Guitar Mash's 2nd Annual Nashville Urban Campfire

Jason Isbell joins Buddy Miller, Nicole Atkins, Gretchen Peters & Amythyst Kiah. 

Led by Jerry Douglas & Mark Stewart
Saturday May 11th at City Winery Nashville

Guitar Mash is bringing its signature “Urban Campfire” back to Music City the afternoon of May 11th with some of Nashville’s best guitarists and singer-songwriters sharing the songs that shaped them.  An audience of hundreds of guitarists and other acoustic string players -- together with music lovers and fans -- are invited to sing and play along with Jason Isbell,  Buddy Miller, Nicole Atkins, Gretchen Peters, and Amythyst Kiah.

Following his participation in Guitar Mash’s flagship event in New York City in 2015, Grammy Award-winning dobro player Jerry Douglas and Guitar Mash Artistic Director Mark Stewart (Paul Simon, Bang on a Can) promised to bring this participatory event to Jerry’s hometown. In 2018, the first annual Nashville Urban Campfire attracted a full house of players and music lovers.  Featured singer-songwriter Mary Gauthier called Guitar Mash a “happiness machine.”  See the video recap of last year’s Nashville Urban Campfire here.

Complementing the relaxed and open atmosphere of the “campfire,” Guitar Mash projects the charts of each featured song, and Chord Coaches (not ushers) help get each attendee seated and each player tuned up. The Guitar Mash Nashville House Band led by Jerry Douglas (dobro) and Mark Stewart (guitar) includes Barry Walsh (keys), Viktor Krauss (bass) and Gary Gold (drums), and backs each featured artist as well as the audience singing and playing along.

Whether or not you have an instrument in hand, you are in for a special afternoon with renowned artists as they share the songs and stories that have shaped their lives and music-making.

“We are so excited to be bringing our Urban Campfire back to Music City and to partner again with Jerry Douglas to connect everyday people with some of the best guitarists and singer-songwriters in the world,” says Guitar Mash Founder & Executive Producer Rebecca Weller.  “Guitar Mash Nashville represents our first foray out of New York City and sets a thrilling standard for further expansion around the country.”

Jerry Douglas says, “I find it unconscionable that our children can go through school without proper musical education.  The specialized program Guitar Mash offers reach people young, and not so young, bringing to life the experience of making music with peers and the exhilaration that can bring.  Simultaneously, Guitar Mash continues to contribute to inner-city outreach programs, in hopes that even those unable to attend our show have the opportunity to feel the love that music gives unconditionally.”

Nurturing the future generation is critical to the Guitar Mash mission of connecting people through participatory musical storytelling. Each Urban Campfire partners with teens in the local community; in Nashville, Guitar Mash is collaborating with the W.O. Smith School, whose teachers will serve as Chord Coaches, and with an ensemble from Southern Girls Rock Camp who will lead the audience in a song.  Students from both organizations will be guests in the audience.

Guitar Mash Artistic Director Mark Stewart says, “Community music making is ancient stuff. It is one of the perfect onboard apps humans are born with… and born for. We have precious few opportunities to play and sing together. So, we are malnourished these days. With Guitar Mash, we set the table and invite folks to it.”

This year, Guitar Mash is offering the opportunity to further connect with some of the artists at an after-party hosted by Gruhn Guitars.  VIP tickets include reserved seating at the event as well as an invitation to the party that evening.



All Acoustic Strings Welcome!
Saturday, May 11th, 2019
City Winery Nashville (609 Lafayette Street)
Doors: 12:30 pm
Show: 1 pm (end time approx. 3:15 pm)
GA Ticket: $32/$10 for students
VIP Ticket: $75 which includes: Prime Seating, Guitar Lover’s Gift Bag, Private After-Party at Gruhn Guitars (6-8pm) including cocktails & BBQ with Jerry Douglas, Mark Stewart, George Gruhn & select artists from the day.


Hint® and Fishman® are official sponsors of Guitar Mash.
Premier Guitar and WMOT are official media partners of Guitar Mash Nashville.

With special thanks to the W.O. Smith Music School, Gruhn Guitars and the Hayes Street Hotel.
Guitar Mash also receives support from the D’Addario Foundation and GAMA.

To learn more about Guitar Mash visit



Nicole Atkins: Transplanted from Asbury Park, NJ, Nashville-based singer-songwriter and guitarist Nicole Atkins possesses a signature "crooner" vocal style that mixes soul, 60's psychedelic rock, and Americana and has often been compared to Roy Orbison. Her acclaimed 2017 album "Goodnight Rhonda Lee" reflects her personal struggles and these wide-ranging influences.  Complementing a solo European tour plus dates in support of Lake Street Dive, Nicole releases her newest project, a collection of eclectic songs with Jim Sclavunos of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. 

Jason Isbell: One of the most respected and celebrated songwriters of his generation, Jason Isbell possesses an incredible penchant for identifying and articulating some of the deepest, yet simplest, human emotions. His last two studio albums both won Grammy Awards for Best Americana Album & Best American Roots Song. Last October, Jason and his band, the 400 Unit, released Live From The Ryman, a stunning collection of tracks primarily recorded during the group's six sold-out nights at Nashville’s legendary theater in 2017. Rolling Stone remarked that the live album is "easily among the finest of the past decade, in any genre.” Jason returns to his North Alabama roots with the debut of his own festival, Shoals Fest, in October 2019.

Amythyst Kiah: A professed Southern Gothic, alt-country blues singer-songwriter based in Johnson City, TN, Amythyst Kiah’s commanding stage presence is only matched by her raw and powerful vocals—a deeply moving, hypnotic sound that stirs echoes of a distant and restless past. Accoutered interchangeably with banjo, acoustic guitar, or a full band (Her Chest of Glass), Amythyst’s toolbox is augmented by her scholarship of African-American roots music. Among her most recent projects is the “Songs of Our Native Daughters” album in collaboration with Rhiannon Giddens for Smithsonian Folkways.

Buddy Miller: A prolific American singer, songwriter, musician, recording artist and producer, Buddy Miller has garnered Grammy and Americana Awards for his work solo as well as with his wife Julie Miller, and was named “Artist of the Decade” by No Depression magazine for the 2000s.  He produced standout albums by Robert Plant, Solomon Burke, Carolina Chocolate Drops, Patty Griffin, Richard Thompson, the War & Treaty, and Shawn Colvin and Steve Earle and joined T Bone Burnett on the musical team working on the hit ABC-TV series Nashville, becoming the show’s executive music producer. Buddy also hosts a radio program with Jim Lauderdale on SiriusXM.

Gretchen Peters: Grammy nominee Gretchen Peters has been one of Nashville's most beloved and respected artists for over two decades. A Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame inductee in 2014 and named one of the greatest 60 female singer-songwriters of all time in The Telegraph, she has written for artists including Etta James, Bonnie Raitt, The Neville Brothers, Patty Loveless, George Strait, Bryan Adams, and Faith Hill.  Her newest album, Dancing With The Beast, was released to great acclaim in May 2018.


Jerry Douglas: Dobro master and 14-time Grammy winner Jerry Douglas is to the resonator guitar what Jimi Hendrix was to the electric guitar: elevating, transforming, and reinventing the instrument in countless ways. Inspired by his appearance at Guitar Mash in New York City in 2015, Jerry led the charge for a Mash in his hometown.

Mark Stewart: Multi-instrumentalist, singer, song leader, composer and instrument designer Mark Stewart is the founding Artistic Director of Guitar Mash. He is a founding member of the Bang on a Can All-Stars and since 1998 has recorded, toured and been Musical Director with Paul Simon.



Guitar Mash, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is leading a movement to change the way we experience music and the way we connect with each other. Their signature Urban Campfires harness the power of the guitar and the voice in sharing songs and life stories, connecting people of diverse backgrounds and musical abilities.

The Story of Guitar Mash

Guitar Mash was born of the belief that Art is not a spectator sport. In 2012, veteran New York producer Rebecca Weller (Lincoln Center’s Midsummer Night Swing) met Paul Simon’s longtime guitarist Mark Stewart, who had just led a parade of trombones down a street in the East Village. She recognized a kindred spirit. With a shared passion for the participatory, Rebecca and Mark saw the guitar as the quickest catalyst for sharing stories, songs and life-changing moments and bringing people together. Along with Founding Artist Chairs chef Tom Colicchio and drummer Chad Smith, Guitar Mash was officially born when Mark led the first “campfire jam” with 50 people in a living room in downtown Manhattan. Since then, artist leaders have included Kaki King, Nels Cline, Ani DiFranco, Valerie June, Keb’ Mo’, John Oates, Julian Lage, Marc Ribot, and many others. Nashville represents the first city outside of New York in its national expansion.

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Contact: Britt Marden, Guitar Mash