Beautiful melodies that get you to swaying and tapping your feet, set against the backdrop of spectacular scenery. What more could you ask for on a warm summer night?

The arts and entertainment, and the folks who make them, are a big part of what makes Gatlinburg so special. Our musical heritage is treasured here in the Smokies.

Every summer night as you stroll along the Parkway, you’ll hear the strains of traditional songs that have been passed down from generation to generation. These songs tell stories about love, life, hardship and prosperity. You’ll hear lots of musical styles mixed in—country, bluegrass, gospel and a smidgen of blues.

Smoky Mountain Tunes & Tales That’s why Smoky Mountain Tunes & Tales is so popular. Smoky Mountain music appeals to everyone, and so do the tales about old times and good times told by gifted storytellers along the Parkway. You’ll also run across some of our talented craftspeople, who show you how they create items from brooms to musical instruments that are both beautiful and useful.

You never know who’s going to drop by and sit in with the performers at Smoky Mountain Tunes & Tales. You might just discover the next local performer who’ll make it big, like Emi Sunshine, the talented little bundle of energy who got started here in East Tennessee and became an Internet sensation.

In the music of the east Tennessee mountains, you’ll hear echoes that go back to the European homelands our forefathers left centuries ago. The songs you hear today are descendants of the ballads those early settlers brought with them, and they’re played on instruments like the dulcimer that those folks crafted to resemble the ones they’d left behind.

Smoky Mountain Tunes & Tales turns the Parkway into a giant stage for your entertainment every night during the summer starting at 6 p.m.

Live Music Venues But the Parkway isn’t the only place where you’ll get to hear music of all types. In fact, Gatlinburg in the summer is like a little Nashville. The Mountain Grass Bluegrass Band welcomes you when you arrive at the top of Ober Gatlinburg’s Scenic Chairlift. There are many venues where you can enjoy talented performers playing and singing. Our distilleries, wineries and restaurants book top talent for your listening and dancing pleasure. Check out the entertainment schedules at Ole Smoky Distillery and Smoky Mountain Brewery. Like a little comedy with your music? Then you’ll enjoy the festivities at Sweet Fanny Adams Theater and Music Hall. Want to get in on the act yourself? Drop by Three Jimmy’s on Thursday’s for karaoke night.

Smoky Mountain Songwriters Festival If you’re planning your Gatlinburg visit between August 19 and 23, be sure and check out the Smoky Mountain Songwriters Festival, a four-day event in downtown Gatlinburg where we celebrate our Appalachian music roots. You’ll be treated to great performances, and if you aspire to be a songwriter, you can participate in workshops, have your song critiqued and even co-write what might be a hit song with established writers. It’s great fun, and Emi Sunshine herself will be the featured performer on Aug. 21.

We steer you to all the musical happenings in Gatlinburg with our free apps for your smartphone. Download them here.