The five-day Key West Songwriters Festival wraps up Sunday night and when it’s completed, more than 150 performing songwriters will have staged more than 50 shows in the island city.
Several thousand people gathered on Key West’s Duval Street Saturday night for a free main stage concert starring recording artist Brad Paisley, who has racked up more than 30 Top 10 singles during his career. Ryan Hurd and Mitchell Tenpenny were also featured during the show.
An outstanding songwriter as well as a performer, Paisley released his debut album, “Who Needs Pictures,” in 1999. He wrote or co-wrote many of his notable singles including “He Didn’t Have to Be,” “Perfect Storm,” the summertime anthem “Beat This Summer” and the recent “My Miracle.”
“I think the trick to my success that I’ve had, has been the songs I’ve recorded,” said Paisley. “And I wrote a lot of them, but if someone else had written them, or if someone else had sung them, it would be the same result.
“It has nothing to do with me, if that makes any sense — and that’s how important the song really is,” Paisley said.
The festival’s talent roster also features songwriters Dean Dillon, Chuck Cannon, Jeffrey Steele, Scotty Emerick and Al Anderson among many others, as well asTexas singer/songwriter Robert Earl Keen.
Now in its 24th year, the event has become an annual tradition for many leading country and pop music hitmakers. Performers shared stages at Key West bars, restaurants, theaters, waterfront resorts, poolsides and even an excursion catamaran at sunset.
Events conclude Sunday with a day of musical showcases and an all-star sunset concert headlined by the Randy Houser Band.