Clarksville, TN – The City of Clarksville is holding the 12th annual Rivers and Spires Festival in Historic Downtown Clarksville Tennessee this weekend. Running Thursday, April 24th through Saturday, April 26th. The Festival promises to be bigger and better than ever!
With the arrival of spring each year Clarksvillians began to look forward to this three-day long musical extravaganza. The Festival will be headlined on Saturday night by ACM and CMA award-nominated country musician Randy Houser. He will perform some of his biggest hits, including “Goodnight Kiss”, “How Country Feels”, “Boots On” and “Runnin’ Outta Moonlight,” this will make for a concert you do not want to miss.
The musical attractions kickoff this year on Thursday at the Strawberry Alley Stage at 5:00pm with Danciel, the musician responsible for the official Rivers and Spires Festival jingle. He will be performing a variety of music including pop, R&B, country, rock, gospel, and electronica. It’s sure to be a crowd pleasing show.
At 6:00pm on the Strawberry Alley stage the Appleton Harley-Davidson’s Last Band Standing competition takes place. This is a venue for you to see eight local bands compete to find out who is the best of the best!
At 6:30pm on the Public Square Stage Rubiks Groove steps up the action with a live 80s dance party featuring the best music from Prince and Humpty all the way to Bon Jovi and The Cure. Be sure to come out and enjoy all of your favorite 80s dance tunes!
The Thursday evening headliner Slippery When Wet takes the Public Square Stage at 8:30pm. Billed as the ultimate Bon Jovi tribute band, and featuring exact live arrangements from several of Bon Jovi world tours, this promises to be an experience real Bon Jovi fans won’t forget. Their drive, musical ability, showmanship and dedication to duplicating the Bon Jovi live experience simply cannot be outdone.
The action kicks up again on Friday at 5:00pm with four simultaneous events on different stages. The Gateway Realty and A+ property Aspire to Stardom kicks off the fun on the courthouse stage with their teen talent competition. This is the place to watch some of Clarksville’s most talented young people sing, dance, and perform their way to stardom!
On the Strawberry Alley stage the incredibly talented Northeast High School Exit One Show Choir and JV Show Choir will perform. Led by Debbie Wilson, Amanda Batts, and Lana Cromwell it’s sure to be a spectacular show!
On the family fun stage the group Chasing Lovely takes the stage blending country with pop, rock and Americana influences, this sister duo has a refreshingly unique sound that can’t be tamed! Raw, honest songs with a conscience, intermingled with energetic, feel-good tunes. Check out Chasing Lovely on the web at http://chasinglovely.com
For those who want something a little different, they can enjoy the Little Mexico and Latin Folklore Dancers on the Main & Third Street Stage. This group of colorful dances captivate the eye as they perform traditional dances from Mexico and Latin America.
Two more events began at 5:15pm.
Dragon Scales & Faerie Tales takes to the Kids Stage in the Family Fun Zone with a show sure to captivate the children attending the festival. After all who doesn’t love stories about princesses, knights, and the birth of a baby Dragon! The enchanted wagon will be roaming the Festival all weekend long on the back of a giant turtle. It is sure to be a world of imagination!
The Public Square Stage also kicks off at 5:15 PM with Emerald Blue a all-female country duo based out of Nashville Tennessee. You can sample their music and advance at the groups soundcloud https://soundcloud.com/emeraldbluemusic.
At 5:45pm on the Family Fun Stage the Clarksville group Earnest Ernest is set to perform. The band features a mix of Acoustic and Alternative music. Earnest Ernest plans to start touring in summer 2014, and their self-titled EP coming out around the turn of the new year. In the mean time check them out on the web at earnesternestmusic.com.
At 6:00pm Viva Mexico will perform traditional Mexican dances at the Main & Third Street Stage.
Also on the Strawberry Alley stage the Appleton Harley-Davidson’s Last Band Standing competition continues. This is a venue for you to see eight local bands compete to find out who is the best of the best!
When 6:15pm rolls around events began on both the Public Square Stage and Kids Stage stages.
Rodney Watts a U.S. Army veteran backed up by his four piece band take the Public Square Stage. Watts has opened for many of the top names in country music including Kenny Chesney, Rodney Adkins, Hank Williams Jr., and others. If you haven’t had the opportunity to check him out, you can find him on the web at http://www.rodneywatts.com
On the Kids Stage we find The Tangled Threads performing the tale of the Lost Toys. The Clockwork Jarquin and doll Mari are adrift when their train car derailed somewhere in Eastern Europe, see their adventures as the duo wander the world seeking their makers. With only each other to rely on, they charm audiences with an array of tricks. Whether dancing, juggling, flipping hats, or just clowning around, this pair of not-quite-humans is sure to draw looks of amazement!
Only one event kicks off at 6:30 PM that is Jackson Alley performing on the Family Fun Stage. The group features their original music, as well as covers of popular songs ranging from Queen to Martina McBride. To get a taste of this dynamic group you can check them out on the web at http://www.reverbnation.com/jacksonalley
The next events start up at 7:00pm
The Clarksville Dance Club will teach Salsa Dance Lessions at Main & Third Street Stage so everyone can dance during Revolfusion performance.
Dragon Scales & Faerie Tales also retakes the Kids Stage in the Family Fun Zone
Nathan Diller performs on the family fun stage starting at 7:15pm. A Nashville-based singer/songwriter Diller will be performing new songs as well as compositions from his first EP, Frenzy. You can find out more about this talented musician at his website nathandiller.com
7:30pm finds The Tangled Threads retaking the Kids Stage for the final performance of the evening for the Family Fun Zone.
8:00pm finds the Family Fun Stage the center of attention with the hard rock group Awaken storms the stage. Billed as an in-your-face experience that will leave you wanting more with resounding notes, soul gripping lyrics, and a presence that makes itself clear; it’s a show not to be missed
As 8:30pm rolls around the focus shifts to the Main & Third Street Stage with the Latin band Revolfusion stepping up to perform. With an eight-piece band this is one of the larger group you’ll find performing throughout the weekend. You can find out more about the group at the Facebook page Facebook.com/revolfusion.
The final group of the evening the country music group The Swon Brothers takes to the Public Square Stage at 9:00pm. Many Clarksville years may know them from their appearance on NBC’s The Voice as part of team Blake, and more recently as having taking the stage at the Grand Ole Opry; in what People Magazine described as a “Swoncert”, and a “Nod to History – and Mom and Dad”. Their’s will be a show sure to delight the heart the most diehard country fans!
Things resume bright and early for the final day of the Rivers and Spires Festival on Saturday with a trio of events at 10:00am! The Distinguished Steppers on the Courthouse Stage, the junior and senior teams from the Main Street Elite Dance Team on the Strawberry Alley Stage, and last but certainly not least will be the Korean American Association on the Main & Third Street Stage.
Gaming fans should be at the Strawberry Alley stage at 10:15am so that they don’t mess Press A to Jump, a chiptunes rock group. Chiptunes features synthesized eight bit electronic music a.k.a. retro videogame music.
Dance, is on the table at 10:30am at the Courthouse Stage featuring the talented young folks from Natalie’s Dance Network as performers of all ages show off their talents with a variety of choreographed routines.
You can also join the gospel group Xample on the Main & Third Street Stage to offer praise in song! Their unique style crosses generational and cultural barriers as they use music to share the love of Jesus Christ. To find out more about Xample check them out on the web at http://facebook.com/xamplepraise
The Strawberry Alley Stage features the indie rock group The Whippoorwill’s at 11:00am. The barebones three piece delivers shrilling melodies coupled with intense vocals, drivin by an underlying blues tone that delivers a one of a kind sound. You can find out more about the Whippoorwill’s on the web at mattresshousemusic.com
Tangled threads begins their first performance of the tale of the Lost Toys of the day at 11:00am on the Kids Stage. The Clockwork Jarquin and doll Mari are adrift when their train car derailed somewhere in Eastern Europe, see their adventures as the duo wander the world seeking their makers. With only each other to rely on, they charm audiences with an array of tricks. Whether dancing, juggling, flipping hats, or just clowning around, this pair of not-quite-humans is sure to draw looks of amazement!
For Stomp and Stepping fans join the Daymar Institute at the Courthouse stage at 11:00am for Stomping in the Streets, their annual STEP OFF! This event provides an opportunity to display the artistic skills of step teams throughout the region in a competition about the display of attitude, creativity, showmanship, skill, respect, dedication and enthusiasm for the history of stepping and hip hop!
Enhance your cultural awareness with the Filipino-American International Association at 11:00am on the Main & Third Street Stage for a presentation showcasing artifacts and local garb, Filipino music, and the Sungka game “Mancala.”
Stick around the Main & Third Street Stage for the 11:30am performance by the Hui Hawaii O Tenesi Hawaiian Civic Club which will feature hula performances with children and adults.
Four separate events kickoff simultaneously at noon…
The Cumberland Heights Glee Club will perform on the Family Fun Stage.
Musical group Khamsin takes the Strawberry Alley stage by storm. After starting as an instrumental solo project, Khamsin soon expanded into a full band and began writing more music and playing shows. You can find out more about this talented group at their website khamsin.bandcamp.com.
Dragon Scales & Faerie Tales retakes kids stage to entertain children with stories about princesses, knights, and the birth of a baby Dragon!
Those who are looking for a bit more action will find it on the Main & Third Street Stage with the Harris Holt Martial Arts academy. You can find out more about them at their web site http://www.hhmartialarts.com.
The Barksdale Elementary Bengal PAC featuring the Fourth and Fifth grade choirs from Barksdale Elementary School will be performing for their families and friends on the Family Fun Stage beginning at 12:15pm.
The next school group to perform is the Sango Honor Choir at 12:45pm on the Family Fun Stage. Featuring 65 talented 4th and 5th grade students from Sango Elementary School, this will be one of the larger groups to take the stage during the Rivers and Spires Festival.
They are followed by the Montgomery Central Honor Choir at 1:00pm which features 60 3rd to 5th grade students.
Several other groups are also performing at 1:00pm…
The Courthouse stage will feature the Dance Force dance Academy with three distinct performances ranging from ballet to hip-hop.
Brian Hayes & the Retrievers kick off the action on the Public Square Stage. This country/Americana band offers catchy, clean-cut, and family-friendly show.
Harrison Anvil take the Strawberry Alley stage. The group is a rock band, but mixes it with elements of soul, funk, jazz and even some southern-rock, “We play what we are feeling at that moment in time,” says the band. “ We want fans to leave our show knowing that they heard whole-hearted music, and partied as hard as we did.” You can find out more about the group at the Facebook page facebook.com/HarrisonAnvil.
Bellydancing will also be featured at the Main & Third Street Stage when the Ambient Angels take the stage at 1:00pm.Ambient Movements Bellydance offers instruction is multiple areas of the Middle Eastern art commonly known as Bellydance; but, specializes in American Cabaret, also known as Vintage Oriental.
At 1:30pm on the family fun stage Kayla Mihalinec and Alexis Mihalinec will be performing songs from their new CD “Country Girls for Life.” In a Facebook posting Kayla Mihalinec said, “We are so stoked to have this opportunity, Thank you God, family, friends, fans, and Rivers and Spires!”
At the same time, The Backroad Brigade will be performing on the courthouse stage. The group is an american rock band that leans towards the classic sound of rock and roll.
The students of the Kriegisch Martial Arts Academy will also be showing their stuff on the Main & Third Street Stage. They receive instruction on self-discipline, integrity, soundness of body, and life direction with proper emphasis on self-control in a program designed to further the student’s progress physically, mentally and spiritually.
Five events kickoff simultaneously 2:00pm…
The Public Square Stage will play host to Friends of Lola. The group credits the influences of The Eagles, Bonnie Raitt, Stevie Wonder, and Hank Williams Sr. Their songs find a perfect balance between poetic yet translucent lyrics, with melodies that drive ya mad all day.
At the Kids Stage your child will have another opportunity to catch the Dragon Scales & Faerie Tales show.
On the Family Fun Stage the Woodlawn Elementary School Chorus will be taking the stage. The group features around 30 kids ranging in age from 10 to 11-years-old. They will be performing a selection of songs that they have been practicing at school.
On the Strawberry Alley stage you will find the group Cover Down, the 101st Airborne Division Rock Band! The band took its name from the military adage, “get in line and cover down.” Having seen them perform at multiple events, I can truly say you’re in for a treat. Take a look at the band’s performance at the 2012 Rivers and Spires Festival if you don’t believe me!
The final group performing at 2:00pm is Fields of Empire who will be performing on the Main & Third Street Stage. Featuring a mix of pop/rock favorites, along with a selection of the latest hits, as well as new takes on old songs, and their completely original material, Fields of Empire is rock music for the masses! If you like everything from Johnny Cash to Jimi Hendrix to U2, then this is the band for you! You can find out more information on the group’s Facebook page at facebook.com/fieldsofempire.
A group from Fort Campbell that I haven’t seen perform before is the Dirty Birds, they are billed as Fort Campbell’s New Orleans style band. They will be performing a selection of patriotic music at the Courthouse Stage beginning at 2:15pm.
The husband and wife Christian group Sojo takes to the family fun stage at 2:30pm. Their performance will feature Christian Contemporary music, reaching all ethnic backgrounds. You can find out more about the group on their website at sojojo2.com.
3:00pm sees another five simultaneous performances beginning…
Flyte Three will be on the Public Square Stage. The group which features two sisters who play the guitar and mandolin, and their band. Their show will entertain the crowd with a mix of country, folk, and pop music.
Your child will have another opportunity to catch The Tangled Threads performance of The Lost Toys at the Kids Stage.
The Student Praise Band from First Baptist Church will be featured on the Family Fun Stage
The alternative buzz band, Darling Parade will take the Strawberry Alley Stage. The group melds melding all of their influences to create a sound that’s infectious, refreshing, and all their own. The band was in the top 10 on Sirius XM 20 on 20 for 8 weeks with their lead single “Ghost.” Check out the website darlingparade.com to find out more about the band.
The Tiffany Fashion Show will begin on the Main & Third Street Stage. This runway show will feature glammed up fashion Models wearing women and junior girl’s clothing from Dillard’s. Models will be showcasing fantasy hair and makeup.
At 3:15pm the group Kazual takes to the Courthouse Stage. They sing, dance, write music that blends harmonious styles and eclectic mixes of R&B, Hip-Hop, and Dirty Pop with choreographed dance and dub-step.
Emma Feldman from First Baptist Church stars on the family fun stage starting at 3:30pm. A 13 year singer/songwriter she plays the piano, guitar, and loves to sing praise music.
A total of Six events begin At 4:00pm are you getting tired yet?
The Syd Hedrick and the Phalcons will be performing on the Main & Third Street Stage. Featuring a melding of hot blues mixed with the spice of life-cool funk,-this R&B Soul Stew Review revs up the blowback and takes you on a trip with the Day Glow freaks. Is there gas in the car? I hope so, because you won’t want to miss this kitchen clean technicolor freight train as it chugs into Clarksville on a dare. You couldn’t go it alone.
On the courthouse stage you will find Island Wren, a group of friends that derive their unique sound from combining different styles of music, catchy melodies, and engaging vocal harmonies roted in the folk and bluegrass styles of Appalachian music.
On the Kids Stage your child can catch a performance of Dragon Scales & Faerie Tales with stories about princesses, knights, and the birth of a baby Dragon!
The Modern Worship Praise Band from First Baptist Church will be performing on the Family Fun Stage.
Saints of Havana will be taking the Public Square Stage. Their live show is reminiscent of the great 70’s bands, and remains true to the Country genre while flawlessly weaving in flavors of flamenco, rock and pop to create a beautiful and alluringly unique sound. You can find out more about them on their Facebook page at facebook.com/saintsofhavana/.
Check out their performance from the 2012 Rivers and Spires Festival
As 5:00pm rolls around, four events are scheduled to start.
A local favorite, the Tina Brown band will be performing at the Main & Third Street Stage. They are the ultimate R&B/Blues Party Band, performing all over the south at different venues and festivals.
Tangled threads begins their final performance of the tale of the Lost Toys on the Kids Stage. The Clockwork Jarquin and doll Mari are adrift when their train car derailed somewhere in Eastern Europe, see their adventures as the duo wander the world seeking their makers. With only each other to rely on, they charm audiences with an array of tricks. Whether dancing, juggling, flipping hats, or just clowning around, this pair of not-quite-humans is sure to draw looks of amazement!
HotLanta, an Allman Brothers tribute band will be performing on the Public Square Stage. The group named after an instrumental song first performed by the Allman Brothers Band back in July 1971, combines the country-rock, blues, instrumental jazz, and symphonic acid rock that made the Allman Brothers Band one of America’s greatest band of the early 1970s.
On the courthouse stage the acoustic duo Sam and Luke will be featured. Drawing influences from the Everly Brothers, there show delivers a catchy mixture of country and pop covers along with upbeat original songs.
At 5:30pm, Christian artist Aaron Shust will be performing songs from his album the Morning Rises Tour on the Family Fun Stage. He will be joined by Johnny Diaz, and Mikeschair front man Mike Grayson.
The final opportunity for your child to catch the Dragon Scales & Faerie Tales show is at 5:45pm at the Kids Stage
At 6:00pm the Mike Claiborne Band takes the stage at the Main & Third Street Stage. The show is a fusion of Jazz, Funk, Fusion, Gospel, and R&B has been referred to as “Inspirational Jazz Funk,” and is sure to delight the fans of those genres.
The Clarksville’s Got Talent talent competition will be held at 6 PM on the courthouse stage and features some of the best amateur talents from the middle-Tennessee region.
At 7:00pm it’s time for the headliners to take the stage all across downtown Clarksville.
On the on the Public Square Stage we have the big name for the Rivers and Spires Festival, Randy Houser.
Randy Houser is a man refreshed. “I don’t know how it happened, but everything in my life has started lining up,” says the Lake, Mississippi native. “I must have done somebody right in the past.”
Those positive vibes of renewal ripple through Houser’s newest single “Runnin’ Outta Moonlight” and “How Country Feels,” his first radio No. 1 and Gold® certified title track from Stoney Creek Records debut, How Country Feels, which hit stores on Tuesday, January 22, 2013. The title track was his fastest-rising single to-date on the country radio charts and sparked a wildfire of accolades and media appearances including: CONAN, NBC Nightly News, NBC Weekend Today, CBS’s “On The Couch,” FOX & Friends, Better TV and many more. “It was the obvious choice for a lead-off,” Houser says of “How Country Feels.” “It caught my ear the first time I heard it—like, ‘I wanna hear that again.’”
Houser cut How Country Feels with producer Derek George, a long-time friend and fellow Mississippian he had wanted to work with for over a decade. It’s been called “a buoyant, hook-filled outing” (Washington Post) that’s infused with “ a balance of revelry and introspection” (Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel) and shows off Randy’s powerhouse voice, hailed “one of the best in Nashville” by Great American Country (GAC) and numerous other critics.
Houser’s past contains no shortage of achievement, as it includes multiple nominations for ACM and CMA Awards, a No. 2 single in the form of “Boots On,” and songwriting credits for major names such as Trace Adkins, Justin Moore and Chris Young. In 2008—mere months after the release of his debut single, “Anything Goes”—Houser was even asked by David Letterman himself to appear on the Late Show. The singer’s first full-length, Anything Goes, came out later that year, followed in 2010 by They Call Me Cadillac which spawned hit “Whistlin’ Dixie,” and fan-favorite “A Man Like Me.”
But despite this early success, Houser now admits that he wasn’t truly happy. “It seemed like professionally things weren’t as great as they could be, and that was part of it,” he says. “But the biggest thing was not having a homebase. I needed an anchor.” He found one last year when he started a family and welcomed his son, West. “All of a sudden it was like I had this piece that had been missing,” he says with audible gratitude. Shortly after, Houser signed with new label home Stoney Creek Records based in Nashville, Tenn.
“Everybody there feels like part of my family,” Houser says of the independent imprint, where he happily signed following a long stretch of intensive touring. (How intensive? Think 150 shows a year.) “You walk in the door and everybody seems really happy with their job; there’s no strife in the air. That’s really important for me to have right now. It’s comforting.”
New tracks on How Country Feels echo the single’s sunny self-assurance, including “We’re Just Growing Younger” and “Along for the Ride,” which Houser co-wrote with Zac Brown. “We were playing a festival and I just had this song rolling around in my head,” Houser remembers of the latter. “I stayed up till about 5 in the morning but then got stuck. So I called up Zac and we went on his bus and knocked it out of the park.”
There is contemplation, too: “Like a Cowboy” is about “me coming home for a few days, then having to leave again,” Houser says, while “Route 3 Box 250D” provides an intimate snapshot of the singer’s upbringing. “That one’s kind of hard to listen to,” he admits. “It hits almost too close to home.” Billboard calls the song “stunning,” and The New York Times writes, “His voice here is almost wholly different, thicker and more throbbing, a caldron bubbling over. For a few minutes he’s the singer Nashville won’t let him be.”
As for the sound of How Country Feels, Houser says it’s his most expansive outing yet, with more bells and whistles than he’s used in the past; it also showcases the remarkable voice that led Vince Gill to call Houser “one of the best in the new crop of country singer-songwriters” and pal Jamey Johnson to say, “I watched a blind man jump to his feet and drop his crutches the first time he heard Randy Houser sing.”
And since the release of How Country Feels, critics have echoed those claims in reviews, with MSN writing “Houser is hands down one of the best male vocalists in Nashville,” and quoting Dierks Bentley as saying, “It’s kind of ridiculous how good of a singer he is.”
Still, the heart of the album—of Houser’s entire outlook right now—remains the story of a man who’s moved through darkness into light. “I feel like I’ve reached such a special moment,” he says, and it’s a true pleasure to hear him inside it.
ReggaeInfinity is the headliner for the Main & Third Street Stage.
ReggaeInfinity plays authentic Roots Reggae! Though based in Columbia, SC, the band members hail from various Caribbean Islands plus the US. Original, positive music written by Ras B along with occasional covers keeps everyone feeling, dancing and listening to the positive vibes. With a firm spiritual foundation, these talented musicians and singers are dedicated to sharing the message of Roots Reggae and believe strongly in advancing equality, brotherhood and universal love.
They have shared the stage with many international acts including Haile Maskel, Zema, Culture, Burning Spear, Yellowman, The Wailers, The Meditations, Morgan Heritage, Midnite, Everton Blender, Soldiers of Jah Army, Inner Visions, Bambu Station, Beres Hammond and Wayne Wonder.
ReggaeInfinity’s music is suitable for all ages and will have all ages up and dancing to the word, sound and power that is roots reggae. This is the “real deal,”to the word, sound and power that is Roots Reggae.
Their first CD, Vision, is now available through CD Baby, Amazon.com, iTunes and from myspace.com/thatreggaewoman.com.
High energy, never quit, a melodic kick in the teeth…these are all ways that describe the driving force that is Sideshow Romance.
Since the band formed in 2011, they’ve went non-stop, both on stage and in studio, swinging for the fences. They came right out of the gate and recorded with major label producer Brett Hestla (Dark New Day, Framing Hanley, Creed) to slam out their first single “Take Me Down”. They used this to garner regional radio attention and put them on the map in the Midwest. After sharing the stage with such bands as Papa Roach, Halestorm, Puddle of Mudd, Theory of a Deadman, Pop Evil, and Eye Empire, and touring across the U.S., Sideshow Romance set the bar, not only in their local area, but the surrounding area as well.
In 2012, they recorded their follow-up single “Numb” with producer Brandon Wootten from Framing Hanley. This brought even more shows and more support from regional radio. Winning radio “cage match” after cage match, the head of steam continued to build for Sideshow Romance and led to more shows and a tour run through the Midwest.
In March of 2013, Sideshow Romance went back in the studio with Grammy nominated and Dove award winning producer Travis Wyrick (P.O.D., 10 Years, Adelitas Way) to cover the Jars of Clay single “Flood”. That was followed up in the summer of 2013 with a 6 song EP titled “This Means War”, which is slated for a February 2014 release, with the lead single “Goodbye”. In August of 2013, Sideshow Romance was chosen to be a part of the Coldcock Herbal Whiskey stage on the Rockstar Energy Uproar Festival, which featured Alice In Chains and Jane’s Addiction.
And this is just the a fraction of all that is going on at the Festival.
About the Rivers and Spires Festival
The 12th annual Rivers and Spires Festival will be held April 24th-26th, 2014 in Historic Downtown Clarksville. This event has five stages of entertainment with over 100 entertainers performing all three days. From children’s activities, arts & crafts, car shows, military exhibits, shopping and so much more this is truly an event for the whole family. Admission to the Festival is free including all games, activities and concerts.
For more information about Rivers and Spires contact Jessica Goldberg at or visit us at www.riversandspires.com . Become a fan of us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @RIVERSandSPIRES.