Country music songwriter Chuck Jones
Country music songwriter Chuck Jones

John Jarrard Foundation’s Summer Songwriters Series Returns to Brenau July 10

Jul 8, 2015
Brenau Staff

The John Jarrard Foundation’s Summer Songwriters Series kicks off its 2015 showcase Friday, July 10, with performances by award-winning country songwriters Chuck Jones and Ed Hill in the Theatre on the Square at Brenau University’s Downtown Center, located at 301 Main St. in Gainesville.

The show begins at 8 p.m. with doors opening at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 each and are available by calling 770-710-9191 or purchasing online at

“As the TV show ‘Nashville’ has made the Bluebird Cafe so popular in the last couple of years, we are so fortunate to bring the same guys that appear in Nashville right here to Gainesville, performing hit song after hit song,” said Jody Jackson, executive director of the John Jarrard Foundation.

However, the informal performances in the intimate venue enable the artists to interact with the audience conversationally, putting out music industry insider info and spinning yarns about how some of the songs happened.

“Everyone loves to hear the stories behind the songs,” said Jackson. “It’s magical.”

Chuck Jones, from Memphis, Tennessee, has had his songs recorded by artists such as Patti LaBelle, Ronnie Milsap, Shelby Lynne, Chris Ledoux, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Charlie Daniels, Deana Carter, Reba McEntire and Peter Cetera. He has had more than 140 songs recorded, including multiple top-10 singles, and various other charting singles on country and pop radio. He recently started his own publishing company, Jonesin’ For A Hit LLC, which has garnered cuts on a variety of artists ranging from Montgomery Gentry and Trace Adkins to Rascal Flatts, Jake Owen and Randy Houser. He resides in Nashville with his wife, Becky Pommer Jones, and their daughter, Savannah Grace.

Country music songwriter Ed Hill
Country music songwriter Ed Hill

Ed Hill, a Hanford, California native, has won four Nashville Songwriters Association International Awards for his works, including “It Matters to Me” by Faith Hill, “Georgia Rain” by Trisha Yearwood, “Find Out Who Your Friends Are” by Tracy Lawrence and “Just Fishin’” by Trace Adkins. He also has a recent No. 1 country song, “Drinkin’ Class” by Lee Brice. Since the early 1970s, Hill has played piano and keyboard, and has backed artists like Merle Haggard, Kris Kristofferson, Marty Robbins and Willie Nelson. In 1980, he won a Grammy Award for Best Country Instrumental Performance for “Orange Blossom Special/Hoedown.” In 2012, Hill was nominated for a Grammy Award in the Best Country Song category for “Just Fishin’,” written with Casey Beathard and Monty Criswell.

Founded in 2000, the John Jarrard Foundation honors the memory of the Gainesville native and pre-eminent country music songwriter who penned dozens of hit songs, including 12 No. 1 country hits. He battled diabetes before his death in 2001. Jarrard was inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame in 2011.

Over the past 13 years, the John Jarrard Foundation has grown from an annual concert to a regionally recognized organization supporting songwriters and many great causes, with the proceeds going to a permanent endowment fund in Jarrard’s name established at the North Georgia Community Foundation. Proceeds benefit local charities, including the Good News Clinics, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Hall County, Georgia Mountain Food Bank Fund, and one of John’s favorite causes, Good News at Noon Shelter.

The final performance in the summer series will be Aug. 8 at 7:30 p.m. at the Brenau Downtown Center. It will feature Jason Matthews and Kerry Kurt Phillips. Tickets are $20 per person for each show. Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling 770-710-9191.

The organization’s largest concert of the year, the 14th annual John Jarrard Foundation Concert, will be Saturday, Sept. 12, on the front lawn at Brenau University. Tickets and table reservations are available at or by calling 770-710-9191.