Grassy Hill Kerrville New Folk Competition is a yearly event to discover promising singer-songwriters. The competition was established in 1972 by Kerrville Folk Festival Founder Rod Kennedy and folk legend Peter Yarrow. Thirty-two finalists are selected from a field of 800 entries to come to the Kerrville Folk Festival and share two of their original songs. From these 32 finalists, six award winners are selected by a small group of well-established performing songwriters.
A win at Kerrville carries considerable prestige in the singer-songwriter community.
2019 NEW FOLK FINALISTS - Congratulations to the Grassy Hill Kerrville New Folk Winners for 2019. These songwriters were chosen over 500 wonderful entries. 5 of these winners will be with us at this show!
Aaron Smith (Harrison, AR)
Daniel Neihoff (Paducah, KY)
Lisa Bastoni (Northampton, MA)
Liv Greene (Washington DC)
D.B. Rielly (New York, NY)
D.B. Rielly is a real American songwriter singing funny, open-hearted, and touching songs with an everyman ease. He is an award-winning singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who has played live at such prestigious venues as Lincoln Center, The Montreux Jazz Festival, Staples Center, The Apollo Theater, and has performed with B.B. King, The Boston Pops, and Chubby Checker, among others.
Liv Greene is an americana singer-songwriter based in Boston, MA. She was a finalist in the 2016 National YoungArts and a recipient of a Fine Arts Award in Singer-Songwriter from Interlochen Center for the Arts.
Aaron Smith is the songwriter and frontman of the group Aaron Smith and the Coal Biters. His songs draw from folk, roots, and Americana musical styles. In addition to being on of this year’s new folk winners, Aaron has also been a finalist in the 2019 Power of Music Festival-BMG Songwriter Showcase, 2016 Kerrville New Folk, 2015 Rock House Music Festival, and the 2014 Ozark Folk Festival.
Lisa Bastoni had a thriving singer-songwriter career going until she took a break to start a family with her husband, novelist Christopher Boucher. Now, after nearly ten years away from writing and performing, Bastoni returns to music. Within the last couple years, she has been showcased in the 2017 New England Regional Folk Alliance (NERFA) Semi-Formal, 2017 Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, 2017 New Song Music/LEAF Festival Showcase, and the 2017 Great American Song Contest.
Daniel Neihoff wrote his first song at 8 years old as he grew up around family of melodies and legends. Over the years, whether it was for paying gigs or for open mics at Paducah’s bars, Neihoff turned heads with his smooth and soulful sound. Since then, he has appeared on WKMS’s Something From Nothing Podcast and The Spiel in Southern IL. Neihoff was also recently a semi-finalist on Nashville Rising Song.