John King

John King will headline Waterfest’s main stage at 7 p.m., Saturday, June 22. King said many fans have followed him and his band from the beginning. They have become like family to him.

Waterfest organizers recently announced a Grand Ole Opry performer will headline the main stage during the festival

Although John King said he loves everything about performing, one thing will always stand out for him – the love he holds for his fans.

“I love all aspects of it, I love the songwriting part of it, I love touring, I love being on stage," he said. "And I especially love the fans. I mean, the fans are the reason I do this."

Born in a small mountain town in Georgia, King moved to Nashville five years ago. Since he began touring, he and his band have traveled throughout the United States and in Canada.

He said Waterfest can expect a high-energy concert from him and his band whom he said he describes as “the best group of guys around.”

King began making a name for himself after his debut radio single, “Tonight Tonight,” earned him his first Top 40 hit. Millions of National Football League fans also heard this single after officials chose it to highlight CBS network’s Thursday night football throughout the 2014 season.

About the same time, King also began earning recognition as a songwriter. King wrote the number one single “We Went,” recorded by artist Randy Houser.

“King co-wrote the song with friends, Matt Rogers and Justin Wilson and received a 2016 ASCAP Songwriter Award for the song’s success,” King’s website said. “King has gone on to write songs for some of Country’s biggest stars.”

Growing up, King’s parents exposed him to all genres of music. King grew up loving everything from Led Zepplin and ACDC to Waylon Jennings and Johnny Cash.

After graduating high school, King attended the University of Georgia to study music. According to his website, King’s time at UGA helped in the formation of John’s musical footprint. 

“My time at UGA helped me tremendously,” King said. “It made me realize I could make a career out of doing what I love.”

King said Waterfest goers can definitely expect a country show, but with an edge that comes from the other musical influences. His current tour began in January

in Billings, Montana. He will travel through over 20 states from as far west as Nevada and as far east as New York. He will cross the northern border to perform in Montreal, Canadian providence before ending in Gilbert, West Virginia on Oct. 12. According to his website, King’s recent releases “Heat Wave” and “Never Wanna Be” both debuted on Spotify’s “New Boots” playlist, gaining over 3 million cumulative streams.

In late 2017, King released the single “I Still Pick Up.” The song debuted Top 5 on the Apple Music Hot Chart and quickly gained over 1 million streams. The music video recently debuted on Country Music Television, voted Top 10 on the countdown.

Named one of Rolling Stone’s Top 10 Country Songs, his newest single “Try Saying Goodbye” earned features from platforms including Billboard, Amazon, CMT, Whiskey Riff and Taste of Country.

Apple Music’s “Best of the Week,” “Breaking Country” and “Broken Down” Playlists also featured the single helping to earn more than 6 million streams, King said. Playlists such as “New Boots”, “Wild Country” also featured the single.

Spotify also featured the song on their 6 million listener playlist “Hot Country”, gaining King over 500,000 listeners in the last month. A link to the single, which King said will definitely be included in Waterfest’s concert can be found at

Tosha Jackson, executive director at the Excelsior Springs Area Chamber of Commerce, said she described King as an authentic and talented musician with a great mix of traditional country sound with a new age flair.

“Along with Waterfest, he’ll be playing Country Stampede (opening for Old Dominion), CMA Fest and the Grand Ol’ Opry this summer,” she said. “We are so excited to have him in Excelsior Springs to headline the main stage at Waterfest!”

King said he plans to entertain Excelsior Springs as much as he can with his concert. 

Concert goers should expect to sing along with many of the songs, he said, and most of all, get up and dance. After all, he said entertaining his fans, many of whom have formed a family with him, will always be one of the best parts of his job.

“I love the way Garth (Brooks) treats his fans like royalty … I wanna be like that,” he said in a prepared statement on his website. “If you’ve made a long career in country music it’s because your fans love you. Entertaining a crowd, meeting the fans, hearing their stories, seeing them have the time of their lives … that is what God put me here to do … that’s my passion.”

King will headline Waterfest’s main stage located across from the Hall of Waters at 7 p.m., Saturday, June 22.

More information can be found on John King at

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