Augusta Business Daily

Monday, June 5, 2023

CSRA businesses to promote the music industry

Walter Santiago partners with local businesses and non-profit organizations to promote and grow the CSRA music industry.

Santiago is an Augusta musician, media, and project manager for Sample Augusta, an online music and arts publication founded by Rachel Goodman, another local musician, three years ago. The publication will host The Music & Nightlife Industry Roundtable on Monday, Feb. 27, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Columbia County Performing Arts Center in Evans.

For this free event, Sample Augusta has partnered with local businesses, such as GetUp Productions, which will livestream the roundtable discussion, and CSRA Photography. It’s also looking for more business sponsors. Sponsorship levels range from $150 to $1,500.

The public event will include a mixer and panel discussion featuring local and state music and tourism industry leaders, such as Josh Small, General Manager of the Columbia County Performing Arts Center; Mala Sharma, President of Georgia Music Partners; Joe Stevenson, founder of GlueStick Music and Augusta Music Partners; and Jay Markwalter, Executive Director of the Georgia Association of Convention & Visitors Bureaus.

He said Sample Augusta will also unveil a survey to learn more about the local music industry, such as how many musicians are working in the CSRA and the average pay for these musicians.

“The purpose of the event is to bring attention and awareness to the current industry, announce the survey and unveil Augusta Music Partners,” Santiago said.

Georgia Music Partners is a nonprofit that promotes the state’s music industry and its effects on the Georgia economy. Augusta Music Partners does the same thing on the local level.

As of yesterday afternoon, he said 12 people had registered, but he’s hoping about 100 people attend the event. Santiago hopes the local music industry and city leaders will be there. Sample Augusta has previously hosted other roundtable events and hopes to make it a quarterly event.

“This is going to be an extremely dynamic event,” he said. “Augusta will be the next biggest home for music in Georgia (after Atlanta).”

For more information or to register, visit

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