Aug. 12—A local songwriters foundation has a new name, but its melody hasn’t changed.
Established in 2001, the John Jarrard Foundation was renamed the Jarrard Burch Foundation to honor the association’s founder and longtime supporter, Bruce Burch, who died in March after a long battle with leukemia.
The foundation first began with a concert series, “Bruce Burch and Friends Honor John Jarrard”, which Burch helped launch in memory of the foundation’s original namesake, John Jarrard, a longtime friend and country music songwriter who died of complications from diabetes.
From there, the concerts grew into the John Jarrard Foundation, which holds annual fundraisers to support area songwriters and organizations “who were close to Jarrard’s heart”.
Despite his residency in Nashville and his battle with cancer, Burch remained a staunch supporter until the very end, the foundation said, serving on its board of trustees and regularly attending events including the 20th annual concert. anniversary of the foundation which was held last fall.
Burch also co-wrote two hit singles for Reba McEntire, “Rumor Has It” and “It’s Your Call”, among many other songs for such prominent country artists as Faith Hill, George Jones and T. Graham Brown.
“(Burch) was loved by so many people in Gainesville before he moved to Nashville and became a successful songwriter and music publisher,” foundation board chair Leslie Miller said in a statement. communicated. “He returned to Gainesville again and again to make this concert and this organization what it is today. Our board of directors did not hesitate to rename the foundation, which would not exist without his vision. and his dedication.”
The 21st Annual Songwriters Show will take place Saturday, September 10 at 6 p.m. at Midland Social, featuring a lineup of award-winning songwriters like Chuck Cannon, Jeff Sevens and Stephony Smith.
Like previous shows, proceeds will benefit area nonprofits, including Lanier Boys and Girls Clubs, Georgia Mountain Food Bank, Good News Clinics, Good News at Noon, and Sisu Integrated Early Learning.
“It will be bittersweet to watch from the stage and not see Bruce’s face during this year’s show,” Jody Jackson, a close friend of Burch and the foundation’s executive director since 2009, said in a statement. . “But I can’t help but smile thinking about how not only are Bruce and John reunited in a better place, but they’re forever linked in both name and legacy, thanks to the support that the foundation brings to other members of our community.”
For more information about the Jarrard Burch Foundation or Songwriters Show tickets and sponsorship information, visit jarrardburchfoundation.com or call 770-710-9191.