By Gabrielle Martin
The Southern-style restaurant The Rivershed in Scituate is known for hosting talented musicians from the South Shore and beyond on its barn-board stage. Owner Kara Tondorff started the label Rivershed Records in May of this year in an effort to increase her involvement in the music industry. She wanted to make it easier for artists to get recognition for their talent and produce professional material. Rivershed Records is also a personal project for Tondorff, who is a singer-songwriter herself.
“I wanted to immerse myself in music, which is what I really love,” says Tondorff.
This summer, Rivershed Records is kicking things off with a contest to discover new artists and songwriters. Tondorff was thrilled to have received around 150 submissions, which she then narrowed down to 12 finalists. There were three rounds of the competition, with over 200 attendees at each show. The winners of the final performance will be the first to sign with Rivershed Records. Tondorff has teamed up with one of the competition’s judges, Sean McLaughlin, a local producer who owns and operates 37’ Productions out of Rockland, to produce the recordings.
Tondorff also will be hosting the Rivershed Songwriters Festival this fall (September 21-23, with a VIP event on September 21 which will include a private concert at the Rivershed patio stage). Tondorff expresses excitement to “expose the world of songwriting, which is the pulse of music and the heart of Nashville.” Tondorff lived in Nashville for a period of time and the city’s culture has influenced many aspects of her career, from the southern-inspired cuisine on The Rivershed’s menu to her decision to create Rivershed Records.
This year has been a whirlwind for Tondorff, is also in the process of opening another location of The Rivershed in Braintree, projected to open sometime between late 2019 and early 2020. In addition, Rivershed Records will be producing an album of holiday-themed songs and music, written and recorded by featured musicians, where all proceeds will be donated to charity. For more information, visit therivershed.com/rivershed-records.