The 35th annual Frank Brown International Songwriters’ Fest spreads 200 songwriters in venues along the Florida / Alabama Gulf Coast for 11 days of listening pleasure beginning Nov. 7.
“Most of the time you don’t know the person you are going to see. But you know their no. 1 hit,’’ said fest director Andy Haynes. “Even more fun is when you hear a song that is a no. 1 six months later. It’s a unique experience rather than a run of the mill concert.’’
Haynes, a fest volunteer for 16 years before taking the director’s job in 2016, tips his hat to the founder, Joe Gilchrist. “We are sure lucky having Joe in our community doing what he does,’’ he said.
“We hope to simply showcase the people that create the music and the magic,’’ Gilchrist said. We are respectful. We’re glad to provide a listening environment where they can play, and it’s not background music. It’s living music that professes emotions and feelings that all of us have, but very few of us know how to express.’’
The festival is named after the late Frank Brown, night watchman at the ‘Bama for 28 years. Mr. Frank retired at 91.