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Americana Music Festival picks first two bands

Wednesday, February 11, 2009 – A former Nashville Star finalist and a trio formed at Mississippi State University were picked as the first two showcase artists for the upcoming Americana Music Festival in Nashville in September.

Brigid Kaelin and Come On Go With Us were named to be part of the concerts held during the convention Sept. 16-19.

Brigid Kaelin made the front page of The Tennessean on her very first day playing Nashville, daring to play the accordion to country music during the 2007 Nashville Star finals. Last May, she wrote Elvis Costello a note offering her services as an Imposter, and he invited her to play live with his band without rehearsal. Dueling head-to-head accordion solos with keyboardist Steve Nieve, she later received several standing ovations during her musical saw solo.

Kaelin is a trained jazz pianist who played show tunes at West Village cabarets while a student at New York University. She released a country Chanukah record "Mazel Tonk!"

Come On Go With Us is Jacob Simpson (vocals, guitar), Chase McGill (vocals, guitar, banjo, piano), Chris Hurt (bass), Justin McKenzie (drums) and Dustin Hedrick (violin).

During their first tour, the need for a full band and a bigger sound became prevalent as their audiences grew. In stepped Hurt and McKenzie. Recorded at Nashville's Quad Studios, the band's first full length album drops in March.

The Americana Music Association, working in partnership with Sonicbids, picked the groups. Applications for the 2009 Americana Music Festival will be accepted through Thursday, April 30. Materials can be submitted directly to the AMA office via mail. All submissions must include the application form.

Conference registrations currently at the early bird discount rate of $250 for members and $350 for non-members are available at the Americana Music Online Store.

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