Music in the Valley: Caitlin Fernandez


Bethany Chidlow

Caitlin Fernandez playing her original song, “St. Augustine,” at Brothers Craft Brewing.

Bethany Chidlow, Staff Writer

Harrisonburg, Va.- Caitlin Fernandez is a 21-year-old upcoming artist in Harrisonburg, Va. On March 19, she performed at Brother’s Craft Brewing in Harrisonburg.

This performance was a part of the “Women’s Artist Showcase,” an event hosted for the past seven years by Brothers Craft Brewery as part of Women’s History Month. They bring in local women artists who play music for around 30–45 minutes. 

Fernandez was born in Del Rio, Tx. and raised in Miami, Fl. 

She moved to Harrisonburg during her first year of high school and is now a senior at James Madison University. She is earning a degree in graphic design with a minor in creative writing. 

Fernandez has only been performing for about a year, but her confidence on stage makes it seem as if she has been playing longer. She prefers to sing country music, but not country covers that people are used to hearing.

Her voice adds a soft simplicity to country music, and she also writes and performs her own original music. Her original songs are soft and light and have a unique, calming tone to them. 

She started taking guitar lessons at The Tuning Fork in Downtown Harrisonburg. This shop is owned and operated by Sean Waddington, Fernandez’s guitar teacher.

“After five lessons, Sean asked me if I wanted to perform in front of people,” said Fernandez. “I was nervous, but I went for it. I loved it and I haven’t looked back since.” 

In addition to owning The Tuning Fork, Waddington also teaches private lessons in the shop.

“Caitlin has been an incredible inspiration to me,” said Waddington. “It gives me such joy to see the performer in which she is becoming. The fact that I get to be a part of it has reinforced that I’m on the right path.” 

Fernandez credited her confidence to other women in the music business in Harrisonburg.

“These women are amazing. They are my heroes,” said Fernandez. “They have taken me in and taught me so much.”

In addition to her performances, she also sells prints that she paints herself. They are Texan inspired art that includes skulls, snakes and more. 

Fernandez is on Instagram @CFernandezMusic, as well as on Facebook and YouTube under CaitlinFernandezMusic. 

“Caitlin is amazing,” said Courtney Daniels, a patron at the event. “Her voice is so refreshing to hear. She has a beautiful voice, and she is also so kind.”