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Lyrics & Lore (January 17 - 20, 2019)

Lyrics & Lore was designed so that any individual can experience songwriting and storytelling. You don't have to be a songwriter or a storyteller to attend this event. Join the Dollywood Entertainment team and The International Storytelling Center (ISC) and our new partner, Bandtwango as they bring together the beauty and inspiration of songs and stories to Dollywood's DreamMore Resort and Spa, Jan. 17 - 20, 2019.

During the Lyrics & Lore weekend, audience members will have the opportunity to enjoy internationally recognized storytellers as they share their stories and learn about the most popular songs heard on the radio. Plus, on Friday and Saturday evening, sit back and enjoy listening to these hit songs performed by the songwriters that create these chart toppers.

Please Note: Lyrics & Lore is open to the general public. This event does not require an overnight resort stay to participate. Concerts on Friday and Saturday evening are each $15 per person, per concert. Concert tickets are available for purchase at the door.

Lyrics & Lore Co-Write is open to the general public and resort guests for a fee of $135. To register for the Lyrics & Lore Co-Write, please send an email to:, containing your Name, Phone Number and Mailing Address.

Thom and Coley

Thom Shepherd & Coley McCabe

CMA Texas Songwriter of the Year, Thom Shepherd is an Austin-based touring artist who spent many years as a songwriter in Nashville. He performs regularly with his band, as a solo acoustic performer, and as a duo with artist Coley McCabe. Thom and Coley have recently launched their new YouTube channel, “American Dreamers On The Road,” which features videos about the couple moving from a three bedroom house into a 39′ Fleetwood American Dream motorcoach. Thom, and his Radio Margaritaville hit “Always Saturday Night,” are featured in the documentary “Parrot Heads: The Movie,” and he won the Radio Show of the Year Award at the 2015 Trop Rock Music Awards for “Live From The Redneck Yacht Club.”  Along with his own radio singles in Texas, Thom is the writer of five #1 singles for other artists –  “Redneck Yacht Club” (Craig Morgan), “Riding with Private Malone” (David Ball), “The Night Is Young” (Kyle Park), “My Texas” (Josh Abbott and Pat Green), and “Beer Season” (Kevin Fowler). In total Thom has had over 10 singles and over 100 songs recorded by other artists. Coley McCabe has had several major artist cuts including Loretta Lynn and SHeDAISY as well as writing most of the songs on her self-titled CD which boasts the presence of Kenny Chesney on “The Next Sound You Hear”.  Currently, both Thom and Coley are touring all over Texas and beyond. Expect to see these talented singer-songwriters in some intimate performances at MusicFest’s acoustic venues, as well as song swaps. 

Sam Tate

Sam Tate

Someone once said “if there wasn’t a Sam Tate, someone would make him up”. Sam has done more living in his sixty years than most men would do in several lifetimes and his rich and varied experiences have translated well into his songs. Sam’s songs have been recorded by a Who’s Who of Nashville recording artists from Reba McEntire to Rodney Atkins. He has had three number 1 records and 15 top 40 singles. His song “If you’re going through hell” was SESAC song of the year and garnered an ACM nomination for song of the year as well. HIS song “Moments” was again ACM nominated for song of the year. Sam was nominated for a Grammy for country song of the year for his song “I”d love to be your last” by Gretchen Wilson. A multiple SESAC songwriter of the year recipient, songs have sold over 25 million to date.

Cole Taylor

Cole Taylor

Hailing from Georgia, country newcomer Cole Taylor has quickly become an in-demand country songwriter for a multitude of country artists like Luke Bryan, Jason Aldean, and Cole Swindell . Cole’s written #1 hits for Florida Georgia Line ["Sippin' On Fire"] and Luke Bryan ["Home Alone Tonight”] and is now ready to step into the spotlight as an artist himself.

Chase McGill

Chase McGill

Songwriting newcomer Chase McGill hit his stride this year with #1 songs recorded by Luke Bryan & Cole Swindell. In October, Chase topped the Music Row Songwriter chart at #1 with 4 songs by Swindell, Bryan, and Kane Brown on the charts simultaneously.

Regie Hamm

Regie Hamm

Regie is gifted “Storyteller” and his writing career is multidimensional. He’s achieved success as an Artist, producer, songwriter, novelist & more. He’s received multi-Dove and Grammy® Award nominations and is a 4-time SESAC Writer of the year. Regie has penned 21 #1 hits in the Christian market for major artists such a Point of Grace, Clay Crosse, Bob Carlisle, and Jaci Velasquez, and has over 400+ songs recorded across multiple genres. He penned the American Idol finale song, The Time of My Life, recorded by David Cook, the song topped the Billboard charts for 16 weeks- a #1, Adult Contemporary hit. Regie recently turned his attention to writing long- form fiction (he’s authored three novels and a biography to date) and hosts a popular blog that chronicles his writing career in all its manifestations. Regie’s Bio, “Angels & Idols” has been optioned for a feature film, currently in pre-production.

Tim Nichols

Tim Nichols

With nearly two dozen smash hits, multiple BMI songwriting awards, a Grammy for Best Country Song, as well as recently being a 2017 Nashville Songwriter Hall of Fame inductee, Tim Nichols has earned his place among Nashville's most elite and respected tunesmiths. In 2004, Nichols co-wrote Tim McGraw's "Live Like You Were Dying," which stayed at #1 for ten consecutive weeks. In addition to breaking a 30 year record, "Live Like You Were Dying" won the Grammy award for Best Country Song in 2005. It also won the Song of the Year award from the Country Music Association, Academy of Country Music, BMI Country Awards, ASCAP Country Awards, Billboard and the Nashville Songwriters Association International. It is the only song to have won every major song award that is presented for country music.

Tim Nichols

Barbara McBride-Smith

Barbara McBride-Smith transports audiences from the ancient world of the Greek gods and goddesses to the eclectic shenanigans of her Baby Boomer generation. She midrashes the lives of Biblical saints and sinners and interprets folklore with the style of a Texas-born cheerleader. McBride-Smith, who travels nationally, has been featured on NPR, authored two books, and contributed to the multi-volume series, The Storytellers Companion to the Bible. She is the recipient of the NSN ORACLE Circle of Excellence and the American Library Association’s ‘Top Ten Titles’ awards. “Her stories will make you laugh … break your heart, and give you a new take on the struggles of ‘we mortals’ to live our lives on this earth.” – New Directions for Women

Tim Nichols

Michael Reno Harrell

Michael Reno Harrell is an award-winning songwriter and veteran storyteller and entertainer from the Southern Appalachian Mountains, where storytelling is as much a part of the culture as is music. Five decades of performing have taken him to over forty states and several countries. A consummate performer, Harrell’s combination of music and storytelling is based in experience – sometimes very funny, sometimes a bit scary, often heartwarming and always entertaining. “In a perfect world, every town would have a storyteller, a keeper of the trunk of memories reminding us of who we are and where we came from. Michael Reno Harrell is that keeper.” – Western North Carolina Magazine

2019 Lyrics & Lore Schedule

Thursday, January 17, 2019

7:00 p.m. OPENING RECEPTION: Storyteller & Songwriter Meet & Greet with Regie Hamm, Thom Shepherd & Coley McCabe, Cole Taylor, Chase McGill, Sam Tate, Barbara McBride-Smith and Michael Reno Harrell
8 p.m.

Performance by "Thom Shepherd & Coley McCabe"

Complimentary Admission - Donations accepted for the Dolly Parton's Imagination Library.


Friday, January 18, 2019

9 - 10 a.m.

Welcome remarks and agenda presentation: Performance by International Storyteller, Barbara McBride-Smith

Pro songwriters and aspiring songwriters will have the option to participate in the Lyrics & Lore Workshop: Transforming a Spoken Story into a Written Song

10:45 - 11:45 a.m.

Lyrics and Lore Workshop: Team Building with Regie Hamm, Sam Tate, Cole Taylor and Chase McGill

12 - 2 p.m.

Storyteller Luncheon and Performance with Barbara McBride and Michael Reno Harrell

Tickets can be purchased in advance or day of event, pending availability.

1:30 - 3:30 p.m. Lyrics & Lore Song Writing Workshop: Co-Writing Breakout Sessions
3:45 - 6:30 p.m. Evening Open Mic Session: Enjoy aspiring songwriters as they showcase their songs.
7 p.m. Doors open for evening concert.
7:30 - 8:30 p.m. Lyrics & Lore Keynote Speech and Concert featuring professional song writer Regie Hamm
9:30 - 11 p.m.

Late Night "Fireside Jam"

Join other singer and songwriters as they play in an intimate setting. This event is open to all participants.

Saturday, January 19, 2019

9 - 10 a.m. FINDING THE STORY BEHING THE SONG, a storytelling workshop with Michael Reno Harrell
10 - 11:30 a.m. Song Writing Workshop - Co-Writing Breakout Sessions Part A
12 - 1:30 p.m.

"Lunch with a Pro" - Enjoy a working lunch hosted by songwriting & storytelling pros, featuring Q & A sessions.

Themed roundtables include music publishing, the business of storytelling, etc.

Tickets can be purchased in advance or day of event, pending availability.

1:30 - 3 p.m. Songwriting Workshop Co-Writing Break Sessions Part B
3 - 4:30 p.m.

Storytelling concert featuring internationally-known storytellers Barbara McBride-Smith and Michael Reno Harrell

Complimentary Admission - Donations accepted for the Dolly Parton's Imagination Library

5:30 - 6:30 p.m. "Stories behind the Song" - Professional songwriter Sam Tate performs his most recognizable songs and tell the stories that inspired them.
7:30 p.m. Doors open for evening concert
8 p.m.

Lyrics & Lore Concert (with special guest)

International storyteller Barbara McBride-Smith will retell the story from the co-writing event. Lyrics & Lore Workshop Teams will perform the songs they composed based on that story.

Performance by Headliner - Tim Nichols with guests, Cole Taylor and Chase McGill

10 p.m. Closing Party

Lyrics & Lore Resort Special

Enjoy all of the amenities Dollywood's DreamMore Resort has to offer during this special event (Jan. 17 - 19, 2019). Hurry! This exclusive price is only available for a limited time. Plus, we’re happy to offer concert ticket add-ons for Friday, January 18, 2019 and Saturday, January 19, 2019.

Individual concerts cost $15 per person, per concert. You can purchase the add-on option to include concert tickets to both Friday and Saturday for the discounted rate of $25 per person.

  • Friday Night Songwriter Keynote & Concert featuring, Regie Hamm
  • Saturday Night Songwriter Keynote & Concert featuring, Tim Nichols


Check Availability

*Cost of concert is included in the package rate