BOBBY KARL WORKS THE ROOM
Tin Pan South is off and running.
The festival’s launch was commemorated on Monday (March 24) with a cocktail party that had it all -– location, food, talented attendees and industrial-strength schmoozing.
Sponsored by Regions Bank and ole, the gig took place at an ideal location, location, location. You might think that the Regions lobby facing the Roundabout is inconvenient, but you would be wrong. Since the party started at 6:00 p.m., after rush hour, traffic was no prob. Furthermore, the building’s entire parking garage was open and free for the event. Now that’s what I call a location.
Food? Also no prob. Maggiano’s Little Italy restaurant laid it on us: Italian mini meatballs, chicken pesto sliders, tomato caprese skewers, sliced cucumbers with herb cheese dollops, Italian and domestic cheeses, BBQ brisket sliders, crackers and yum, yum, yum.
Thank you, Jack Daniels, for the fully stocked bar. Ditto to the Pop Rock Café for the coffee.
It seemed like everybody I ran into had a story to tell. Rockin’ Randy Perkins has a rockin’ tattooed niece, Kat Perkins, who is competing on TV’s The Voice. She’s on Team Adam.
Bill Lloyd reports that he’s completing a new album. “I don’t know why I keep doing this,” he said. “Because you are good at it,” I replied. I should have said, “really, really good,” since he is one of my best faves.
Spunky, who is a music journalist for atlasjams.com covering the Nashville scene, is also a painter. He has been doing a series of musician portraits for Rolling Stone. And, yes, “Spunky” is the name on his business card.
Bobby Rymer met Echo Propp. In addition to having a fabulous music-industry name, she is the community-relations person at Nashville Opera and hosts a bluegrass radio show. Whoa.
The room was awash with fabulons. Working the room were Bernie Nelson, James Dean Hicks, Steve Bogard, Suzi Ragsdale, Lance Carpenter, Rich Fagan, Bob Saporiti (a.k.a Reckless Johnny Wales), Steve O’Brien, Janie West, Craig Campbell, Erika Wollam Nichols, Kira Florita, Sherod Robertson, Fletcher Foster, the St. Jude’s music-industry liaison Jackie Proffit, Doak Turner, Mark Ford, Mike Sistad, John Ozier, Emily Mueller, Preshus Tomes, Alicia Warwick, Anthony Smith, Larry Sheridan, Laura Travis Crawford, Ralph Murphy and hostess-with-the-mostest, Lisa Harless.
“Who are all these people?” asked Roger Nichols and I in unison to one another as we gazed upon the throng of youngsters in attendance. Which is bizarre, since he is a generation younger than Bobby Karl. I guess it shows how many people are pouring into our community these days. Even Roger said that he could remember a time when you could know pretty much everyone inside of a year, if you worked at it.
The party was broiling, but tempus fugit. Time to go. Wa-a-a-a-i-t a minute, Bub. Get a load of that Maggiano’s dessert display –- lemon cookies, crème brulee cups, pecan bars, mini cheesecakes and apple crostada. Perhaps a few more moments in partyland.
Tin Pan South, the world’s largest songwriting fest, officially begins today (March 25). Its shows take place at 10 Nashville venues – B.B. King’s, Belcourt Taps, the Bluebird Cafe, Commodore Grille, Douglas Corner, the Hard Rock, The Listening Room Café, The Rutledge, Station Inn and 3rd & Lindsley.
Drop into any one of those, and you’re bound to have your ears pinned back. During the five-day extravaganza, more than 425 song poets are warbling their wares.
Citing just 10 percent of these, we have, for starters, Adam Wright, Brandy Clark, Leslie Satcher, Rivers Rutherford, Rose Falcon, Ella Mae Bowen, Jimbeau Hinson, Karen Staley, Jessi Alexander, ACM Songwriter of the Year Shane McAnally, Erin Enderlin, Randy Montana, Roxie Dean, Jerry Salley, Marcus Hummon, Angel Snow, Amy Speace and Josh Leo.
Nashville Songwriters Hall of Famers on hand include Mark D. Sanders, Sonny Curtis, Allen Shamblin, Pat Alger, Dickey Lee, Mac Davis, Hugh Prestwood, Roger Murrah, Roger Cook and Vince Gill. Plus the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame’s new inductee John Oates (Hall & Oates) and future inductee Jonathan Cain (Journey). Come to think of it, Sonny is in both of those Halls.
Americana fan? Got ya covered. Robin & Linda Williams, Jeff Black, Kim Richey, Chuck Mead (BR5-49), Holly Williams, Kevin Welch and Jim Lauderdale are a few who are participating. CCM fan? How about Amy Grant, Wayne Kirkpatrick or Ashley Cleveland?
Country star gaze, if you must. Rounding out our 10 percent for your edification are T. Graham Brown, Eddy Raven, Jamie O’Neal, Michael Peterson, The Kinleys, Buddy Jewell, Billy Yates, James Otto and Lee Roy Parnell. Trust me, there are many, many, many more who are showcasing. Like 300 more.
All photos by Bev Moser.