Headlining the 2018 Vidalia Onion Festival concert is singer/songwriter, Phil Vassar. Phil has reached the Top 5 seven times and has topped the charts on multiple occasions with hits like “Just Another Day in Paradise.” Phil has released eight albums and has received several awards, including two ASCAP Songwriter of the Year trophies and Billboard Country Songwriter of the year. Known as one of Nashville’s tunesmiths, his songs that other artists have taken to #1 include “My Next Thirty Years” by Tim McGraw, “She’s Right on the Money” by Alan Jackson, and Jo Dee Messina’s “Bye Bye” and “I’m Alright”. Phil has also written songs for some of the newer country artists like David Nail’s “The Sound of a Million Dreams”.
For Vassar, his philosophy about songs has never changed during his time spent writing hits for himself and other artists. It’s important for a song to carry a message and make the listener feel something. Phil launched his own label known as Rodeowave Entertainment. This full-service record label has promoted music by The Lumineers, Neal McCoy, Miss Willie Brown, High Valley, Old Dominion and Sam Riddle. Vassar continues to churn out incisive, soulful lyrics and melodies that capture the heart and soul in the unique and special way that only he can, and he enjoys performing these songs for his fans.
Also playing at this year’s festival is the young and energetic band, Love and Theft. The band’s latest album, Whiskey On My Breath, marks a significant creative statement for the two singer-songwriter-guitarists, whose resume already includes a long series of career highlights. Having already established themselves as one of country’s hottest young acts with such memorable hits as the #1 country smash “Angel Eyes” and the Top 10 hit “Runaway,” the band continues to produce fresh new hits today. Their latest music finds the pair stripping down to its essence, with spare, largely acoustic arrangements that focus squarely on their impassioned performances and distinctive vocal chemistry.
Playing in front of Love and Theft will be Southern Halo from Mississippi. The sister trio has a signature sound of multiple country styles and a dash of Southern rock. It’s youthful, energetic music – made immediately recognizable by the sweet sibling harmonies that have become Southern Halo’s trademark. Noted music critic Robert K. Oermann of MusicRow Magazine says the sisters “harmonize like angels.” The band is launching a new album this April and plans on performing many songs from that new album at the festival.
Experience the Pine Box Dwellers, a musical family of friends from Waycross, GA. With their unique blend of “Swampadelic” Americana the Pine Box Dwellers take you on a free-wheeling trip through a distorted fun house of southern rock archetypes that never stray in to parody, thanks to their spot on skill. Front man Sean Clark’s songs are well crafted stories that the band breaks down and rebuilds with impressive virtuosity. Listen here.
Opening on Saturday is the Heather Gillis Band. Heather Gillis is the complete package as a guitar player, lap steel player, songwriter, singer and arranger. She and her band have the stage presence and confidence to appeal to a variety of musical tastes be it rock, soul, jazz, roots or gospel. At 23 years old, Heather has not only formed a following at a local level, but has played alongside and befriended members of the The Allman Brothers Band, Col Bruce Hampton, The Lee Boys, North Mississippi All-Stars, Matt Schofield, and many more. In 2015 Heather was drafted by (legendary Allman Brothers drummer) Butch Trucks to be a member of his touring band, Butch Trucks and the Freight Train Band (2015-2017) Heather’s live shows are energetic and consist of her original music as well as rock, soul, and roots music
Advanced tickets available for $15 online here. These advanced tickets are refundable if the event is cancelled due to inclement weather.