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Catawba College Music Grad Wins Carolina Music Awards Competition

August 27, 2019

Category: Academics, Alumni, Music


Catawba College graduate Lisette Rodriguez recently won Best Rock Female Artist at the 2019 Carolina Music Awards competition, held at the Duke Music Center for the Performing Arts in Raleigh.

The awards program, now in its 12th year, was co-founded by performers Roberta Flack and Randy Travis and is focused on the development of the Music industry in the Carolinas, while encouraging growing growth in Carolinas music, both present and future.

Rodriguez, a 2019 Catawba graduate, was a double major in Music Business and Popular Music. She is employed as music management assistant at Rameur Ramseur Records in Concord  ( and performs frequently in Charlotte, Fayetteville, Raleigh and Salisbury. Some of her past performances include Salisbury’s Cheerwine Festival, Gallery Gallop, Fayetteville Pride Fest, Kaboom Art Gallery, and the Shuckin' Shack restaurant. She is scheduled to perform at the restaurant on Sept. 21 from 7-9pm.

Award winners in the contest are chosen by votes of fans and the Carolina Music Awards board. Rodriguez performed submitted her new unreleased single, World Gone Mad, in the competition to the awards, which she wrote, produced and recorded. “It is 100 percent me,” she said. The work will be released as a single in September and as part of her debut EP album, Beneath the Surface, which is set for release in October. It will be available on Spotify and other all music streaming platforms.

Rodriguez began playing guitar at the age of 13. “Around the age of 16, I discovered I could sing,” she said. From that, she moved on to writing her own music. She played in a hard rock band in high school, and chose Catawba after doing research on colleges that offered music musical theatre and music programs. “Catawba was the only North Carolina school that offered music business and popular music,” she said. “Other schools offered classical. I wanted contemporary … today’s world.” After experimenting with different musical genres, she now performs alternative pop rock.

Catawba’s music programs continue to be nationally recognized with In Tune Monthly citing Catawba as one of the best music schools in their February 2019 edition and Zippia ranking Catawba’s music program as third among top colleges and universities for music majors.

At Catawba, Rodriguez was the general manager of the Artist Development Program and performed in rock and roots Vernacular ensembles.

For more information, visit or

Follow Lisette at @IAmLisetteMusic on InstagramFacebook, and Twitter.

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