Song submissions open April First (no fooling!) Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest 2021


Hahira, Georgia, March 25, 2021 — With online voting for finalists, and judges selecting winners at the Turner Center for the Arts in Valdosta, GA, with $300 in cash to the First Prize winner plus one day of recording studio time, the Fourth Annual Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest seeks songs. Submissions open Thursday, April 1, 2021. Yes, no fooling!

“Georgia Beer Co. is back as our top-tier sponsor, which helps us get these new songs about our rivers, swamps, springs, and sinks,” said Suwannee Riverkeeper John S. Quarterman.

Submissions can be songs about any river, stream, spring, sink, swamp, lake, or pond in the Suwannee River Basin or Estuary (except not the Santa Fe Basin; that has its own contest).

“There’s always room for a new song about the Suwannee River, or other rivers in the Basin or Estuary!” said 2018 winner and 2019 headliner Laura D’Alisera, scribe for the WWALS Songwriting Contest Committee.

This year we will have online voting on the songs submitted, which the Committee will take into account when selecting finalists.

Finalists will play at the Contest, 7-10 PM, Saturday, August 21, 2021, and judges will judge at the Turner Center for the Arts, 527 N. Patterson St., Valdosta, GA 31601. There will be food and a cash bar, as you watch and listen, and you can browse the artworks at the Turner Center. There will also be a kayak raffle and a silent auction, as well as a range of buttons, stickers, hats, notecards, signs, shirts, and posters for sale (this is a fundraiser for WWALS Watershed Coalition).

[Submissions open April 1, 2021, Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest, Headliners last year]
Submissions open April 1, 2021, Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest, Headliners last year
Photo: John S. Quarterman for WWALS, of Dirty Bird and the Flu,
Headliners at the 2020 Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest.

“We hope that one or more songs will become well-known and enter the Great American Songbook, at the 2021 Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest!” said Tom H. Johnson, Jr., who is the Committee Chair and WWALS President.

So you’ll know what you’re supporting, there will be talks about WWALS advocacy, from water quality testing to opposing pipelines and mines and plastic water bottles, to promoting water trails and a Troupville River Camp.

You do not have to be a songwriter to come listen to the finalists. Judging of finalists will take into account integrity, historical value, and/or present value of the waters, originality of lyrics and music, and performance, plus extra credit for naming the most rivers (springs, etc.) in a way that shows their value (even just listing them counts), and storytelling: creating a narrative regarding the history and/or attributes of the Suwannee River Basin.

“We are proud to be supporting WWALS in this event, and look forward to some great new music for 2021!” Angela and Josh Duncan of Azalea City Music Academy.

Unless the novel coronavirus pandemic is over by August and everyone is vaccinated, we will enforce masks when people are close to other people not in their party, and we will test temperatures at the entrance with an infrared thermometer. Tables will be spaced for distancing.

“I’m happy to provide sound support again!” said David Rodock, of Dirty Bird and the Flu, and Committee member.

Much more about the Contest is here, including song submission form, contest Rules, and, soon, tickets:–songwriting/

About WWALS: Founded in June 2012, WWALS Watershed Coalition, Inc. (WWALS) advocates for conservation and stewardship of the Withlacoochee, Willacoochee, Alapaha, Little, Santa Fe, and Suwannee River watersheds in south Georgia and north Florida through education, awareness, environmental monitoring, and citizen activities. John S. Quarterman is the Suwannee Riverkeeper®, which is a staff position and a project of WWALS as the member of Waterkeeper® Alliance for the Suwannee River Basin.

Contact: John S. Quarterman, Suwannee Riverkeeper
WWALS Watershed Coalition
PO Box 88, Hahira, GA 31632