2019 HOPE GIVERS MENTAL WELLNESS & MUSIC FESTIVAL
Judah & the Lion
Drew Holcomb & the Neighbors
The War and Treaty
SATURDAY, MAY 11TH 12-10PM
SWEETLAND AMPHITHEATRE - LAGRANGE, GA
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JUDAH & THE LION
For Judah & the Lion, the last two years should've been the best of their lives as the Nashville band toured behind a powerful single and a genre-upending album, sharing stages with heroes and playing to oceans of fans. But as everything was coming together for them, singer-guitarist Judah Akers' family was falling apart in a hail of alcoholism and affairs, death and divorce. From that tension comes Pep Talks, the trio's third LP and a hard left turn into deeply personal terrain. Knowing they had something new on their hands, Judah, Brian Macdonald (mandolin), and Nate Zuercher (banjo) took their time crafting a set of songs that not only shores up their one-of-a-kind sound—a heart-pounding whirl of folk, bluegrass, rock, hip-hop and electronic production—but takes the listener on a bracingly candid, surprisingly anthemic journey from the kind of pain that tears your whole world apart to the sort of hard-won hope that can bridge the deepest of rifts.
"Up to this point, the band's message has mostly been: 'Live your best life! Pursue your dreams! Follow your heart!'" says Judah, "We had to start this record with broken-ness, with this cry that says, 'I don't want to hide this from anyone anymore. I'm going through something. I need help.'"
Judah & the Lion has been a family unto itself since forming at Nashville's Belmont University in 2011. Judah was from nearby Cookeville, an aspiring baseball player with a secret love for folk guitar. Brian came from Chicagoland and was mostly obsessed with piano. Nate, a Coloradan, was a son of symphony players but preferred metal. Their differences were their strength as they shaped their sound over a bluegrass-heavy debut, Kids These Days, and its mold-breaking follow-up Folk Hop n' Roll, both produced by Dave Cobb (Sturgill Simpson, Jason Isbell) and made in under two weeks. For Pep Talks, they took three months, coproduced as a band alongside two friends (Brian's college roomie Drew Long and local artist Daniel James), and kept the guest list tight: drummer Darren King (ex Mutemath), a hero to the guys; Kacey, whose transcendent Golden Hour was a powerful influence; and genre-flouting tour buddy, Jon Bellion.
DREW HOLCOMB AND THE NEIGHBORS
Over 140,000 albums sold, Drew Holcomb and The Neighbors’ songs have received over 50 TV placements, including How I Met Your Mother, Parenthood, Criminal Minds, Nashville, HOUSE, and many more.
Drew Holcomb and The Neighbors have played over 2,000 concert dates in 7 countries, and many festivals including Bonnaroo, Hangout Music Fest, Forecastle, Voodoo Experience and more.
THE WAR AND TREATY
As The War and Treaty, Michael and Tanya serve up healing and pain robbing with freewheeling joy on a monumental new full-length album, Healing Tide. An original tour-de-force produced by Buddy Miller, the collection swaggers with a confidence only gained by artists who are wholly, proudly, themselves. Funky bass lines, keys, lap steel, acoustic strings, and stripped-down percussion create a swampy Southern soul bed for the couple’s transcendent vocals. “I hope people see our hearts on this record,” Michael says. “I want them to experience freedom. To feel again.”
Michael wrote every track on Healing Tide alone. Opener “Love Like There’s No Tomorrow” sets the tone both thematically and vocally. Stark tambourine gives way to Michael’s gravelly locomotive vocals, which are joined in an early chorus by Tanya’s soaring harmonies. “Today is all that matters,” Michael says. “I would say that The War and Treaty’s mission is to embrace the now.”
KRIS BROOKS - YOGA & RECOVERY INSTRUCTOR (NASCAR)
One of the most sought after yoga instructors in America, Kris works for NASCAR and other professional sports organizations. Active both locally and internationally in the recovery community, Kris Brooks advocates to break the stigma of mental illness and addiction.
MEL CARTER - HEAD OF MINDFULNESS DEPT. AT NYU
Head of the Mindfulness Education and Innovation at New York University (NYU). Miami was her home base for the last three years where Mel has been devoted to serving as a mindfulness consultant for various companies, colleges, C+ executives to identify gaps and needs within those cultures to foster stronger mindfulness foundations, tools, and leadership.
GIOVAN BAZAN - INTERNATIONAL MOTIVATIONAL SPEAKER
Giovan Bazan, aka G for short, is an international speaker who helps people develop excellent Mental Health Care strategies to optimize wellbeing and ensure longevity of fulfilling and purposeful lives. Over the past decade, G has researched the field of Mental Health from leading scholars, top academic institutions, and experts with lived-experiences from all around the world. His gift is his ability to articulate his empirically and academically obtained wisdom in humorous and anecdotal stories, that both educate and inspire the audience.
KAT DOLAN - TEDx SPEAKER & PERFORMANCE POET
Kat Dolan is a performance poet and inspirational speaker and the founder of Out of Your Mind, a non-profit organization combatting social isolation through creative peer support and reframing mental illness as a mental opportunity. Kat has been performing original poetry for eight years, gracing countless stages across the United States and New Zealand. By sharing her poetry, Kat has found that her words have the ability to evoke visceral emotion in her audience, encouraging them to feel. When she is not traveling the country for inspirational speaking and poetry gigs, Kat finds joy in trail running and relaxing with her cat, Pem, in her renovated school bus nestled in the heart of Western North Carolina.
The 1st Annual HOPE GIVERS Mental Wellness & Music Festival is a celebration of music, inspiration, hope, and education featuring:
Judah & the Lion, Drew Holcomb and The Neighbors, and The War and Treaty
Renowned Speakers and Testimonials of Hope through Resilience
Mental Wellness Trainings
Yoga and Mindfulness
Interactive Art Installations
Mental Health/Suicide Prevention Resources