Conference Events and Programming



Showcase Opportunities

The Stone Pony

In-Person Formals

As part of NERFA’s annual showcase, the best artists from our region are featured.  There is no better venue to showcase these artists than Asbury Park’s legendary Stone Pony.  For our digital attendees, the formal showcase artists will be streamed in 4K.

Showcase applications are open until July 15 and chosen artists will be informed in mid-August.

All artists who have registered for either our in-person or virtual conference can apply.  

Virtual Formal Showcase

There is no doubt that our Virtual Formal Showcases are amazing opportunities to be seen in various forms and in significant places.  We will feature all Virtual Formal Showcase artists in our 16’x9′ video wall in the exhibit hall during the conference, as well as in the virtual conference.  

In addition to being worked into promotional material before and after the event, Virtual Formal Showcases will remain available for a full year after the event!

Jud Caswell's 2022 Showcase

Specialty Showcases

This year’s host has a wonderful performance space that will be the host of conference run opportunities (our open mic and performance workshops) as well as private specialty showcases run by some of our wonderful partner organizations.  More information on those opportunities to come!

Private (Guerrilla) Showcases

Among all the conference traditions, guerrilla showcases (now private showcases) are the most beloved by our community. A wonderful and unique aspect of the conference is being discovered at 2:30AM while performing in a hotel room in front of five people. As long as hosts curate their own stages, we will continue to support them. 

Artists interested in live, pre-recorded, or remote opportunities can participate virtually and in person as part of this showcase opportunity.  We would like to express our gratitude to our community of Showcase Presenters for keeping this tradition alive!

Submissions have been simplified so that artists only need to apply once for any opportunity – the only requirement is that they are registered for the conference (either through in-person attendance or virtual participation).  Our registration cost for a virtual ticket is less than most organization’s submission costs! It is important to note that many other showcasing conferences and festivals do not require registration, but instead charge a fee for submissions. For the sake of ensuring that all artists will participate in the overall event, we have waived our previous application fee but require a virtual or physical registration.  ALL REGISTERED ARTISTS will receive their application for a showcase with seven days of registration.


July 15, 2022: In-Person Formal Showcase Applications Close
August 15, 2022: Virtual Formal Showcase Applications Close
August 20, 2022: In-Person Formal Showcase Artists Notified
September 1, 2022: In-Person Formal Showcases Announced Publicly
September 15, 2022: Virtual Formal Showcase Artists Notified
October 1, 2022: Virtual Formal Showcase Artists Announced Publicly
October 15, 2022: Virtual Formal Showcase Artists Video Submissions Due


All in-person selected artists and accompanying musicians are required to be paid registrants of the conference.  Artists who register virtually will be contacted if they are selected for an in-person showcase and can purchase an upgrade to their registration. Artists attending in-person are still eligible for Virtual Showcasing. All showcasing artists will be featured in the virtual conference which had over 2,000 hours of viewing time in 2021!

To register for the conference please visit our registration page! Registrants will receive their applications the first Monday after they register!

Patty Larkin

She redefines the boundaries of folk-urban pop music with her inventive guitar wizardry and uncompromising lyrics and vocals.  Described as “riveting” (Chicago Tribune) and “hypnotic” (Entertainment Weekly), Patty Larkin has captured audiences for over 30 years with her imagination and technical artistry.

In her 14th release Bird in a Cage, she mines the intersection of poetry and song, featuring ten notable poets, including five US Poet Laureates, for an innovative and haunting musical collection.

Raised in the Midwest, a descendant of a long line of Irish American taletellers, Patty studied English and Folklore in the Pacific Northwest, and jazz guitar and voice at Berklee College of Music.

Recent projects include Still Green, written in a national seashore dune shack and 25, a retrospective of duets with 25 friends, including Shawn Colvin, Bruce Cockburn. Her songs have been covered by Cher and Holly Cole and featured in films: Evolution, Random Hearts, and Sliding Doors. She is the recipient of an Honorary Doctorate of Music from Berklee College of Music. (link to bio)