• Lyrics YET LIVED


    "Blame it on my state of dreaming, or my lack of self control..."


    Washington DC-based singer-songwriter Calista Garcia brings a mix of lyrical complexity and musical sophistication to her folk-rock and blues sound that harkens back to ’70s classic acts such as Fleetwood Mac, the Eagles, and Joni Mitchell.


    In addition to regularly performing as a singer-songwriter locally, she has been gaining increasing attention for her songwriting prowess. A prolific songwriter who plays guitar, piano, ukulele, bass, mandolin and harmonica, Calista also writes for the stage, having completed her second classic-rock inspired musical, Crystal Skies, which premiered in April 2018. A member of ASCAP and the Dramatists Guild, Calista is a 2019 Strathmore Artist in Residence, 2018 & 2019 National Young Arts Winner, 2017 & 2018 Berklee Performance Showcase Winner, 2017 Bernard Ebbs Young Songwriter of the Year and a 2017 Grammy Foundation Young Songwriter Program Artist.


    What's Next?

    Considered a "creative machine" by her mentors, Calista is excited to explore what's next for her musical journey. Her talent, passion, and fire is an evolving story with new moments of ignition.


    "We can't wait to see what's next. There's no telling what direction she'll go."


    IAMA Finalist

    Acoustic Songwriting Awards Finalist- January 2019

    I'm happy to announce that two of my songs that will be on my upcoming debut EP have been selected as finalists in the International Acoustic Music Awards songwriting contest. The IAMA promotes excellence in acoustic music performance and artistry and receives entrants from all over the world: Australia, Canada, Japan, Brazil, Germany, USA, South Africa, etc. "Muddy River" is a finalist in the Folk/Americana/Roots category and "Stuck in Your Head" is a finalist in Best Female Vocalist. This makes me even more excited to release these tunes. Coming very soon. . .



    National YoungArts Winner 2019

    Vocal/Singer-Songwriter - Dec 2018

    Happy to be recognized again this year as a National YoungArts winner in the voice/singer-songwriter category. National YoungArts is one of the most comprehensive programs for emerging artists in the United States, offering financial, professional and artistic development opportunities over the course of their careers to promising young artists in the visual, literary, design and performing arts. Really appreciate that they value vocal singer-songwriter styling! Looking forward to attending the workshops in Miami!



    Strathmore Season Begins

    I'm excited to begin performing this Strathmore season with my amazing Strathmore Artist in Resident classmates. Come see our kickoff concert at Strathmore at AMP.



    HeraFest is the Best!

    Calista Garcia Band Debut- Sept 2018

    Had a great time playing at HeraFest sponsored by Project Hera at Clare and Don’s Beach Shack this past weekend. It was my first show playing with a backing band, which was super exciting! Joe DuBois, Doug Imhoff and James Britton did a great job of learning my material and it was an awesome set! Looking forward to playing with them again!


    Photo Credit: Mark Webster



    Bye Bye Berklee

    Summer of Rock - July-Aug 2018

    Just returned from spending my summer at Berklee College of Music. Had a blast performing in many shows, and I think my favorite was my rock/metal show! Never thought I'd have so much fun singing Guns N' Roses! Here is a link to my original "Jezebel" which I performed at the Songwriters Showcase. I've got lots of fun gigs coming up this Fall. Sign up for my mailing list and stay tuned!



    Songwriter's Association of Washington Coverage

    Blog Interview - May 2018

    The Songwriter's Association of Washington ("SAW") is a great local organization of passionate songwriters who provide an annual songwriting contest, open mics, training and support for the craft. I sat down for an interview recently about my musical, Crystal Skies. If you are a songwriter in the DC area, you should check out their programs.



    2019 Strathmore Artist in Residence

    Strathmore Institute for Artistic & Professional Development- May 2018

    I am honored to have been selected as one of six Artists in Residence for Strathmore's 2019 season. I will have the opportunity to collaborate with a slew of gifted musicians and receive mentorship, training, and unique performance and learning experiences.


    I will also be the artist in residence for the month of April 2019. Stay tuned for more information on my concerts and for a workshop that I will be teaching on songwriting.



    BeneFiesta Time!

    Jimmy Miller Memorial Foundation Benefit- May 2018

    I have the honor of playing at a Los Angeles benefit called Benefiesta!


    The 2018 Jimmy Miller Foundation Benefiesta is May 19th in Manhattan Beach, CA. The event raises support and awareness for the groundbreaking surf-therapy work the Foundation does on behalf of Wounded Warriors, PTSD victims, and at-risk kids. This work was highlighted in a recent Washington Post feature. If you happen to be in Los Angeles, come on out to support a great cause!



    Crystal Skies

    New Musical Debut- April 2018

    Just finished up teaching the music to the cast of my original musical, “Crystal Skies” and I’m so so excited! Everyone sounds terrific! Here’s a song from the show to hype you up so you wanna see it, the show’s going up April 27th and April 28th at H-B Woodlawn Theatre and this song shares a name with the show.



    Spring Fever

    National Cherry Blossom Festival - March 2018

    I don't know about all of you, but I'm ready for springtime after this very strange winter. As you know, springtime here in DC means catching a glimpse of the amazing cherry blossoms! I'm psyched that I will have the opportunity to play at the National Cherry Blossom Festival in the Jefferson Tidal Basin this year! It's going to be fab! Come out to play Friday March 23rd 2:00-3:00!



    National YoungArts Winner

    Outstanding Teenage Artist Vocals Singer Songwriter- December 2017

    I have received a pretty cool honor of being selected as a 2018 YoungArts winner for vocals/songwriting. National Young Arts is a great organization based in Miami that awards the nation’s most promising young artists from 47 states across visual, literary, design and performing arts.



    Shakespeare in Song

    King John Production H-B Woodlawn - November 2017

    I had the pleasure of writing original music for a production of King John performed at H-B Woodlawn Theatre. It was interesting to add a modern flare to the multimedia production. Congrats to the cast and crew! I've also started working on my next stage project, writing book, music and lyrics for a full blown original musical called Crystal Skies opening in April 2018. Stay tuned for more info!


    Berklee Showcase Winner

    Berklee Performing Songwriter Showcase- August 2017

    I had a blast as one of 10 featured artists in Berklee's premier main stage Summer Performing Songwriter Showcase this summer. It was awesome to open the show backed by a top notch band at Berklee Performance Center!! Grateful for the full scholarship to Berklee's Vocal Performance Summit next summer!



    New Single "Baby Blue" Released

    It's out!!! The @halfkingmusic Summer Sample is available on iTunes and Amazon music, and so is Calista's song, "Baby Blue". Everybody everybody everybody go check it out!!!



    Arlington Connection Coverage

    Feature story- June 2017

    I had a nice interview with our local paper regarding my Grammycamp selection and upcoming career plans.



    Grammy Camp

    Songwriting Intensive in Nashville- May 2017

    Calista was one of twelve young artists selected for the Grammy Foundation's songwriting program in Nashville. She was chosen from more than 700 applicants nationwide to attend one of two GRAMMY Camp programs this summer. GRAMMY Camp is a 5-day nonresidential summer music industry program for high school students. Hosted by Belmont University in Nashville and USC Thornton School of Music in Los Angeles, students from across the country apply for one of the eight offered career tracks. GRAMMY Camp faculty of music professionals as well as guest industry professionals provide valuable insight to give the campers the best chance at achieving success in their chosen career.



    2017 Young Songwriter of the Year

    Winner of Bernard Ebb Songwriter Contest- March 2017

    Calista was selected by a three judge panel as the 2017 Bernard Ebb Young Songwriter of the Year after a special evening of live performances by the 8 finalists at the Bethesda Blue and Jazz Supper Club. As part of the prize, Calista received $2,500 and will have multiple performance opportunities over the coming year. She is so excited and humbled by this honor!



    Live TV Debut

    Let's Talk Live, Newschannel 8- Feb 2017

    Calista was invited to represent the Bernard Ebb Songwriter Award Finalists in a live TV interview and performance on WJLU's morning news show. The Bernard Ebb Songwriting Awards is produced by the Bethesda Arts & Entertainment District and recognizes talented songwriters from Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia and features a live concert performed by the competition finalists. Calista is a finalist in the youth category and will be performing in the finals on March 3, 2017.



    15 Minutes Max

    Performance at Amazon, Seattle WA- November 2016

    Calista got the amazing opportunity to play at an event for Amazon in Seattle called "15 Minutes Max". From hundreds of entries, she was one of seven acts selected, and played a set of her own originals.



    Sounds of Community

    Warren Wilson College’s The Swannanoa Gathering Celebrates 25 years with All-Star Lineup- July 2016

    Calista's vocals highlight the local news coverage of this unique music experience. Singer and song writers unite for summer session workshops. In this Carolina Moment, photojournalist Matt Raisch gives us a look into Warren Wilson College's "The Swannanoa Gathering."



    Arlington's Hottest Musicians

    Arlington Magazine Feature- July 2015

    Local magazine highlights the biggest names in local music, from rising stars and Grammy nominees to legends of blues, bluegrass and reggae. At the time 14 years old, Calista is a rising star feature in the write up.



    Early Beginnings

    Musical Score Highlighted in the Washington Post- Nov 2014

    In 2014 Calista was featured in the Washington Post for writing the score for a musical at H-B Woodlawn Secondary Program. A very exciting feature for the then 13 year old who wrote her first musical score.



    Ruminations on Dreams

    DeerDaniel.com Impressions- April 2014

    Daniel Vestal shares on his blog some heartfelt observations after hearing Calista during a 2014 Austin Java Open Mic night. "I remember feeling relevant once, but after witnessing the talents of such young performers like Calista, I am publicly retiring all ambition that I might’ve once had and replacing it with desperate attempts for pity."




    Calista frequents local music hot spots, open mic nights, DC, VA, & MD fairs and festivals. Keep an eye out for where to find her in the DC community or on the road.

    Writing Accolades

    2019 Strathmore Artist in Residence

    Calista has been selected by the Strathmore Institute of Artistic & Professional Development as a 2019 Strathmore Artist in Residence. She will receive extensive mentorship and performance opportunities in the coming year culminating in solo performances and events in April 2019. Keep posted here!



    Photo credit: Robert Bejil Productions via VisualHunt / CC BY

    In the Studio

    Studio Sessions

    Calista is currently in the studio working on an EP slated for in April 2019 and simultaneously recording a soundtrack of her original musical Crystal Skies. Stay tuned for more info . . .

    Photo credit: Robert Bejil Productions via VisualHunt / CC BY

    Upcoming Performances


    Friday January 11th, 6:30

    Lake Ann Coffeehouse & Wine bar

    1612 Washington Plaza N,

    Reston, VA


    Sunday December 23rd, 7:00

    Annual Clauster-f@%! Christmas Spectacular

    Jammin Java

    227 Maple Ave E

    Vienna, VA


    Saturday December 22nd, 7:00

    Annual Clauster-f@%! Christmas Spectacular

    Jammin Java

    227 Maple Ave E

    Vienna, VA


    Friday December 14th, 8:00


    2719 Wilson Blvd,

    Arlington, VA


    Sunday December 9th, 7:00

    Women Who Rock: 90's Edition

    Pearl Street Warehouse

    33 Pearl Street SW,

    Washington, DC


    Wednesday November 28th, 8:00

    Fresh AIR

    AMP by Strathmore

    11810 Grand Park Ave

    Bethesda, MD


    Friday November 23rd, 6:30

    Lake Ann Coffeehouse & Wine bar

    1612 Washington Plaza N,

    Reston, VA


    Wednesday November 7th, 1:00

    Osher Foundation

    JHU Montgomery County Campus

    9601 Medical Center Drive

    Rockville, MD


    Come see her live. Join our mailing list to stay in the loop on the latest calendar updates.

  • Social Feed


    Here are links to her bio and performance history! Below are some photos!

    Photo Credit: Jonathan Timmes

    Photo Credit: Connie Chornuk

    Photo Credit: Jonathan Timmes