Home » Review of C2C 2024 – a weekend in the name of the country

Review of C2C 2024 – a weekend in the name of the country

After almost four years, the Country to Country Festival returned to Berlin and made the hearts of the fans beat faster. The C2C presented itself on March 2nd and 3rd with a colorful program on and around the Mercedes-Benz Platz.

Kick-off the night before: Bluebird Cafe Goes C2C

Nashville’s legendary Bluebird Cafe kicked things off the night before with their popular songwriters’ session at the Passionskirche. Read our review of this great evening with Alana Springsteen, Rita Wilson and Stephen Wilson Jr. here.

The Daytime-Stages

The festival’s programme started beginning on 10am on both days at five side stages and in the interview lounge around Mercedes-Benz Platz. From the rooftop bar with a fantastic view over Berlin to the movie theater, the Pindeck stage and the two restaurant stages, there was something for everyone. You could either start the day with live music or relax with the two movies (Bluebird or Stoned Cold Country).

In order to find one’s way around the site and not miss any performances, it was possible to create a personalized schedule online in advance. Optional a paper program was also available onsite. Additional you could join a WhatsApp channel for last-minute changes and other information, such as the announcement of secret acts at the Meet & Greet. So you were always well informed.

New faces and good old friends

The daytime stages offered music and entertainment at its best until about 3:30 pm. You could meet “old friends” like Twinnie, Kyle Daniel or Rita Wilson wowing the audience. But also newcomers like f.e. Alexandra Kay, Lakeview, Fancy Hagood, JJ Shiplett and Alli Walker quickly won the hearts of the fans.

The proximity to the audience created a very special, almost family atmosphere around all stages. Even the temporary admission stop, mainly in the rooftop bar, did not detract from the relaxed and very good atmosphere.

What I like most about this festival, besides the music, is the amazing atmosphere. The daytime stages offer a very special concert experience. One of my personal highlights this year was the Sad Song Society on the UCI stage. In this not-so-sad songwriters’ round, hosts Kenny Foster, Tyler Sjöström and Liz Longley entertained the enthusiastic audience with great songs and funny anecdotes.

After the show we had a chat with the charming Liz Longley about songwriting and her upcoming EP. Stay tuned for more on MUSICSPOTS.

The Townsquare

Away from the daytime stages, Townsquare had plenty to offer. In addition to a merchandise tent and two small western stores, the community tents invited people to stay. Compared to previous years, there was only one band playing at the Townsquare this year. However, this did not detract from the great atmosphere. Several people spontaneously got together to line dance, entertaining and inspiring the other visitors.

Food and drinks were also well catered for. In addition to the surrounding restaurants, there was a food truck and a beverage stand right on the Townsquare. New this year and a special highlight on the square was the Meet & Greet tent. Here you could exchange a few words with your idol and take a souvenir photo. Unfortunately, I had the impression that this offer didn’t really get through to the visitors. The crowds here often seemed very small.

For those who wanted to take home a lasting memory of the C2C Festival, the nearby tattoo parlor offered a selection of themed tattoo designs to choose from. Music not only goes under the skin, but also – figuratively speaking – on the skin.

The MainStage on Festival-Saturday

The Verti Music Hall opened its doors at 4 p.m., where on Saturday at 4:50 p.m. a very well presented Stephen Wilson Jr. started the program on the main stage. As on Friday night, but this time with a band, he wowed the audience once again.

The 25-year-old Drake Milligan, who was dubbed “the new Elvis of country” a few years ago, also delivered an energetic show. A powerful songwriter and singer, he easily took over the main stage.

The performance of Jackson Dean and his band was also eagerly awaited. The up-and-coming young singer-songwriter with the raspy voice wowed the German audience at last year’s Heart-to-Heart events.

Next, a lady entered the main stage: Laura Alaina! The newly married singer, who lives in Nashville, immediately convinced the audience with her likeable stage presence.

And then it was time! Around 10 p.m. the headliners of the evening – Old Dominion – took the stage and unleashed a musical firework of hits. The fans celebrated frenetically.

For those who couldn’t get enough after Saturday night’s MainStage program, the official and ever-popular After Show Party was the place to be. People danced, laughed and celebrated until late into the night. This year’s party was again hosted by Twinnie. We met the likeable Brit for an interview – more on that soon on MUSICSPOTS.

Into the Spotlight

Once again this year, the Spotlight Stage was located in the middle of the great hall of the Verti Music Hall. Some of Nashville’s up and comers introduced themselves to the audience on this stage during the main stage intermissions on both Saturday and Sunday! We think it is a great idea!

The MainStage on Festival-Sunday

Like the day before, the main stage program started late Sunday afternoon, this time more than on time. The festival evening kicked off with the CMA Songwriter Series Introducing Nashville featuring Lauren Watkins, Karley Scott Collins and Conner Smith. It was a traditional format. The three artists performed their songs and gave insights into their work. Personally, I think it’s great that this format continues to find a place on the main stage.

Then the wonderful Colbie Caillat entered the main stage of the Verti Music Hall. The singer and songwriter performed songs from her current country album as well as her “old” hits, such as the Grammy-winning song Lucky by her and Jason Mraz.

Coming from a mellower performance, the next artist delivered an explosive show. Randall King and his band fired up the crowd – despite his poor health. The fans celebrated the performance!

Then another lady graced the main stage: Alana Springsteen, who we had the joy to listen to live in the Passionskirche on Friday night. Today, the charismatic singer and her band delivered an energetic performance. She also took a “little journey” through the audience in the hall shaking hands. Finally, a sea of cell phone lights lit up the Verti Music Hall during her song Amen.

The Final

But now to the final of the C2C Festival 2024. Sunday night’s headliner, Brad Paisley, rocked the MainStage with his band – including the fantastic Sierra Hull. The audience celebrated Brad Paisley, the uplifting superstar from the US. With a very well filled set list, the artist showed his joy of playing.

Brad Paisley also showed that he was in a good mood during a brief Instagram takeover, for which he “borrowed” a member of the audience’s cell phone. After scrolling through her posts and commenting on a few things, he posted a selfie with to her Instagram account. The incoming messages and comments were, of course, shared with the audience too. Fun for all present.

After about 20 songs, encores and a polonaise, Brad Paisley left the stage. A more than happy audience went home.

Some final words

After this weekend, one thing is clear to us once again: music unites! We have seen a lineup that shows just how diverse country music is today. Listen and be inspired! You will be surprised! We were especially pleased to see a large number of female acts this year, not only on the side stages, also on the main stage.

We also think that the different ticket options for this festival are worth mentioning. In addition to the Full Festival Experience for all stages on both days, there were single day tickets as well as the possibility to buy tickets for the side stages only. This meant that even those who were not (yet) country fans could get a taste of the music.

We can look back on a successful festival and are already looking forward to next year! Mark your calendars for C2C Festival 2025 on March 7-9, 2025!

Photocredits: Jennifer Ploog

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