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ISSUE No.1 JULY 2012

FIVE KNIVES | OLD MADE GOOD | SAVANT VINTAGE | JACKALOPE BREWERY | DCXV PETER NAPPI | THE COFFEE TRUCK | BENTON-C | JARED FREIHOEFER | THE STORY OF FILM | MOONRISE KINGDOM | THE PHARMACY | No. 308 | MICHAEL BROWN | MORE JULY | 2012

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what do you

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THIS MONTH AT THE BELCOURT JULY | 2012

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CONTENTS 8

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Five Knives are making a name for themselves.

The Pharmacy’s perfectly crafted burgers, wursts, and phosphate sodas will make you feel better.

Known Around Town (And I Like It Like That)

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Tristen

With a new album on the way, Tristen talks about Nashville, inspiration, and French cultural theorist Baudrillard, among other things.

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2D Menagerie

Jared Freihoefer’s new mural in 12 South.

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Visual Music

World famous video artist Benton-C talks about his work.

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The Unreality of Reality Michael Brown talks about his new work at the Rymer Gallery.

The Wurst-Burger Joint in Nashville

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NASHVILLE FOR NASHVILLE

DCXV is taking hometown pride to a whole new level.

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let there be Southern Lights

Adam Gatchel makes the transition from musician to light-maker.

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NASHVILLE’S NEW BOOTS These (Peter Nappi) boots were made (in Italy) for walkin’.

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Savant Vintage Lookbook

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The newest trends in summer fashion aren’t new at all.

Robyn Virball and Bailey Spaulding of Jackalope Brewery bust up the boys’ club.

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Green Fleet’s new Hub is now up and running, er... biking.

Juliet and Sutherland Seals serve some of the world’s best coffee, out of a truck.

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Lord, Beer Me Strength

HOT (COFFEE) WHEELS

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No. 308 Cocktail of the Month

This month, learn how to make the firey Big Woo.

J U LY 2 0 1 2

a to b: It’s a Great Day for a Ride

OM(F)G

How Kate Mills and Ashley Sheehan turned Old Made Good into a beacon of Nashville creativity.

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Film Nerd Music City

Nashvillians should cultivate a love for film, and they can start with The Story of Film. JULY | 2012

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mÄmbu is an eclectic and inviting place to enjoy enjoying an intimate dinner date or drinks with friends, but it’s also great spot to start a night on the town. Our fully-stocked Hideaway Bar features the finest spirits, wines and beers. Our wine list brings you variety and quality at affordable prices. We also have amazing house specialty drinks like the Ginger Bomb (made from our own house-made ginger elixir), the Lemon Balm Martini (our version of a lemon drop martini), and the Presbyterian (made from local Belle Meade bourbon). We also serve local organic gin and vanilla bean vodka from Corsair Artisan Distillery. Our drinks are especially good when enjoyed on our funky covered patio. In the mood for something light? We also offer very affordable small plates, that are $5 or $6 during Happy Hour, which is from 4-6 Monday-Friday. It’s time for you to experience mÄmbu. We can’t wait to see you!

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Editor’s Letter:

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’ve been writing this letter in my head for some time now, but I never thought I would get a chance to actually write it. You’re reading this because a small army of brilliant creative people worked their asses off, lost sleep, and donated time to make this first issue a reality. I will always be grateful to them for the help they have given me and each other in the process of creating this magazine. You may not realize it, but this is a very special moment. Right now, you’re holding one of the very first issues of Native ever printed, in the world, ever. Go ahead, give yourself a pat on the back. You must be a cool person! Unless you accidentally picked this up, thinking it was a different magazine... wait! No, don’t go! Stick around. Feel free to peruse. We think you’ll like it. If you’re “into” any of the following: film, music, art, design, clothes, food, drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic varieties), or, um... bicycles, then you’re going to love Native. If you don’t like any of those things, well, I mean, come on. Really? As I was saying, Native is Nashville’s new monthly culture magazine. We’re here to document and share all of the amazing things that are being poured, played, filmed, performed, painted, shown, designed, cooked, ridden, sewn, or otherwise created here in Nashville. We do this because we love it. We love Nashville, and we love culture. We’re artists, designers, musicians, writers, and... um... I’m not sure what Steve does. You may notice that a lot of the contributors and people featured in our magazine aren’t originally from around here. While that’s not exactly deliberate, it helps to illustrate an important point: Native is a magazine for all locals, not just the true-to-the-dictionary “natives.” As far as we’re concerned, you’re a native if you love this city. People are drawn to this place from all over, and they have been for a long time. It’s an uprooted big small town that welcomes newcomers with open arms. We decided to call the magazine “Native” because Nashville is the kind of city where anyone can become one. And just so you know, it doesn’t take long to feel like a native, if you don’t feel like one already. All you have to do is give Nashville a chance to make you one of its own. There’s never been a better time to be here. I hope you enjoy our first issue and all the things we’ve found to share with you this month. Thanks for picking us up and taking us home. See you again in August.

President: Angelique Pittman Publisher: Jonathan Pittman Editor-in-Chief: Dave Pittman Managing Editor: Cayla Mackey Creative Director: Mackenzie moore Advertising: Joshua sirchio

Writers: Gillis bernard Megan pacella cat acree andri alexandrou rachel bubis sarah brown b.b. wright ray degout elizabeth grey

Photographers: Jon Morrell Jeremy ryan Sebastian rogers Will holland Josh Marx quinn ballard

to advertise, contact:

Sales@Natv.is Dave Pittman Editor-in-Chief

For all other enquiries:

Hello@Natv.is SPECIAL THANKS TO ALL OF OUR ADVERTISERS FOR BELIEVING IN US AND SUPPORTING THIS FIRST ISSUE OF NATIVE. WITHOUT YOU, THIS WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN POSSIBLE.

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Known Around Town (AND I LIKE IT LIKE THAT)

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It stinks like sweaty cigarettes. People press together toward the front of the basement where the “stage” is, if you can call it that. It could be more accurately described as “the area where the bands play.”

Three guys dressed in black, quasi-punk-Sovietesque-military garb and bandana skull masks are plugging in instruments, microphones, and other electronics. A girl in knee-high socks and neon yellow booty shorts hovers around the mix board in the back of the room, like a fighter about to enter the ring. “East Nashville Underground” is bannered in pink and blue graffiti on the back wall. A fog of tobacco smoke and water vapor crawls along the abnormally-low ceiling toward the band, the ceiling is plywood and so is the back wall. Kitschy Christmas lights run down the left side of the room, and red rope lights snake around the drum set and over the unfinished concrete floor. One of the drums is illuminated (apparently from the inside, but I’m still not positive about that) ...

(above) PHOTO JOSH JULY | 2012 MARX NATIVE

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eople crowd into the tiny room. They are here to see Five Knives, a Nashville-based electronic punk band whose talent, presence, and unique sound have delivered them from basements to main-stage music venues. For their first show, they opened for the London-based alternative rock powerhouse Bush. More recently, they’ve played Mercy Lounge, Exit/In, and the High Watt, as well as performed on numerous stages at South by Southwest (SXSW) in Austin, Texas. They were also booked to play the mainstage at Snowmont Music Festival along with Snoop Dog and The Flaming Lips, which would have launched them even further, if it weren’t for the festival’s unfortunate cancellation. Their loss was our gain. For now, you don’t have to travel all the way to Vermont to catch them, and they’re OK with that. They credit Nashville’s robust music scene, vibrantly teeming more than ever before, with their existence. On this specific night, they’re playing at East Nashville Underground, a quarterly underground music festival hosted literally underground, in the basement of a house on the East Side. On stage, deep distortion and twinkling trance chimes blast through the floor speaker stacks. In the back of the basement behind a faded couch, some guys hustle to adjust the levels of the mix board, almost panicked. It’s funny. The other bands who played earlier in the night were fairly conventional—a couple of guitars and some drums and vocals. Consoles, skull masks, bone-rattling bass, and lasers were a shock to the system. Five Knives is full force now, bobbing up and down to their own music. As the noise builds, the drummer throws his weight into every pounding hit and crash over the fuzz. Outside the house, it’s obvious that the music has started, even more people start pouring into the room, drawn by the entrancing combination of acoustic and digital bass rhythms. Not all of these newcomers are familiar with Five Knives, but everyone is excited by what they hear. They’ve come with their shaggy manes and perfectly polished nails to drink beer and, of course, to check out the coolest “underground” acts in a city that boasts the best music scene in the country. Even as the show picks up, it’s clear that something is missing. The girl in the neon booty shorts slices her way through the middle of the crowd and mounts the foot-high drum platform to join the rest of the band. The three guys in skull masks don’t seem to notice her. She grabs the mic and spins to face the audience. As she yells the words to the song, she wraps the cord around her hands. “I’m like, ‘What-what who you think you’re messin’ with?’ ” The crowd loses its collective inhibitions. “You are the riot, I am the violence.” Her vocals are a fusion of natural voice and the mic-ed, distorted words coming through the loudspeakers. She doesn’t wear a skull mask, but that’s the point. No one can take their eyes off hers, sharply lined in fluorescent pink and blue. She stands out as a singular splash of color against a dark backdrop in this carefully painted picture. She jumps on top of the kick drum with her back facing the crowd. She kangaroos up and down and then throws herself across the stage. She wraps herself in the mic-cord, and thrashes her blonde, razor-cut hair through the pulsing air. The two guys

manning the consoles on stage rarely take their eyes off their hands, but when they do, it’s to look at her. They’re responding to each other. At one point she holds the mic to one of the guys as he sings into his own. He, in turn, picks up the device he’s playing on and holds it up to the crowd, giving us a rare glimpse of what producing electronic music actually looks like. In moments like this, Five Knives proves that electronic music can actually be performed live. It leaves no room for excuses for those artists who stand behind a laptop, solitary and unmoving. Most of the mixing, distortion, and other sonic elements don’t arrive on stage prerecorded. Paired with live drums, bass, and vocals, the electronic music they’re performing is coming from real people in real time. The main room is now full. As Five Knives blends from song to song, more people crowd into the plexiglass window in another room, next to the stage. One white guy with a short fro and window frames crouches and presses his ear to the four-foot speaker on the left of the stage. A grin spreads across his face. He looks back at me and screams the words, “I can’t hear anything,” as he points enthusiastically to his other ear. His words are drowned out by the music before they even leave his mouth. Anna Worstell, the girl in the neon shorts and knee-high socks, is used to performing. In her own words, “If someone pays to come see a show, they’re gonna get a show.” As the creator and eponymous frontman of The Worsties, a Nashville punk institution that opened for Bon Jovi, she knows what she’s doing on stage. She knew from a young age that she wanted to be a performer, having spent spent a formative part of her childhood in Montreal, a known hotbed for the arts (and performing arts in particular). “Montreal defines my creativity,” she says. She performed ballets and operettas growing-up, until her family moved to Florida in her middle school years. According to her, “Something changes in me whenever I’m on stage. The stage does something to me. It flips a switch.” Anna’s proclivity to performance was obvious to Lamar Baptiste, who approached Anna a year ago with the idea to collaborate on the project that became Five Knives. He had first seen Anna perform when he saw a Worsties show five years ago. The partnership was not immediately obvious, however. As Anna said, “The first time we met, we actually got in a fight. Our personalities totally clashed.” It wasn’t until a year ago that Lamar approached Anna with idea of working together. It wasn’t until a year ago that Lamar approached Anna with idea of working together. He was working on tracks with Zach Hall, a fellow programmer, at the time. As Zach recalls, “When Five Knives started, Lamar and I had already been working together for a couple years. We kept generating really crazy electronic stuff. Five Knives seemed like the right name for the sound. As soon as we wrote the first few songs, ‘All Fall Down’ and ‘Ratattat,’ we knew we were on to something. But we didn’t know exactly where it was going. We weren’t really pursuing it just yet.” They were missing something. The music was great by itself: the pounding bass lines, the drowned distortion, the dance grooves. But it was too conventional. Then they had an idea. “Having a group of dudes was expected. It’s aggressive music,”

“If someone pays to come see a show,

they’re gonna get a show.”

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(below) PHOTO WILL HOLLAND

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(above) PHOTOS JOSH MARX

Zach explains. “We thought that having a girl who’s a bad ass up front, fronting the band and singing lead vocals, would be the right move. It would make our music stand out.” They decided to give it a shot. They called Anna in, who Lamar remembered from the fight. Unexpectedly, the chemistry was instant, and the three of them immediately started plowing ahead into new material. “Once we had Anna on the tracks, that’s when we knew that we had something that was complete,” says Zach. Within half a year, they recruited drummer Shane Wise and together planned their EP releases and performances. Zach and Lamar run the consoles on stage together when they perform live. Five Knives still uses Zach’s studio in Marathon Village for tracking. Lamar and Zach write most of the songs together. They send each other files of ideas and recordings, which start out as virtual chains and evolve into emotive live performances. Lamar finds inspiration for an unusual source - old fashion magazines. “I love old fashion magazines,” he says. “They’re my muse. I get a lot of inspiration by flipping through those. It makes ideas bubble up for me. That might be why we fit into the fashion world so well.” Five Knives was the kickoff band for Nashville Fashion Week this past Spring, and played Naked Without Us at the Exit/In last month. The goal of Five Knives is to create dark electro-pop that puts on a kick-ass live show. Five Knives is more than a band - it’s an art project. Videos and photo shoots are as important as the music itself. Five Knives works within the tight-knit Nashville creative community to collaborate across disciplines. “All our friends are the greatest photographers, the greatest video directors, the greatest graphic designers and web

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designers,” says Lamar. They all work together and had a hand in the creation of Five Knives. “They just want to be a part of it,” he explains. For example, Lamar’s cousin did the website, web design, and the Five Knives logo. Will Holland, the talented multi-disciplinary creative, shot some of their early photos, and revered videographer Josh Marx shot their new music video for “Take My Picture.” In a world where artists are struggling to figure out how to perform electronic music live, Five Knives has found the magic formula.

“ We want danceable music ... but it’s a real band performing it, it’s not just someone up there spinning it .” They’re wizards of live sonic alchemy, blending analog and electronic elements. “We want danceable music like Pretty Lights would do, or like a DJ would do, but it’s a real band performing it, it’s not just someone up there spinning it,” says Anna. “Electronic music is the new jam band. The only thing that’s missing is an actual human performance with that type of music backing it. We know that performable electronic music is the future, and that’s what we do.” Even though they describe their music as electronic punk, Five Knives isn’t sticking to any one sound. They’re bound by a

commitment to pull people’s attention. You can’t do the same thing for very long and maintain that. Says Lamar, “We want to move people, literally and figuratively. I want people to feel something. I want them be intrigued. That’s part of why we wear masks.” As Anna says, “We just want to look like street kids that are ready to f*** some shit up.” Like Nashville, Five Knives is based on transformation. “I see us moving and changing,” says Lamar. He moved here from Raleigh, North Carolina 12 years ago and has been heavily involved in the music scene here. “I’ve seen Nashville go through the ups and downs,” he says. “I remember five and six years ago a lot of A&R people from L.A. and New York were here every weekend looking for bands. Then Nashville went through a lull and there was mostly underground stuff. Now, Jack White, The Black Keys and the Kings of Leon are here. They sort of made Nashville cool again. There are now really cool bands coming out of Nashville, like Jeff the Brotherhood, among others. It’s a really good time to be in Nashville.” This distinctive Nashville music scene bred Five Knives and fuels its growth. “I love living in Nashville and having creative people around. There are so many great bands here,” says Lamar.  Still, part of making art is pushing boundaries. Five Knives is challenging more than audiences. Many of the shows they play feature a diversity of acts that range from similar to completely disparate. But that’s part of what makes the shows so much fun. According to Lamar, “It’s interesting playing with a bunch of rock bands. We’re the only band that shows up with a million things to plug in. It takes us forever to set up, but that’s just what we do.” Since they started recording last year, Five Knives has put out three EPs - Un, Deux, and


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(above) PHOTO WILL HOLLAND

Trois. Their first show ever was Halloween of 2011 when they opened with Bush at the third annual Haunted Valley Block Party between Mai and 12th and Porter. The french-inspired titles and lyrics come from Anna, who speaks French, which she learned growing up in Montreal (before moving to Florida, where she went to a “super-conservative christian school” and joined “the dirtiest punk band of all time”). Five Knives self-releases their music, throwing the launch parties in friends basements. Friends also contributed the remixes to their tracks, credited to Noisefloor, ArkiteQT, Telemitry, BoyGenius, and SoJorn. The remixed tracks range from dubstep to glitchy trance to hard-driving electrometal, incorporating floor-breaking drops, tempo changes, and spliced lyrics in a dizzying array of musical breadth. Five Knives’ independent, bootstrapping attitude comes through in the music. Their song “The Rising” speaks to their beliefs about creative integrity and owning their art. The lyrics are, “You can keep your money because I’d rather go hungry. So, make your bed where the cash is and be a bitch for the masses. From London to Soho, the kids want control. Blow up the radio. Burn down the disco.” In a time where big music corporations are fading in favor of the self-owned artists and small labels, Five Knives has their proverbial shit figured out. They’re an example of the norm in Nashville: artists lifting each other up. Nashville-based hip-hop artist Chancellor Warhol contributed vocals for “Drum Machine” on Trois. As Anna recalls, “He honestly just came into the studio, wrote down a couple of notes, and free-styled.” The vocals were recorded in only a couple of takes. Chance says, “I’ve known Lamar and his brother for a long time. When we get together to work, it’s friends getting together. They’ve

worked on my projects in the past. We’re like family. We just get in the zone and do what we love. We’re both fans of each other’s music so it was great to come together and make something great.” Like Lamar, Chance functions at the intersection of fashion and music. He formerly worked as a stylist at Posh. According to him, the collaboration on “Drum Machine” brought a diverse tone to the track. This type of successful collaboration was made possible by the nature of the music scene in Nashville. “I’m a Nashville Native,” he says. “Everything I do is to shed a light on the music scene in Nashville and to represent the city.” “Nashville’s the new mecca of music,” Chance says. “You could see Katy Perry or Nas any day on the street. Nashville has always been Music City, but recently people are starting to realize that there’s so much more than country music here. We have the Kings of Leon, Paramore, and the Blackfoot Gypsies all in one city. The diversity of the music scene allows genres to blend and allows collaboration to happen in a successful way.” Due to this diversity of sound, it’s hard to describe Five Knives. Their genre-proof music blends influences such as Crystal Castles and Justice with Lamar’s passion for 80s music like Depeche Mode and New Order with punk influences like the Clash. Lamar says, “It’s a really cool mix.” Anna has a different take on it. According to her, “If Trent Reznor and M.I.A. had some weird rock-hip-hop baby, then that’s probably what we are.” As a performer, she cites Veruca Salt, Iggy Pop, and Freddie Mercury as her biggest influences. According to Anna, Tragic Kingdom, the album by Gwen Stefani, “changed her life.” Five Knives’ versatile musical abilities are a testament to the different outlets they find for their talents. Broadly, Five Knives is a blend of

opposites: pop and metal, electronic and acoustic, dark and upbeat. A track title that defines this amalgamation is “Fairytales and Razorblades” from Trois. Referring to the South African group Die Antwoord, Anna explains Five Knives as hovering in the space between complete transfixation and making you feel like you need to go back to Sunday School. Says Anna, the reason why the male members of Five Knives wear skull masks is because, “We want to make you feel a little bit uncomfortable.” Comfort levels aside, Five Knives is a band that has already taken off and will undoubtedly continue its ascent. They showcase the diversity of the Nashville music scene and demonstrate the interdisciplinary nature of the arts in Music City. As in its past, Nashville is again a breeding ground for world-changing musical acts. As a definitively uprooted city, Nashville attracts multi-talented artists who are pushing boundaries. More and more bands are growing successful careers in Nashville and basing themselves here, and the international music community is taking notice. Five Knives’ song “White Light Riot” sums this up in a way. Even though the song is literally about alien abduction, one can read meta-layers of meaning: “All of us, they want all of us. Far from home where we don’t belong. Taking us, taking all of us. To the sky with a blinding light.” The last song crescendos. The girl in the neon shorts belts out one last sirenical yell. The lasers go dark and the music stops, but the concrete and plywood room is still deafeningly loud. This time, it’s the screaming, clapping, and banging on the ceiling of the audience. Everyone on stage drenched with a satisfying sweat. Long after the ringing in my ears fades, Five Knives keeps ringing in my head.

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BY CAYLA MACKEY | PHOTOS DAVE PITTMAN

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he first time I saw Tristen was back in 2010. She was playing at 12th and Porter, and the audience was an even scattering of people. She played an unexpected and mesmerizing set that rocked my tiny little world. Tristen was boldly confident. Her performance was so well put together that not even wrecking ball could shake the tightly-built, pop-infused songs. At that moment, if Tristen was a color, she would have been the steely blue of industrial metal - strong and permanent. I was hooked, and so was everyone else in the room. The second time I saw Tristen was at Bonnaroo in 2011. She was at one of the small stages, and she had amassed a crowd so big that I had to stand on a picnic table to see. Earlier that year she had released her album Charlatans at the Gate, which received a firm nod from basically every legitimate music-reviewing institution—NPR, Spin, Paste, Slant, and Rolling Stone included. Then, in 2012, I got the chance to spend some time with her between shows on her current national tour. We met at Sip in Riverside Village in East Nashville. I walked through the small coffee shop out onto the patio and found her sitting with her back to the far wall. She had a new haircut, replacing her banged, midlength hair with an above-the-shoulder crop. And she was wearing a fantastic pullover, a black jersey with orange, glittery feathers over a tiger’s face. Tristen was instantly disarming. She had just gotten back from Bonnaroo, and I could tell she had enjoyed it, in that special way that only a musician could. No, I’m not talking about drugs. I’m talking about the electrifying energy of inspiration, of creative stimulation. She talked excitedly about how she was now in the middle of writing a new song and how much she loved being outside. I could tell we were going to get along. Tristen Gaspadarek is from Lansing, Illinois, which she will tell you is “basically Chicago.” She moved to Nashville five years ago in 2007 to pursue music, which she has done seriously since she was 14. Now 29, Tristen thrives in Nashville. “Me and my guitar-player-slash-fiancé live right here in Inglewood,” she says. “We have an awesome house. He has his space and I have my space, and we have rehearsal space in the house. Our dining room is where I do a lot of the CD stuff. We have a perfect creative space. I love my house, I love my garden. I love my home life.” Tristen is constantly re-inventing herself. That’s what initially drew her to Nashville in the first place. She initially came to Nashville to record an album after graduating from college. “I had a really great experience recording my record

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in Nashville,” she says, “so I decided to move here permanently. I basically pushed the reset button and moved to Nashville,” she recalls. “It’s very easy to go down a road aimlessly following the next step. I got to that next step and had a panic attack. Sometimes you have to do that if you want to be happy.” And she knew she could be happy in Nashville. She adds, “I like Nashville because it’s calm and I can retreat here.” For Tristen, having a place to retreat to is important because she spends so much time on the road. “Touring is the only way I want to make a living,” she says, “I love touring, traveling, meeting people, and performing. It’s so much fun and it’s such hard work. It takes it out of you and makes you so exhausted and zapped that you know you’re doing something right. It gets you to that place where you’re not thinking about your thoughts. That’s where I’m the happiest.” Outside of music, Tristen cites other reasons Nashville is a great place to be for creative people. “Here it’s really cheap. You don’t have to work that much to be able to survive. That’s really good if you want to be an artist.” Nashville’s size is another positive aspect. It’s small enough to meet people easily and to maintain relationships, but large enough to still be a city. Even though she’s on tour most of the time, she still gets out. As she says, “I will still go to a show and be like, ‘F*** yeah, Nashville’s the coolest!’” She’s always trying to support fellow musicians. “I just went to see Daniel Pujol’s CD release,” she offers as an example. “It

was an awesome group of people and an awesome night of music. It was really nice. The vibes were really positive and everyone was feeling really good about things. It’s a great group of people who are doing things completely from scratch.” Her next album, due out this fall, will include a merging of electronic influences, something new for Tristen. In fact, Charlatans at the Gate was recorded at Battle Tapes, the local, now famous, studio. Tristen wrote most of the songs for her upcoming album on keyboard,  a definite departure from the last four years, during which she wrote and performed mostly on guitar. She tells me that her new record will be a pop record, but her style of pop is more sophisticated than what most of us think of when we hear that little three-letter word. As NPR noted, she’s an A+ student of the pop hook, specializing in the great pop styles of the 60s and 70s. Her new album employs organ, synthesizers, strings, and electronic and live drums mixed together. As she explains, “I want to merge the modern things we can make using machines with the organic sounds that make people feel human. I’m making something that’s kind of a melding of those two elements.” Tristen is currently in the process of re-tracking and mixing the album. “It’s a long process,” she says. She started work on the album in August of last year. Even though it will have taken a year to produce, that will be faster than Tristen has ever worked before. Instead of using one studio for the entire album, as she did with Charlatans at the Gate, Tristen is piecing together her new upcoming album in different places. She did basic tracking at Alex The Great and is re-

“I want to merge the modern things we can make using machines with the organic sounds that make people feel human. ”

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cutting drums and vocals at Sound Emporium. Both studios are in Nashville. Her upcoming album has also taken her to fabulous Omaha, Nebraska, where she worked with Mike Mogis of Bright Eyes. “Besides being a great musician, he’s also a talented producer and mixer,” she notes. While in Omaha, Tristen also cut strings with a quartet of Omaha Symphony musicians, something that was completely new for her. Here in Nashville, Tristen collaborates with other talented musicians on a regular basis. Playing a show with one in particular convinced her to start touring. She recalls, “I played a show in Asheville with Chris Scruggs at Jack of the Wood. We drove five hours to get there, and we played. And that was it. I was like, ‘Ahh! I want to tour!’” She and Nashville indieAmericana musician Caitlin Rose collaborated on parts of Charlatans at the Gate. “We used to have a group together here called The Garland Sisters,” says Tristen, “We did that for six months. You know how this town is. We were just running around having fun. In 2008, Caitlin helped me write ‘Tadpoles.’ She also sings background vocals on ‘Eager for Your Love.’” Tristen’s current album has been described as “folk-pop” and involves organ, tambourine, cello, acoustic guitar, and piano. In it, Tristen dances through contagious pop ballads. As a

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sociology buff (in college studied she studied “relational group and organizational theories of communication”), she writes mostly about the intricacies of human relations, and love. Any conversation with Tristen reveals her obsession with academic sociology and other nerdy, enlightened pursuits. On the day we met, for example, the conversation spanned from Nietzsche to the French cultural theorist Baudrillard. We talked about Indian philosophy (Jiddu Krishnamurti) and her favorite NPR interviewer (Tom Ashbrook). Tristen is also a music geek, of course. She gushes over her newest acquirement: a Lowery Adventurer organ. She loves the churchy sounds of the instrument - the flute sounds and vibrato. “I like all that shit,” she says. That’s how she is. She likes a lot of things. She is academic, intellectual, creative, open to inspiration, sucking up the world around her like a sponge. She likes it all mixed together in her own particular way. She loves experimenting, collaborating, working hard, and developing as an artist. Tristen isn’t easily defined by a genre or category because her work reflects her true nature. She operates in a steady mode of constant, spontaneous re-invention, always looking for the next opportunity to push the “reset button” and try something new.


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f you don’t know what you’re looking for, if you’re not a regular at the 12 South Taproom, you’ll miss it. Which is hard to believe, given its size and color, but Jared Freihoefer’s new mural on the side of the neighborhood watering hole is for the locals. In it, a black and white trio of businessmen with animal heads stand around conversing against a two-tone purple background. There’s more to the work than meets the eye. Freihoefer is using this once-blank canvas to make a bigger statement about the nature of humanity and the 12 South neighborhood. According to Jared, the idea to paint a mural on the side of the 12 South Taproom actually came from Alex Torres, the Taproom’s owner. Jared says, “He just knew that he wanted something to go up over there. He just trusted me and left it up to me.” It’s unusual for a commission to permit such artistic freedom, it requires a high level of trust, something the staff at the Taproom have. “The great thing about 12 South Taproom is that we’re all really good friends,” says Jared. “We were all friends before the Taproom existed - and everyone has a side talent, whether it be music, art, photography, or writing.” For Jared, it happens to be art. For the past three years he’s held a studio at Track 13, a string of old train cars on the retired track behind Cummins Station downtown. He works with mixed media: collage work, decollage work, acrylic paint, and screen printing, among other media. “You name it, I’m probably going to try to use it,” he says. “I use whatever I can get my hands on.” This is evidenced by his most recent employment of the previouslyunadorned Taproom wall. The mural was completed May 15th of this year and has the pop of freshly-dried paint. It makes multiple statements. First, it’s a

Menagerie BY B.B.WRIGHT

reflection of the changes the 12 South neighborhood is experiencing. In between the Taproom and Savant Vintage Couture, a four-story condominium development has put the neighbors in an uproar. Jared’s work reflects this, “I thought it’d be cool to put some guys in some business suits with animal heads on there. It’s almost a commentary on the neighborhood and what’s going on next door, without being insulting to anyone. It’s keeping it playful.” What he means is that the 12 South area is undergoing a transformation. It’s known as a “neighborhoody” part of Nashville, generally free of big commercial real estate development. With the new condos, 12 Southers fear that the vibe will be lost to a less homey, less grassroots culture. Jared’s work is a visual representation of these growing pains. In his words, “It’s definitely an eclectic neighborhood, and we try to keep it that way.” The Taproom is a microcosm of this transition. Jared notes the change in clientele, “We see a lot of business people coming into the Taproom. Business in animalistic. I wanted to make a comment on that without insulting our customers. I had to be careful about what animals I chose. I picked animals that people wouldn’t be offended to be compared to.” Jared is also in the process of expanding the mural around the corner to the back wall. He plans on featuring more female characters, which are lacking in the current trio. “I’ve had some complaints,” he says, about the male-dominated wall, “so I’m taking care of that.” 12 South is a tolerant and liberal neighborhood, and Jared’s mural is an extension of that ethos. Even as the appearance of 12 South changes, the people who make it great will always be around. As the script graffiti says on the cinderblock wall opposite the mural, “The more things change, the more they stay the same.” JULY | 2012

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VISUAL

MUSIC BY ELIZABETH GREY

For more information about this artist, visit

Benton-C.com

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hrough the far window of the studio, the sun is setting beyond the Nashville skyline. Chairs circle the perimeter of the wood floor. A pool of faded, distorted ambient music drains into the room. Shapes, colors, splashes of light drift across the walls. The images are being projected by two seated men on opposite sides of the room. Each has a projector and a glass water bottle in their hands. A door opens in a corner and a single dancer glides into the expanse. Her face is calm, with a relaxed smile. Like fish, one by one other women follow her as she traces the room, turning at precise right angles. Each dancer wears either a blue dress or a blue shirt with white, eyelet shorts. This is Company Rose’s performance of “Pollen.” It is the Nashville-based, contemporary dance company’s first performance solely featuring improvisation. For forty minutes, the dancers move in freeform to live projection and manipulation of sound and video. It is here that I first met Benton-C Bainbridge, the video artist responsible for Company Rose’s mesmerizing visual accompaniment. Based in Nashville, Benton is a video artist who is defining “visual music.” Benton relocated to Nashville in October of 2010, and has since used Nashville as a creative homebase for his art. He’s a rare breed: a video artist. Many people don’t know what video art is, or what the term really means. For Benton, who goes by his artist name Benton-C, being a video artist means celebrating the act of seeing as a creative act. As a visual artist, Benton works at the intersection of technology, music, film, installation art, and dance. Benton is an internationally celebrated artist, having showcased works in Asia, Europe, Australia, and South America. Additionally, he has worked with well-known bands like TV

“ It’s like a TV from another dimension.” On The Radio and the Beastie Boys (whom he served for two world tours as the video/visual designer). For Tv On The Radio, he created analog effects that were used in their Staring at the Sun music video, which currently has over a million views on YouTube. According to Benton, he used a device called the Rutt/ Etra Video Synthesizer. In Benton’s words, “It’s like a TV from another dimension.” Right now, he’s currently on tour with the progressive metal band Dream Theater. This is just a taste of Benton’s world. His ultimate goal, which was inspired by Bill Etra, is to push for a future in which a “total plasticity” of sight and sound enables cinema to flow like conversation in a universal language that transcends cultural boundaries. His current installation at Seed Space, called “SUPER LONG PLAY!,” illustrates this well. Its goal is to put the power to create video art into the hands of the audience. The interactive installation consists of 50 orange VHS tapes and an old-school television sitting atop a pedestal that reads “please touch!”.  The idea is that people will interact with the outdated technology and participate in live video performance. For Benton, SUPER LONG PLAY! is a return to technologies that aren’t restrictively complicated, “VHS is my pencil and paper. Its non-precious material. That’s very freeing.” Conversely,

most of Benton’s time is spent wrestling with technology that’s on the leading edge, technologies that are incredibly complicated and expensive. “I wanted to be free of worrying about the tech so that I could just concentrate on sketching.” The result is a lo-fi electronic sketchbook that puts the power to create into the hands of the visitor. As with most of his projects, Benton collaborated with numerous people in the creation of SUPER LONG PLAY!, including  his six year old son, who features in one video. Other collaborators include: Erin Law, a Company Rose dancer; underground music hub Tony Youngblood; former Seed Space artist Ryan Hogan; graphic facilitator and artist Perrin Ireland; and an artist who mysteriously calls himself Johnny Invective. According to Benton, the ability to be part of a collaborative community of artists is part of what drew him to Nashville. “I was very excited to be in Nashville because I’m finding lots of collaborators and all kinds of media and inspiration.” In general, Benton says Nashville is a perfect place for artists, “There’s a lot of things that make Nashville so great for the arts. Artists need to be in a community with other artists. They need to be appreciated. They need resources, support, and an audience. That’s all here in Nashville. It’s such a creative town.” Benton’s love of music also attracted him to Nashville. “Nashville has a reputation for being a major center of music globally. I love walking out my door and hearing music all around,” he says. “There’s live music in the airport. I walk out the door and I look up and I see people practicing guitar on their roofs. I hear my next door neighbor practicing the flute before she goes to her rehearsal with the Nashville Symphony Orchestra.” For Benton, music, dance, and video are all parts of the same whole and they can all thrive in Music City. According to Benton, Nashville isn’t just great for artists, it’s great for everyone. “I think people need to be in creative environments. Really, all of us need that. Whatever it is that resonates with you, you need to be in a place where you feel that you have some source of inspiration, solace, and joy. Nashville’s got that in abundance.” Recently, it’s been exciting for Benton to see his work gain popularity. “For years I thought that what I do would always be extremely underground,” he admits, but that’s changing. “It’s nice that a lot more people are starting to understand and can appreciate this art.” If seeing is a creative act, then we can’t wait to “create” what Benton comes up with next.

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unreality The

of

Reality by CAT ACREE

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One of the highlights of every First Saturday Art Crawl is the Rymer gallery, which sits both below and above eye level in the 5th Avenue arts district and promises some of the best contemporary art in Nashville. The July crawl is just as much about seeking refuge from the mulish downtown heat as it is about new artists (and free drinks)—expel summer demons with the newest series of paintings from SCAD (Savannah College of Art and Design) professor Michael Brown, whose collection of imagined landscapes have the cooling, inviting effect of dark Southern mud. Brown’s fourth solo show at the Rymer gallery will reveal his newest body of work, an expressionist series of paintings seven years in the making titled “Know Place.” Those familiar with Brown’s previous nightmarish naturalist paintings—fleshy, vibrant plants and animals sometimes with human features, sometimes morphing together on a surreal rainforest floor—will be astonished at the change in direction, as the mottled lines and shadowy palette of these landscapes lend themselves almost to abstraction. An afternoon chat with Michael Brown quickly revealed the depth of his new series. As it turns out, he’s still brilliant, even without the pink plant orgies. I’m not alone in my appreciation; the Rymer gallery’s Herb Williams said of Brown’s work, “There is an irony and level of sarcasm that speaks to me down in my bones. Plus, his mastery of the very craft of painting is just delicious.” Our confab evolved into its own beast, growing until it couldn’t help but swipe at the niggling questions of humanity. “Know Place” is pretty different from your previous work. What ideas were you playing around with as you developed this series of paintings? The new work is about . . . being connected to a place. It initially stems from an experience I had as a kid going to Scotland and having never been there before, never in my whole life. And I was born and raised in a small place in upstate New York, but I got to this place and the only thing I can attribute it to is the light and the color, and it felt like I was home. It was profound. It was, like, a profound connection to a place I’d never been to before. And so, for a while I’d been playing around with that idea in terms of creating landscapes. But there’s also this recognition, because these landscapes are all imagined. They’re not real landscapes—I find that to be a little boring—because it’s more about space than the actuality of the thing that I’m trying to convey. But there’s also this element in photography that I find very fascinating. It’s that, we look at photography as being much more real, because when we look at it, it appears to be identical to places that we’ve seen in real life, so we take it as being real. But it’s, obviously, it’s an allusion to reality. But I find old photographs, like you would find in attics or, or in a drawer or whatever... that have accumulated this history. This passage of time on its surface imbues the photograph with a much greater sense of reality and truth. . . I’m trying to apply that same sense to these paintings and give

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Plant and animal paintings are from Michael Brown’s earlier bodies of work. Landscapes are from current exhibit at the Rymer Gallery.

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these paintings a greater sense of being real. Not that it’s the place that’s real, it’s the sensation of reality. How were you able to give your paintings the characteristics of a photograph? Alright. I start off with a painting, and then in order to create these, like, layers, I started to utilize epoxy. Now, epoxy does a couple things. One, because it’s super shiny, smooth surface, I think it’s very alluring, very manipulative, very foxy to a viewing audience. I think that many times, you can coat something with epoxy and an audience is going to love it regardless of the image, just because of its surface. But I used that, and that’s a surface I can start to manipulate, start to scratch up and add these layers of “history.” You start to manipulate the original image so that it more accurately portrays that passage of time than you would see, you know, on an old photograph in an attic or whatnot. You’ve said that the thought behind the art is more important than the product itself. When that is the case, how do you think your audience will approach your paintings, and how do you think they should? I think that there’s two different perspectives that we have to take into account. One, as the maker, the product is not important. The idea to make the work is far more interesting.

employ in order to understand the world around us? And so that was a completely separate thought and idea than this idea of being connected to this space that we’re a part of. I guess, part of it—I guess it’s just a jump. The landscapes become a jump of that, because me as a person, I don’t understand my existence. I know that I exist but I don’t understand why, and so the process of art-making starts to lend itself to me coming to terms. Because [laughs] obviously I haven’t figured anything out, but it helps me come to terms with existing and being able to accept that I don’t understand any of this stuff. So, how are you able to balance your own search and that of the audience? As an artist, my pursuit is to help, or to help enlighten or come to terms as an individual. But as a maker of a product, or a maker of this thing, you know, I think more than anything, I use the audience as a barometer of being able to understand my own thought process. Do they respond in similar ways that I anticipate they might, or not? And what are those differences? It’s kind of like a scientist in a laboratory. I’ve created this thing; I want to find out if it is indeed true. I can’t just use myself as the guide for recognition of truth or whatever, so I’m looking outside of myself. It’s kind of like, how can we begin to

I want to create this thing that feels really, really familiar, even though it’s completely constructed. The act of making is an investigation of an idea, and through... the making of these things, I can come to some understanding. Now with that, you end up with a product of process, and that product of process happens to be these images for the viewer. I want to see if the viewer responds to these things in the same way that I anticipate them responding, and that is... reaction to the sense of nostalgia or a connection to this place that, maybe, is sentimental. It’s familiar. But that’s what I want to do. I want to create this thing that feels really, really familiar, even though it’s completely constructed. I mean, it doesn’t exist. I’m creating these documentations of nothing. If the landscape isn’t real and the history is fake, then what is the audience ultimately responding to? Where are the major difference between this work and your previous work? The previous work, I was more interested in the real versus the unreal. You know, so Plato talks about the real and that the world that we live in is just a simulation of the real and that’s why he’s pointing at the sky. I think that that’s kind of a ludicrous idea; I think all of it’s real. There’s that which is tangible and that which is intangible, but it’s all equally real. And then I was playing around with mimicry and language, and being able to provide information in a variety of different ways and make things appear familiar and then appear completely unfamiliar. And beautiful and grotesque. And playing with these opposites. . . Why do we find things familiar? Why do we find things unfamiliar? What is the thought process that we

understand a brain with a brain? It’s a little bit manipulative, but not in a negative way. I want to see, I want to see what we think and why we think the way we do. People can tell me anything, and it’s like, you really believe this? We all have beliefs in life and of the world. Where do they come from? What are their constructions? And, you know, if we start to break that apart, all of a sudden it starts to make less and less sense. And the things that guide those decisions are very, very tenuous. They’re often very silly. Is this body of work silly? I do struggle with the fact that, I feel that they’re starting to be just pretty. They do the things I want them to do, but ultimately in the end, they’re just these pretty landscapes. I don’t know how I feel about that. Do you think you’ll return to grotesque paintings? I don’t know, because I don’t see the last body of work as being grotesque. I think it’s incredibly beautiful, but it’s unfamiliar. It puts you in a very weird place, because there’s unfamiliarity, there’s beauty, there’s nature, flowers and animals. There’s nothing grotesque about flowers and animals. But the way that they’re composed together, the way that flowers are coming out of animals, all of a sudden, it’s like, “Wait a second, that might be bad. But it might be good.” And I think that, because of an inability to give yourself context to what you’re looking at, it puts you in an unfamiliar place, but I don’t know if it’s grotesque. And if it is grotesque, I’m fine with that.

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BY RACHEL BUBIS | PHOTOS SEBASTIAN ROGERS

When Robyn Virball and Bailey Spaulding met, they had no idea that one day they would start a brewery together, let alone in Nashville. They were four thousand miles from here, at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. As a Harvard student, Bailey was studying abroad, where Robyn was already a student. One of their first memories was of teaching Danish people how to play beer pong. That must have planted the seed, because in 2009, they founded Jackalope Brewing Company, a locally-active and socially-conscious microbrewery that serves badass beer with an emphasis on craft. A Jackalope is a mythical jackrabbit with antlers. Bailey’s fascination with this particular “fearsome critter” stems from her childhood horseback riding instructor telling her that the animal was real. “My instructor had two mounted Jackalope heads,” Bailey recalls, “She would tell me stories about them and where there were from and what they did. I was like, ‘sweet!’ I just kind of went with it. It seems plausible. I mean, there are mules.” In Bailey’s eyes, the burden of proof rests with non-believers , and she still swears they’re out there somewhere. “I believe in Jackalopes. Yes, that’s accurate,” Bailey asserts. She was once given a tee-shirt with a picture of a Jackalope that said Believe in Yourself. Cheesy as the slogan may be, she and Robyn have adopted it as their unofficial motto. (cont’d)

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While studying law at Vanderbilt University, Bailey fell in love with Nashville. With the promise of unicorns, she lured Robyn down from Boston to start the Brewery. This was Bailey’s chance to take her brewing hobby pro. “I was a home-brewer in law school and thought it would be really cool. A lot cooler than being a lawyer,” she says. Since 2011, the two have been serving Nashville the finest beers by the pint, growler, or keg. Jackalope’s home, an old flooring warehouse on 8th, holds a 15 barrel brew house, four fermenters, and three conditioning tanks (to find out what those things do, take a brewery tour, offered twice each Saturday). Out front, their taproom offers three beers and a “rotating tap,” which incorporates a different specialty craft beer every four-to-six weeks. Craft brewing culture is fairly new to the South, Tennessee, and Nashville. In Bailey’s words, “It’s just coming along.” Tennessee has always been known for its Tennessee whiskey and moonshine, but it’s starting to be known for beer. Still, microbreweries in the South are few and far between. Robyn notes that there are only a handful of local breweries in the South. “People are just intrigued at this point, which is cool,” Bailey says, “They’re excited to try it.” As their slogan says: Nashville loves beer, and we do, too. “Nashville has a real sense of community,” Bailey explains, “the beer culture here is small but growing, and the cool thing is everyone is so supportive of what we’re trying to do.” When asked about their relationship with other local breweries such as Yazoo, located only a few blocks away, as well as a handful of others popping up in the next year, Robyn explains that they all maintain a supportive relationship.  “The more breweries the better. It actually allows us to be more specific and creative in what we do.” Nashville has been especially nurturing to Jackalope. “When we started, we were doing a one-batch system,” recalls Robyn. “That means one keg at a time. There were inconsistencies and we were running out. And people were just so patient with us. I don’t think that would happen in another city. This is the place where people are understanding and loyal. Nashville has embraced Jackalope, while the microbrewing culture continues to grow. According to Robyn, “There should be taps with all of the local breweries on them.” Bailey agrees, “Everybody’s bringing their own style to the table, their own take on brewing. The more breweries you have, the more you’re able to really stylize. The more you’re like, ‘Okay, now everyone’s into craft beer. I’m gonna brew this crazy motherf***er and then they’re gonna really like it.’” Like Bailey says, Jackalope isn’t afraid to be daring. Bailey is used to experimenting, having come from a science background. Their rotating tap has featured everything from a Blueberry 28

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Baltic Porter to the current denizen, a Gose named Casper. Casper the Friendly Gose is a German-style, half-wheat beer brewed with coriander and slightly saline water. “It’s a nearly-extinct style of beer,” says Bailey, which inspired the name. They don’t always know how successsful their experiments will be, and this was especially the case with the Gose. But they were rewarded for the risk. “We were nervous about what people were going to think and we went through it in two weeks,” says Robyn. A normal stay on the rotating tap is four to six weeks. “That was pretty fun. It’s encouragement for when we do the weirder stuff like beet beer.” She is referring to the next beer on the rotating tap, a farmhouse ale brewed with beets called Number One Frog. The name, like the name of the brewery, hearkens back to Bailey’s horseback riding days. She named her first pony Number One Frog.  “It was a really weird name for a pony,” Bailey admits. The entire brew draws inspiration from her childhood with horses. “It’s a farmhouse ale,” Bailey says. “Brewing reminds me a lot of

“People are just intrigued at this point, which is cool.” being in a barn, and horses eat beet pulp if they need to gain weight.” The beets being used for Number One Frog are sourced from nearby Delvin Farms. Nearly everything about Jackalope finds its root in Bailey and Robyn’s identities. For example, Bailey’s home state definitely inspired Bearwalker, Jackalope’s American Maple Brown Ale. “I’m from Vermont so I’m a maple syrup fiend. It has 100% pure maple syrup in it. It’s important. We don’t fake maple,” she says, while wearing an “I love Vermont” T-shirt. Gender plays into Jackalope’s identity as well. Two women owning a brewery is rare in the industry. “If anything, it makes us more interesting to people,” says Robyn. The rotating tap allows the right balance between business savvy and creative expression. “The theory with the rotating tap is: if you hate it, hold on and enjoy the other three for a few weeks, and then there will be something else to try, and you’ll probably like it,” says Robyn, “If you love it, then drink enough of it while you can, because it’ll be gone soon. It’s nice. Nobody has to be totally put off. They can experiment with it.” As for the other three beers, there’s a great deal of variation offered. There’s a Red Rye called Rompo, which has a caramel malt flavor, an American Maple Brown Ale called Bearwalker,


This month’s rotating tap: Number One Frog, Farmhouse Ale Beet Beer (There are 3 other beers, if you’re not into beets.) For more information, visit JackalopeBrew.com Taproom hours: Thursdays-Saturdays 4-8pm

maple beer mentioned earlier, and a classic unfiltered American Pale Ale called Thunder Ann. Although they like to experiment with new flavors, Bailey expresses the importance that all their products be very drinkable and not alienate non-aficionados. “I think that people are trying to get more and more extreme with beers,” says Robyn. “We enjoy tasting them, but we’re also trying to run a business. We want to make beers that people actually enjoy. The beer that makes people say, ‘Oh, it’s okay but I can only drink half of it,’ makes me wonder why that beer was made. Bailey and Steve need to have fun while they’re brewing, but you don’t want to make something that alienates people so much that they can only have a sip of it. Yeah, you can make a beer taste like a pizza, but why would you? We want beer that is drinkable.” Bailey succinctly clarifies, “I want to make something that’s different, but not off-putting.” When asked about their favorite beer, the choice is hard. Robyn’s favorite is the Thunder Ann, “but I like hops a lot,” she adds. “The Gose has tempted me to cheat a little on the Thunder Ann. Bailey and Steve are much more middle-ofthe-road.” Bailey admits, “My favorite changes every week. I’m in Bearwalker mode right now.” Robyn notes, “The Blueberry Baltic Porter was one of my favorites that we ever did.” But in general, they both agree, “We wouldn’t brew it if we didn’t love it.” Besides making adventurous, drinkable beer, Jackalope’s mission is to be locally-active and socially-conscious. They achieve this in a number of ways. Each one of their beers on rotating tap is linked to a local charity. 20% of the profits from that beer on tap go to the charity. Last month’s charity was the Exchange Club. Jackalope has also supported the Nashville Chapter of the

American Cancer Society, the Arts and Business Council, and the Tennessee Literacy Coalition. In addition to rotating tap charities, they also provide kegs for many local events and try to work as locally as possible. For example, every third Thursday they do a trivia night for the Literacy Coalition. Hands On Nashville picks up their spent grains to use in their compost. “We try to work with as many local people as we can,” says Bailey. This involves using Old Made Good’s “interior concierge services” to decorate the walls of the taproom. (For more information on Old Made Good, check out our

“Yeah, you can make a beer taste like a pizza, but why would you? We want beer that is drinkable.” feature on them in this month’s issue.) Local artisan Sean Gerster built their tables, which friends burned with their favorite quotes. Jackalope also works closely with the Green Wagon. They plan on using local honey in a brew later this summer. As Bailey puts it,“Anything we can get locally we do. We’re even experimenting with the idea of local organizations growing hops.” A recent charity event illustrates their balance of serious mission and having fun. “Almost all of our nonprofits have been local, except for the Save Your Ass Foundation,” admits Bailey. Robyn explains, “We did a Dunkelweizen, which is like a

dark Hefeweizen, and named it in honor of our friend Lizzy, whose horse became best friends with a donkey named Jazz Honky. We thought that was awesome. We thought Dunkelweizen sounded like donkey, so we named the beer Jazz Honky Donkey-Weizen. We tried to find a local donkey rescue. (“There were none,” interjects Bailey.) Well, there were some, but they had become inactive. Then we were like, ‘Should we do horses? It doesn’t really count.’ So in honor of Jazz Honkey we went to New Hampshire and there was one called Save Your Ass. It’s these two women who save donkeys. They have a donkey parade. They’re not from the part of New Hampshire that I’m from, but I feel like I need to go visit them and see their donkeys.” Of course, there are other fun elements to what Jackalope does. For starters, most of their beer names come from creatures, animals, and folklore, which is fun. And to celebrate the Summer Olympics, they are holding their own boozy version of the games, with competitive events like a dance contest and a keg wall sit. (Jackalope Olympics to be held Saturday, July 21st: Teams of 5-7 people compete as representatives of a country in seven events.) They also hold a monthly crafting event, facilitated by Old Made Good, called Crafty Bitches. Oh, and they have a Tara Reid quote carved into one of their tables. It hasn’t all been fun and games along the way though. “Everything about starting this business was really hard,” explains Robyn, “It’s not an easy thing to do, but it’s very rewarding.” It’s been rewarding for Nashville, too, as they continue to hone their craft, creating both unique and accessible products, and working closely with the local community. Whether you believe in Jackalopes or not, you can believe in Jackalope Brewing Co. JULY | 2012

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(COFFEE)

Wheels

Juliet and Sutherland Seals serve some of the world’s best coffee, out of a truck. BY GILLIS BERNARD | PHOTOS JON MORRELL

Ever since Juliet and Sutherland Seals launched The Coffee Truck in 2011, getting a great cup of drip in town has never been easier. And nor has it ever been easier to spot. The bright, lime-green exterior of the caffeinemobile shines like a beacon of hope for weary-eyed Nashvillians looking for their morning or afternoon buzz. The brothersister duo whips up coffee shop favorites with far-from-ordinary flavor, sans artificial syrups. And their coffee doesn’t need it. In a modern world full of orange-mocha frappucinos and skinny vanilla half-caff hold-the-foam lattés, Juliet and Sutherland provide beautifully simple options. From cappuccinos to cortados, their brews boast a “back-to-basics” taste straight from the Seals’ childhood home in Costa Rica. That’s right, Costa Rica. Los Angeles-born and Costa Rica-raised, it’s no wonder Juliet

and Sutherland were among the first to fuse their love of coffee with the food truck trend. After a few years in Southern California, the Seals moved to a coffee plantation nestled in the mountains of the Salitral de Santa Ana in the heart of the Central American gem to try their hands at growing coffee. The relocation marked Sutherland and Juliet’s introduction to coffee not only as a beverage, but also as a way of life. To put it in perspective, Costa Rica is to coffee as the United States is to an ice-cold Coca-Cola: a major export and mealtime staple, deeply rooted in the national norms. “Coffee is everything,” Juliet says, “they even put coffee in their babies’ bottles.” When bean-picking time came around twice a year, brother and sister made sure they didn’t miss out on any of the action. A young Juliet and Sutherland would romp about the Seals family’s twelve-acre

plantation, helping shed the beans fresh from their stalks one at a time. “Our mom would get mad at us,” Sutherland laughed, “because we would just take them all, ripe and unripe.” When ready for picking, coffee beans turn from green to red. The more green beans roasted in the batch, the more bitter the flavor, devoid of the “fruity acidity” found in a carefully picked roast of Costa Rican beans. Juliet and Sutherland’s bean-picking days are now behind them, but fortunately for us, their connection to Costa Rica’s popular beverage remains as strong as a shot of espresso made from their coffee of choice: Café Britt. According to Juliet, the secret is in the soil. The country’s volcanic soil makes for a very distinct taste that can still find favor with a more traditional palate. The sweet acidic flavor sets Costa Rican beans apart from the characteristically bold taste

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As with most food trucks, it’s best to double-check The Coffee Truck’s schedule and location on Twitter (@CoffeeTruckNash) or their website (TheCoffeeTruckNashville.com), before you pay them a visit.

of another Latin American competitor, Columbia. “Coffee is very sensitive to both pressure and heat,” Sutherland says, which creates delicate shipping needs and causes beans to have a short shelf life. No need to fret, though, the Seals have the hook up. The owners of Café Britt are close family friends, and their children even attended the same elementary and high school as Juliet and Sutherland. This allows the coffee to be roasted, packaged and sent straight to the Seals in Nashville, and Nashville alone. According to Sutherland, The Coffee Truck is the only vendor in the United State that uses this small-batch Costa Rican coffee brand, making each steamy cup of Café Britt even more special in its rarity. So why Nashville? After 19 years in Costa Rica, Juliet embarked for the US to share her caffeinated culture and creativity at design school in Chicago. While in the Windy City, she refined her skills in visual communications and graphic design, learning tricks of the trade that would later prove valuable to her involvement in Nashville’s gourmet food truck business. Sutherland’s 25 years in Costa Rica, four of which were spent at business school, were brought to a close upon his relocation back to the US to Nashville, with wife and son in tow. It wasn’t long before Juliet moved to Nashville, too, and the Seals siblings reunited. The move to Music City seemed an obvious choice for Juliet and Sutherland. “There’s a lot of creativity, a lot of art, a lot of music,” Sutherland says, while Juliet believes she fell for its “unique urban vibe.” It also doesn’t hurt that music is in their veins. As much as Juliet and Sutherland grew up around coffee, so they did equally around music, and specifically the music of their father’s band; Juliet and Sutherland are even musicians

themselves. Knowing that other members of the Seals clan would also be nearby didn’t detract from Nashville’s attractiveness, especially with creatively culinary cousins like Crystal De LunaBogan around, co-founder of the Grilled Cheeserie food truck. In 2010, Juliet worked with Crystal to create the brand of one of Nashville’s greatest (and cheesiest) gourmet food trucks. Wanderland Urban Food Park also has Juliet to thank for lending a hand to its marketing design, which helps draw hundreds of food truck devotees to its weekend location in Elmington Park every week. This introduction to the food truck business seemed to stick

The Coffee Truck is the only vendor in the United States that uses this small-batch Costa Rican coffee brand...

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for Juliet, and soon enough the brother-sister team was, ahem, brewing up some great ideas for their own mobile business. Sutherland and Juliet turned to what they loved: coffee and people. The truck’s tag One Planet. One Coffee. stems from the Seals’ father’s song One Planet. One People. Please. But even more importantly, the loving line describes Juliet and Sutherland’s compassionate goal for the business: “We believe that mankind is one human family…Our mission is to build and to support unity


in the community while providing the best quality and service.” Through this mission, The Coffee Truck becomes a mobile (caffeinated) watering hole for all kinds of people, brought together by a shared love of coffee. Pure and simple. So when you see the lime green truck rolling around Nashville, don’t be shy, especially if you’re in the mood for good conversation on the side with that delicious cappuccino. And if you’re seeking satisfaction for your sweet tooth, go for the best-selling Cubanito, or “the little Cuban”—one part powerful espresso, two parts steamed milk, and a bit of creamy sweetness, thanks to the addition of condensed milk, makes magic in a cup. And if you’re hungry, pick up one of the Truck’s tasty food options, too. Maybe a Homemade Empanada or some fried green plantains. Oh, and welcome to the community. During the week, Tuesday through Friday, you can usually find The Coffee Truck at 719 McFerrin (across the street from Holland House) from 7 A.M. to 3 P.M. On the weekend, you can find them in Wanderland Urban Food Park in Elmington Park (on West End, on the western side of 440). Wanderland runs from 11 A.M. to 6 P.M. on Saturday and 12 P.M. to 6 P.M. on Sunday.

WE SPECIALIZE IN HIGH END WHIMSEY FOR THOSE WITH A YEARNING FOR SOMETHING DIFFERENT. POP IN TUESDAY THROUGH SUNDAY 10-5 FOR OUR SWEET TREATS, HOT PANINIS, SINGLE BREW LOCALLY ROASTED COFFEE, FRESH COLD DRINKS, AND OF COURSE OUR MARSHMALLOWS!

BANGCANDYCOMPANY.COM 1300 CLINTON ST. SUITE 127 IN MARATHON VILLAGE JULY | 2012

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COCKTAIL OF THE MONTH by No. 308

THE BIG

WOO This Firey, tropical concoction was named after the volcano in the movie Joe Versus the Volcano. In the Box-office-flopturned-cult-film, Joe (TOM hanks) decides to throw himself into a volcano, but then falls in love with Patricia (meg ryan) and faces a difficult choice. enjoy responsibly and steer clear of volcanoes— And meg ryan. 1 oz. light rum 1 oz. dark rum 1 oz. fresh cantaloupe juice 1/2 oz. fresh lime juice 1/2 oz. vanilla syrup topped with 151 rum Shake all ingredients except for dark rum. Doublestrain into freshly-iced rocks glass. Top with dark rum. Garnish with sugared lime wheel. Top lime wheel with 151 and set on fire.* Drink after fire is out.

*Remember: fire is extremely hot and this drink is only for people 21 and older. Use common sense. Be careful to avoid burning anything or anyone. Do not light drink or let it burn near anything flammable. Do not leave flame unattended. Only you can prevent forest fires. If you like doing things the easy way, let a mixologist at No. 308 make one for you. 34

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P HOTO: JON MORRELL

- Ben Clemons, No. 308


Joe Natural’s Cafe & Farm Store

High-Quality. Delicious. Local. Visit our new location in Cummins Station! We believe that great food is grown locally and prepared with care; that’s why we only serve the freshest natural ingredients at our restaurants, as well as in our stores. We’re proud to offer the highest-quality organic, homemade and hand-raised cuisine around — it’s the best way to eat!

From our farm to your table, naturally!

From gluten-free breads and cookies, to vegetarian bowls and big, juicy grass-fed burgers, we’re pleased to offer an array of delectable selections, artfully-prepared fresh daily.

Nashville: Cummins Station • 615.345.6313 Franklin: Leipers Fork • 615.595.2233

JoeNaturals.com JULY | 2012

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THIS MONTH AT THE BELCOURT

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Wurst The

Burger Joint

in Nashville BY RAY DEGOUT | PHOTOS JEREMY RYAN

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I

n the heart of the Greenwood neighborhood on the East Side, you can find The Pharmacy Burger Parlor & Beer Garden. Lauded for their burgers, the menu boasts handmade sausages, milkshakes, floats, oldfashioned phosphate sodas, and a well-curated beer and cider list. Even though it opened its doors a mere six months ago, The Pharmacy is one of the most buzzed-about new restaurants on either side of the river. “When we opened we were hoping for maybe seventy-five people a night. It’s been way beyond our expectations,” said manager Ryan Creamer. “Keeping up with demand has been the number one issue for management so far, and that’s a good problem to have.” Chef Trent Raley adds, “It’s not unheard of for us to serve 1600 people on a single Saturday.” Ryan, an immediately likable guy, has a relaxed, inviting demeanor that suits The Pharmacy’s backyard playground-turned-beer-garden. Ryan moved here five years ago to work in a recording studio and worked as a bar tender at Holland House right after it had opened. It was while Ryan was at the Holland House that the idea of The Pharmacy was developed, drawing from the discovery of a plethora of old medicinal bottles

affordable. He’s a natural gourmet who pays particular attention to quality. The ingredients are nearly 100% locally sourced, and almost everything is made from scratch. As the menu boasts, “The Pharmacy serves 100% TN beef (or turkey, if you prefer) on a lightly-toasted Provence bun made especially for The Pharmacy.” Provence provides the rolls and buns for the menu, which sounds like a pedestrian fact at first, but they actually invented those breads especially for The Pharmacy. Provence head baker and Ombi alum Kim Totzke worked for three months with Trent to get the recipe just right. The custom-made Provence buns posed a special challenge. The first trial buns were crumbly and too small. To remedy this, a special technique was employed. Besides making the buns a whole inch larger than standard hamburger buns, they are taken out of the oven once during baking and spritzed with water. The result is a lusciously light and subtly sweet cushion of deliciousness, able to hold up to the hearty and overflowing fillings as well as support and compliment the handpressed patties. The beef burger patties themselves are certified Hereford beef, raised in Tennessee. The nine-option burger listing also includes

Trent engineered a menu with the goal of being unique, simple, and affordable. found at the Holland House. Terrell, a former bartender and owner of Ombi, started Holland House with Dutchman Cees Brinkman, who had been selling restaurant equipment out of what is now Holland House. The two decided to turn the restaurant equipment warehouse into a restaurant with a special emphasis on Raley’s passion—the art of mixology. Holland House quickly became a local favorite in the fast-developing Republic of East Nashville. When Mrs. T’s Learning Center, a former daycare center on the adjacent property, became available, Terrell and Ryan planted the seed of an idea. It grew into a utopian Franken-restaurant: part good-ole-fashioned neighborhood burger joint, part old-timey soda fountain, part department store lunch counter, and part beer garden. Terrell’s inspiration for the backyard, neighborhood beer garden came from similar ones he encountered in his hometown of San Antonio, Texas. Terrell called on his brother Trent to come onboard as the head chef. Trent is an accomplished chef who worked at Sunset Grill, and alongside his brother at Ombi. Trent can often be seen running the show in the back, where the magic happens. It’s his burger-ninja dojo. Trent engineered a menu with the goal of being unique, simple, and

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indulgences like the Stroganoff Burger (topped with mushroom stroganoff bechamel, sour cream, caramelized onions and swiss cheese) and the “Choose Your Cure” build-it-yourself option. There are also two bonafide vegetarian choices: the classic Black Bean Burger and the Falafel Burger, which is served with yogurt raita and Noble Springs goat cheese. For $7 you can start with a base of beef or turkey then add any of of seven cheese and 25 toppings, which range from beer mustard to horchata crema fresca to garlic alioli. The Würstchen (that German for “sausage” and called “wurst” for short) options include seven house-made sausages ranging from the traditional Bratwurst to the edgier Currywurst, straight from Munich. Additionally, three variations of chicken sandwiches, a handful of delicious side options, and a kids menu round out the food offerings. The ice cream is supplied by East Nashville’s own Pied Piper Creamery. The syrups are made in-house with cane sugar, not high-fructose corn syrup, and range in flavors from Kentucky Mint to Maraschino Cherry. Instead of using a traditional carbonated base, their phosphate sodas are based on an ancient remedy. Phosphate beverages were an attempt to replicate mineral waters that bubbled up from the ground, which many


Fo r m o r e i n f o r m a t i o n v i s i t thepharmacynashville.com o r v i s i t 7 3 1 M c Fe r r i n Av e : Tuesdays - Sundays: 11AM - 12AM. “Hoppy Hour”: Sundays - Thursdays 9:30PM - 12AM Fridays and Saturdays 10PM - 12AM (half-price “hoppy” bee r s )

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civilizations believed cured diseases. At The Pharmacy, the phosphate used comes in the little blue bottles that read “Extinct Acid Phosphate Solution.” To be frank, they look pretty frackin’ sweet. The phosphate adds a pleasant tartness to the sodas and give a “tight, extra-carbonated” mouth feel. And in case you’re interested: we’re told that the phosphate atoms help to bind the hydrogen molecules tightly together. The process of creating a phosphate soda is intricate, and that’s part of what makes them so special. A person who makes a phosphate soda is traditionally called a “soda jerk,” and they are wizards in their own right. They start with a splash of housemade syrup. Six dashes of phosphoric acid are added and the glass is filled with soda from the fountain head (which was custommade), using both hard and soft streams. The hard stream agitates the syrup with the phosphate, and then the soft stream gently tops it off. Each soda is tasted to ensure

A person who makes a phosphate soda is traditionally called a “soda jerk,” and they are wizards in their own righT. proper balance between the sweetness of the syrup, the tartness of the phosphate, and the dilution the soda water adds. What’s left is a perfectly mixed and refreshing soda free of any artificial flavors or preservatives commonly found in modern sodas. In addition to the classic phosphates, dessert-worthy sodas grace the Soda Shop section of the menu. The Egg Cream Soda, for example, employs Fox’s classic U-bet Chocolate Syrup and whole milk. The eponymous Pharmacy Cream Soda includes vanilla and lemon syrups, as well as, you guessed it, cream. In addition to the floats, milkshakes, and malts, you can also get a Mexican Coca-Cola or a Sprecher Root Beer. Twelve carefully selected beers can be found on tap, in addition to 27 bottled American beers,   and 11 bottled German beers, which include seven high-gravity varieties. There are also a healthy helping of bottled imports from Canada, France, England, the Czech Republic, Belgium, Japan, and Scotland. Not to mention the five ciders, including two high-gravity. All of that said, the beer-heavy menu shouldn’t discourage families. The freshly-

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landscaped beer garden is an inviting playground in its own right. According to Ryan, “We looked everywhere for a space that was perfect for what we wanted to do with The Pharmacy concept. It just happened that the perfect place was right next door to Holland House. Here, we can have open space and a huge grassy area for families.” Mrs. T of the former “Learning Center” would be proud. On a recent visit to The Pharmacy, I personally had the joy of sampling not one, but two delectable burgers, complete with their respective mates of fries and tater tots. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. First came the phosphate. We were outside in the early-afternoon sun, and the Kentucky Lime was the perfect choice. If you’ve never had a phosphate, it’s not enough to say it’s an oldfashioned soda. You have to try one to fully understand. Whereas today’s sodas are overly sweet, carbonated to the point of tongue-abuse, and syrupy bordering on slimy, phosphates have a subtle, delicate, wonderfully refreshing quality that cannot be matched. The fact that I could taste the lime, the sugar (again: cane sugar, not corn syrup), and the water, freshly carbonated in-house, was nothing short of revelatory (and yes, I could actually taste the water). I don’t think I ever want a Coke again. Each member of our party had a similar experience, giddily aghast at the natural and full taste of the flavors that never even came close to overbearing. What struck me about the phosphates was their balance, which made a tangible reality out of all of the thought put into them. It was a theme that resonated throughout the entire meal. For example, take my two burgers. Not being a stranger to The Pharmacy’s menu, I immediately went for the Farm Burger, but at the urging of Ryan, I ventured further and decided to try a second. I’d had their namesake burger before, which is precisely what you’d imagine: a simple, no-frills-yetperfected backyard burger. So this time I went with the Chili Burger. After a disastrous experience with chili on hash browns at Waffle House (I don’t want to talk about it), I was skeptical of the topping and thus deemed it a worthy challenge. I had gravitated towards the Farm Burger

out of attraction to its decadence. Bacon is the chocolate of meats. It goes with everything, and it’s as common an addition as mustard or ketchup. But what if you added a thinly fried piece of country ham, alongside a fried egg, and just a teensy garnish of maple mustard aioli? Thus, the Farm Burger was born by quite literally combining an entire farm’s worth of animals on one bun: Tennessee beef, Tripp Country ham, Emerald Glen Farm bacon, Willow Farm egg. Old MacDonald had a burger, and this was it. But of course this is about the burger itself, not where it came from. Simple in seasoning, the meat is tender, salivatingly inviting, while the ham adds a pleasant, crisp saltiness, and the bacon a thicker, smokier crunch. The fried egg comes in at the top of the pile, just in time to save your tongue from any danger of meaty boredom. It offers a contrasting texture and flavor. The final element, the maple mustard aioli, with it’s tangy sweetness, comes in at just the right point to trigger a different part of your brain, and is what brings it all home. Honey mustard? Overdone. Maple mustard? Well played, Trent Raley, well played.


Even after the Farm Burger’s Kilimanjaro of meat, the Chili Burger was still enigmatically satisfying. I still don’t know how I did it, maybe the burger deserves all of the credit. After all, it was a wonderful concoction that completely reversed my stance on chili as a condiment. The chili, another one of Trent’s from-scratch recipes, is good enough to eat on its own. It’s an exceptional equilibrium of meat, beans, tomato, and seasoning. A generous portion is ladled onto the burger, but not so much that it drowns in it. A very precise amount of sour cream is then placed on top with a few slices of chives, and then topped by the same exquisite bun. With every bite, between burgers and fried potato perfection (of both the fry and tot variety), between sips of my Kentucky Lime phosphate, I became increasingly enlightened, and glimpsed what may be the meaning of life. Any and every restaurant in town, local or chain, has that typical kitchen-sink burger. However, very few are able to nail the balance of ingredients that has made The Pharmacy stand out from the crowd, and so quickly, too. The two burgers I tried were certainly not scant on ingredients, yet I could pick out every flavor, every texture, and it was obvious why they were there. It all added up to a remarkable experience. Around the table, this was the unanimous decision, as we all agreed that every element of the burgers we tried, which also included the Falafel and Black Bean burgers, culminated in cuisine excellence. The sides, fries and tater tots, should not be overlooked, for they are the perfected essence of fried-ness. The fries are wonderfully natural in appearance and taste, neither rigidly fried nor oil-saturated limp fish. The golden slivers of hand-sliced potatoes have a deliciously crisp outside that encases a balanced inside, neither dry, nor mushy. The tater tot, so simple in concept but so difficult in execution, is perfected at The Pharmacy. They’re done to a golden hue and exactly salted, with a wonderfully rich center. But as all good supporting acts go, they only serve to make the headliners look even better. In Chef Trent’s own words, “We’re not trying to be the best burger in Nashville. We just do what we love, and we do it as well as we know how to do it, because we’re serving our neighbors.” It’s apparent in his words, and abundantly clear in his food: The Pharmacy is an amazing local restaurant, not simply because of where they get their ingredients, but because they care even more about who they’re serving them to. Trying or not, if The Pharmacy isn’t already serving the “best burger in Nashville,” they’re pretty damn close.

Av ailable at... T h e Willow T r ee / 615.383.5639 4 4 2 9 Murphy Road / Nashville, TN 37209

NOW OPEN. P^Zk^ikhn]mhh__^kaZg]\kZ_m^] lhk[^mmhZg]`^eZmh%fZ]^_k^la ]ZberbglfZee[Zm\a^lnlbg`_k^la bg`k^]b^gml%bg\en]bg`eh\Ze`khpma& ahkfhg^&_k^^fbedZg]ikh]n\^' Eh\Zm^]bg>]`^abeeObeeZ`^ Mn^l]Zr&LZmnk]Zr3**3,)Zf&23))if Lng]Zr3*+3))if&/3))if E^`Zmh@^eZmh'\hf

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NASHVILLE for

NASHVILLE BY C A Y L A M A C K E Y | P H OTO S Q U I N N B A L L A R D

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I

n the 12th South neighborhood, on the side of Harb’s Rug store, there’s a mural that reads “I Believe in Nashville.” It’s ten feet high and wheat-pasted over the brick wall’s pastel-green paint. It’s about knee-height from the asphalt of the adjacent parking lot. The blue headers and footers bracket a vertical span of red and white stripes that back a blue circle containing the three stars of the Tennessee flag. If you look closely, DCXV is written in the bottom-right corner, signed like an artist signs a canvas. It’s this tag that led me to Adrien Saporiti, the creator of a new company that elevates Nashville’s icons, familiar imagery, inside jokes, into fan merch for the city that we Nashvillians can be proud of. In less than a year, DCXV has grown from a favor to a select few friends into a veritable business with the potential to change the way people see Nashville. “I started DCXV because I wanted to brand Nashville for locals. It’s a real product of the city: Nashville for Nashville,” he says. Adrien designs the graphics and hand-prints the T-shirts in Nashville. By doing this, he’s aiding in the creation of the new identity of Music City, one that doesn’t revolve around outdated misconceptions and a lack of local input. Nashville has historically been a tourist destination. They come here for the rich musical legacy and usually leave with souvenirs. Yet, most of the products that are branded as coming from Nashville are not actually designed or made in the city. This is especially the case with apparel. From Adrien’s perspective, the idea for

DCXV started from him asking himself this question: “Rather than let these large companies make the same crap for every city, and probably just change the name and add a guitar for Nashville or a cowboy hat for Texas, rather than have them make that in China and ship it over here and sell it for 30 bucks, why not make something here, designed by someone from here and actually printed by hand?” On his website, DCXVclothing.com, Adrien sells a variety of items. Most of them are T-shirts imprinted with distinctively Nashville images: The Nashville Skyline,

“I’d like DCXV to become Nashville’s company, in terms of apparel, but also in what it represents.” the Pink Elephant with Glasses outside University Motors on Charlotte, the 5 Points intersection street signs, DCXV inside an outline of Tennessee, a dictionary definition of Nashville, Bobby’s Dairy Dip, the Grimey’s logo on a plastic crate, the Elliston Place Soda Shop sign, and the Batman Building among other images. The roman numerals DCXV stand for 615 (if you don’t use a telephone or don’t live here, that’s Nashville’s area code). Of course, Adrien doesn’t take credit for the traced outline of the state you may have seen tattooed on

body parts around town, but it’s become a popular image that nicely illustrates what Adrien is going for—to spread binding images of our identity. In other words, Adrien wants to make people accurate billboards for the real Nashville. “I’d like DCXV to become Nashville’s company, in terms of apparel, but also in what it represents,” he says. “In the same way American Apparel is associated with L.A. or Urban Outfitters is associated with Philly. You have these brands that are associated with where they’re from even though they’re everywhere.” He wants the same thing for Nashville. In this way, DCXV is changing the concept of what it means to be Nashville by giving Nashville a say in how the city is presented to the world. Much of Adrien’s work is deeply invested in the history of Nashville. His “I Believe in Nashville” mural, which is also a T-shirt, tank top, and poster, reflects the Tennessee state flag. On it, the three stars represent the three main historic geographical divisions of Tennessee: East Tennessee, Middle Tennessee, and West Tennessee. Even though these areas were known as the “Grand Divisions,” the stars representing them are encircled in a field of blue, reflecting their unity within the same state. In the same way, Nashville has distinct areas that are united under the identity of the city. For example, East Nashville, Sylvan Park, 12 South, and Hillsboro Village each have their own identities, but together they contribute to the whole, complete Nashville. The unity of the city is something that Adrien thinks should be treasured. “In Nashville, everybody is neighbors with JULY | 2012

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ADRIEN SAPORITI with his mural in12 SOUTH


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everybody else,” he says. “Everybody knows everybody. You can start conversations on the side of the street. You can’t do that in many parts of the country—many parts of the world, really—but you can do that in the South. And Nashville is special because it’s also a globally important, cosmopolitan city. So not only can you talk to people, but you have people who are from all different walks of life,” he explains. Nashville exists more and more at the intersection of cosmopolitan and Southern congeniality. It’s a global city infused heavily with Southern culture. According to Adrien, “You can get anything you want in the city. Yet, it’s a small Southern town. It’s this weird Southern culture that’s truly unique. It’s Old and New South in a worldly city.” Adrien’s own heritage demonstrates this well. His mother is a professional oil painter from Vietnam and his father is a retired record exec, originally from Boston. They met in San Francisco and moved to Nashville. For Adrien, projecting Nashville to the world comes from personal experiences and objective truths about the progression of the city’s identity. As he says, “If the image 46

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of Nashville is changing and shifting and becoming more broadly known in the global sense, then I would like to have a say in what it means to be Nashville, to be from here. I’m making things and images that people here or abroad can see and associate with Nashville.”

“It’s this weird Southern culture that’s truly unique. It’s Old and New South in a worldly city.” Like most people who live here, Adrien is multi-talented. He hasn’t always been branding and designing and making apparel. He graduated from Berklee College of Music in Boston, has published a book, and he’s planning on releasing his music project, Bell Buckle, any day now. Even in this musical side of his life, Nashville and Tennessee

inspire him. Bell Buckle is a small town south of Nashville, named according to the legend that one of the first white men to travel through the area found a tree with a cowbell and a buckle carved by Native Americans to warn white settlers away. For now, Adrien is dedicated to the mission of branding Nashville for the world and unifying the city under common images. “I wanted to create something that people who had just moved here, people who were from here, could look at and be a part of,” he says. That’s the reason why he arrived at distinctly Nashville-based designs, though he didn’t start out with this goal at first. Before going to college, Adrien took a year off and started working for Apple at the Green Hills store. He returned after college and the supportive community at Apple encouraged him in many of his creative pursuits. He was in various bands and projects at the time. His own band was called Adrien and the Fine Print. When the band dissolved, he looked for something to occupy his time. It wasn’t until after he moved back to Nashville that he began work


FOR MORE INFO VISIT

DCXVclothing.com

on what was to become DCXV. “It started out with me making designs on my computer because my band broke up and I didn’t have a project,” he recalls. After he adjusted to being back in Nashville, he tried his hand at more Nashville-based projects. “The first design was actually not related to Nashville at all,” he says. Adrien was originally inspired by family and friends. “My cousin is a fashion designer in Europe. He took a picture of two sisters leaning up against a wall in the south of France. Around the same time, I met someone from Melbourne who was a street artist, so I started with that idea. I took the photo and made it a stencil, like street art,” he says. BALANCE, the Melbourne street artist Adrien refers to, was the inspiration for the the two-tone drummer graphic that can now be purchased on a DCXV T-shirt. Adrien’s designs were originally mixedmedia on canvas. “I showed it to some friends when I used to work at Apple. They said it was really cool and wanted me to put it on a shirt for them. I did. Then their friends started buying them and I started selling them.” Though Adrien caters to what he thinks will be popular,

he is true to his own aesthetics and maintains creative control. Though he was responding to requests for orders, he says, “At the same time, I started designing stuff that I would want.” The “I Believe in Nashville” slogan was inspired by political campaigns. At the time, Adrien was making faux-political posters that were universally appealing. He was sick of seeing Nashville divided by contemporary politics, especially when it came time for elections. So he created the posters, “just for fun,” that pay homage to historic Tennessee icons. From Adrien’s foray into paleo-political branding, the idea of designing a unifying Nashville identity was born. “‘I Believe in Nashville’ is the least political of all the slogans and designs I came up with,” he says. The idea is to concisely articulate the unity and optimism Nashvillians feel—to capture that sense that things just keep getting better. In Adrien’s words, the sentiment is basically this: “This is where I live. This is my city. This is what I believe in.” With DCVX, Adrien chooses the colors of the prints and shirts with artisanal care.

They’re designed to look a certain way and not made-to-order. He works out of his house and coffee shops and performs the screenprinting in his garage by hand. Without a screenprinting machine or even screenprinting hinges to clamp his screens in place, he eyeballs the placement of the images and squeegees the ink over the screen with his other hand, then onto the shirt. It’s a rudimentary setup, but Adrien’s goal is that DCXV will one day grow into a company that resembles Brooklyn Industries. The New York-based company is known for making Brooklyn-centric items in Brooklyn that then go out to the rest of the world. In parallel, DCXV is making Nashville-centric items in Nashville that then go out to the rest of the world. “It’s about defining and pushing the Nashville style. That’s kind of the grand vision for everything,” he says. For DCXV and for Adrien, Nashville is more than a destination, it’s an identity and a place called “home.” He’s visually defining what it means to be a Nashvillian. In his words, “If you live in Nashville, you are probably a fan of the city.” Now fans of the city have something to show it.

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PECHA KUCHA

7

ELEVEN

2 0 1 2 AT THE BUILDING EAST NASHVILLE

JULY 7, 6:30PM

20 SLIDES 20 SECONDS each

Fast-paced, designcentered speaker series

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SPONSORED BY

ELEVEN

2 0 1 2 AT THE BUILDING EAST NASHVILLE

JULY 7, 6:30PM

Pecha-Kucha.org/Night/Nashville


INVEST IN NASHVILLE VESNA PAVLOVIC • DEREK COTE • EMILY LEONARD H E R B W I L L I A M S • L E S L E Y P AT T E R S O N - M A R X SHER FICK • JODI HAYS • MIKE CALWAY-FAGEN NICOLE BAUMANN • RYAN HOGAN • DAVID WOOD HANS SCHMITT-MATZEN • BENTON-C BAINBRIDGE

CSArt ANNOUNCES ITS SUMMER BUMPER CROP

$250 $100

SHARE GETS YOU 5 WORKS OF ART

SEEDSPACE.ORG

SHARE GETS YOU 2 WORKS OF ART

Artworks released at each Seed Space opening. Visit Seed Space this month to s e e C S A r t i s t Ni c o l e B a u m m a n ' s work. JULY | 2012

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Last fall, Adam Gatchel quit his boring day job as a successful touring musician to pursue his passion for light-making. Many musicians in Nashville dream of the day when they can go on tour and be paid for it (and consistently), but Adam was able to achieve that in his early twenties. Now, it’s been over half a decade, and he’s taking a break from his repressive nine-to-five as a drummer to do something a little riskier. The funny thing is, he doesn’t seem to have struggled with that much, either. The first lamp he ever tried to sell was on Etsy.com, and it sold before he finished typing the description.

Southern Lights Electric Company, Adam’s new business that grew out of his Etsy experience, specializes in old-fashioned lighting, both pre- and custom-made, much of which could be described as “industrial” or “machine age.” Adam proudly touts that all of his pieces are “Handcrafted in Nashville, Tennessee.” His favorite pieces include Edison bulb-mounted wooden cigar boxes and a converted retro space heater. What makes Southern Lights exceptional is the intricate level of craftsmanship that Adam commits to each handmade piece. Whether it’s a pendant light, a lamp, a glass insulator light, a vintage fixture, or custom commercial lighting, Adam’s attention to detail turns what could otherwise be an ordinary object into a work of art. “It’s something I’m not really educated in,” admits Adam, “but the great thing about lamps

didn’t know right away that lighting was his calling. His senior year in college, where he got a degree in music, he started painting and remodelling houses. That’s where he started to notice how poorlydesigned and poorly-made most light fixtures were. That’s also how he learned to quickly wire light fixtures. At one point, he was offered $25 for every light fixture he installed while remodeling an apartment complex, he went online and learned the task well. “That’s how I managed to make most of my money for about a year: I was just installing light fixtures,” he recalls. In a lot of ways, Adam’s new business overlaps with his musical past, especially in the way he learned how to do it. “I was going online and looking at what everyone was making, what everyone else was doing, and then I would try to

“It’s a power source and a socket and a bulb. The interesting part is how you turn that power source into a fixture.” and lighting fixtures is that it’s the same thing over and over and over again. It’s a power source and a socket and a bulb. The interesting part is how you turn that power source into a fixture.” Before starting Southern Lights, Adam was a professional drummer. He was a member of a Nashville-based pop rock band for five years until he decided that he needed a change. Looking back, the need for the eventual move was obvious. In a video interview of Adam in 2010, he comments on life on the road with hints of bittersweetness: “The travel’s really fun. It’s hard, but it’s fun.” He goes on to say, “I think I’ve got a pretty good job. I think it’s one of the best jobs you can have. But being gone for so long, you know, you miss your friends and family and having a normal schedule.” After Adam got engaged, he started thinking seriously about doing something else. “I proposed to my fiancé and then I was gone for 72 days in a row a week after that,” he recalls. “When I got back I said, ‘I just need a break. I’m done with this.’” But he

figure out how they did it, which is kind of the same with music. You just study someone who’s done it before until you learn how to do it, and then you’re able to innovate and do it differently. You develop your own style.” Looking back into his musical past, his attraction to lights was definitely present. As a drummer, he was often excited and distracted by the stage lighting. Adam was also highly attuned to how he was building the music’s architecture for the rest of the band. A drummer’s job, more so than anyone else in the band, is to keep time and make everyone else look good. You could make the same comment about what lighting does for a physical space. On Adam’s website, he has a Picasso quote that illustrates this parallel: “For me, a landscape does not exist in its own right, since its appearance changes at every moment; but the surrounding atmosphere brings it to life—the light which varies continually. For me, it is only the surrounding atmosphere which gives subjects their true value.”

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According to Adam, there are two parts of lighting design: the beauty and intrigue of the fixture itself, and the way light sources are placed in a room, which is similar to the way a musician’s part exists both alone and in relation to others. Simply put, he’s drawn to lights. His business took off when he committed himself to light-making full-time last November. Prior to that, he was filling orders from Etsy on the side, in addition to painting professionally.   Now, he’s become more focused on commercial lighting, and has already done work for bars, restaurants, hotels, and coffee shops   all across the world, but he remains loyal to Nashville. His commercial work can be seen locally at Barista Parlor. Since Adam made the commitment to do Southern Lights full-time, he hasn’t looked back. “I haven’t picked up a paintbrush or drumsticks since then,” he says, as if they were some previous addictions that he had proudly renounced. He adds, “I have a full drum set in the back of my wife’s car and I have all my painting supplies in the back of my car. I don’t really miss painting all that much. I’d throw that paint stuff away - I should probably do that soon. But the music stuff, that’s on hold, I’m not ready to go back to it right now. 99% of my friends are musicians and people I’ve played with and now they all know that I just make lights all the time. It’s pretty bizarre to them. They ask how it’s going and I’m like, ‘It’s going really well.”

EVERY WEEKEND IN ELMINGTON PARK SATURDAYS 11AM-6PM & SUNDAYS 12PM-6PM TWITTER: @WANDERLANDNASH

Website: southernlightsdecor.tumblr.com Etsy store: etsy.com/shop/SouthernLightsTN JULY | 2012

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NASHVILLE’S

NEW

BO OTS THESE (PETER NAPPI) BOOTS WERE MADE (IN ITALY) FOR WALKING BY CAT ACREE | PHOTOS JON MORRELL

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A

mericana—tough old denim, worn leather and a stars and stripes palette—is not nostalgia. Forget the sentimentality; Americana style is a banner, the bunting of a nation’s comparably short but determined history. In a region as sweeping as the American South, the Americana celebration of our small-but-mighty timeline composes a major portion of the Nashville ethos. Its tattered, gritty style suggests a heritage that finds wealth in age and aspires to its own longevity. Nashville defines its modern style through the thrill of rediscovery. And so, even though old-world Peter Nappi boots are hand-crafted by Italian artisans in a distant leatherworking shop, they still feel truly local and classically American. “It’s not trendy,” says Phillip Nappi, the unassuming founder of Peter Nappi, dressed in straight jeans, a white v-neck worn inside-out and, of course, busted leather boots. “It’s timeless. You can wear these a hundred years ago, today, or a hundred years from now.” Peter Nappi, named after Phillip’s Italian grandfather, has just opened for the day, afternoon light streaming into the massive studio located on the banks of the Cumberland near Germantown. Once, the Neuhoff Meat Packing Plant employed 1,200 workers; now, this one room of the abandoned slaughterhouse is home to some of the finest leather goods this side of the pond. From the outside, the studio is practically swallowed by the surrounding empty factory. The rusty Peter Nappi sign looks as though it survived floods both local and Biblical, and could easily be missed. Follow Adams St. past their open doors and the golden-haired children playing in a field of clover (seriously), and you’ll find the ruins of the colossal slaughterhouse. On the inside, the 4,200 square-foot houses towering stacks of wooden shoe boxes; one-of-a-kind, sellable furniture from France, Sweden, and Belgium; “found” objects from everywhere and everywhen; and shelves of boots and bags. At the center of the room is a long wooden table, an altar bearing massive bowls of lush moss and the monthly one-of-a-kind boots—hand-sewn special editions. A raised wooden stage is tucked to the side, its backdrop a gargantuan, tattered American flag with 36 stars, dating it at about 1865. A display case of Santa Maria Novella products—fragrances, potpourri, candles and dog shampoo made by Florentine monks who have been hand-harvesting their ingredients since 1221—leads to the back, where Phillip’s assistant bangs away at work.

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Head through the rear exit to find Phillip’s “playground,” where he stretches, dries and soaks swathes of leather, and where the factory’s old steam exhaust chimney shoots straight to the heavens. Stores like Peter Nappi, especially with its Italian and American roots, make it possible for sprawling Nashville to maintain that precious city intimacy. From Italy, where tiny leather shops have been nestled in teetering buildings for generations, it draws a sense of timelessness; from America, it gets its appetite for wide spaces. It feels ancient, ingrained in our culture, but also unfettered and grand. Peter Nappi seems as though it’s always been here—but they’ve only just celebrated their one year anniversary. And perhaps it’s only in Nashville that this is possible. “I think Italy and the South have very oldschool... cultures. They’re very similar in that they’re very rich in tradition,” says Dana Nappi, Phillip’s wife and erudite business partner. She has an easy smile like Phillip, but as he comes and goes in our conversation, she stays at my side, moving easily and warmly throughout the shop. She goes on, “Heritage is very respected and highly regarded. So those parallels, I think, work well for us. At the end of the day, this is his grandfather’s company, and that type of lineage is very well-respected in the South as well.” The Peter Nappi heritage is the stuff of ancestral myth, for those who believe in prophecy or destiny. Phillip had long dreamt of opening his own shoe store, and after a beloved pair of work boots blew out and could not be replaced, he and Dana— Nashvillians already—moved forward with plans to design and craft fine Italian boots. They discovered a family history they hadn’t known: A century ago, Phillip’s Italian grandfather Peter immigrated to America, bringing with him the craft of boot making. With a passion clearly passed by blood, Phillip spends much of his time scouring the globe, looking for inspiration from past models, from old photographs of construction workers to finished leather bags dug up at antique shows. “We want all of our styles and our models to be timeless and to be authentic,” says Phillip. “[We’re] really trying to capture this whole world.” Phillip’s endless search extends to their materials, too: the

finest leathers, all durable and understated, all more beautiful with age. “We want something that breaks in more beautifully, day after day,” Dana says. Their most used leather is kudu, a South African antelope infused with natural oils, tanned in Leeds, England—though they also incorporate vegetabletanned cavallo (from horses that were not raised or slaughtered for leather) and vitello (calf) leathers. All uppers and soles are combined using the Blake method, a single row of stitching which allows for a tighter profile and a narrower sole. They use the same fine leather inside and out, “because it’s about the experience of wearing the shoe, too,” Dana says. “You don’t want to put some cheap cowhide on the inside—that’s the part your foot’s touching.” The boot wall displays the seven men’s and five women’s styles, and each model is named for a person close to the Nappis’ hearts. The Julius, their flagship boot, is Phillip’s Confirmation name and the name of his father. The Bartolomeo is named for St. Bartolomeo, patron saint of leatherworkers and shoemakers. The slip-on Lucano is named after the region of Italy from which Peter Nappi hailed. The Stefano memorializes a friend who helped them start the company and find the Neuhoff space, another inspiring friend lent the calf-grazing Murdaugh its name, the classic Lunardi is named after the production manager in Italy, and the Romeo shoe is named for Phillip’s godfather. It’s surprising to learn that Peter Nappi boots are made in the same factory as some of the biggest Italian brands, considering their aversion to the homogeny of typical fine shoe companies. The difference lays in a passion for the work, a love that sends Phillip to Italy to work alongside the Italian artisans several times a year. “[Phillip’s] on the line with the guys,” Dana says. “He’s working and sewing and stitching and working the leather and stretching. What’s cool about the artisans when he is there with them is that they have a lot more, much more of a collaboration. [With the factory’s other French and Italian shoes], artists on the line are instructed to make one shoe, exactly the same, highly polished, shiny. It needs to look exactly the same.” “They all look the same,” says Phillip. “So repetitive.” “With us,” Dana goes on, “they’ve got input on, ‘This is the way we should treat the leather. If that’s the outlook, why don’t we try this?’ These guys have been doing this for 30, 40, 50, 60 years,

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they know a lot more than us, and so it’s much more, they get much more input. I think it’s much more fulfilling for them as well, from what they’ve told us.” Nashville has a major hand in creating the Nappi lifestyle, and it’s why this company feels like it’s been here forever. “What’s really cool about Nashville versus being in any other big metropolitan location,” Dana says, “what makes it work here even more is the support that the community gives us. I think if we were in New York or L.A. it’s so competitive, almost to the point where a lot of the smaller guys get bullied out. Nashville... has enabled us to grow our first year and to still be alive and viable.”

December. “Shelly Fairchild closed it,” Phillip says of the latter. “That was probably the best show, music-wise. She crushed it.” And they promise much more to come. Speaking of what’s next, the rising tide carries all boats in this town, and Phillip and Dana are riding it to (someday) opening stores in New York, Milan, Tokyo and San Francisco. “World domination,” Dana promises. Same goes for style evolution—look for new dyes, sand- and soda-blasted leather, and a line of women’s heeled boots coming this fall. “The Peter Nappi experience is about bridging the generations and about bringing what’s best of what we remember our grandparents to be into today’s world,” Dana says. “Today, unfortunately, a lot of things are mass-produced. And excess had been the norm in the last two or three decades. I think consumers today are ready to get back to oldschool, or old-fashioned almost, qualities and traits. And what we’re trying to do is provide a product that embodies those old-fashioned characteristics that can then be brought into your life and you can live out the rest of your history with them.” In a town where the long-dead lay undisturbed in crumbling cemeteries on the side of the interstate, in backyards and throughout subdivisions, it’s fitting for our shoes to look this old. When Ann Patchett wrote in the Huffington Post that “we have put on our shoes and shaken the hayseed from our hair,” these are the shoes she was referring to. And the more people pay attention to the cool things coming out of Nashville, the more we’ll hang onto the new relics of our precious history.

“I think if WE were in New York or L.A. it’s so competitive, almost to the point where a lot of the smaller guys get bullied out. Nashville... has enabled us to grow our first year and to still be alive and viable.” And because this is Nashville, even the shoemakers know about music. The store easily transforms into a show space, and the music events performed on its raised wooden stage are just as much part of the Peter Nappi experience as wearing shoes with personality. According to the Nappis, two of the best shows so far were a private event with The Fray and the women’s launch party last

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“This is a company looking to make a difference in the world of music.”

– Jennifer Barry, Awaiting The Flood

Out Now (available on iTunes and AmericanCadence.com) “Making an album, nowadays, that has personal meaning and tells a real story is a tough sell. Some people would call it a risk. The way I see it, I’ve been able to spend the last few years working on the exact album I wanted to put together for a long time. This record chronicles a two year period of my life dating from November 2nd, 2008 to November 2nd 2010. I signed my first record deal and spent almost all of my time on the road. I loved, sacrificed and lost only to have to pick up and start again. I hitchhiked for 3 months around America and followed that up with driving 100 thousand miles in 18 months. I slept in my van in the winter and lived on an extravagant tour bus in the summer. I’ve gotten to see most continents and play my music in cities I thought I would never even get the chance to travel to. And when all was said and done, I was back on the same flight two years later back to the same airport to start the next chapter of this story. It has taken quite a few years and a lot of support from people in every corner of the globe to get this album finished and out; and to that end, I really hope I don’t forget to thank anyone on here. But if you helped, you know who you are, and my door is always open. Hope you enjoy the record.” – Kiernan

Brandon Jaehne / Kiernan McMullan Wood & Wire Split 10” Paste OFA tag here.

Kiernan McMullan Two Years

Charlie Abbott Brand New Weather

American Cadence is much more than a record label.

Aaron Shanley Please Tell Me The Clocks Are Lying

Coming Soon

We believe in the healing power of music and it’s ability to change lives. Because of this belief and our commitment to community, we donate a portion of all ACR proceeds to music education initiatives for children living in low income communities in the Nashville area. Visit AmericanCadence.org to learn more and get involved! Sonia Montez and The Henry Street Players

Free Stickers at: facebook.com/AmericanCadence

Special thanks to: W.O. Smith School of Music, Jive! A Digital Print Factory, The Reel East Nashville, joshua black wilkins, United Record Pressing, and You!

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facebook.com/AmericanCadence


THIS MONTH AT THE BELCOURT

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SAVANT’S

SUMMER VINTAGE LOOKBOOK

For over a decade, Beverly Chowning, the owner of Savant Vintage Couture, has been collecting, curating, and selling rare and exceptional vintage clothing and furniture. What’s the one thing it all has in common? As Beverly says, “It has to be fabulous.” This month, we teamed up with Savant to bring you fresh takes on classic clothes. When the heat goes up, there are few things more refreshing than unique pieces of wearable classic cool. Some of the best looks from the 50s, 60s, and 70s found their way into these pages (and our hearts). After pairing some of those looks with anachronistic, rugged leather accessories and wide-brimmed hats, Nashville’s unique character found its way in, too.

PhotographER: Jeremy Ryan Hatfield Stylist: Gavin O'Neill Hair & Makeup: Angelica Smith, The Style Kitchen Hair: Sara Schoonover, The Style Kitchen MODELS: Itoro Udoko , Ryan Winnen, Marisa Mlynarek, Tanya Montana Coe 62 NATIVE JULY | 2012


OPPOSITE PAGE: On Itoro: Kennington Western-embroidered blue button-down with Native American on back ($145), navy blue short shorts ($45), belt, canvas tote bag, Harlan Bass leather sandals ($42) On Ryan: teal shorts with belt ($48), creamsicle short sleeve shirt, brown dress shoes

On Itoro: golf pants ($68), navy suspenders ($18), cream button-down with embroidered flowers ($49)

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On Tanya: yellow wiggle dress ($146), straw hat ($65)

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On Marisa: Alex colman Hot pink wide-leg pants ($125), Black Drop-neck bathing suit ($108), Pierre cardin blue scarf ($89), Rope platforms ($78), Australian ranger's rabbit hat ($189) JULY | 2012

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On Tanya: short teal dress ($94), red with tan triangle pumps, "saddle" bag On Marisa: lavender cotton dress ($48), scarf ($28), zip-up neutral boots ($140), western barrel bag

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On Itoro: blue & yellow striped shorts ($46), light yellow short-sleeve button down ($32) On Ryan: blue & olive green plaid shorts ($46), red snap-down with red embroidered roses ($48) On Marisa: red apron dress with yellow & grey flowers ($52)

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On Marisa: off-white, cotton-blend dress with Embroidered dots And lace trim ($78), rugged lace-up work boots, coonskin hat

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On Tanya: orange halter ($48), orange bell bottoms ($78), sunglasses


On Tanya: blue and white striped denim jumper with lace-up back On Marisa: yellow dress with white and maroon flowers ($82)

On Tanya: burnt orange floral embroidered top with sash ($24), maroon wool blend shorts ($34) On Ryan: light blue sheer short-sleeve button down ($39), black work boots On Marisa: Bessi blue & green floral dress ($350) On Itoro: green & orange plaid button down ($48), distressed Doc Martens ($120)

On Tanya: light pink shift ($52), brown leather riding boots ($56), green & white checkered scarf ($48) On Marisa: cotton blend red & white checkered day dress ($58), leather belt with tassels ($32)

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G place sticker here

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A to B

Day Great for a ride It’s a

Green Fleet’s new Hub redefines what it means to get around Nashville BY: Andri Alexandrou & B.B. Wright

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A to B

A

hub is the central part of a wheel, from which spokes radiate. A hub is also the effective center of an activity, region, or network. The Hub in Edgehill Village plays on both of these definitions. As Nashville’s newest bike shop, The Hub is more than just a cool place to fix a chain. It serves as the rallying point for an impressive collection of organizations and activities devoted to making Nashville a more bike-friendly city. The glass-fitted, functional garage doors and hand-painted signs lure in passers-by. Inside, the sandblasted brick walls are lined with glistening bikes and gear. The Hub is perched on Edgehill road, nestled into the side of a hill around the corner from Edgehill Cafe. It was previously used as a storage facility, and was recently converted into what it is now - the focal point of a bicycle revolution. The Hub is a full-service bicycle shop in addition to being the home to Green Fleet Bicycle Tours and Green Fleet Messengers, two services that are changing the way Nashville interacts with bicycles. Green Fleet Messengers (Green Fleet, for short) is the brainchild of Austin Bauman. Austin started the company in 2009 out of his apartment, after working with a local real estate company. There, he noticed that small packages were being delivered in and around town inefficiently and expensively. Austin looked at the situation and saw the opportunity to create his own bicycle courier service. While they originally served only Nashville, Green Fleet now delivers to Brentwood, Franklin, Hendersonville, Mt. Juliet, Lebanon, LaVergne, Smryna, Murfreesboro, Gallatin, and all points in between. According to Green Fleet, they are “the fastest, most flexible delivery fleet in Middle Tennessee.” While Green Fleet was the first of its kind in Nashville, bicycle courier services have been around since the Paris stock exchange of the 1870s and began in the United States with

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Western Union in the 1890s. Perhaps Nashville is now getting big enough and wise enough to see the benefits of the alternative messenger system. Nashville is transitioning into becoming a more bikeand environmentally-friendly city. Still, the transition takes many people working toward the same goal. Part of Green Fleet’s purpose is to educate people about bicycling and bicycle safety. The more exposed people are to bicycles, the more they will grow comfortable with the idea of using a bicycle as an alternative mode of transportation. In Austin’s words, “If you get used to driving around in a car, it doesn’t even occur to you to ride a bicycle to go to the grocery store or to deliver a package. It takes a reminder, that ‘Hey, we can do that by bicycle.’ So with Green Fleet we put that reminder out there.” When a messenger picks up or drops off a package, the face-to-face interaction also helps promote bicycling. According to Austin, “When clients see one of our couriers do a delivery, all of a sudden the bicyclist becomes a person to them, and they start thinking more about safety.” All of this translates to a safer environment for bicycling and a healthier community: a better Nashville. In addition to being a “green” business, Green Fleet simultaneously champions economy. “We’re not just some more expensive alternative. We’re actually cheaper,” says Austin. Many businesses assume that greener practices mean higher prices, but that’s not the case with Green Fleet. They know they are competing with other messenger services and that they can’t rely on people’s consciences alone in order win over and keep customers. Most people aren’t going to put in the effort to change their habits if it isn’t more convenient or doesn’t make sense to them financially. As a social business, Green Fleet is contributing to the greater good while running a profit. “Plus,” as Austin says, “one time we delivered George Strait’s hat. That was cool.” Now that Green Fleet has relocated to its Hub on Edgehill, Austin spends his time as the face of the company, travelling around Nashville to find new clients. Most of Green Fleet’s clients use the courier service to run legal documents around downtown. As their business has expanded, so have their services. The Hub now houses Green Fleet Bicycle Tours, a service provided in conjunction with New Belgium Brewing Co., the makers of Fat Tire, and the Nashville Bicycle Alliance, a bicycle advocacy group.  For $49, you can get a guided bicycle tour of Nashville. Green Fleet promises that participants will, “learn about Nashville’s birth, wild-west roots, Civil War


“We’re not just some more expensive alternative. We’re actually cheaper.” past, and rich music history.” The route explores some of the most famous landmarks between Music Row and Downtown, including The Country Music Hall of Fame, Schermerhorn Symphony Center, Union Station, The Hermitage Hotel, Ryman Auditorium, Station Inn, The Frist Center, Riverfront Park, Bicentennial Mall, The Nashville Farmers’ Market, and Studio B. You may be thinking, “On a bike, that would take all day!” But Green Fleet can take you around town in two to three hours. This is another way that The Hub is introducing people

to the surprisingly satisfying world of bicycling. Bicycle lanes have already increased dramatically in the city, but there is far more to be accomplished in terms of driver awareness and laws regarding bicyclists. For example, most people don’t know that bicycles are legally entitled to a full lane in traffic or that it is illegal to ride your bike on the sidewalk in a business district. Austin notes, “When someone gets hit by a car bicycling in Nashville, they ask ‘Why were you biking on that road,’ not, ‘why did that car hit you?’” The goal is to educate the uninformed. More than anything, The Hub is helping make bicycles cool for the mainstream. They have always been cool, of course, it’s just that a lot of people didn’t know it. The Hub in all of its components wants Nashvillians to get out and “See Nashville by bicycle!” They would like to see more people riding bicycles to work or to grab to a cup of coffee—to think of bicycles as an alternative to driving everywhere. As their slogan says, “It’s a great day for a ride.”

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BYMEGAN PACELLA

W

hen Ashley Sheehan opened up a small handmade goods store, called “Made,” in 2010, she had no idea what was coming for her. Housed in a 400-square-foot space at the corner of Porter Road and Eastland Avenue in East Nashville, it didn’t take long for her vintage items and handmade jewelry to become a hit in the local market. Also, it didn’t take long for Kate Mills to convince her to expand into something bigger than she could imagine. Old Made Good (OMG) started from modest and disjointed beginnings, as most great businesses do. Two years ago, Kate quit her job as a teacher’s assistant in an elementary school with the intention of starting a non-profit, only to discover that her attorney had filed the wrong paperwork. Without the 501(c)(3) documents that she needed to start her organization, Kate turned to her Etsy shop to make some extra money until she could line up another job. This is when she met Ashley.

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The first time Kate and Ashley met, Ashley was complaining about how her laptop had died and how she needed one to run her then-new business. Kate offered to drop one off to her the next day. Ashley recalls that that she didn’t actually expect Kate to follow through. “I was like, ‘No you won’t.’ I really didn’t think she’d do that,” Ashley says, “but the next day, she showed up with her laptop, and it had a bumper sticker on it that said: ‘There’s a special place in Hell for women who don’t help other women.’” During this uncertain period, Ashley agreed to put some of Kate’s vintage items in Made. From this starting point, the two began a relationship that would lead them to becoming business partners just six weeks later. This wasn’t an easy transition. According to Kate, it was kind of awkward. Neither of them knew each other very well. Yet they were starting a business together. To cope with this, they employed an unorthodox method: alter egos. As Kate recalls, “We were at Home Depot


picking out paint swatches for the store. We stumbled upon the colors Dusty Miller and Misty Moonstone and decided that those names needed to be our alter egos. It was a coping mechanism for how little we knew each other. And it’s how we were able to get to know each other.” Dusty and Misty have taken off, possibly at the risk of overshadowing Kate and Ashley. They star in a series of videos that OMG posts online, and they have gained some serious fans. When a serial burglar broke into OMG, Ashley and Kate tried to bring attention to the situation through Dusty and Misty videos. Their episodes “Shop Talk: Robbery Edition” and “Shop Talk: Vigilante Justice” call for their customers to “make it rain” to fill up their emptied cash register, among other things. They also give the robber the finger and wave around a baseball bat. Whatever they did, they sent a pretty strong message. As one of the videos stated, “These videos are going virus.” And they did, um, “go virus.” One of the videos was picked up by MSNBC. As Dusty is quick to note, “I do not know that show.”

“We’re kind of becoming known for finding one-of-a-kind shit.” Even though Dusty and Misty were born as a coping mechanism, they’ve grown to occupy a serious part of OMG’s identity. As Kate says, “Now we just do it because we love it.” Kate found a home for OMG in an old blue bungalow in Riverside Village. At 1,200 square feet, it could house more furniture and allow them to host events for the neighborhood. All they had to do was sign the lease and move in, which Kate didn’t think would be as easy as it sounded. The night before signing the lease, the two met at No. 308. Kate recalls what was going through her head at the time, “I just thought that any moment, she was going to call complete bullshit. I was like, ‘I can’t wait to see what’s going to happen, but she’s not going to do it.’” According to Ashley, she never gave it a second thought. After a successful signing, Ashley and Kate made moves for what they now call “The Big Blue Bungalow.” In just two weeks, they moved everything into the new space and reopened the store as Old Made Good. They’ve also recently started offering monthly classes that they cleverly call Crafty Bitches. The classes are hosted at Jackalope Brewery, another business run by a duo of young women. According to Kate, “We got

hooked up with Jackalope and helped with the decor of their space. We’ve been with Jackalope literally since they opened their doors. We always wanted to teach classes. That’s always something we wanted to do. But our space wasn’t conducive to that. One day we were like, ‘We should just do this at the brewery,’ and that was it.” A recent Crafty Bitches poster explains the concept best, “We’re a bunch of crafty bitches who make awesome shit, crack jaw-droppingly vulgar jokes, and drink kick-ass beer. Join us for a series of DIY classes taught by local artisans.” Each month, they bring in local makers to teach classes ranging from knitting to art collaging to coin purse-making. “The idea is that you leave with a finished product,” Kate says. There’s another layer to what Crafty Bitches stands for that gets to the heart of OMG’s identity. “It’s women supporting women, explains Kate. “Jackalope is a women-run small business like Old Made Good. Crafty Bitches is a way of bringing awareness to women-run businesses and the women-run business community, and tying all of us together.” Kate and Ashley are expanding the breadth of OMG yet again by starting to offer a service Kate calls “interior concierge.” In order to be an interior designer you have to go to school. But Kate and Ashley can work with people to find things for their spaces without the need for additional credentials. “We’re kind of becoming known for finding one-of-a-kind shit,” Kate says. “That’s how we evolved into interior concierge. We go find all the stuff for people. They give us a wish-list of what they want for their businesses, and we go find it.” One great example of their work is the newly-opened Barista Parlor, which is worth checking out. Old Made Good is a little bit of everything. OMG is as flexible as Kate and Ashley’s ambitions. The shop has never been the kind that is open from 10 to 5 Monday through Saturday and closed on Sundays. During the times when the store is closed, Ashley and Kate pour every ounce of their energy into picking through junk at flea markets and estate sales, refinishing and recovering furniture, and curating an ever-changing store full of one-of-a-kind items. Kate explains, “Everything at OMG is made or found. We go find it. Load it up in the truck. Clean it off. Sell it.” Old Made Good isn’t really a “type” of store. The ever-changing collection includes locally-created goods, handmade jewelry, re-purposed furniture, decor and clothing. Some people describe it as a living, breathing Etsy shop. In Kate’s words, “We’re more like a wellcurated flea market. We do the digging for you. We go to the estate and garage sales and pick the best so that you

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don’t have to sort through all the junk. That’s my big passion. Having things in the shop that are one-of-a-kind and unique.” Running OMG can be exhilarating and exhausting at the same time. As Kate says, “It gets to the point where you’re just bone tired.” But they can’t envision doing anything else anywhere else. “We’re irreverent and we’re pushing the envelope,” Kate says, “People in Nashville - especially East Nashville kind of like that. We’re so fortunate to be in East Nashville where all of these cool businesses are popping up. This is the only community that we could not only survive in, but thrive in.” And thriving they are. Their business model grants them a way to change a culture they view as flawed. The deeper message behind OMG is about living a life that you’re proud of. In a mass-everything market that emphasizes “new” and produces excess amounts of so-called “waste,” OMG stands for working with what you’ve got and what you find—what other people throw away or overlook. “There’s a big handmade movement,” Kate explains. “It’s easy and fun to do. You don’t have to live a mass-produced life. You don’t have to buy everything from a big box store. It just takes a little courage and a lot of looking and collecting and learning.” Kate calls this process “reinventing and purging.” She’s changing people’s misconceptions about re-purposed goods, including her own previous misconceptions. “I hadn’t stepped into a thrift store before we opened OMG,” she confesses. “Thrift stores were not cool or fun places. But I didn’t know what I was looking for. Now it’s my life. I had no idea how much amazing stuff people through away. It’s really empowering and it makes you feel creative. It’s like you are taking control of your life.” After less than two years in business together, Ashley and Kate certainly are evolving—but they haven’t grown apart. “Ashley and I are different people,” Kate says. “That’s the beautiful thing about us. I can’t make a piece of jewelry. I can’t do things she can do. But we just complement each other so well. There is no other person on the planet that I could do this with. We’re more than friends. We’re sisters.” Address: 1304 McGavock Pike Hours: Sunday - Monday 12-5, Tuesday - Saturday 11-6 Crafty Bitches classes are held at Jackalope Brewing Company on the fourth Thursday of every month from 6:30-8:30. Information on the cost and craft can be found on the OMG website, OldMadeGood.com.

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(832) 3PITTIE (832) 374-8843

musiccitypitbrigade@gmail.com facebook.com/musiccitypitbrigade


THIS MONTH AT THE BELCOURT

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F ILM N E R D I N MUSICCITY

It’s Time To Cheat On Music Nashvillians should cultivate a love for film, and they can start with The Story of Film, playing at The Belcourt this month.

Read more of Sarah Brown’s film writing at

saintviciousfilm.com

BY SARAH BROWN

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here has been a marked recurrence in my life: the conversation turns to movies, and suddenly I become a veritable Niagara of ridiculous trivia, semi-famous names, and obscure, partially-relevant quotes, which I have the bad habit of tossing around like confetti. This inevitably leads to, “My God, how do you know all that?” To which I reply, “You know the way you’re into music? Well, that’s the way I’m into film.” Boom. There it is. I can feel the judgment. Regardless of how the person saw me before, I am suddenly and irrevocably labeled forever in their minds: Film Nerd. Lumped in with every lightsaber-waving, Tarantinoworshipping, popcorn-gobbling freak you’ve ever seen lined up outside an auditorium for a midnight release—except perhaps better dressed, and slightly more female.    Don’t get me wrong, I love music, and I love that we’re so good at it. I’m proud of our heritage and our trajectory, of the way music has shaped and enriched every aspect of our local culture, a culture we’re all watching come into its own—from the upsurge in foodie and locavore dining, to the establishment of a fashion community that has both mass appeal and a distinct hometown flavor. I am pleased to be part of a generation of young Nashvillians that is taking more interest (and maybe even a more interesting interest, at that) in our culture than our predecessors (you may think that’s not fair, but it’s my opinion). But there’s one arena in which I would say we are definitely lagging, and that is film. Nashvillians like movies, sure, but the contingency that actually loves film as an art form, and who feel free to make that love public, is heartbreakingly small for a city of our size and prominence. If we want to continue to grow in cultural relevance, that’s something that has to change. It’s not that we’re not making strides. The Nashville Film Festival becomes more famous and prestigious each year, and the Belcourt brings hundreds of amazing films to Nashville each year. Plus, we have Harmony Korine, for God’s sake. But in such an incredibly creative city, there is certainly room to grow. The talent is definitely out there, those up-and-coming Nashville-based filmmakers, and I know some of them. They are remarkably driven, and best of all, productive, making movies on shoestring budgets, relying heavily on the obliging nature of a small circle of like-minded individuals, often assisting for free. They are working every bit as hard as their counterparts in the music industry, but they are doing it without the benefit of the support system enjoyed by musicians. Their efforts are, by necessity, much more collaborative and much more reliant on the input of others. It almost always takes a crew

to produce even one second of worthwhile film; there are no “solo artists.” Not to discount the knowledge, training, and teamwork that goes into music-making, but the prerequisite knowledge of filmmakers is often more specialized and less intuitive, requiring some educational background for almost every aspect of the process. But their greatest difficulty, what Nashville’s filmmakers lack most desperately, is what any art needs in order to truly flourish: an enthusiastic and receptive audience to validate their often herculean efforts. That’s where we come in. We Nashvillians need to change our perception of film and the way we engage with it. We need to educate ourselves and appreciate film every bit as much as we appreciate music. All too often, I get the sense that movies are just seen as time-fillers, escapist distractions for when there’s nothing else to do. Film can be and is so much more, and if we want that to be a meaningful part of our culture here, we have to understand it and support it. Most of the world’s great cities have supportive and well-developed filmmaking communities and infrastructure. There is no reason we can’t have the same here. When a film is visually stunning, you become submerged in it. Especially in the darkness, in that isolated little bubble of time and space, with the sound thundering around you.  Theatre-going can sweep you up in a visceral whirlwind, just as much as any concert. And isn’t that why we love art, because of its power to take us out of our usual state, stimulating mind and senses? Film should not simply be a mental and emotional escape, but a destination. Some people are not comfortable appreciating film on that level, but if you are willing to give yourself over to music, why deny yourself the same experience when it comes to film? Our local film community needs support. Unlike many other cities of this size, Nashville only has one independent theatre, our beloved Belcourt, and only the Regal Green Hills 16 shows the rest of the more “mainstream” indie and art house features. Yet, we’re in an exciting position to promote a flourishing independent film scene here, and to stand up and be counted. I would love for the whole country to see homegrown Nashville productions that would blow the lid off of some pernicious stereotypes of the South and Music City. Film is a unique avenue for us to proudly present our true nature as a city to the world, while enriching our own cultural lives. Education is the first step. So, if you would like to get to know film a little bit better, there is an excellent opportunity give it a nice firm handshake at The Belcourt this month with the epic documentary The Story of Film: An Odyssey, directed by Mark Cousins (who wrote a book of the same name). The documentary lovingly covers the entire sweep of film’s history, from those first jerky silent features to the massive digital empire that dominates the modern globe. Who knows what small insight or grand overarching theme could ignite you to jump up and become a part of the action? Join me in the quest to help Music City realize its potential as a valuable contributor to this dynamic art. See you in the dark.

“Don’t get me wrong, I love music, and I love that we’re so good at it.”

The Story of Film: An Odyssey at the Belcourt Saturday, July 7 noon-2 Sunday, July 8 noon-2 Saturday, July 14 noon-2 Sunday, July 15 noon-2 Saturday, July 21 noon-2 Sunday, July 22 noon-2 Saturday, July 28 noon-2 Sunday, July 29 noon-2 For more information and for a full listing of offerings, visit Belcourt.org.

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F I L M NERD IN MUSICCITY

MOONRISE KINGDOM

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nticipation may well be my favorite emotion. There’s something so delicious about expectation, isn’t there? For film lovers, this delightful sensation starts to build in the spring, once the Oscars have run their course and everyone has simmered down after last year’s sensations, cueing the studios to start building buzz for their next batch of cinematic confections. Then we wait, letting it build as the seasons shift into the sultry, sweaty groove that lets us know it’s that time of the year again, time to run for the cool relief of theatrical darkness to gulp down Hollywood’s latest. This year is obviously no exception, and this summer, no prospect has me more atingle than hipster tastemaker Wes Anderson’s latest offering, Moonrise Kingdom. For those familiar with Anderson’s body of work, this shouldn’t be a surprise, as he’s been delighting movie-goers with his films since his Bottle Rocket debut in 1996. And the hits just keep on coming: 1998’s Rushmore really put him on the map, followed by The Royal Tenenbaums (2001), The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004), The Darjeeling Limited (2007), and The Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009). When it comes to Wes Anderson, there’s just so much to love. What is so striking about his films is how potently he infuses his distinct personality into every part of them, which has led to a style, a brand, practically a genre, that is entirely and compulsively unique. Here is a man with a crystalline self-awareness that shines through every facet of his creations.  His stories and characters are quirky and novel enough to take one on the kind of soaring imaginative flight movies were made for, while still retaining enough humanity and pathos to ground them firmly in emotional response. He writes screenplays replete with such disaffected humor and deftly balanced dialogue that they could only fail to entertain those too mundane or too jaded to enjoy the brilliance of anything. All his stylistic choices, from costumes to sets to infectious soundtracks, are at once nostalgic yet refreshing, flamboyant yet refined, calibrated to the taste of the eccentric, postmodern prep. Every scene is framed with the artistic attention generally attributed to

fashion editorials, rendering his films into intelligent eye-candy. And his incredible casts are peopled with magnetic actors whose overt pleasure in performing his work emanates from every shot. Moonrise Kingdom is a coming-of-age story of pre-adolescent romance that culminates in the two star-crossed lovers (played by newcomers Kara Hayward and Jared Gilman) meeting at summer camp and running away together, much to the consternation of their parents, the camp counselors, the local law enforcement and social services. Anderson is a genius when it comes to depicting the tender awkwardness of childhood (or any age for that matter), ever maintaining the delicate balance between naïve wonder and the uncertainty of transition; in fact, it is this same balance that he employs with his adult characters as well, just with a heaping spoonful of hilarious cynicism, and perhaps that is one of the keys to his appeal. The cast alone would be enough to reel in most people: recurring Anderson favorites Bill Murray and Jason Schwartzman, plus Edward Norton, Bruce Willis, Frances MacDormand and Tilda Swinton. I’m particularly excited to see what Anderson makes of these talents, as one can always be assured of seeing a completely new and unexpected performance out of a familiar face when they’re under his direction. As Nashvillians, our opportunity to experience anticipation is more protracted than it is for those in some larger cities, since we’re always on the tail-end of a limited released. But if, like me, you’re into that sort of thing, the delay only makes for a sweeter sense of gratification. And, while normally I try not to read any reviews or hear anyone else’s opinion of a movie I have yet to see, I have it on good authority from those who have already had the pleasure that this film is nothing short of marvelous. We can get our fresh Wes Anderson fix at the Belcourt this month, and you can expect to see me there, soaking up all that I can. Because once it’s over, it’ll be another two or three years until the Anderson comet swings by us again, which means plenty of time to build up that delicious anticipation. – SARAH BROWN

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NATIVE ANIMAL OF THE MONTH

the

REDTAILED squirrel

Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Mammalia Order: Rodentia Family: Sciuridae Genus: Tamiasciurus Species: Hudsonicus

Tamiasciurus hudsonicus: (n.) a mid-size, ground and tree-dwelling rodent native to North America Other names: chickaree, American red squirrel, pine squirrel, North American red squirrel, Squirrel Nutkin

M

eet the Native Animal of the Month, the redtailed squirrel. He’s one of three members of the Pine family, and though he won’t admit it, the others will tell you that he’s most-assuredly adopted. This ginger should not be confused with the Eurasian Red Squirrel (sciurus vulgaris - yep, as in vulgar), who dwells on the other side of the Atlantic. Both are lazily referred to as “red squirrel” and as a whole their name means “hoarder,” so watch your stuff. Like most Southern families, the red squirrel has many cousins, 25 recognized subspecies in all. They don’t always get along, and feuds are not uncommon. There’s the over-achieving goody-goody side of the family, with names like gymnicus (as in gymnast)and regalis (as in regal). Then there’s the ones who give the rest a bad rap, like petulans (as in petulant) and picatus 82

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(meaning “pitch,” as in they’re annoying). Above them all is dixiensis, named for hailing from the good ole South. Their cute “chuck-chuck” can be heard echoing through the canopies of trees. Look for them everywhere. It is easy to identify their presence with the telltale signs of large nests, scratched barks, and chewed pine cones. Their nests are called dreys, which they build in underbrush, grass, and in the branches and cavities of trees. American red squirrels are primarily granivores, but incorporate other food items into their diet opportunistically. They’ve been known to get adventurous with fruits and even bird eggs. And they love mushrooms. Red squirrels clip and gather truffles and other fungi to dry them in the sun. As if that weren’t impressive enough, they can actually choose between good and bad nuts, too. They do this by hold-

ing the nuts in their paws and seem to have some nature-gifted insight. We call it a superpower. Red squirrels are highly communicative. They tap their feet to indicate agitation and anger, and talk to each other by twitching their bushy tails using a highly-sophisticated secret language. Though they’re naturally reclusive, red squirrels love to snuggle, and do so to stay warm. Instead of dating, they chance each other around, which leads to litters of kittens - yes, kittens - of up to six at a time. Alas, life is hard. Only one in four kittens survive their first birthday. Yep, the red squirrel is a southerner through-andthrough, an all-American. He puts the “red” back in red, white and blue - not to be confused with the Communist red of his Eurasian cousin and the “American” back in American red squirrel.


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Native | July 2012 | Nashville, TN