Grace Potter, Tangled music, 30A Songwriters festival

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Grace Potter performing at the Grand Boulevard Main Stage.

The 2024 30A Songwriters Festival

Celebrating 15 Years of Musical Excellence

We’re looking back on another incredible 30A Songwriters Festival! With over 225 performances, 175 artists, and 30 unique music venues across South Walton, Florida, the 30A Songwriters Festival is the largest gathering of nationally recognized songwriters performing on the Florida coast. This year, headliners Jeff Tweedy, Elvis Costello & the Imposters, Rosanne Cash, Grace Potter, Rodney Crowell, and KT Tunstall rocked the Grand Boulevard main stage. Making this eagerly awaited long weekend each year even better, the net proceeds from the festival benefit the Cultural Arts Alliance. This local arts agency supports creatives and the arts through leadership, advocacy, funding, programs, and education in Walton County and beyond.

The festival weekend started with a buzz as the VIE team grabbed our passes at the Festival Headquarters in Cerulean Park, WaterColor. From the get-go, the atmosphere was electric, resonating with the collective excitement of music enthusiasts hailing from every corner of the country (and some beyond). We viewed the silent auction items, featuring an impressive range of goodies, from signed guitars and artwork to an electric bike, unique experiences, and more. After perusing the silent auction items, we headed toward the expansive wall showcasing an array of festival merchandise. In line, cheerful festival-goers waited their turn to snag their favorite pieces.

As we wrap up another year of musical memories, the 30A Songwriters Festival leaves us with a playlist of moments we’ll be replaying until next year!

We look forward to hearing new and familiar artists across various venues and genres year after year. It is truly incredible to experience the personal stories of the songwriters behind some of the biggest names in music or hear about an artist’s first time performing at the 30A Songwriters Festival. From large outdoor stages to the coziest cafes in town, each setting truly brings a unique element to the experience.

A weekend highlight for VIE team members Kelly Curry and Jordan Staggs was reconnecting with artists David Ryan Harris, Chris Stills, and Paul McDonald. In early December, Kelly and Jordan caught these talented individuals performing at the Songwriters in Paradise festival in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. To kick off a weekend filled with music for 30A Fest, the team enjoyed their Friday night performances at Caliza in Alys Beach.

During his first set, Paul McDonald performed with Sarah Clanton, who blew the audiences away on the electric cello. Chris Stills shared intriguing tidbits about his jet-setting lifestyle, shuttling between Paris and Los Angeles before making his way to the festival. He even sang a beautiful song entirely in French. DRH mentioned he’s been making house calls (as Dr. H) for small party events, adding a personal touch to his musical ventures.

Our team also had the pleasure of catching an intimate set at Bud & Alley’s by Grammy winner John Paul White, who delivered a soul-stirring performance of the song “Safe & Sound.” He wrote this hit song in collaboration with Taylor Swift, Joy Williams, and T Bone Burnett as part of The Hunger Games: Songs from District 12 and Beyond, the official companion soundtrack to the 2012 film The Hunger Games.

On the main stage at Grand Boulevard Town Center, audiences enjoyed an atmosphere rivaling any big music festival and a fantastic lineup throughout the weekend. Grace Potter delivered a stellar performance that was certainly a crowd favorite. Her humor and joy while performing added an extra layer of excitement. One of our team members, McKenna Mears, was particularly thrilled to hear “Something That I Want,” the song by Grace Potter and the Nocturnals featured in Tangled and currently trending on TikTok. The main stage had a bustling vibe this year, and the crowd’s energy just amped up the fun factor!

And let’s not forget seeing one of our favorites, Sammi Accola, at the Pearl in Rosemary Beach. Her energetic stage presence, heartfelt songwriting, and killer vocals left editor-in-chief Lisa Burwell and brand ambassador Marta Rata in awe. It’s hard to pick a favorite thing about Sammi; between her vibe onstage, her songwriting skills, or her singing, she’s the whole package. We are excited to watch her career continue rising.

As we wrap up another year of musical memories, the 30A Songwriters Festival leaves us with a playlist of moments we’ll be replaying until next year!

— V —


To learn more about the 30A Songwriters Festival, visit 30asongwritersfestival.com or follow along on Instagram at @30afest.

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