Two strong songwriters make their Savannah Songwriters debut Sun., May 26.
Tony Richards and Shawn Gordon join Andrew Gill and Tom Cooler in another writers-in-the-round showcase of original music.
Classically trained on clarinet and trumpet, Tony Richards eventually opted for rock and roll and has traveled to world with his own bands and 15 years with the (Good Lovin’) Rascals. He’s a guitar slinger for hire, teaches music and has a recording studio and CD duplication company.
He can be heard playing solo at North Beach Grill and other local venues and as a guitar slinger or bass player with others.
South Carolinian Shawn Gordon plays swamp boogie blues, rock and roll country and soul. He plays solo gigs, is the lead singer and guitarist for The Shawn Gordon Band and also plays bass guitar for Johnny C and the Wrecking Crew.
He, too, is making his Savannah Songwriters debut.
Andrew Gill was the lead vocalist for the popular, local band Wormsloew. He can be heard most weekends around Savannah solo or with Stewart Marshall.
To say Andrew’s vocals are dynamic is an understatement. He possesses perhaps one of the strongest voices to grace the Savannah Songwriters Series. His lyrics are as strong as his voice.
Tom Cooler is a veteran of the SSS circuit. He released his first CD last year, “Nebraska Boy,” which includes the popular “Tuscaloosa” about the devastating tornado in that hit that town in 2011.
He has just released a new live CD, “This is What You Get.”
Now in its third year, Savannah Songwriters promotes original music from local musicians in free songwriters-in-the-round showcases the 2nd Sunday at the American Legion on Tybee and the 4th Sunday at Johnny Harris.
Pete Love, Mark Carter David Watt Besley and Roy Swindelle perform a special Mother’s Day showcase for The Savannah Songwriters Series 4th Sunday.
Sun., May 12, at 6 p.m. at the American Legion on Tybee. Free parking.
David Watt Besley makes another returns to SSS. The Virginian currently resides in Saint Augustine, where he is mainstay in the local music scene, playing with the Northstar band he formed with his brother, Ed, and with the Big Lonesome he formed two years ago. He also plays solo as “Dave.”
David has been playing music since the 1970s when he was part of the band Saucer that was one of the first U.S. bands looked at by Virgin Records. Even though he loves to get together with NorthStar and The Big Lonesome he finds his solo career the most enjoyable.
Mark Carter is a regular in the Savannah music scene, playing solo and with Lauren Lapointe. He has established himself as a gifted artist with heart-felt lyrics and life-lived stories that match his stylistic rhythmic guitar progressions. Mark is a regular SSS participant.
Roy Swindelle is one of the Coastal Empire’s best known musicians. Voted yearly as the best musician on Tybee, Roy is also a multi-instrumentalist, playing drums, bass, guitar and steel drums. Rumor has it that he is taking fiddle lessons. Roy is an organizing member of Savannah Songwriters Series, which showcases original music twice monthly – the 2nd Sunday at the Tybee Island American Legion and the 4th Sunday at Johnny Harris. All are free to the public and start at 6 p.m.
Pete Love, a SSS favorite, has played with groups such as the Denny Phillips Band, Spectrum, Band in the Park and Mary Davis and Co. for nearly three decades. A sought-after guitarist who is comfortable with most genres, Pete is currently playing with the Navigators.
Local songwriters wishing to perform can send a query along with a link to their music to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Two touring songwriters take the Savannah Songwriters stage Sun., April 28, at Johnny Harris at 6 p.m.
Canadian folk artist Linda McRae’s highly anticipated fourth solo release “Rough Edges and Ragged Heart” doesn’t describe the gold and platinum polish enhancing a musical career spanning 25 years. The Canadian Folk Music Awards nominated it last year as Contemporary Album of the Year.
Her soaring, honest vocals hold nothing back. She nails a song to the wall.This gifted singer/songwriter/musician and holder of 3 platinum albums, plays claw hammer banjo, acoustic guitar, accordion and porch board, combining old-time sounds with universal themes of heartbreak & redemption offering an intriguing sepia postcard from the past that is vibrant and alive in the present.
Todd Hoke was born in Conroe, Texas (just north of Houston), lived in Austin for a dozen years, and currently pays his utility bills on time in Hendersonville, North Carolina. Todd has two dogs and a wife. Todd has recorded three albums of rootsy, folksy, bluesy music covering a wide array of topics.
Todd paints pictures of the world according to Todd. Combining comedy with tragedy and often times throwing in a brutally sharp wit comment, Todd’s songs are journeys you must experience
Thomas Claxton is a popular fixture on the Savannah music scene. A native of Fort Walton Beach, Fla., the 28-year-old has been performing professional for over a decade.
“…Thomas is a breath of fresh air to a slightly stodgy scene,” according to Connect Savannah. His performances are high-energy and the breadth of rock songs he knows and performs is astounding.
He is currently playing with his band the Myth and promoting their new CD “Return to Nowhere.”
For over a quarter century, Jefferson Ross honed his craft in Nashville both as staff songwriter for companies like Curb Records, a studio session player and as a road musician and background singer for folks like Terri Clark.
Fans of his previous two solo albums: “Azalea” and “Hymns to the Here and Now” are eagerly awaiting the release of “Isle of Hope.”
He is a founding member of the Savannah Songwriters’ Series, which showcases original music twice a month – the second Sunday at the American Legion Post 154 on Tybee Island and the fourth Sunday at Johnny Harris’ restaurant in Savannah.
Local songwriters who would like to be considered for a SSS showcase, should email links to their music to email@example.com
The Georgia Music Awards 2013 nominations include two Savannah songwriters slated to play Sun., April 14, at the SSS showcase at the Tybee Island American Legion.
Tyler Brant Harrison has been nominated for Georgia country male singer of the year, while Cc Witt’s Lyn Avenue band has been nominated for best country group.
Both Harrison and Witt will be among four songwriters playing the 2nd Sunday SSS at the American Legion on Tybee. They will be joined by Allen Cote form Milwaukee and Tybee’s own troubadour Thomas Oliver.
Music starts at 6. It’s free, as is the parking.
Savannah Songwriters Series makes it debut at the Tybee Island American Legion Post 154 Sun., April 14, with a great lineup of three young songwriters, plus of a local favorite.
Tyler Harrison is an Okie from Muskogee, Ok. and just like Merle before him, he grabbed a guitar and a pen. He came to the Savannah area by way of the military and when he realized how much heart the music had there he decided to stay. His witty lines and smooth vocals make his tunes catchy and immediately recognizable. A good ole country boy at heart, Tyler tries to reflect music from the golden days when Merle and George were kings of the country charts.
Cc Witt is a young aspiring musician born and raised in Savannah. The 20-year-old’s songs are composed of a unique blend of genres, with a heavy does of country. Her voice has a warm tone with just the right amount of country twang. When it comes to songwriting, Cc has been winning awards for her songwriting since the age of fifteen.
“When I write my songs, I don’t want people to walk away wondering what they just heard, I want to inspire them. That’s what it’s about for me.”
A graduate of St. Vincent’s Academy, Cc is the lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist for the local band Lyn Avenue. This makes her second showcase with SSS.
Also returning is Allen Coté, a 30-year-old composer, multi-instrumentalist and multimedia artist, originally from Austin and currently living in Milwaukee.
Coté is well versed in guitar, bass, lap steel, ukulele, mandolin and various percussion instruments. He performs his own original compositions – ranging from folk to avant-garde electronica – solo and with various groups.
The elder among this group is Tybee Island singer/songwriter Thomas Oliver.
Thomas’ music is straight from the rich heritage of Southern music: the roots of Americana and real country. Thomas moves easily from country love ballads to the blues of Americana, to country folk songs about Waffle House waitresses and getting older in an ever-younger society. His “Ballad of Tybee Island” is a local favorite.
Thomas is an organizing member of Savannah Songwriters Series, which showcases original music on the 2nd Sunday at the American Legion on Tybee and the 4th Sunday at Johnny Harris restaurant in Savannah.
The Tybee Island American Legion Post 154 is located at 10 Veterans Dr., Tybee Island, GA 31328.
Plenty of free parking. Bar and pizza available.
Doors open at 5. Show starts promptly at 6 pm.
Two newcomers to the Savannah Songwriters Series join two veterans Sun., March 24, for another showcase of original music at Johnny Harris restaurant, starting at 6 p.m.
Zachary Smith is best known as the bass player for Savannah’s hottest band the Accomplices. In addition to his songwriting and singing, Zach is a multi-instrumentalist. His latest pursuit is the banjo.
It all comes from his early years in the studios of his disc jockey father. “Love of music and voice began very early for me. I have sung in choirs, played in orchestras, jazz bands, bluegrass, rock, and reggae groups, and even worked as a bandleader while living on a farm out on the Oregon coast,” Zach says.
Craig Anderson and his wife, Renee, have been living on Tybee for the past six months in order for her to take teaching level instructions in yoga. Craig is a master luthier and guitar player from Vermont. He is a member of the Burlington (Vermont) Songwriters group in Vermont.
His “folk-centric songs [are] delivered in an easy baritone, occasionally shaded with something resembling a light Celtic brogue,” Seven Days, a Vermont newspaper, wrote of Craig’s debut CD, “A Moment in Time.”
Roy Stalnaker was born and raised in Savannah. He started singing professionally in the late 1970s, performing throughout the Southeast, from Savannah’s Night Flight Café to Nashville’s Blue Bird Café.
His songs are not exactly traditional country and certainly not the pop country of radio. But with his smooth voice, Stalnaker takes you with him as he travels the back roads of a soulful country music with his ballads and stories.
Roy Swindelle is the house band “Roy and the Circuit Breakers” at Doc’s Bar on Tybee. Voted yearly as the best musician on Tybee, Roy is also a multi-instrumentalist, playing drums, bass, guitar and steel drums. Rumor has it that he is taking fiddle lessons. Roy is an organizing member of Savannah Songwriters Series, which showcases original music twice monthly – the 2nd Sunday at Doc’s and the 4th Sunday at Johnny Harris. All are free to the public and start at 6 p.m.
Who would have ever imagined that Doc’s Bar on Tybee would evolve into a listening room for songwriters?
But that’s what happens every 2nd Sunday from 6 to 7:30 when the Savannah Songwriters Series present another showcase of original music.
Sunday, a packed bar listened quietly and respectfully to every tune played by Dan Dunnagan, Todd Murray, Pete Love and Thomas Oliver.
Dan, making his public debut, impressed the audience with such beautiful songs as “Boat for Sale. ” Everyone is looking forward to his returning to SSS.
Todd was fresh off the Savannah Stopover, and he demonstrated why his stylistic playing and lyrical storytelling have made him such a valued contributor to the Savannah music scene.
Pete once again demonstrated his guitar skills as well as his songs that cosmically and comically look at life and its meaning.
Thomas Oliver introduced three new songs, ranging from a bluesy saga of life on Atlanta’s Ponce de Leon Avenue to an up-tempo, almost pop love song.
The Savannah Songwriters next showcase is at Johnny Harris restaurant Sun., March 24, at 6, with Zach Smith, Craig Anderson, Roy Stalnaker and Roy Swindelle.
Second Sunday Savannah Songwriters’ Series at Doc’s Bar: March 10. 6 p.m. Free to the public.
Sunday’s showcase features a veteran of the Savannah music scene, a relative newcomer who has taken the area by storm, as well as a songwriter of exceptional talent making his public debut.
Todd Murray records and often performs under the name Sincerely, Iris.
Arriving in Savannah from Chicago in early 2011, Todd quickly garnered attention. Connect Savannah said Todd was “one of the most interesting of Savannah’s newest crop of acoustic artists” in favorably reviewing his CD, “The Great Unknown.”
Todd was one of the local acts selected to perform during last year and this year’s Savannah Stopover.
This is Todd’s third SSS appearance. His second at Doc’s.
Pete Love has played with groups such as the Denny Phillips Band, Spectrum, Band in the Park and Mary Davis and Co. for nearly three decades. A sought-after guitarist who is comfortable with most genres, Pete is currently playing with the Navigators.
Dan Dunnagan is one of the reasons SSS exists: to give unknown songwriters a chance to showcase their talents. Anyone who has heard the North Carolina native is immediately impressed with his playing and singing. His songs are so good, the listener is surprised to learn he wrote them rather than they are something by James Taylor or Nanci Griffith.
The Tybee resident started playing and writing at 14. Although none of his songs sound like Jimmy Buffett, Dan cites the island troubadour as a major influence.
This is Dan’s first public performance.
Rounding out the lineup is Thomas Oliver. An organizing member of SSS, Thomas moved from Atlanta to Tybee four years ago. His songs range from country love ballads to the blues of Americana, to country folk songs about Waffle House waitresses and getting older in an ever-younger society.
Now in its third year, Savannah Songwriters promotes original music from local musicians in free songwriters-in-the-round showcases the 2nd Sunday at Doc’s Bar on Tybee and the 4th Sunday at Johnny Harris’.
A standing ovation showed the crowd’s appreciation of the four performing songwriters at Sunday’s Savannah Songwriters Series.
Lauren Lapointe headlined the group that included Robert Benton, Thomas Oliver and newcomer Taylor Martin at Johnny Harris restaurant.
As with each showcase, the songwriters performed four songs each, usually introducing each with the story behind the songs.
Lauren sang two songs from her upcoming CD, “Superhero,” including one co-written with Taylor.
Robert showcased his strong voice with similarly strong lyrics, while SSS host Thomas played some of his more autobiographical tunes.
Savannah Songwriters put on two showcases a month — the 2nd Sunday at Doc’s Bar and the 4th Sunday at Johnny Harris.
The next showcase of local songwriting talent will be March 10 at Doc’s Bar with Pete Love, Todd Murray, Dan Dunnagan and Thomas Oiver.
Thomas moves easily from country love ballads to the blues of Americana, to country folk songs about Waffle House waitresses and getting older in an ever-younger society.
The son of a Sunday School teacher, Thomas once considered the ministry but opted instead for a career in journalism, which he spent mostly at Atlanta’s largest newspaper. Still his religious upbringing reveals itself in several songs he calls his spiritual blues, where he confronts the mystery of the misery suffered by both the just and the unjust.
Since moving from Atlanta four years ago, Thomas has played most of the music venues on Tybee, from Bernie’s Oyster House and the Rock House to Doc’s Bar, Huc-a-poos and North Beach Grill, as well as Wild Wing’s at City Market and Uncle Bubba’s on Wilmington Island.
Five songs from his two CDs were selected as Best of Country by Georgia Music Association. Songs from his “Finally Over Losing My Mind” and “The Life You Save Might be Your Own” CDs are available on iTunes and most other Internet music sites and stream on everything from Spotify to Rhapsody.
His song “Ballad of Tybee Island” is a favorite among the locals.
MAY 26th 2013
6PM IN THE ROUND with Shawn Gordon, Thomas Oliver, Andrew Gill and Tony Richards, at Johnny Harris Restaurant on Victory Drive
JUNE 9th 2013
6PM IN THE ROUND Tom Cooler, Aaron Herlocker, Dean Johanesen at American Legion on Tybee Island
JUNE 23rd 2013
6PM IN THE ROUND Catherine Kimbro, Brad Wells, Audi Burchett and Leo Dean at Johnny Harris Restaurant on Victory Drive
JULY 28th 2013
6PM IN THE ROUND David Watt Besley, Aaron Zimmer, Crystina Parker at Johnny Harris Restaurant on Victory Drive
AUGUST 25th 2013
6PM IN THE ROUND Louise Warren, Matt Prater, Payne Bridges at Johnny Harris Restaurant on Victory Drive
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