It's finally Charleston Wine + Food week! Although most people are squarely focused on all of the delicious food and refreshing drinks they'll consume during the festival, there's an overlooked aspect of the event that people should be paying more attention to. This year's musical lineup includes some of the festival's most impressive guests ever.
Here's a look at the festival's 2018 Musical Guests:
- Parker Millsap
- Appearing at: Opening Night, Wednesday, February 28th
- At only 24 years of age, Oklahoma native Parker Millsap is quickly making a name for himself with his captivating live performances, soulful sound, and character-driven narratives. He recently wrapped up a banner year, which included his network television debut on CONAN, an invitation to play with Elton John at the Apple Music Festival, an Austin City Limits taping and an Americana Music Association nomination for Album of the Year, as well as winning the International Folk Music Awards' Artist Of the Year. Parker's most recent release, The Very Last Day, has received praise from The New York Times, The Boston Globe, LA Times, Austin Chronicle and Rolling Stone to name a few.
- Tommy Lee James + Dylan Altman
- Appearing at: Noteworthy, Friday, March 2nd
- Originally from Roanoke, VA, Tommy has 7 #1 Songs including “She’s My Kind Of Rain” Tim McGraw, “Wrong Again” Martina McBride, “What I Really Meant To Say” Cyndi Thompson, “If You See Him/If You See Her” Reba/Brooks and Dunn, “A Man This Lonely” Brooks And Dunn, “And Still” Reba, and most recently “My Eyes” Blake Shelton feat. Gwen Sebastian. Other Top Ten radio singles: “Bleed Red” Ronnie Dunn, “Life Ain’t Always Beautiful” Gary Allan, “Let’s Be Us Again” Lonestar, among others. Tommy has had songs performed by Taylor Swift, two songs on the 7x platinum album Take Me Home by One Direction, Celine Dion, The Pussycat Dolls, Rascal Flatts, Delta Goodrem, Christina Aguilera, Rascal Flatts, 98 Degrees, among many others.
- Originally from the great state of New Jersey, Dylan Altman has been writing songs and performing in Nashville since 1995. Altman has had three #1 songs: Tim McGraw’s “Watch The Wind Blow By,” Jake Owen’s “Barefoot Blue Jean Night” and most recently Jason Aldean’s “Take A Little Ride.” Other artists who have recorded Altman’s songs include Eric Paslay, Chase Bryant, Joe Nichols, Eli Young Band, Gloriana, Jennette McCurdy, Trace Adkins, Will Hoge, Gabe Dixon, John King, JT Hodges, The Almost, Ted Russell Kamp, Hayden Panettiere and Jonathan Jackson.
Altman is an avid supporter and volunteer for Musicians On Call (an organization that provides live music for patients in area hospitals) and co-hosts an annual benefit for JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) with good friend and frequent collaborator, EMI Records Nashville recording artist Eric Paslay. His proudest accomplishment is his beautiful daughter Isabella, who serves as his greatest inspiration.
- Leah Suárez
- Appearing at: Bourbon Affair, Friday, March 2nd
- Leah Suárez is a musician and arts entrepreneur whose primary instrument is her velvet rich voice. She’s a multilingual singer, valve trombonist, composer and bandleader blazing her own cool alloy genre that’s jazz tempered with a range of other roots traditions.
A loving daughter of Charleston, South Carolina, Leah’s sound reflects the complexity of her storied hometown and her very own identity. The authority, warmth and expressive tenderness in her singing derive from the myriad of treasured places, people and personal experiences which she courageously explores and humbly honors. Her songbook repertoire and vocal interpretations are a genre-straddling alchemical mix.
Charleston Magazine, which listed her in 2007 as as one of Charleston’s “Women Who Rock,” in 2015, featured her among the city’s top “40 Movers & Shapers” (1975-2015), an honor she shared with the late Jack McCray, her mentor and partner in founding JAC, a non-profit dedicated to preserving, presenting and advocating for jazz in one of America’s most important cradles of the genre.
- Choir! Choir! Choir!
- Appearing at: Pecha Kucha + Choir! Choir! Choir!, Friday, March 2nd
- Daveed Goldman and Nobu Adilman (AKA “DaBu”) started Choir! Choir! Choir! as a weekly drop-in singing event in February 2011. Equal parts singing, comedy, and community-building, the night unfolds like a dream: you get a lyric sheet at the door, DaBu teach you the vocal arrangement, and a video is recorded. Everyone has a ball and goes home feeling great.
- Dale Watson
- Appearing at: Nassau Street Saloon, Friday, March 2nd
- Dale Watson, keeper of the true country music flame, latest album Call Me Insane, was recorded in Austin with veteran producer Lloyd Maines (Robert Earl Keen, Jerry Jeff Walker, etc.). The Austin-based honky-tonker carries on in the tradition of Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson with his “Ameripolitan” brand of American roots music. Dale has flown the flag for classic honky-tonk for over two decades. He’s christened his brand of American roots “Ameripolitan” to differentiate it from current crop of Nashville-based pop country. The Alabama-born, Texas-raised Watson may be the hardest working entertainer today and is rapidly approaching legendary status. He is a country music maverick, a true outlaw who stands alongside Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, and George Strait as one of the finest country singers and songwriters from the Lone Star State.
- Kanika Moore & The Motown Throwdown
- Appearing on: Toasted, Sunday, March 4th
- Kanika Moore and the Motown Throwdown, led by bandleader Mike Quinn, belts out the kind of soulful vocals that are perfect for a Sunday evening bash, and she's backed by a powerhouse soul-funk band: Manny Houston, David Grimm, Corey Stephens, and Stuart White. Their covers of old classics like "Superstitious" by Stevie Wonder or "I Want You Back" by the Jackson Five are impossible not to dance to, and no one at this lively gathering is stopping you.
To learn more about this year's festival, visit Charlestonwineandfood.com.