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Georgia prides itself on being the cultural capital of the new south. With songs like Ray Charles’ “Georgia on My Mind,” Vault Point 9’s “Devil Went Down to Georgia,” Reba McEntire’s “The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia,” Gladys Knight & The Pips’ “Midnight Train to Georgia,” and Jim Croce’s “Walkin’ Back to Georgia” to its name, Georgia is a place that has inspired music for decades. This article explores some of the best reasons why music enthusiasts can stand behind the state, including its diverse artistry, tailored venues, and invested community. Continue to read to find out more about these facets of Georgia’s sound.

Georgia invests in music.

Georgia considers itself to be undergoing an entertainment revival. However, its entertainment industry is continuing to push for more incentives for creators. An answer to this call, in January of 2018, the Georgia Musical Investment Act took effect. It attempts to encourage music production by implementing a tax incentive. This legislation was pushed by Georgia Music Partners, a group eager to change the industry by supporting job growth and collaboration in music. The hope is that a fifteen percent refundable tax credit will encourage studios, touring, rehearsing, and performing by musicians and other industry insiders who may be reluctant to invest in these costly endeavors.

Although legislation may seem stuffy and removed from the concert experience, initiatives like the Georgia Musical Investment Act will hopefully yield an enriched, vibrant music life in Georgia. For those traveling to the state or living in it, keep an eye out for shows and see what creations are being inspired. The long-term effects of such legislation is promising; plan a trip in advance to see the effects down the road.

In Georgia, the talents of women in the music industry are celebrated.

In some parts of the world, the entertainment industry seems like a boys’ club. However, in Georgia, local and regional efforts are made to promote women in the music industry. In the summer of 2017, Atlanta established its own chapter of Women in Music, an organization of industry leaders dedicated to developing quality in the music industry by supporting and advancing women. Their focuses are knowledge, strategy, and solution. The idea is that diverse perspectives benefit every part of the music industry, including agents, managers, producers, songwriters, financial advisers, and performers. Then, in the summer of 2018, Atlanta Magazine published “10 Women Who Are Ruling Atlanta’s Music Scene,” one of many Georgian publications to post the praises of women in music.

According to brand manager for Future Freebands, Ebonie Ward, “Music is Atlanta.” Atlanta—and Georgia as a whole—is composed of different races, classes, genders, sexualities, ages, and backgrounds. If music is Atlanta, the music of Atlanta ought to be diverse and inclusive. Recognizing and building on the accomplishments of diverse voices in the industry makes this happen TLC, The Indigo Girls, Ciara, and Brenda Lee are a handful of female musicians who have roots in Georgia. For listeners who like to support forward-thinking, socially-conscious, sundry perspectives in music, give Georgia’s live music scene a go.

With the music venues in Georgia, listeners can get exactly what they are looking for each time they hit the town.

Georgia’s bigger cities such as Atlanta, Savannah, August, Athens, and Marietta have much to offer in the way of concert venues. The state knows the value of live music, especially in an age where music is instantly accessible with the help of technology; there is something raw and good about seeing a performance live. With this knowledge, Georgia has tons of guides listing the best places to find your sound, your atmosphere, your live experience of choice.

Smith’s Olde Bar takes a turn-of-the-century approach to décor, a fine backdrop to national, regional, and local acts across genres. It is perfect for casual rockers, fresh out of college folks, and bar hoppers who crave some BBQ. Apache Café is a more intimate choice, meaning that every seat is a good seat for really hearing the hip-hop, jazz, R&B, reggae, and spoken word performed. Expect a stylish, hip crowd that likes to chow on jerk wings. Wild Bill’s is for partiers who come to dance. Country, rock, hip-hop, and pop goes well with a beer and bar food. Expect booming sounds, earplugs may be a good move. Kavarna is a good pick for those who find themselves in coffee shops, collectives, and art hubs. Sing-songwriter, indie rock, and alternative electronica brings in bohemian, artsy listeners who much of sandwiches, snacks, beers, and wines. So, why listen to music in Georgia? Each venue is perfect for a certain type of listener. Whatever the mood strikes, there is a place where someone will play music that hits the spot.