s Kylie Sackley.
The liveliest, Gelbuda, featured his seasoned, soulful voice on original titles recently cut by Love and Theft (“On My Way To You”), Lee Brice (“Best Part Of Me”) and Dustin Lynch (“Love Me Or Leave Me Alone”).
Stoklasa also offered similarly impressive, albeit subdued, vocals on the new Charlie Worsham titles “Beginning Of Things” and “Call You Up.” A sync from Oprah’s Weight Watchers commercial was the night’s sing-a-long, “Brand New.” He also offered his first Lady Antebellum cut “Lie With Me,” which he also confessed was his only cut by the group. Of course that excluded his cut by the trio’s lead vocalist, Charles Kelley, “Leaving Nashville,” of which the round was titled. Woods offered up the well-crafted title to close out the show.
Woods softly played through an additional title he and Stoklasa wrote, Tim McGraw‘s “Portland, Maine,” which the Canadian confessed threw his geography after receiving missed calls from that location on his U.S. burner phone.
Sackley, of course, pulled from her impressive cut list to include “Speakers” (Sam Hunt) and “Sunshine and Summertime” (Faith Hill).
Competing early rounds included Keb’ Mo’, Victoria Shaw and Desmond Child at The Listening Room Cafe and Blake Bollinger, Jeff Trott, Phil O’Donnell and Tony Martin for ole’s show at Station Inn. Late shows offered Ty Herndon, JT Hodges, Erik Halbig and Justine Blazer at Whiskey Rhythm among many more.
SESAC also hosted a late night show with recent Americana WagonMaster Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Jim Lauderdale, recent Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame recipient Beth Nielsen Chapman, and GRAMMY-winning songwriter Richard Leigh at 3rd and Lindsley.
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