September 16, 2011

The Lyons Share: ASCAP at the 2011 Rocky Mountain Folks Fest

Majestic cliffs, deep-blue sky, greenery all around, the crystal clear St. Vrain River lazily flowing nearby. It'd be hard to imagine a more picturesque setting for a music festival than the Planet Bluegrass Ranch in Lyons, Colorado, where the Rocky Mountain Folks Fest has been held each year since 1995. ASCAP has proudly partnered with Planet Bluegrass to sponsor both the Folks Fest and the Telluride Bluegrass Festival the whole time.

This year, ASCAP's Etan Rosenbloom ventured out to the Rockies to teach at the preceding week's Song School and soak in music from the Fest's phenomenal lineup, including ASCAP folks Jackson Browne, Josh Ritter, Brandi Carlile, The Civil Wars, Bob Weir, Martin Sexton, Anais Mitchell, Livingston Taylor, Mary Gauthier, Steve Seskin and Sweet Talk Radio.

The Folks Fest kicked off with a Songwriter Showcase which gave 10 emerging singer/songwriters the chance to compete for cash, prizes and a spot on next year's main stage lineup. ASCAP's sponsorship dollars go directly to the prize money for the finalists. This year's winner was the gifted ASCAP singer/songwriter Caleb Hawley, who flirted with mainstream fame as one of the final 50 on the 2011 season of American Idol; ASCAP member Kyle James Hauser earned fourth place honors, and SOCAN affiliate Annabelle Chvostek earned fifth place. Past winners of the Songwriter Showcase include ASCAP members Deb Talan (The Weepies), Catie Curtis, Sarah Sample, Kathrin Shorr (Sweet Talk Radio), Liz Longley and Megan Burtt.

2011 Songwriter Showcase Finalists by planetbluegrass

Find out more about the Rocky Mountain Folks Fest at www.bluegrass.com/folks