WOR LD FA MOUS HE A DLINER S
COWBOY JOE BABCOCK
OFFICIAL JOURNAL OF AFM LOCAL 257 JULY– SEP TEMBER 2016
Keeping the muse in musician
BUDDY MILLER JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 1
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CONTENTS Official Journal of the Nashville Musicians Association, AFM Local 257 | JULY – SEPTEMBER 2016
6 7 8 10 12 14 16
ANNOUNCEMENTS Details on the next membership meeting scheduled for Monday, Aug. 22, which will include an important Bylaw proposal to make changes to the Funeral Benefit. The agenda will also include reports from the president and secretary-treasurer as well as other discussions. STATE OF THE LOCAL President Dave Pomeroy talks about the “Fair Play Fair Pay” legislation, and gives updates on a variety of topics, including the national convention and the newly revised Live Scales for Local 257. NEW GROOVES Secretary-Treasurer Vince Santoro explains the importance of the upcoming proposal to change the Funeral Benefit.
AFM PRESIDENT RAY HAIR
HEARD ON THE GRAPEVINE The notable comings and goings of Nashville Musicians Association members. NEWS Photos and color commentary on the 100th AFM National Convention, held during June in Las Vegas, Nev., in which delegates returned a large number of incumbent officers to leadership positions. GALLERY Summer NAMM once again descended on the Music City Center with all the joyful noise musicians have come to expect from the gear expo and general glad-handing/ networking opportunity. RECORDING A rundown on the Intellectual Property Rights Distribution Fund. Where the money comes from, and why the Fair Play Fair Pay Act is so crucial for getting musician payments from AM/FM radio airplay. COVER STORY: BUDDY MILLER Warren Denney interviewed the Americana icon about the long, strange trip that led Miller to Nashville, his creative process, and what’s on the horizon.
20 REVIEWS We listened to CDs from The World Famous
Headliners, Cyndi Lauper, Cowboy Joe Babcock, and Cam; and reviewed a book about bluegrass musician Curley Seckler.
24 SYMPHONY NOTES Laura Ross details the full story on the new NSO contract plus other Symphony news.
26 JAZZ & BLUES BEAT A roundup of shows, festivals, and other happenings in the jazz and blues community.
28 FINAL NOTES We bid farewell to Guy Clark, Mike Chapman, Ray Griff, and Ray Phillip Carroll.
34 DO NOT WORK FOR LIST
FOGGY MOUNTAIN BOYS Front: Kentucky Slim (Charles Elza), Josh Graves; Rear: Curly Seckler, Lester Flatt, Earl Scruggs, Paul Warren.
COVER PHOTO: C.J. HICKS JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 3
Next General Membership Meeting Monday, Aug. 22, 2016 OFFICIAL QUARTERLY JOURNAL OF THE NASHVILLE MUSICIANS ASSOCIATION AFM LOCAL 257
PUBLISHER EDITOR MANAGING EDITOR ASSISTANT EDITOR CONTRIBUTING WRITERS
Dave Pomeroy Vince Santoro Kathy Osborne Leslie Barr Austin Bealmear Warren Denney Roy Montana Kathy Osborne Dave Pomeroy Vince Santoro Steve Tveit Laura Ross
CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Donn Jones Dave Pomeroy Laura Ross Vince Santoro Lisa Dunn Design ART DIRECTION Kathy Osborne WEB ADMINISTRATOR Leslie Barr AD SALES 615-244-9514
LOCAL 257 OFFICERS PRESIDENT Dave Pomeroy SECRETARY-TREASURER Vince Santoro EXECUTIVE BOARD Jim Brown Jimmy Capps Beth Gottlieb Andy Reiss Laura Ross Tom Wild Jonathan Yudkin HEARING BOARD Michelle Voan Capps Tiger Fitzhugh Teresa Hargrove Kent Goodson Dave Moody Kathy Shepard John Terrence TRUSTEES Bruce Radek Biff Watson SERGEANT-AT-ARMS Steve Tveit NASHVILLE SYMPHONY STEWARD Laura Ross OFFICE MANAGER Anita Winstead ELECTRONIC MEDIA SERVICES DIRECTOR ASSISTANT DATA ENTRY RECORDING DEPT. ASSISTANT
Steve Tveit Teri Barnett Georgia Heckman Ashley Worley
DIRECTOR, LIVE/TOURING DEPT. Leslie Barr AND PENSION ADMINISTRATOR MEMBERSHIP COORDINATOR/RECEPTION Laura Birdwell MPTF COORDINATOR/RECEPTION Sarah Bartolino
The next Local 257 General Membership meeting will be Monday, Aug. 22, 2016 at 2 p.m. Doors will open at 1:30 p.m. The agenda will include a vote on a proposed bylaw to change the Funeral Benefit, as well as officer reports and discussion on a variety of topics. Please plan to attend, and get involved in the business of your local.
Bylaw Amendment Proposal
Whereas, the Local 257 Funeral Benefit Fund currently has a maximum payout of $8000 for fully vested members who joined before July 1, 2015 and $5000 for fully vested members who joined after July 2015; and Whereas, this benefit is the highest in the AFM, while other larger locals such as Local 47 in Los Angeles have a $1000 maximum payment and Local 802 in New York eliminated its funeral benefit program in 1986; and Whereas, the Local 257 Funeral Benefit Fund (FBF) is funded with an annual fee of $15 that has not been raised in more than 20 years, combined with a formula that requires members to contribute an additional amount when yearly payouts exceed $100,000; and Whereas, the FBF was originally designed to be self funded, and the existing funding mechanism was created in a more favorable economic climate, and based on a much larger number of members; and, Whereas, the existing funding mechanism leaves Local 257 with an approximate deficit of $65,000 annually, having a serious effect on our cash flow, the ability to make payroll and provide the high level of service our members deserve, and has caused a dramatic rise in annual membership dues over the past decade; and, Whereas, the Local 257 Executive Board and Funeral Benefit Fund Trustees have been attempting to address this issue with a series of recommended changes, trying to avoid either permanently raising dues to an unreasonable amount or eliminating the benefit entirely; therefore, be it Resolved, That Article XII of the Local 257 Bylaws be amended as follows: (New language in bold – strikethroughs mark language to be deleted) Section 2A. Members’ benefits, upon death, will be determined by length of active continuous membership in Local 257, and shall be in the following minimum amounts, subject to increase change at the discretion of the President and Secretary/Treasurer who may designate such increase as Fiduciary Trustees of the Fund: 0 - 4 years $1,250.00 $750 5 - 9 years $2,500.00 $1500 10 - 14 years $3,750.00 $2300 15 - 19 years $5,500.00 $3100 20 years and over $8,000.00 $4000 Section 2B. Members joining after July 1, 2015, will be vested in the Funeral Benefit Fund after a period of five (5) years of continuous membership, and their benefit will increase as follows: 0 - 4 years vesting period 5 - 9 years $1,000.00 10 - 14 years $2,000.00 15 - 19 years $3,000.00 20 years and up 24 years $4,000.00 25 years and up $5,000.00 Submitted by Dave Pomeroy and Vince Santoro Executive Board Recommendation – Favorable
@ 2016 Nashville Musicians Association P.O. Box 120399, Nashville TN 37212 All rights reserved. nashvillemusicians.org
4 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
Nashville Musicians Association AFM Local 257, AFL-CIO Minutes of the Membership Meeting Nov. 3, 2015 PRESENT: Paul Ross, Tom Smith, Bruce Bouton, Rich Eckhardt,
James Vest, Gordon Lee Worden, Ty Campbell, John Garr, Jim Horn, Vince Barranco, Beth Garner, Matt Davich, John Donahoe, Gary Miller, Sam McClung, John Weaver, Charles West, William Schlueter, Jimmy Nichols, Phil Arnold, Ben Schultz, Billy West, Casey Lutton, Larry Barnes, Steve Sheehan, Mike McCormick, Danny Gottlieb, Mark Allen, Bob Stevens, John England, Lael Eccard. HEARING BOARD PRESENT: Tiger Fitzhugh, Teresa Hargrove, Dave
Moody, Kent Goodson. EXECUTIVE BOARD PRESENT: Tom Wild, Laura Ross, Beth Gottlieb. OFFICERS PRESENT: Vince Santoro, Dave Pomeroy, Steve Tveit.
Meeting was called to order at 3:10 p.m. MINUTES: Minutes from Aug. 24, 2015 membership meeting were
distributed and unanimously approved. PRESIDENT’S REPORT: Pomeroy reported on the following issues: 1. AFM Local 257 is outpacing Local 802 and Local 47 in filed revenue under Demo, Limited Pressing and Low Budget agreements, and more than keeping pace on Masters. 2. Jim Owens’ health issues have delayed the court proceedings in our lawsuit for payment of Nashville Now reruns. 3. Tommy Sims is no longer on the Michael McDonald tour and C.C. Wynans has cut ties with him. A warrant has been issued for his arrest, as he owes our members over $300K. 4. If Electronic Arts continues to not respond to our attempts to negotiate with them, the Federation may need to take over.
5. Major label artists who are using tracks on live shows are still coming to our attention, and are now being made aware of the costs of this SRLA contract violation. 6. Overdue work dues are an ongoing problem and we will be utilizing the Hearing Board regularly and implementing policy changes to encourage payment. TREASURER’S REPORT: Santoro distributed copies of membership changes since the membership meeting on Aug. 24, 2015, which included fund balances as of Nov. 2, 2015. He explained how the bylaws dictate our Funeral Benefit Assessment.
MSC to approve Sec/Treas report. Sam McClung, Tom Wild. Unanimously approved. AGENDA: Pomeroy read the proposed local dues increase of $6 which, along with the new Funeral Benefit Assessment, would raise regular member annual dues by $25 and life member dues by $23. Discussion was lively and animated. The increase would allow the local to offer our staff a modest three percent raise for the upcoming year. The officers would not receive a raise.
MSC to call the question. Larry Barnes, Ty Campbell. Secret ballot voting was conducted. Ballots were counted by Tom Wild and Laura Ross. Local dues increase passed, 36 yea, to 1 no. MSC to adjourn. Sam McClung, Gary Miller. Meeting adjourned 4:44 p.m.
Nashville Musicians Association AFM Local 257, AFL-CIO Minutes of the Executive Board Meeting May 4, 2016 PRESENT: Jonathan Yudkin(JY), Vince Santoro(VS), Dave
Pomeroy(DP), Laura Ross(LR), Jim Brown(JB), Tom Wild(TW), Andre Reiss(AR). ABSENT: Jimmy Capps(JC), Beth Gottlieb(BG).
TREASURER’S REPORT: Santoro distributed financial reports and fund balances and reported the following:
1. Urban Forestry has been hired to remove three Hackberry trees. 2. Discussion about Funeral Benefit Fund adjustments and options to consider at May 16 membership meeting.
President Pomeroy called the meeting to order at 8:23 a.m. MSC to approve secretary-treasurer report, via email. JY, BG. MINUTES: Minutes from Mar. 10, 2016 were distributed.
MSC to approve as amended. LR, AR.
MSC to accept new member applications. AR, TW.
PRESIDENT’S REPORT: The following issues were discussed:
Motion to adjourn. JB, AR. Meeting adjourned at 9:15 a.m.
1. Symphony negotiations ratified. 2. AFM National Convention in June. 3. Phono and TV negotiations upcoming. 4. Staffing changes in Local 257 office. 5. Discussion of raising concert, musical theater and Broadway rates.
JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 5
STATE OF THE LOCAL
BY DAVE POMEROY
“Team Unity, led by President Hair, was re-elected, and I am honored to be serving all working musicians as an International Executive Board member, while continuing to look out for the interests of Local 257.”
he past few months have been a blur of activity that has been both exhilarating and exhausting. This is a 24/7 job that truly has no beginning or end, and it can be challenging to keep it all in balance. It certainly makes me appreciate the joy of playing the bass more than ever!
Fair Play, Fair Pay
On May 10, I traveled to Washington to participate in “Fair Play, Fair Pay” day on Capitol Hill. At our press conference, I was the final speaker, after the four cosponsors of the legislation, and music luminaries including T- Bone Burnett, Rosanne Cash, and Tom “Bones” Malone had spoken. I emphasized that this is a balance of trade issue. We create 80 percent of the world’s music, yet we can’t get paid for our eight percent from overseas because AM/FM broadcasters won’t pay for the 20 percent created in other countries. This lack of reciprocity has cost us untold millions. I invoked the names of Aretha Franklin and all the session players who worked on her biggest hit, and urged Congress to show them some “Respect” and pass this bill. Rodney Crowell, Rosanne Cash, songwriter representative Amanda Williams and I spent the day lobbying various members of Congress on behalf of the bill, and for the most part got a very positive response. My takeaway from the day was that it is essential not only for musicians to be united, but in addition, we must lead and bring together the various branches of the industry in order to make headway in the dysfunctional world that is the U.S. Congress. Otherwise, the “powers that be” will continue to keep fair treatment for content creators at bay. You can help this effort by letting your Congressional representatives know how you feel. 6 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
The 100th AFM Convention was held in Las Vegas, Nev., in June at the Westgate hotel, formerly known as the International. This is where Elvis made his big Vegas comeback and played hundreds of shows; it later became the Vegas Hilton. I played here numerous times in the ‘90s with Don Williams, and it certainly was an interesting change in perspective for me to be there again in a completely different role. This convention was tangible evidence of the progress the AFM has made under Ray Hair’s leadership. We have completely turned the finances of the Federation around, and for the first time in many conventions, we asked for no increases in per capita or dues. The delegates were pleased with the work we have done. Difficult topics that would have caused political uproar at previous conventions were brought up and discussed at length in a respectful and cooperative fashion, and decisions and compromises were reached without political fireworks. As in 2013, the positive spirit was most welcome, after all the unrest and uproar of the 2005 and 2007 conventions which lead to the big change in AFM leadership in 2010. Team Unity, led by President Hair, was re-elected, and I am honored to be serving all working musicians as an International Executive Board member, while continuing to look out for the interests of Local 257.
Live scales raised
At our last membership meeting, we started a long and in-depth discussion of our live scales in general, and Musical Theater rates in particular. Our rates are far below those in comparable cities. Over the past three months, I have been working with players and contractors to not only raise the rates, but reinvent the document itself, with easier to understand formatting and rounding off
scales to even numbers to make calculations easier. At our Special Membership Meeting on July 8, we tweaked the document and all the rates one last time, and it was unanimously approved. Thanks to everyone for their invaluable help.
Funeral Benefit Fund
Please read the Bylaw Amendment proposal for the next meeting [page four in the Announcements section] so that you can understand our proposal, brought about by the necessity to change the payout structure of the Fund. This proposal addresses the shortfall we have been dealing with ever since taking office in 2009. It is unfortunate that we have to take drastic measures, but the survival of the local is at stake.
The key to our future is bringing in new members. There are many players working with you every day that you may not realize are not members. For some reason, they haven’t gotten the memo – yet. There is nothing as powerful as someone they respect saying, “Hey, you need to get with the program and join the team.” When Local 257 provides services for these players, which we must do in a right-to-work state, we often get nothing in return — which is taking money out of your pockets. If we can get 200 new members before the end of the year, it would have a huge effect on our bottom line, and most importantly, really help alleviate the financial crunch created by our Funeral Benefit Fund. Sometimes a nudge is all it takes, and we need your help! As always, thanks for your support and involvement in Local 257. TNM Next General Membership Meeting Monday, Aug. 22, 2016 2:00 p.m.
“I suggest that we all soberly reach a decision for the [Funeral Benefit] fund in August, taking into account the short and the long term needs of the local.” BY VINCE SANTORO
hen I took office as SecretaryTreasurer here I had to get up to speed on a multitude of issues — many procedural, some parliamentary, some technical — and all of them brand-spanking new to me, since until that point I was a drummer-singer whose only concern had been where my next gig was coming from. I’m sure a lot of you are or were once in this situation. As Craig Krampf was exiting this post, and I was moving in, I was informed that the Funeral Benefit Fund was going to need some real attention because its present status was unsustainable. We were using an insurance policy to fund the benefit at the time of my election and even though the first three years of that approach went well, the last two were proving disastrous to our bottom line. We have cancelled the insurance policy and are now once again self-funding the benefit. There are two factors that affect the solvency of our Funeral Benefit Fund. The first is the fee, which is currently $15 per member. This generates approximately $33K/year. The second is the assessment, which currently is applied to payouts above $100K/year. This leaves an unfunded expense that averages about $67K/year. It has been a priority of mine and President Dave Pomeroy to address this shortfall properly and promptly. Therefore, we are presenting a bylaw amendment proposal at our next meeting to change the structure and payouts of the Funeral Benefit Fund. This proposal — which you can read in full on page four of the Announcements section in this magazine — shows a simple way to ensure that the fund would not lose money based on an average of 30 yearly deaths. By raising the fee every member pays into the fund to reach the existing threshold of $100K, and
retaining the ability to assess payouts above that threshold back to membership for the ensuing year, we can eliminate the unfunded amount the union would otherwise lose. One obvious issue for the past decade or more is the effect on the amount of annual dues for members. Therefore, in our proposal, the maximum payout for all vested members is being reduced to $4000. Based on this model, the beneficiary of a member who became fully vested today would still get four times the approximately $900 they would have contributed to the fund over the past 20 years. Of course, some members have been contributing to the fund for a longer time, but, for example, if you joined back in 1985, which is when the first fee for the benefit began being charged, you would have contributed a total of $1091.76 over 31 years. Frankly, the structure of the fund has caused a serious cash-flow problem here at Local 257. Our local cannot pay out these high benefits without continuing to deplete our savings to meet the payout expenses, and I know of no one who thinks that is a good practice. This is impeding our ability to take care of business, and the shortfall makes it harder and harder to make payroll when we are depleting our regular account to cover the Funeral Benefit Fund. A rising death rate and an aging membership have caused a resulting rise in the yearly assessment for the Funeral Benefit Fund, which has its own negative effect. These factors have also made the funeral benefit portion of our annual dues rise, which in turn makes it hard to raise the local dues amount, which hasn’t kept up with our dayto-day expenses. When it comes time to discuss annual dues in the fourth quarter, we will need to allocate more funds for local dues. The changes we adopt for the Funeral Benefit Fund now will affect our ability to raise that money, so I suggest that we all
soberly reach a decision for the fund in August, taking into account the short and the long term needs of the local. It’s important that we inform you all of the options as we see them to attain solvency in all regards. We want to keep the Funeral Benefit Fund alive, but we need operating capital. Whatever way forward we choose, we must acknowledge that the previous benefit was never going to last, and I hope all our members agree that an honest look at this reality is prudent. The future financial health of the local should be uppermost in all our minds. We are not discounting the feelings some of our longtime members may have regarding a reduction in their benefit from this fund. But all members should be relieved that we are finally taking crucial steps to fix this useful union benefit instead of abandoning it altogether, as Local 802 (New York City) did in 1986. For another comparison, Los Angeles Local 47’s benefit has never been more than $1000. The Funeral Benefit Fund helps member families in times of need — but at what cost? We know we need to keep this fund alive, but the local needs to be able to work for all members going forward as well. To do that we must keep the annual dues as low as possible while generating enough operating capital to do business efficiently. How we adjust the Funeral Benefit at our August meeting will determine how successful we’ll be in this effort. TNM
HOLIDAY CLOSINGS Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 5 Columbus Day Monday, Oct. 10 JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 7
HEARD ON THE GRAPEVINE
JAMES GORDON FREEZE
Bassist James Gordon Freeze was inducted into the Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame during ceremonies held May 10 at David Lipscomb University in Nashville. Freeze, a longtime member of Local 257, joined other alumni of the group The Nelons in receiving the honor. He played bass for the group in the 1990s with the founder, Rex Nelon. Freeze has performed for 25 years as Grand Ole Opry member Bill Anderson’s bassist and background vocalist. He has also worked with many other artists and groups including The Happy Goodman Family, The Hemphills, The Downings, and the Sego Brothers and Naomi. “It was an evening filled with great fellowship, memories, laughter, tears and praise to God, who is the reason for gospel music. A night that [my wife] Donna and I will never forget. Thanks to the Nelons and to the late Rex Nelon for wanting their alumni to be included,” Freeze said.
Kelly Nelon Clark and James Gordon Freeze
“A night that I will never forget.” – James Gordon Freeze Alabama
Supergroup Alabama will be featured in an upcoming exhibit at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. Alabama: Born Country will open Aug. 25, and will contain musical instruments, performance clothing, awards, childhood mementos, tour memorabilia, photographs, and more. Cousins Randy Owen, Teddy Gentry, and Jeff Cook first formed the group as teenagers in Fort Payne, Ala., and honed their skills over the next decade. They recruited drummer Mark Herndon in 1979, and signed with RCA in 1980. Alabama, one of the first bands to become successful in country music, went on to accumulate over 40 No. 1 records, and sell more than 70 million albums worldwide. They won a host of awards including CMA Entertainer of the Year honors for 1982, 1983, and 1984. They were inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2005. The exhibit will run through June 2017. 8 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
AFM life member and former Local 257 president Harold Bradley was honored with the Cecil Scaife Visionary Award May 17 at the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum. Bradley is known as the most-recorded guitarist in music history and is also a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame. This year marks the 70th anniversary of his first session. Bradley and his brother Owen built five studios in Nashville including the Quonset Hut. He was the first president of the Nashville NARAS chapter, and a member of the Grammy Board of Governors. He was given the Grammy Trustee Award at the 52nd Grammy Awards in 2009. In addition to serving as the Local 257 president from 1991 – 2008, he also was the AFM vice president from 1999 to 2010. Performers at the event included Ray Stevens, Charlie McCoy, David Briggs and Brenda Lee. The Scaife award is presented to individuals whose life and work have made it possible for future generations to realize careers in the music industry. Funds raised from the event go to the The Cecil Scaife Music Business Endowment Fund at Belmont University and a scholarship in Bradley’s name will be given to a rising senior in the Mike Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business. Previous recipients include Tony Brown, David Briggs, and Norbert Putnam.
HEARD ON THE GRAPEVINE
(l to r) James Akenson, co-chair of the ICMC; Beville Dunkerly, editor of Rolling Stone (Nashville); Pete Finney; and Don Cusic, co-chair of ICMC.
Riffs on The Rascals Official JOurnal Of afM lOcal 257 January– March 2014
Steel guitarist Pete Finney, a 33-year member of Local 257, was recently awarded the 2016 Rolling Stone Chet Flippo Award for Excellence in Country Music Journalism. The award was largely in honor of Finney’s work on the “Dylan, Cash and the Nashville Cats: A New Music City” exhibit at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, particularly his contributions to the accompanying exhibit book. The award also took into account Finney’s cowritten liner notes for the accompanying double-CD that he coproduced for Sony Legacy; the CD also won Reissue of the Year in the recent 16th Annual Country Music Critic’s poll. The exhibit, book, and CD are all heavily focused on the contributions of many of the Nashville studio musicians (and 257 members) from the late 1960s and early 1970s, as detailed in the “Nashville Cats” cover story from the October-December 2015 issue of The Nashville Musician.
on life, love, and The PoweR of a song
January–March 2014 1
Jim Lusk is the organizer and host of the Teddy Bear Music Festival, which raises funds for the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. This year the event raised over $5,000 for the facility, and has raised over $11,000 since 2013. Several other Local 257 members performed, including Leona Williams, Levi Head, and life member Bobby Lewis. Additionally, 100 donated teddy bears were given to local emergency service workers, as well as police and fire departments in Lebanon, Tenn. The toys are used to comfort small children who have been involved in an upsetting event. Next year the festival is tentatively scheduled for April 28 -29. For more information visit teddybearmusicfestival.com. TNM
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JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 9
news THE AFM CONVENTION
AFM President Ray Hair and Vice President Bruce Fife were reelected by acclamation at the 100th AFM Convention held the third week of June in Las Vegas, Nev. Alan Willaert, who also ran unopposed, was reelected Vice President from Canada. Jay Blumenthal will become the new AFM secretarytreasurer. Four of the five members of the International Executive board were also reelected: Tino Gagliardi, Tina Morrison, Joe Parente, and Dave Pomeroy will be joined by new IEB member John Accosta — he replaces Vince Trombetta, who did not run. The leadership team campaigned as a slate ticket, and began their third term Aug. 1. Local 257 President Dave Pomeroy commented on the convention and the new team. “The 100th AFM Convention was remarkable in its unity, and lived up to its motto, ‘Stronger Together.’ The AFM leadership team has made remarkable progress over the past three years, validating the trust given to us by the delegates in the previous two conventions. We welcome Jay Blumenthal and John Acosta to Team Unity. I especially want to thank Vince Trombetta, outgoing IEB member, for his service to the AFM, and all he has taught me about life, music, and respect for the opportunities given to us to change the world for the better.” Former Secretary-Treasurer Sam Folio also ran for reelection. Other candidates for the IEB (listed in order of votes received) were Carla Lehmeier-Tatum, George Troia, Jr., and Joe Boettger. Delegates attending the convention included Local 257 10 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
Newly elected AFM officers Joe Parente, Jay Blumenthal, Alan Willaert, VP Bruce Fife, President Ray Hair, Tino Gagliardi, Dave Pomeroy, Tina Morrison, John Acosta.
257 AFM Convention delegation: Tom Wild, William “Tiger” Fitzhugh, newly elected IEB member Dave Pomeroy, Laura Ross, Vince Santoro members Tom Wild, Tiger Fitzhugh, Laura Ross, and Vince Santoro. Fitzhugh was a first-time delegate. “I am so glad and honored to have represented Local 257 at the convention. Ray Hair ain’t afraid of nothing,’ as the saying goes, and the entire board gives me hope that musicians will be treated more fairly. Many locals are dealing with the same issues we are, as far as musicians not really having an ‘employer,’ and it was interesting to hear how some are trying to deal with it, especially Seattle. Getting to spend time with my co-alternate Tom Wild, whom I have ‘known’ for decades but really got to know on this trip, was a personal highlight,” Fitzhugh said. Secretary-Treasurer Vince Santoro at-
tended his first national convention. “My first taste of an AFM convention had my head spinning for a bit. It was impressive to see so many delegates in the ballroom all at once and focused on the stage, listening intently to what the various speakers had to say. “Being on the Organization and Legislation committee gave me a real feel for the work done at these events and this experience leaves me better prepared for the work necessary to accomplish the changes our organization is looking for every time we meet,” Santoro said. Delegate Tom Wild said he was honored to be a representative of Local 257 at the 100th AFM Convention. “Being in the company of representatives from locals across the U.S. and Canada — plus our
NEWS dedicated international officers, IEB and staff — is quite the experience. The mood at the convention was unified and proactive. I believe that the AFM is poised and ready to deal with the challenges of the new millennium and global economy,” Wild said. Symphony steward Laura Ross attended her 9th national AFM Convention. “I’ve been attending AFM Conventions for 21 years now, and I don’t ever remember one as uncontroversial as this one. It was a first to see so few proposals and no request to increase dues. Bylaw changes were, with one or two exceptions, minimal. One friend remarked that he was missing the fireworks that usually accompanied an AFM convention. The biggest controversy was probably the lack of sufficient restaurants open for lunch!” National conventions are held every three years to elect national officers and bring proposed bylaws and amendments to the Federation Constitution. No major changes to the current Federation Constitution and Bylaws were passed at this year’s convention, which also marked 120 years of TNM the AFM’s existence.
pictured above: swearing in new IEB members - (l-r) John Acosta (LA), Tina Morrison (Spokane), Dave Pomeroy, Tino Gagliardi (NYC)
JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 11
1. TOM RICHARDS visits with Cheap Trick bassist TOM PETERSSON
at the Gretsch booth. 2. TODD SHARP and GUTHRIE TRAPP rock out at the Todd Sharp
Amplifier booth. 3. Guitarist ANDY REISS with singer Mandy Barnett and sly photo bomb from BUDDY MILLER. 4. Local 257 staffer Georgia Heckman with volunteer JOSE AMIYOQOL . 5. JOHN ENGLAND, CHUCK BRADLEY and PHIL ARNOLD jam at
the Local 257 booth. 3.
12 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
1. Local 257 guitarists CHUCK JONES and BIFF WATSON celebrate
getting their 25-year AFM pins. 2. Former Local 257 President HAROLD BRADLEY presents fellow guitarist JOE SETTLEMIRES with his 50-year pin. 3. NSO clarinetist CASSIE LEE and bassoonist CYNTHIA ESTILL at Estill’s
retirement party from the Symphony. 4. Life member PETE WADE was the guest of honor at the “Nashville 1.
Cats” event held April 16 at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. The guitarist played on a multitude of famous records including “He Stopped Loving Her Today.” 5. The Western Swingers celebrate their 15th anniversary. (L-R) TOMMY HANNUM, GENE “PAPPY” MERRITTS, WALTER HARTMAN, JOHN ENGLAND, DAVID SPICHER. Photo:Kelli Dirks
3. 5. TNM
JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 13
BY STEVE TVEIT
he AFM & SAG-AFTRA fund has become a game changer for musicians whose work is played on Internet and satellite radio. The mission statement for the fund is as follows: “The Intellectual Property Rights Distribution Fund is committed to the collection and distribution of equitable remuneration and the advancement of performance rights for musicians and vocalists domestically and internationally.” Passage of the Audio Home Recording Act (AHRA), the Digital Performance Royalty Act (DPRA), and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) all paved the way for nonfeatured performers — studio musicians and background singers — to participate in the royalty stream from digital media only. This is the first time nonfeatured performers in the U.S. have received an income stream similar to what their foreign counterparts have been getting for years. These laws have opened the door for intellectual
Big Band to Bluegrass
all true, all real
www.tom shed.com 14 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
property rights — but they were written some time ago, and will need to be updated as we move forward. When the Fund’s Executive Director Dennis Dreith took over, there was less than $250,000 available to distribute, with no office and no employees. Currently, there are 52 employees — they now have research, accounting, IT, software, administrative, and legal departments. Last year over $50 million was collected for nonfeatured performers. Be sure to check out the website at www.afmsagaftra.org often for updates. You can create an account, set up your beneficiary information and even sign up for direct deposit. You can also check the list of names for unclaimed royalties. On the website click on the SR tab and then “Covered Recordings.” It’s a good idea to go through the list and compare. If you find songs that you aren’t being credited for and have proof, there is a path to correct that.
Where the money goes
The copyright holder gets 50 percent, and the featured artist 45 percent, out of which the producer may receive a portion, often 2.5 percent or more. The remaining 5 percent is split between nonfeatured musicians (2.5 percent), and nonfeatured vocalists (2.5 percent). This can add up to significant income for the backup musicians and vocalists who do not already participate in the royalty stream. One missing piece of the payment equation is for music played on AM/FM radio, which does not pay musician royalties like digital airplay does. The Fair Play Fair Pay Act, if enacted, would finally provide a royalty stream from AM/FM radio airplay to nonfeatured performers. This fundamental right of musicians has been honored around the world for decades, except in the U.S. and a few other countries such as Iran and North Korea. This revenue could be a holy grail for studio musicians and background singers. I had the chance to participate in Leadership Music a few years ago, and I still remember a radio executive telling us that the passage of an act such as this would be the end of radio as we know it. The reality is that a station that makes less than two million a year in ad revenue would have to pay a whopping $500 a year, and a nonprofit would pay only $100! Yet, the broadcast lobby continues to deny musicians this simple basic intellectual property right. Let your representatives in Congress know that you support this legislation and that musicians deserve to share in this revenue we have been denied for decades. It’s time. TNM
JULYâ€“SEPTEMBER 2016 15
There are times watching Buddy Miller onstage that he appears to be a spirit guide, moving in and out of light, dressed often in rough and psychedelic fashion, hitting a lick here, nailing a vocal there — and seamlessly, you become enveloped in a fundamental sound and scene.
He may be the front man, he may work
solo, or he may be working in the shadows — whatever it takes to get the music across. Whatever it takes to get the song across. He is the award-winning musician, producer, singer, and songwriter whose hand appears in some of the best records to come out of Nashville (and beyond) in the last twenty years.
These records would include his own,
his collaborations with his wife Julie, and an endless, powerful list of artists including Robert Plant and the Band of Joy, Emmylou Harris, Steve Earle, Shawn Colvin, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, the Carolina Chocolate Drops, Ralph Stanley, the McCrary Sisters, Patty Griffin, Solomon Burke, Jim Lauderdale, and others. And, of course, Miller has been the executive music producer for the television series Nashville each of the past three seasons. The common thread here is the breadth of musical styles. He is here to stir the pot.
“I’ve been lucky,” Miller said recently from his Nashville home. “I haven’t been genre-focused. When I grew up the music on the radio was cross-pollinated. They would play country on pop stations and R&B versions of country songs. It was all mixed together. It’s how I grew up. “I went to Woodstock in 1969, then to a bluegrass festival the next week. Everything made sense in that it was one big pot.” It is that width of range and tastes that allows one to become a spirit guide — someone who trucks in different worlds. And, Miller’s trip has indeed been long, if not strange. His first encounter with the city of Nashville came as he was 16 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
by warren denney traveling cross-country in an old school bus with what he describes as a “hippie country band.” He worked on his mates to stay overnight, Deadhead style. “That was 1972 — wintertime,” Miller said. “It was Christmas week and we went to the Opry and a lot of the artists must’ve been home for the holidays. We saw Porter Wagoner and Dolly, and Marty Robbins. I had to talk my band into going. We slept in our bus in an empty parking lot. I’m not even sure where it was, now. We stayed overnight, got up and brushed our teeth in a gas station and I talked them into buying tickets. That trip changed things — it turned that light on.”
“We went to the Opry. We saw Porter Wagoner and Dolly, and Marty Robbins. I had to talk my band into going. We slept in our bus in an empty parking lot. I’m not even sure where it was, now. We stayed overnight, got up and brushed our teeth in a gas station and I talked them into buying tickets. That trip changed things — it turned that light on.”
Photo: C.J. Hicks
The stopover gave Miller a slight sense of the environment, at least the environment that held forth then. There was a revealing sense of a hidden community in that Robert Altman-era. “Nashville was intriguing to me, but I moved around. We were on our way to the West Coast, for a record deal that didn’t work out, and we ended up playing on the streets to get enough money to drive back. I soon moved to Austin, the Seattle area, San Francisco. Went broke in L.A. Then ultimately moved to Nashville.” Sounds neatly defined, but is certainly not. Miller was living inside the golden age of the ragged troubadour, following the muse, in search of the deal. And, his fans should pause here and consider
two of the locales — San Francisco and Austin. Miller is a mighty Grateful Dead fan, inspired by that band’s sensibility and reference, and he is the rare musician from Austin who has embraced and rectified the differences found in that city and Nashville. He insists on stirring the pot. “Oh yeah,” Miller said. “I don’t regret anything, but I wish I’d moved here or at least spent more time here back then. I kept bouncing around. I moved to Austin in ’75 or ‘76, and stayed there until 1980. It was a great scene. That’s the way the scene gets when the pot gets stirred. When the hippies and the rednecks get together. There was a place we used to play a lot back then — the Split Rail. I think it was just a dirt floor. That’s where I first heard Shawn Colvin. She was in the Dixie Diesels, and Marcia Ball used to play there all the time. I used to go see Stevie Ray in a small club, with nobody in the room. I’d get done playing at some club at 1:30 and go see him at two in the morning, and he’d just be sitting there on the stage lip with his feet dangling over the edge, playing guitar to about twenty people. “It was such a great time for collaborative music, and that’s another place where you could hear R&B, and bands like Asleep at the Wheel would mix it up.” continued on page 18 JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 17
continued from page 17
“I was always intrigued by Nashville’s writers’ scene and the studios. We moved here not knowing what to expect and we didn’t know a soul, but we found in a really short time, a likeminded community of songwriters and friends.”
Photo: Mickey Dobo
“I’m into the song where its heart comes through and it tells a story. And, the playing is part of the story — I like to get lost in the playing.” Miller is a student of this world. Robert Plant has described him as a “musical encyclopedia.” He takes it in and translates, moving himself and other artists — as well as listeners — to another plane. And, his sense of our common musical narrative and storytelling has allowed him to bring it out in others. “I love it and want to take it all in,” Miller said. “Everything comes down to storytelling … There’s the song. There’s the singer. There’s the story. The frame. That’s what it’s about and it’s gotta be real. In the back of my head is the Grateful Dead, you know — they would play a Howlin’ Wolf song, or a Stanley Brothers song, or a Merle Haggard song in the most psychedelic messed up way that a lot of people still don’t get. They would mix it up and put it out there and bring a lot of people to the blues and to country music through the back door. It’s all about the process and it’s about the song. “I’m into the song where its heart comes through and it tells a story. And, the playing is part of the story — I like to get lost in the playing. I tell my drummer ‘don’t ever tell me where the one [downbeat] 18 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
is.’ I wanna get lost. I don’t wanna know. And sometimes I don’t have a clue where the one is. I like to go and get lost and not worry about it and see where we wind up.” This is the thing that makes Buddy Miller a great producer, and the thing that allowed him to succeed in the world of network television. He breaks it down, reassembles the heart of the matter, and delivers. He wants to know what is inside of himself, inside of an artist, and inside of a song. Magical realism is a term often used in literary criticism to describe a piece that marries the known, tangible world with the reality of the unknown and unseen. When the presentation is seamless, the reader moves naturally in both worlds. It is the same in song. Miller marries the working parts to emotion. “When a song resonates with you and it’s real, you don’t have to do a lot — the song does the work,” he said. “You just tell the story. It unfolds and you don’t want to get in the way, you don’t want to put in a lot of vocal or guitar licks that distract from the heart of the matter. It’s about the story. “When I’m producing [on the television show] it’s really specific to a scene, I keep the script open in the studio — I need to put myself in that scene. I need to make that scene the best it can be within its time constraints … I want to create music and create the right feel for the scene, then create the edit after we track. But I’m thinking of it as making records.” He carries with him that mindset of delivery regardless of the project. To stir the pot, you must possess technique. For his current release on New West, Cayamo Sessions at Sea: Buddy Miller and Friends, Miller shared the magic of the celebrated cruise from the appropriately named Bliss Lounge. “I had thought [from cruises past] there’s been so many collaborative opportunities missed,” he said. “I wanted to record some of it with people I love and admire. Richard Thompson. Lucinda Williams. Kris Kristofferson. I thought we could pull the veil back on the process of making a record for the boat audience. Most people just know they hear a song they like, but don’t know how it got there. So I thought we would share the process. They know it starts with a song, but most people have never seen the creative process that goes into making a record. I thought they would like to come in and watch us flesh out an arrangement and record. “I think we had about 100 people attend each session, and they loved it, seeing how it happens, and the interaction of the musicians feeding and playing off each other. How you arrange a song, how you arrange vocals. We’d do the track, we’d do some fixes and vocal overdubs. Switch around and do some instrument overdubs. We’d sign the time cards [laughing].”
Photo: Erika Goldring
Marc Ribot and Buddy Miller
On dry land, Miller loves to call Nashville his home. He and Julie met in Austin and ultimately moved here in 1993. In 1996 he became a member of Local 257. And, by stirring the pot — separately and together —they have garnered awards, from Grammys to Americana to Doves. “I was always intrigued by Nashville’s writers’ scene and the studios. We moved here not knowing what to expect and we didn’t know a soul, but we found in a really short time, a like-minded community of songwriters and friends really quickly. Within a couple of years of us moving here, Emmylou [Harris] held auditions for her band — I was one of fifteen guys auditioning to take Daniel Lanois’ slot, and I somehow landed that gig. It was life-changing. I learned so much from her generosity of spirit and openness to following where the music leads you.” Miller knows the challenges musicians and songwriters face in the Nashville scene today, but he believes in them. And he spreads his belief in the tenet of a musical mix. “It’s a different world,” he said. “There are so many different pressures that didn’t exist 25 years ago … I just had fun for my first twenty years — living in band houses, trying to make rent and get a deal. Now, labels are struggling, budgets are dwindling, you have to do so many things for yourself. But it’s always been about — for me — doing whatever it takes to just keep playing music. My wife would say, back when we were playing in bands — back in Austin — ‘if you can pay the rent and play music, everything else is gravy.’ Now it’s about stirring the pot that has everything in it. It’s not about focusing on one little part of it. “It’s all music. You get guys — studio players in this town — this is what I love about casting different bands for different sessions,
is how they’ll react to different references. Everybody’s record collection is mixed, not just pop, country or old blues. And all the new and legendary songwriters in this town are mindboggling. The sheer number of them and how great a lot of them are … You know, it’s like it was when we were growing up. There’s a lot of music, and you’ve gotta dig for the good stuff. Sometimes the good stuff will rise to the surface on its own, and sometimes you gotta do the work.”
Buddy Miller does the work. That’s what spirit guides do.
BUDDY’S RIG GUITARS 1960s Wandre guitars (3) $50 each in 1976 1948 Gibson J45 1931 Gibson L-00 Jerry Jones Baritone Trace Audio Amulet – Acoustic guitar pickup system AMPLIFIERS (Two) Swart Atomic Space Tone Pro Amps with Celestion Alnico Gold Speakers PEDALS King of Tone Boss VB-2 Fulltone Stereo Super Tremolo Strymon El Capistan Echo
JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 19
World Famous Headliners Now Appearing World Famous Recordings
The World Famous Headliners is a supergroup that doesn’t take itself too seriously. The band is fronted by three of Music City’s finest singer/songwriter/guitarists: Local 257 members Shawn Camp and Al Anderson, along with Pat McLaughlin. Add to this the killer rhythm section of Michael Rhodes on bass and Greg Morrow on drums, and their collective resume is outstanding. The members of the group have had songs recorded by everyone from Steve Wariner, to Jerry Lee Lewis, Garth Brooks, Del McCoury, and Guy Clark. They’ve played gigs and sessions with Amy Grant, Vince Gill, Joe Bonamassa, Pete Townshend, and Steve Winwood, just to name a few. From the opening track, “Theme,” a raveup barely over a minute long consisting of the band’s name chanted over a rockin’ groove and a series of unexpected modulations, it is apparent that these guys know how to have a good time. Anderson, Camp, and McLaughlin each have their moments to step out front, but for the most part they sublimate their individual vocal identities in favor of pleasantly loose unison and harmony singing, which gives the whole project a friendly, unpretentious feel. Rhodes and Morrow lay down deep and funky grooves that match the wildly diverse material perfectly. Their multiple guitars are seamlessly integrated into the songs, and in particular, Anderson lays down some scorching lead guitar reminiscent of his great body of work during his time with the legendary band NRBQ. 20 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
Untamed Arista19 Nashville / RCA
songs on this project. As a songwriter, she has also had cuts with Miley Cyrus and Maggie Rose. In the credits Cam writes the following: “Five years of my life have gone into the 38 minutes you are about to hear. Five years of work with my friends and co-conspirators… we have been broke, heartbroken, inspired, betrayed, fulfilled and very tired and very, very grateful.” Upon seeing or hearing any artist’s finished work it’s not often apparent what has gone into the making of it. It’s best when you hear a song and can learn something about the artist that sings it or the writer that wrote it. Through the course of this album you see a completely different side of Cam’s personality with each and every song. There are several tracks of note on Untamed. She comes right out of the gate with the title track, with Dan Needham on drums, Joeie Canaday on bass, Glen Duncan on banjo, Kris Donegan on electric guitar and Pat Bergeson on harmonica. It’s an uptempo infectious mashup of country and pop. They even recorded the sound of nighttime crickets in Franklin — I’m still checking their member status! Another great song is “Mayday.” This time Tony Lucido is on bass with Ian Fitchuk on drums and the great Russ Pahl on pedal steel. The drums keep the driving pulse going throughout the track. Cam’s descriptive line for this song is “love yourself enough to be alone.” Enough said. “Cold In California” is another favorite – Dan Needham on drums, Tony Lucido on bass is even credited with a bass solo – when was the last time that happened? Cam’s vocal on this big ballad keeps the track within the country genre. Overall Untamed is a solid project front to back. Cam has a great voice and songwriting chops – that should keep her in the game for years to come. — Steve Wayne
When I first heard “Burning House” on the radio, I was immediately drawn in. It’s one of those songs that has always been somewhere in the ether waiting for the right artist. The arrangement is sparse and haunting with a string quartet provided by our very own Nashville String Machine. Cam cowrote this song along with all the other
Through the course of this album you see a completely different side of Cam’s personality with each and every song.
Many of the songs have a healthy dose of tongue-in-cheek humor, both musically and lyrically. The protagonist of the Ry Cooder-ish “Hitchhike Home,” finds himself stranded with diminishing chances of a positive resolution, and “Where The Sun Don’t Shine,” describes a “Dear John” letter that is met with less than a respectful response. “Fried Chicken” features some old-school soul falsetto singing and takes the food-as-love metaphor to some unusual places. “Whoa Whoa Song” simultaneously sets out the band’s mission to rock hard and have fun while gently spoofing the singalong choruses commonly found in today’s Americana and country tunes. Mike Rojas makes a guest appearance on accordion for the hilarious Tejano polka parody piece, “Dance.” Mixed in with the high energy tunes such as “Tearin’ it up ‘til the Wheels Come Off” are several more reflective tunes that still retain the looseness of the Headliners’ distinctive style, including the pulsing “She Loves Everybody” with cool Beatle-ish unison singing and the sweet “Hometown Girl,” featuring Camp’s plaintive lead vocal and a gentle Tex-Mex sway. The journey ends with the rocker “Balls to the Wall,” which features a wedge of nasty electric guitars, a huge half-time groove, several unexpected lyrical metaphors, and some serious guitar shredding. The World Famous Headliners obviously had a blast making this record, which was coproduced with engineer Chad Carlson, and it’s a heck of a lot of fun for the listener as well! — Roy Montana
Cyndi Lauper’s new CD, Detour, highlights the iconic singer doing what she does best – making us believe her. Producer Tony Brown’s sound is a perfect backdrop for her voice and personality. Plaintive and vulnerable on “Misty Blue,” playful on the spare treatment of “Walking After Midnight,” and smoky and carefree on “Nightlife” — she never stops being herself. It must have been fun making the record. It sure sounds that way! The songs Lauper chose for this collection are heard in a completely new light which makes one realize that she is totally at ease in this, or any other, genre. Kudos to Lauper for enlisting the talents of a fine group of Local 257 members on this record. Tom Bukovac, Chad Cromwell, Dan Dugmore, Kenny Greenberg, Aubrey Haynie, Greg Morrow, Steve Nathan, Jimmie Lee Sloas, Bryan Sutton, Jeff Taylor and Willie Weeks all play their hearts out and Vince Gill shares the lead vocal on “You’re the Reason Our Kids Are Ugly.” I will keep this CD nearby for those times when I want to walk down a country road without a predetermined destination. I know Lauper will not disappoint. — Vince Santoro
of the Western Swing charts. The musicians on the CD are all Local 257 members, and include five trailblazers who left us too soon: Curly Chalker and Hal Rugg on steel, Henry Strzlecki on bass, Bunky Keels on piano and Willie Ackerman on drums. Local 257 Executive Board member Jimmy Capps is featured on acoustic guitar, legendary electric guitarist Leon Rhodes contributes his signature hot licks, and fiddlers Tommy Williams, Hoot Hester and Jim Buchanan all bring home the bacon. The band also includes Jerry Ray Johnston and D.J. Fontana on drums, Danny Davis and Mark Powelson on bass, Rodger Morris and Pig Robbins on piano, and Sonny Garrish and Doug Jernigan on steel. Cowboy Joe sings and writes with sincerity and passion, and this stellar cast of players nail every tune. Babcock wrote all but one of the tunes on the CD, and highlights include his originals “Please Don’t Leave Me Anymore,” “Everything’s Gotta Swing in Texas,” featuring Rhodes’ nimble guitar fills, and “Smoky Clubs and Dizzy People” with beautifully bittersweet steel guitar from Chalker. A number of song titles beg the question, “Why didn’t I think of that?” including “I Know She Loves Me (In a Hateful Kind of Way)” and “No Way to Go But Down.” “The Stratocaster Song” puts a sweet story to music and is a fitting tribute to one of Babcock’s heroes — Eldon Shamblin. Trail Jazz is an excellent record that will stand the test of time. — Roy Montana
Cyndi Lauper Detour Sire
Foggy Mountain Troubadour: The Life and Music of Curly Seckler University of Illinois Press
Trail Jazz is a special project featuring longtime Local 257 member Joe Babcock (aka Cowboy Joe) with a “who’s who” cast of great Nashville players past and present. The album takes the listener on a sentimental journey through the timeless swing and country music that influenced Babcock as a youth in Nebraska. This 14-song CD is the end result of several decades of recording, and has already won awards and hit the top
Like many genres of music, bluegrass has had its ups and downs in popularity over the decades. But whether you are a true “blue” follower from back in the day, or you’re a recent convert after a hot night at a roots club like Station Inn, Foggy Mountain Troubadour will give you an insight into the real “Americana” that emerged early in the 20th century from the deep hollows and high ridges of the South — the birthplace of hillbilly music, as it was first called. Penny Parsons set about to document the life and times of musician and tenor singer Curly Seckler, best known today as the last
Trail Jazz Chimney Rock Records
living member of the Foggy Mountain Boys — Earl Scruggs and Lester Flatt’s band throughout their long run of success, starting in the ‘40s and ultimately running well over three decades. It’s generally agreed that Seckler’s solid mandolin chop, driving rhythm guitar, and impeccable harmonies with Flatt were a formative part of the band’s sound. But Seckler was playing mandolin and guitar in a panoply of bands long before Flatt and Scruggs brought their talents together — for artists like Charlie Monroe, Jim and Jesse McReynolds, and many others. The meticulously researched book begins with the early childhood farm life of Seckler, a native of China Grove, N.C. It continues with an amazing journey that led him to work with many seminal bluegrass groups, with stops along the way in the Army, as well as a variety of day gigs that Seckler took to keep body and soul together in the hardscrabble times of the era. The story Parsons tells becomes the story of bluegrass itself, as it sprouted from the tiny communities of the mountains in the South, and then through the magic of small-town radio — and eventually giant megawatt stations like WSM — began its wondrous ascent to national and eventual worldwide recognition. Back in that pre-WWII era, commercial radio stations — as now — were vehicles for advertising. To sell ads, they featured musical content, and in the beginning that content was largely live performances. Bluegrass bands played these radio shows because they led to live area bookings. The bands would work a regional radio station program for the bookings that would follow, then move to a different station on the circuit and do it all over again. continued on page 22 JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 21
REVIEWS continued from page 21
As the child of a small radio station owner myself — my father also played bass in a bluegrass band in the ‘40s — I was particularly engrossed by the amazing radio program notes Parsons includes, as well as colorful descriptions of the special concerts the stations often hosted. This excerpt taken from a period when Seckler was playing with Bill Carlisle in a band called the Melody Boys is a great example: “The first event took place at the WNOX (Knoxville) studios on Thursday, Dec. 10, 1942, and was broadcast live from 7 to 9:00 p.m. Lowell Blanchard was the master of ceremonies. An ad in the Knoxville NewsSentinel touted the benefit as an ‘All Star Show for the benefit of the Empty Stocking Fund! Two Solid Hours of Gala Music and Riotous Fun! See ‘em in person! Hear ‘em at home ! Listen! Have a Good Time --- Help Others Have a Good Time !’ Performers listed included the Melody Boys, Cass Walker, Hotshot Elmer, Cowboy Copas, the Tennessee Valley Players, Bill Lawson’s Commanders, the Dixieland Swingers, and others.” Foggy Mountain Troubadour is an honest, endearing account of a man who is clearly not only very gifted as a singer and a player, but who is also an honorable, caring person, well-loved by peers and fans alike. After his long run with Flatt and Scruggs, Seckler played for many years in Nashville Grass with Flatt. Before Flatt’s passing, he asked Seckler to keep the band performing, and he did. Band members at various times in-
22 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN 22 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
cluded Marty Stuart, Kenny Ingram, Johnny Warren, Bob Rodgers, Charlie Nixon, Blake Williams, Pete Corum, Willis Spears, Paul Warren, Tater Tate, and Jack Hicks. He also released several solo records, and worked with David Grisman and the Steep Canyon Rangers, and many other artists. He was inducted into the IBMA Hall of Fame in 2004 and the Bill Monroe Bluegrass Hall of Fame in 2011. Seckler no longer performs, since having serious health issues in 2014, but he was a guest of honor in November 2014 at a private concert in Hendersonville, Tenn., given by the Earls of Leicester — a Flatt and Scruggs tribute band. Eddie Stubbs, one of the most knowledgeable experts around on country music
history, succinctly sums up the unique and invaluable contribution Seckler made to Flatt and Scruggs. In the book’s forward he recalls the story of a recording session where Flatt’s producer, after meeting Seckler said, “Whatever you do, don’t let that guy get away!” Whatever you do, seek out Foggy Mountain Troubadour, and you’ll get not only the fascinating tale of a talented and honorable man who helped fuel the engines of what many consider the best bluegrass bands in history, but also a fullimmersion baptism into the colorful and scrappy story of a genre that can truly call itself American-made. — Kathy Osborne TNM
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JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 23
BY LAURA ROSS
“Our proposal was ambitious and was premised on the losses the musicians had sustained during the past three seasons along with cost of living increases that had reduced our losses even further. We also insisted that management restore all three vacant positions in the string sections.”
NSO musicians ratified a new agreement as the last issue of The Nashville Musician was going to press. Two years ago, following the musicians’ 15-percent pay cut, we negotiated a four-year agreement with the hope that it would restore our salaries to 2013 levels. The Association managed to retain ownership of the building but unfortunately nearly all its financial resources — aside from about $10 million in totally restricted endowment funds — were depleted. Management was not willing to commit to funding beyond 2016, so the negotiating team agreed to reopen the contract mid-term to bargain wages for the final two years of the agreement that expires on July 31, 2018. Three string positions were also left vacant — one each in the first violin, second violin and cello sections — and were also a subject of bargaining. At the musicians’ request, Local 257 engaged an attorney to handle our negotiations this time. Attorney Kevin Case, of Case Arts Law in Chicago, has been a member and ICSOM delegate of the Grant Park Orchestra, concertmaster of the Memphis Symphony, and a freelance violinist; currently he serves as lead negotiator for a number of ICSOM orchestras, and as ICSOM’s new general counsel. Kevin worked with the orchestra committee, the negotiating committee, and the full orchestra to prepare for negotiations. Serving on the negotiating team with me were NSO musicians Brad Mansell, Judith Ablon, Joel Reist, and Chris Farrell who served as alternate but attended all meetings and participated fully in our discussions, as well as Local 257 President Dave Pomeroy. Management’s 24 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
bargaining representatives were President & CEO Alan Valentine, and new administration and staff who have joined the NSO since 2015 — COO Steve Brosvik (previously with the Houston Symphony), CFO Marye Walker Lewis (previously with HCA), and Operations Manager Sonja Winkler (previously with the Pittsburgh Symphony) who served as management’s note taker. The group met April 15-18 to hammer out an agreement that would satisfy the musicians and be approved by the NSA board. Our proposal was ambitious and was premised on the losses the musicians had sustained during the past three seasons along with cost of living increases that had reduced our losses even further. We also insisted that management restore all three vacant positions in the string sections. The final agreement included wage increases of 4.5 percent in the 2016-17 season, and a split increase of 4.5 and 1.55
percent for an overall 5.3 percent increase during the 2017-18 season. This means the starting annual salary will be $60,024, just a few dollars above the 2012-13 salary of $60,000, when negotiations begin in 2018. We also restored one of the string positions in the second violins during the last year of the agreement. It’s not a perfect agreement, and we certainly would have hoped for bigger increases but the agreement demonstrates a legitimate effort to restore salaries that we can hopefully use to build upon in the future. Thanks to Local 257 for providing Kevin Case’s services, and to Dave Pomeroy for his support of the entire process. I also offer special thanks to my musician colleagues—Brad, Judith, Joel and Chris—for their leadership, support and many wonderful contributions to this process; it was a real pleasure working with you.
Alan Valentine & Dave Pomeroy sign new NSO agreement
Photo: Matt Mulroy
The orchestra is firmly into its summer season with a schedule that allows the Schermerhorn Symphony Center to “pay for itself.” This means that all areas of the building (with the exception of the office areas) are available for rental, including Laura Turner Hall. And, since summer is a prime time for weddings, the orchestra is often on a runout or not performing on Friday or Saturday evenings, which is very unlike the rest of the season! But we are still working very hard; in fact, the first week of June included nine services (the maximum allowed only six times per season, and must be followed or preceded by no more than a seven service week.) The NSO is currently performing in various parks in Nashville, Gallatin and Lebanon; doing special concerts consisting of one rehearsal and concert performed on the same day celebrating John Williams, Elton John, Jerry Garcia, and Simon and Garfunkel, and with artists such as Seth MacFarlane and LeAnn Rimes performing with us; patriotic concerts with the 101st Airborne Band, and July 4th with Sheryl Crowe; and all that’s missing is popcorn when we perform soundtrack scores to accompany Star Trek: Into Darkness, The Wizard of Oz and Raiders of the Lost Ark being displayed above us. As summer is upon us, it begins a transition period as many orchestra members head off to music festivals, significant travel, or to new experiences. We have held a number of auditions this season that have had some good, not so good and bittersweet moments. I wrote about the principal librarian audition in September that ended without hiring anyone. Interim-principal librarian Jennifer Goldberg was offered but declined the position, so another audition was held in early May. A winner and an alternate were identified and since the winning candidate declined the position, the alternate candidate Melissa McCarthy Steinberg joins us in August as principal librarian. In the last issue I wrote that Cynthia Estill retires at the end of this season; the new principal bassoonist, Julia Harguindey, from Montreal, Quebec, Canada, will join us in September. There were 101 violinists that auditioned for a section second violin position in March but the winner (there was no alternate) declined the job and accepted
one with the Baltimore Symphony instead. This means more auditions next season for two, possibly three section second violin positions. We also held auditions for second trumpet in late May and Alec Blazek will join the orchestra in September. Both the second violin and second trumpet positions were vacant because Lisa Thrall and Gary Armstrong were on long-term disability (LTD) and left the orchestra. Other musicians who have resigned due to LTD in the past few years include former principal trombone Larry Borden, former principal/section bassist Gary Lawrence, and second violinist Radu Georgescu missed the entire past season and has just submitted his resignation. Auditions for Gary Lawrence’s position will be held in September. Thankfully, Nashville is blessed with a number of very talented musicians: Tim Pearson (bass), Adrienne Harmon (second
violin), Preston Bailey (second trumpet), and Zoya Leybin (second violin), have filled these temporary positions until auditions could be held. Pearson and Leybin will continue next season along with Jung-Min Shin (second violin). We really have been so lucky to have all these fine musicians share their time and talents with us; their contributions have been outstanding — many thanks to you all! Two-thirds of the flute section will also be on leave next season when Erik Gratton (principal flute) joins the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra as co-principal flute (in many sections the MET has two principals), and Kate Ladner (third flute/piccolo) joins the Houston Symphony. Gratton also recently won the position of Associate Principal Flute in the Pittsburgh Symphony. Vanderbilt’s flute professor Phil Dikeman will serve as acting-principal and Leslie Fagan joins us from the Omaha Symphony as acting third Flute/Piccolo. TNM
The times they are a-changing — next season is the NSO’s 70th, and the 10th anniversary of the Schermerhorn Symphony Center.
CLASSICAL SERIES FEATURING YOUR NASHVILLE SYMPHONY
MAHLER’S SECOND 10th Anniversary Classical Celebration September 22 to 24
THE PLANETS — AN HD ODYSSEY
Exclusive Space Footage from NASA January 12 to 15
Grieg’s Piano Concerto October 7 & 8
RESPIGHI'S PINES OF ROME February 10 & 11
October 28 & 29
THE RITE OF SPRING
MOZART & TCHAIKOVSKY
February 23 to 25
Edgar Meyer World Premiere March 16 to 18
November 4 & 5
& Piano Concerto No. 4 November 17 to 19
BEETHOVEN'S SECOND Symphony Soloists Play New American Classics April 14 & 15
MOZART & RACHMANINOFF April 27 to 29
AN AMERICAN REQUIEM May 12 & 13
COPLAND'S THIRD Featuring Fanfare for the Common Man June 1 to 3
BERNSTEIN'S SERENADE March 31 & April 1
Mention promo code AFM for 10% off Aegis Sciences Classical Series tickets!
615.687.6400 • NashvilleSymphony.org JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 25
JAZZ & BLUES BEAT
BY AUSTIN BEALMEAR
have a confession to make. While I stand by my grumbles about the difficulty of getting timely information on jazz and blues projects around town, it is also the case that sometimes I just flat miss something. Herewith I can happily correct a couple of those oversights. At the same time, I still say this would be a much richer community if jazz and blues artists didn’t have to work so hard to create visibility for their projects. To the extent this column can help, I invite all jazz and blues musicians to contact me with their latest news, via this magazine.
Nashville Jazz Composers Collective
I really don’t know how I missed this one, which involves about three dozen of Nashville’s most progressive and veteran jazz musicians. The NJCC is the inspiration of threetime Grammy Award-winning saxophonist, bandleader, composer, and educator — and author — Jeff Coffin. He’s worked with many artists including Béla Fleck & The Flecktones and the Dave Matthews Band. According to Coffin, “I feel it’s long past due that Nashville showcases her incredible composing and improvising jazz musicians in a way that truly recognizes their talents. Our aim is to…present new compositions, fresh ideas, and most importantly, a community-based educational outreach which will empower young music students to learn the art of musical composition, improvisation and self-expression.” The project began with wide-ranging jam sessions at Coffin’s house, and grew to a diverse company of composing players and singers who present workshops and unique concerts at places like the Vanderbilt University Blair School of Music’s Ingram Hall. Look for the group’s next concert Sept. 13, featuring the music and virtuoso trombone playing of Wycliffe Gordon. In the meantime, check out their website at nashvillejazzcomposerscollective.com and the seven audio tracks posted. 26 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
While the crowdfunding concept has been around for centuries — books were printed by selling subscriptions — the Internet has given artists access to financial support from around the globe. Thanks to a 2014 campaign on Indiegogo.com, veteran Memphis composer Jack Cooper was finally able to complete a 13-year recording project called Mists: Charles Ives for Jazz Orchestra. Now considered one of the first original American composers, Ives wrote music at the beginning of the 20th century that was so far out, it was rarely performed until after his death in 1954. Imagine the challenge of turning his dissonant, complex sound collages into something that swings. Tracks were recorded in New York with musicians from the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra, and the Mingus Dynasty Big Band, and released on the Planet Arts Recordings label. Read an interesting history of the project on Wikipedia, and watch the band recording one track on Cooper’s staff page at the University of Memphis website, memphis.edu/music. Also in 2014, Nashville vocalist Liz Johnson used a Kickstarter campaign to realize a CD called Jazz + Hymns — a jazz performance of 10 traditional hymns. The seeds of the project were planted in the year after her graduation from Belmont when she and her schoolmate Wil Houchens, a pianist and arranger, were experimenting with re-harmonizing some
hymns. With encouragement from a jazz lover at church, they put a video on the Internet, and found not only funding but a whole community of new friends and supporters. The project — Johnson on vocals/alto sax, Houchens on piano, and a three-piece rhythm section — is available at CDBaby and iTunes. Also check out Johnson’s extensive vocal training work at loverevolutionvocalstudio.com.
Jazz in the schools
Mark your calendars for Jazzmania 2016, the Nashville Jazz Workshop’s annual fall jazz party and fundraiser. The event will again be held in Liberty Hall at The Factory in Franklin, on Saturday, Oct. 22, from 6 to 10:00 p.m. The lineup of jazz performers is always outstanding; it’s a fun way to support jazz education in Music City. Over at Middle Tennessee State University, concerts by both students and pros are well worth attending. The senior recital by veteran trumpeter Joe Gross Sept. 13 at 8 p.m. should be hot. Saxophonist Don Aliquo always has something cool to offer; his faculty recital is Sept. 20 at 8 p.m. Top student groups play on Sept. 22 (Jazz Ensemble I and II), Oct. 24 (Jazz Ensemble I), and Oct. 31 (Jazz Combo), all at 7:30 p.m. The annual Jazz Artist Series kicks off with a concert featuring the music of Gil Evans, with Ryan Truesdell conducting the Tennessee Jazz Collective on Oct. 20 at 7:30 p.m. All events are in the Wright Music Building. TNM
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JULYâ€“SEPTEMBER 2016 27
GUY C. CLARK
Nov. 6, 1941 — May 17, 2016 Photo: Jim McGuire
engendary songwriter and artist Guy Clark, 74, died May 17, 2016 in Nashville, Tenn. The Nashville Musicians Association life member joined Local 257 in March 1973. He released over twenty albums during the course of his career, and was associated with the Texas Troubadour movement of the ‘70s and ‘80s — part of the ancestry of the genre now known as Americana. His many well-known songs include the impeccable “Desperados Waiting on a Train” and “L.A. Freeway,” both of which were recorded by a multitude of other artists. Clark received a host of accolades during his lifetime, and was thought of as one of the fundamental creators of a new sort of music — a blend of folk and “outlaw country” with a strong
28 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
lyrical sensibility. Clark was born in Monahans, Texas, on Nov. 6, 1941 to Ellis and Frances Clark. His grandmother ran a 13-room hotel where Clark would encounter a variety of characters, including one named Jack Prigg who he drew upon for inspiration in the classic “Desperados Waiting on a Train.” When he was 12 his family moved to Rockport, Texas, where Clark excelled at a variety of activities, including captain of his football team. He also won science fairs, became class president his junior year, acted in plays, and began to delve more deeply into folk music and playing guitar. After a stint with the Peace Corps in 1963 that took him to Puerto Rico, followed by a short stay at the University
of Minnesota, he moved to Houston and opened a guitar repair shop with a friend, Minor Wilson. In 1966 he married folksinger Susan Spaw; they had a son, Travis. He played folk clubs around town and also met fellow songwriters Mickey Newbury, Townes Van Zandt, and Jerry Jeff Walker. They became lifelong friends who would come to be known in the ‘70s for their honest, folk-driven tunes — often laced equally with humor and bittersweet universal truths. In 1969 Clark split from his wife Susan, and moved to San Francisco, but soon he was back in Houston, where he met Susanna Talley — a painter. They fell in love, and moved to Los Angeles, Calif., where Clark worked at a dobro company and played music on the weekends. He continued to write songs, and signed a publishing deal with Sunbury Dunbar in 1971. Clark and Talley moved to Nashville where they reconnected with Newbury and Van Zandt, who served as Clark’s best man when he and Susanna married in 1972, at the Sumner County Courthouse in Gallatin, Tenn. After his first few years in Music City, Clark had written not only “Desperados” but also “L.A. Freeway,” and “That Old Time Feeling,” and in 1975 he released Old No. 1, his debut and critically acclaimed record for RCA. He moved to Warner Brothers in 1978. Clark’s “Heartbroke” was a No. 1 hit for Ricky Skaggs in 1982. He scored on the charts himself with “Homegrown Tomatoes” in 1983. In 1988 Steve Wariner took Clark’s “Baby I’m Yours” to No. 1; Asleep at the Wheel charted with “Blowin’ Like a Bandit” the same year. Vince GilI had a Top 10 country hit with “Oklahoma Borderline” in 1985. In the next twentyplus years Clark would release several significant folk and Americana records, first with Sugar Hill, and then on Asylum Records and Dualtone Music Group. Songs from these albums include “Old Friends,” “Dublin Blues,” “The Dark,” and “Some Days the Song Writes You.” His songwriting success with other artists continued; Kenny Chesney made Clark’s “Hemingway’s Whiskey” the title of his 2010 album. Beyond his critical success, Clark was known as a mentor to many artists, and his dwelling became a gathering place for them, as well as other friends
FINAL NOTES and writers who enjoyed the bohemian atmosphere of his unique home. This group included Gill, Rodney Crowell, Jim McGuire, Steve Earle, Emmylou Harris, Joe Ely, Lyle Lovett, Verlon Thompson, Shawn Camp, and many others. In addition to his legendary status as a writer, Clark was an accomplished luthier, and his home included a workshop where he made many of the guitars he played. Dave Pomeroy, president of Local 257, played with Clark in the ‘80s. “Playing with Guy was my first ‘real’ Nashville gig, and I learned many valuable lessons about life and music from him. The depth and honesty of his songs taught me the importance of respect for the lyric and the power of playing simply. It was priceless preparation for the rest of my career and I will always be grateful for his encouragement and friendship over the years,” Pomeroy said. Among many honors, Clark received several Grammy nominations over the years, and won a Grammy for Best Folk Album in 2014 for My Favorite Picture of You. Clark was honored with the Poet’s Award from the Academy of Country Music in 2012, and was inducted into the Nashville Songwriter’s Hall of Fame in 2004. He became a member of the Austin City Limits Hall of Fame in 2015. In an interview Clark said, “I really work hard at being true. And that’s where the uniqueness of the songs come out. I couldn’t have made them up.” Clark was preceded in death by his parents; and by his wife Susanna. Survivors include his son Travis; his sisters Caroline Clark Dugan and Jan Clark; two grandchildren; manager and friend Keith Case; caretaker and sweetheart Joy Brogdon; nieces, nephews, and many dear friends, colleagues and fans. In addition to several wakes, private funeral services were held May 25. Clark’s directions included cremation, and requested that his friend Terry Allen incorporate Clark’s ashes into a sculpture.
MICHAEL L. CHAPMAN
“His kindness and honesty were legendary and his musical instincts were brilliant. He will always be with us. RIP, my dear old friend,” Judy Rodman MICHAEL L. CHAPMAN July 22, 1952 — June 13, 2016 Bassist Michael “Mike” Leo Chapman, 63, died June 13, 2016. He was a longtime member of AFM Local 257 who joined in January 1985. He was inducted into the Musicians Hall of Fame earlier this year along with the members of the G-Men — Garth Brooks’ studio band. Chapman’s bass can be heard on a multitude of albums, including practically every record Brooks made. Chapman was born July 22, 1952 in Athens, Ala., to Mabin and Mable Brown. He graduated from Clements High School, and then went on to receive a BS in business from Athens State University. After some time spent playing locally and in Muscle Shoals, Chapman made the move to Nashville, and began a career that would include playing on a plethora of top-selling records during his career. In addition to the Brooks catalog,
some of the many artists Chapman worked with include LeAnn Rimes, Brooks and Dunn, Collin Raye, Trisha Yearwood, George Jones, Doug Stone, Blackhawk, Asleep at the Wheel, Sammy Kershaw and Judy Rodman. In the wake of his passing, artists and fellow musicians who played with Chapman commented on his singular style — one that brought to a session not only great talent, but a positive, uplifting personality. “His kindness and honesty were legendary and his musical instincts were brilliant. He will always be with us. RIP, my dear old friend,” Rodman said. Drummer and fellow member of the GMen Milton Sledge talked about his long friendship with Chapman. “I have known Mike Chapman since the first grade. We’ve been best friends since. We began playing music together as teens growing up in Alabama. His musicianship, his love for others, continued on page 30 JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 29
FINAL NOTES continued from page 29
honesty, and faith are benchmarks of a life well lived,” Sledge said. Among many accolades, Chapman won the Bass Player of the Year award from Music Row magazine in 1993, and in 2003 he was inducted into the Alabama Music Hall of Fame. Chapman was preceded in death by his parents. Survivors include his wife Connie; two sons, Lee and Clinton Chapman; one daughter, Allison Chapman; one sister, Faye Wise; and one grandson. A celebration of life was held June 17 at Church of the City in Franklin, Tenn., with Pastor Jay Strother officiating. Interment will be private at Williamson Memorial Gardens. Memorial donations may be made to Meals 4 Health & Healing or the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum.
DR. RAY PHILLIP CARROLL Aug. 28, 1938 — April 25, 2016
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Nashville Musicians Association life member Dr. Ray Phillip Carroll, Sr., 77, died April 27, 2016. He was a trumpet player with Danny Davis & the Nashville Brass when the group won seven Emmy Awards, and was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. He was also a conductor, arranger, and drummer; he joined Local 257 in April 1972. Carroll was a member of St. Philip Catholic Church. He was born Aug. 28, 1938 to Floyd and Helen Neas Carroll and attended the University of Louisiana Monroe, where he received a doctorate in administration and supervision. In addition to his work with Davis, he was also Boots Randolph’s “Mr. Sax” trumpet player, conductor, and arranger. Carroll also owned the Jack Daniels Silver Coronet Band in which he played for several years. He was preceded in death by his parents; one sister, Flossie Frances Allen; and one brother, Gene Lee Carroll. Survivors include his wife, Ann Barrett Clark Carroll; three sons, Ray, Jeff, and Tim Carroll; one daughter, Julie Ann Zamudio; and eight grandchildren. Funeral mass was conducted April 29 with Father Bala celebrant. Burial followed in Williamson Memorial Gardens. Memorials may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association at act.alz.org.
RAY GRIFF April 22, 1940 — Mar. 9, 2016
Songwriter and keyboardist Ray Griff died March 9, 2016 at the age of 75. Griff was a life member of the Nashville Musicians Association; he joined the local in 1965. The native Canadian was also an artist, publisher and a producer. He was inducted into the Canada Music Hall of Fame in 1989. Griff was born in Vancouver, B.C. April 22, 1940, to George and Katherine Grefe. He showed his musical aptitude early; he started playing piano when he was six, and wrote his first song at the age of seven. A year later he and his brother Ken formed a band with friends — they called themselves “The Winfield Amateurs.” His family moved to Calgary, Alberta, when Griff was 12. When he was 17 he met Johnny Horton, who asked him to go on tour. While on the road he played a song he had written for Horton — “Mr. Moonlight” — which Horton recorded. In 1962 he met Jim Reeves, who recorded Griff’s “Where Do I Go From Here?” In 1964 Griff moved to Nashville. He pitched songs and survived by working in a record plant and for a publishing company. The following year he partnered with Carla Scarborough to
FINAL NOTES form Blue Echo Music, Inc. He continued to tour, and also to continue what would become a successful artist-songwriting career. In the 1970s Griff had top-40 success with several of his songs, including “If I Let Her Come In,” and “The Last of the Winfield Amateurs.” He would go on to release 30 albums and receive many songwriting awards over his career, including a host of BMI and ASCAP awards. He made numerous TV appearances on the Grand Ole Opry, The Ralph Emery Show, Hee Haw and many other shows. His hits recorded by other artists include “Who’s Gonna Play This Old Piano,” by Jerry Lee Lewis, “Something Special,” by Mel Tillis, and “Darlin” by Wayne Kemp. “Darlin’” was also recorded by Conway Twitty, George Jones, Jeanne Pruett, Wilma Burgess, Jim Ed Brown, and Nat Stuckey. Over the years he also wrote songs recorded by Tennessee Ernie Ford, Crystal Gayle, Conway Twitty, Eddy Arnold, Chet Atkins, Wayne Newton, Dolly Parton, Dottie West, Loretta Lynn and Pat Boone, among many others. He was said to be Canada’s most prolific country songwriter with the most compositions to reach the Billboard country charts in the U.S. Griff moved back to Canada in 1998, where he hosted two TV shows, Goodtime Country and Uptown Country, as well as hosting for the syndicated radio program Raymond’s Place. He was preceded in death by his mother and father. Survivors include his wife of 25 years, Trudy; one brother, Ken Greff of Hermitage, Tenn., and several nieces and nephews. Memorial services were held March 29 at Southview Alliance Church in Calgary, Alberta. Donations may TNM be made in Griff’s name to the Canadian Cancer Society.
LOCAL 257 MEMBERS: Please check to see that your
FUNERAL FUND BENEFICIARY is listed correctly, and up to date. We can't stress the importance of this enough.
YOUR LOVED ONES ARE COUNTING ON YOU.
IN MEMORIAM The officers, staff and members of Local 257 extend our deepest sympathies to the families and friends of our members who have recently passed away. You are in our thoughts, hearts and prayers. Name
Michael L Chapman
Guy C Clark
Wayne L Jackson
Winfield Scott Moore, III
Ralph Edmond Stanley
Take a moment and ask the front desk to verify your funeral benefit beneficiary information. Please also check to see that we have your correct email address. JULY–SEPTEMBER 2016 31
MEMBER STATUS NEW MEMBBERS Todd Alan Anderson BAS 887 Bernard Couch Drive Anniston, AL 36207 Hm (256) 691-6803 David H Baron PIA KEY SYN Box 153 26 Sun Mountain Rd Boiceville, NY 12412 Cell (646) 221-3912 Hm (212) 869-8080 Kristen Joy Bowers (Kristin Bowers) FHN 302 Paragon Mills Road Nashville, TN 37211 Cell (615) 429-6538
Rachael Davis VOC GTR UKE 1832 Primrose Avenue Nashville, TN 37212 Cell (231) 884-0424
Stephen Lewis BAS GTR MDN 5361 Trousdale Dr Nashville, TN 37220 Cell (931) 334-9826
Richard Deroberts (Andrew Deroberts) Dba The Lanercost Company 1616 Eastside Ave Nashville, TN 37206 Cell (614) 296-2155
Andy May GTR MDN P.O. Box 231 Gladeville, TN 37071 Hm (615) 428-1008
Keegan Edward Dewitt GTR PIA BAS DRM VOC 1117 North 7th St Nashville, TN 37207 Cell (310) 597-1006
C Russell Bridges BAS GTR PIA TPT 2120 Circle Drive Columbia, TN 38401
Jon William Doughty (Will Doughty) PIA VOC 7421 Lords Chapel Dr Nashville, TN 37211 Cell (615) 456-8080 Hm (615) 456-8080
Daniel James Brigham PRG GTR BAS PIA 2101 Belmont Blvd Apt 603 Nashville, TN 37212 Hm (615) 414-4201
Jason M Gantt PRG BAS DRM VOC GTR 1125 Mistletoe Circle Hermitage, TN 37076 Cell (615) 485-9080
Jonathan Edward Brown PIA 107 Springbrook Blvd White House, TN 37188 Cell (615) 828-2983
Jennifer Karen Hartswick TPT VOC 711 Kent Rd Nashville, TN 37214 Cell (615) 939-3633
Sylvester John Bryant (Sam Bryant) DRM CJN PRC 1594 Anita Lane Seaford, NY 11783 Cell (910) 398-3329 Hm (516) 783-6018
Ryan Jackson Holladay GTR MDN BAS BJO 910 St Andrews Dr Apt #P6 Murfreesboro, TN 37128 Cell (731) 441-3091
Bentley T Caldwell GTR VOC 180 Wallace Rd Apt #J3 Nashville, TN 37211 Hm (270) 559-1267 Jeffrey A Clemens DRM VOC 109 Stoneway Close Nashville, TN 37209 Cell (504) 975-5192 Jarrod T Cure GTR BJO 5934 Obrien Ave Nashville, TN 37209 Hm (615) 979-5634 Dominic John Davis (Dominic Suchyta) GTR DRM 1832 Primrose Ave Nashville, TN 37212 Cell (517) 449-0703
Brandon C Hood GTR BJO BAS DRM PIA 1909 Wildwood Ave Nashville, TN 37212 Cell (706) 835-6014 Andrew J Keenan (Andy Keenan) GTR PST DBR BJO SAX 1344 Stratford Ave Nashville, TN 37216 Cell (215) 300-9292 Kevin M Key GTR BAS DBR VOC 229 Neal Ave Smyrna, TN 37167 Hm (615) 335-5021 Andrew Tyler Lambert (Drew Lambert) BAS PIA GTR PRC 3017 Runabout Drive Nashville, TN 37217 Cell (615) 594-7151
Ernie Bryan McCoy DRM GTR 113 Williams Ave Apt A3 Bridgeport, AL 35740 Hm (423) 290-6608 Lindsey Miller GTR BJO MDN GNJ 8119 Valley Oak Dr Brentwood, TN 37027 Hm (817) 966-0058 Stefan Thomas Miller GTR 242 Highland Villa Cir Nashville, TN 37211 Cell (270) 230-6273 Ashley Monroe (Ashley Lauren Danks) GTR VOC 2300 Charlotte Ave Ste 103 Nashville, TN 37203-0020 Cameron Jaymes Montgomery GTR BAS PIA MDN DRM 493 Saddle Dr Nashville, TN 37221 Cell (602) 350-8932 Joe Murphy (Leslie Joseph Murphy II) BAS TBA ARR 1515 5th Ave N Ste 125 Nashville, TN 37208 Hm (615) 394-3920 Colleen I Phelps PRC MRB 8207 Sawyer Brown Rd. O-6 Nashville, TN 37221 Cell (513) 919-1133 Ben Joseph Probus FDL VLN MDN GTR 3590 Boyds Knob Rd Munfordville, KY 42765 Cell (270) 991-1568 Logan Ramp GTR BAS DBR 108 Thompson Lane Apt C-09 Nashville, TN 37211 Hm (317) 450-6285
Luke Fitzpatrick Reynolds BJO DRM GTR HRM MDN PIA VOC PO Box 340020 Nashville, TN 37203 Hm (615) 305-7000 Christina Simpson VLN VLA ARR 117 S. 13th Street Nashville, TN 37206 Cell (615) 974-9447 Benjamin P. Sims (Ben Sims) DRM 2111 Highway 323 Gillsville, GA 30543 Cell (404) 307-6448 Keith E Smith TPT KEY DRM FHN VOC In Sound Enterprises 352 Astor Way Franklin, TN 37064 Cell (615) 830-3288 Jeremy Stover GTR PRC 4208 Two Rivers Lane Franklin, TN 37069 Hm (615) 425-8629 Richard R Swiger PST 2309 Marsha Dr Madison, TN 37115 Cell( 615) 784-9996 Hm (408) 601-8477 Gregory Wayne Watson (Greg Watson) BAS VOC 692 St Blaise Rd Gallatin, TN 37066 Cell (910) 622-0898 Kristin E Weber 808-a Knox Ave Nashville, TN 37204 Cell (615) 515-3838 Clayton Hale White (Hale White) GTR PIA ORG KEY 8441 Callabee Way H-6 Antioch, TN 37013 Hm (615) 479-5141 RESIGNED Adrienne Harmon Kathryn Howse Edwin Imer Santiago Charles Richard West REINSTATED Roy Buell Agee Vernon M Arnold Denise Elaine Baker Billy Ray Barnette Bennie P Beach Adam Beard
Jeffrey Seth Brown Robert Edward Brulo David James Carr Michael Casteel David Allan Coe Darin Lee Favorite Eric T Flores Jesse Barnard Franklin, III Elaine Garton Frizzell Quenton Keith Gattis John Gavin Gerald Craig Greer Larry Thomas Harden Robert Harsen Derek Harville Amos Jacob Heller Chip Henderson John Charles Hinchey Bobby G Huff James P Hyde James David Jones, III Keith H Landry Patrick S Lassiter Kevin Hugh Moore Joe Murphy Jimmie Ray Murrell James A Nalls, III David Clark Neal Mark Oakley Dean Pastin Hyram Lee Posey Christopher Aaron Powell Lex P Price Ronnie Victor Prophet Brent Rader Steve Romero Harry Lee Smith, III Donna Kay Stallings Michael Lewis Swope Lou Toomey Guthrie Trapp Jonathan Marc Trebing John Henry Trinko Christopher Walters Mingzhe Wang James Marshall White Melinda Bootz Whitley EXPELLED Roland Jabari Barber Ray Allen Cardwell Bernard V Chiaravalle Benjamin T Clark Thornton Douglas Cline Alexander Shigemitsu Hargrave Vincent L Heckard Jason Howard Anderson Dirk Johnson Gail Rudisill Johnson James Kendall Lester Clifford Edward Long Michael Derek Mixon Daniel Joseph O’Lannerghty Thomas John Paul Samulak Herb Shucher Joseph Smyth, III Timothy J Thompson Raymond von Rotz Derrick Ryan Whiteside
32 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
JULYâ€“SEPTEMBER 2016 33
DO NOT WORK FOR
The “Do Not Work For” list exists to warn our members, other musicians and the general public about employers who, according to our records, owe players money and/or pension, have failed to sign the appropriate AFM signatory documents required to make the appropriate pension contribution, or are soliciting union members to do non-union work. TOP OFFENDERS LIST
RecordingMusicians.com - Alan and Cathy Umstead are soliciting non-union recording work through this website and elsewhere. Do not work for them under any circumstances without an AFM contract. These are employers who owe musicians large amounts of money and have thus far refused to fulfill their contractual obligations to Local 257 musicians. Positive Movement/Tommy Sims (multiple unpaid contracts – 2007 Making Payments) Terry K. Johnson/ 1720 Entertainment (unpaid contracts/unauthorized sales - Jamie O’Neal project) Beautiful Monkey/JAB Country/Josh Gracin Eric Legg & Tracey Legg (multiple unpaid contracts) Ray Vega/Casa Vega Quarterback/G Force/Doug Anderson Rust Records/Ken Cooper (unpaid contracts and pension) Revelator/Gregg Brown (multiple bounced checks/unpaid contracts) HonkyTone Records – Debbie Randle
Mike Ward Music (pension/demo signature) Joseph McClelland Tim McDonald Joe Meyers Missionary Music Jason Morales (pension/demo signature) O Street Mansion OTB Publishing (pension/demo signature) Tebey Ottoh Ride N High Records Ronnie Palmer Barry Preston Smith Jason Sturgeon Music
AFM NON-SIGNATORY PHONO LIST
We do not have signatory paperwork from the following employers — pension may have been paid in some cases, but cannot be credited to the proper musicians without a signatory agreement in place. If you can provide us with current contact info for these people, we will make sure you get your proper pension contribution for your work.
UNPAID CONTRACTS AND PENSION
Casa Vega/Ray Vega Knight Brothers/Harold, Dean, Danny & Curtis Knight RLS Records-Nashville/Ronald Stone Region One Records RichDor Music/Keith Brown River County Band/SVC Entertainment (unpaid demo conversion/pension) Robbins Nashville Jeff Huskins
UNPAID PENSION ONLY
Conchita Leeflang/Chris Sevier Ricky D. Cook FJH Enterprises First Tribe Media Matthew Flinchum dba Resilient Jimmy Fohn Music Rebecca Frederick Goofy Footed Gospocentric Tony Graham Jeffrey Green/Cahernzcole House Randy Hatchett Highland Music Publishing In Light Records/Rick Lloyd Little Red Hen Records/Arjana Olson Maverick Management Group
34 THE NASHVILLE MUSICIAN
604 Records Heaven Productions Stonebridge Station Entertainment Donica Knight Trent Wilmon The CollectiveCharles Bentley III Kelsey Lamb Randall Poole Frances Cunningham Philip Lawson Cassady Feasby Sterling Abernathy Chris LaCorte Galen Butler Richard B. Young Matt Stanfield
JULYâ€“SEPTEMBER 2016 35
Nashville Musicians Association PO Box 120399 Nashville, TN 37212-0399 —Address Service Requested—
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The Official Journal of the Nashville Musicians Association, AFM Local 257. This quarter featuring Buddy Miller, Curly Seckler, Cowboy Joe B...
Published on Aug 9, 2016
The Official Journal of the Nashville Musicians Association, AFM Local 257. This quarter featuring Buddy Miller, Curly Seckler, Cowboy Joe B...