Combustion Music hosted its 3rd annual Hope Town Music Festival early in December, 2016 on the beautiful island of Elbow Cay. Over $75,000 was raised from the four writer- rounds, making this year the best to date.
Combustion Music President Chris Farren was able to bring some of Music City’s finest writers to his home-away-from-home. Ashley Gorley, Brett James, Chris Destefano, Matt Jenkins, Jameson Rodgers, Jordan Walker, Johnny McGuire, Mickey Jack Cones, Chip Esten, John Nite, Kendall Marvell, Andy Albert, and Marc Beeson all contributed their time and songwriting efforts to this valiant cause.
Every Child Counts, Friends of the Environment, and Hope Town Fire & Rescue were the three organizations that received all money raised from the festival. The idea of hosting such an event came to Chris Farren 14 years ago when he decided that it would be fun to intertwine his work and play by introducing his Nashville songwriting community to his friends from the islands, and raising money for some very worthy local charities “All of my friends donated their time and talents, and together with the local community and some incredible Nashville sponsors, we raised a bunch of money that will all stay on the island and really make a difference… not to mention the fact that we all had a blast,” said Farren.
“We at SunTrust Music Row have been involved with the Hopetown Music Festival since its inception in 2013. We are so glad to be a part of such a great cause, that gives back to such a special place like Hopetown,” Said Suntrust First Vice President Dusty Miller.
The series of four writer rounds started the night of Friday, Dec. 2 at the Hope Town Harbor Lodge. An expansive audience sprawled out from the venue onto the beach as they danced and sang along to hit after hit. Saturday featured an equally enthusiastic set at the Harbour’s Edge. A daytime performance at the Abaco Inn Sunday complete with a Junkanoo parade performed by children of the Every Child Counts organization, prepared the audience for the final round of the festival at the Hope Town Inn and Marina later that night.
Four-time ASCAP Songwriter of the Year and Combustion Music writer Ashley Gorley continued, “the locals and I know each other by name at this point. The islands are beyond beautiful and the people couldn’t be more kind and appreciative. I’m more than happy to help Combustion and Chris Farren raise money for that community, and I’ve got it on my calendar to come back every year” None of this would be possible without the incredible sponsors, partners, and donors that participated for the three worthy organizations that will benefit from the donations; ASCAP, The Academy of Country Music, Suntrust Bank, Hackney Financial, Downtown Music Publishing, Warner Chappell, IBC Airways, Sword Rowe & Company, Abaco Inn, Albury’s Ferry Service, Abaco Buzz, Hope Town Inn and Marina, Hope Town Harbor Lodge, Harbour’s Edge, Commonwealth Brewery Limited, Lighthouse Marina, Rock Around The Clock, Island Cart Rentals, Bahamas Ministry of Tourism.
As the Combustion Music Hope Town Music Festival continues to prove its success, Chris Farren is already working to lock in dates for next year’s festival. Be on the lookout for more details of this great event.