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NOVEMBER

2014


RSVP on Downtown Subaru's Facebook page to the Dine On Us tab to take an overnight test drive of the all-new 2015 Subaru Legacy and recieve a $25 M Street gift card. M Street restaurants include: Virago, Tavern, Kanye Prime, Whiskey Kitchen, Moto & Saint Anejo. Offer is valid while giftcards last! Find full contest rules on Facebook. # NAT I V ENAS HV I L L E ///// / / / / / / / / / / / / / / / 1 BROADWAY AT 65 | 1512 BROADWAY, NASHVILLE, TN 37203 | 615.329.2929 | DOWNTOWNSUBARUNASHVILLE.COM


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Welcome to Our Family

INTERNATIONAL MARKET & RESTAURANT

Come see why the Myint family has been a part of the Belmont neighborhood since 1975. 4 / // / / / / / / / / / / / / /////

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Ready to hit it hard with the calorie-busting fitness classes or personal training sessions at TITLE Boxing Club? Visit our website to search our schedule of fitness classes to start your Power Hour or personal training today!

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RESPECT THE UNEXPECTED.

We are an independent record label born and bred in Nashville, TN. We produce no-bullshit homegrown music for everyone. WE’RE NASHVILLE, DAMMIT.

THE FAUNTLEROYS BELOW THE PINK PONY

AVAILABLE NOW! LP/CD/DD/CS

"The band premiered the first single from their EP, "I'm In Love With Everything," over at USA Today, and it's got the kind of classic rock ‘n’ roll songwriting you'd expect from a group with this kind of resume." - Brooklyn Vegan

CHUCK MEAD/PAUL BURCH SPLIT 7” COMMEMORATING THE 20TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE REVIVAL OF NASHVILLE’S LOWER BROADWAY

Limited Edition 7” vinyl featuring 2 songs from Chuck Mead and Paul Burch

AVAILABLE NOVEMBER 11TH ONLY AT PLOWBOYRECORDS.COM & NASHVILLE AREA RECORD STORES!

VISIT PLOWBOYRECORDS.COM FOR NEW RELEASES

OUR ARTISTS: BOBBY BARE • PAUL BURCH • BUZZ CASON • CHEETAH CHROME • CHUCK MEAD • THE FAUNTLEROYS • THE GHOST WOLVES • JD WILKES & THE DIRTDAUBERS • # NAT I V ENAS HV I L L E

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Fall is here and at Cumberland Transit we have a great selection of Patagonia gear to keep you warm during all of your outdoor adventures.

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TABLE OF CONTENTS NOVEMBER 2014

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66 56

21 THE GOODS 76

17 Beer from Here 18 Cocktail 21 Master Platers 86 Hey Good Lookin’ 89 You Oughta Know 92 Observatory 94 Animal of the Month

FEATURES 24 litkaby 34 404 Kitchen 44 Cool Shit to Get 56 Adia Victoria 66 Megan Kelley 76 Manuel Cuevas

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M E N ' S S TO R E • CU S TO M C L OT H I N G B A R • B A R B ER S H OP

ALDEN BOOT COMPANY • BALDWIN DENIM • BARBOUR INTERNATIONAL • DEUS EX MACHINA • EIDOS NAPOLI • GITMAN VINTAGE • FAHERTY BRAND • FARIBAULT WOOLEN MILLS • THE HILLSIDE • IMPERIAL BARBER PRODUCTS • IRON & RESIN • J. BRAND • LBM 1911 • LEVI'S XX LVC • LIFE AFTER DENIM • MITCHELL BAT CO. • NAKED & FAMOUS DENIM • NEW BALANCE MADE IN THE USA • P.F. FLYERS • RAILCAR FINE GOODS • RALEIGH DENIM • SATURDAYS NYC • SAVE KHAKI UNITED • TODD SNYDER X CHAMPION • WILL LEATHER GOODS • WOOLRICH • WOLVERINE 1KMILE

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615.810.9442 • 3307 WEST END AVE WWW.HAYMAKERSANDCO.COM


DEAR NATIVES,

T

hanks for tagging us, y’all! Be to sure to check out these Instagramers, and #nativenashville to share your photos with us.

president, founder:

ANGELIQUE PITTMAN JON PITTMAN associate publisher:  KATRINA HARTWIG publisher, founder: 

founder, brand director:

DAVE PITTMAN

founder:

CAYLA MACKEY

creative director:

MACKENZIE MOORE

managing editor: 

CHARLIE HICKERSON DARCIE CLEMEN

art director: 

COURTNEY SPENCER

community relations manager:

JOE CLEMONS

community representative:

LINDSAY ALDERSON

account manager:

AYLA SADLER

web editor:

TAYLOR RABOIN

film supervisor:

CASEY FULLER

editor:

@nolanfeldpausch

@darren2112

@hullosam

@dearhaleynicole

          writers: photographers:

@seygomusic

@littleharpethbrewing

p.r. intern:

DANIELLE ATKINS JESS WILLIAMS BLYTHE THOMAS BRETT WARREN CHRISTOPHER MORLEY WILL MORGAN HOLLAND ELI MCFADDEN WILL VASTINE

founding team:

MATTHEW LEFF HENRY PILE JONAH ELLER-ISAACS SHELLEY DUBOIS MATT COLANGELO CHARLIE HICKERSON MELANIE SHELLEY

CHLOE BROOKSHIRE

MACKENZIE MOORE JOSHUA SIRCHIO TAYLOR RABOIN

want to work at native? contact:

WORK@NATIVE.IS SALES@NATIVE.IS for all other inquiries: HELLO@NATIVE.IS to advertise, contact:

@heywanderer

@localforkful

In our last issue, we accidentally didn't credit the following for their work on our Isabel S-K feature: HAIR AND MAKEUP: JESSICA ARNHOLT LIGHTING ASSISTANT: LAYLA MAYS MODELS: ALEX LEE, SYDNEY CHIYOKO, DAISY ADKINS, & MCKENNA GRACE. COVER MODEL: MCKENNA GRACE ALL MODELS FROM AMAX TALENT Sorry about that, guys!

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“It’s a great holiday party cocktail— good for a first drink to welcome your guests to Thanksgiving or whatever occasion you are entertaining for.” —Ben Clemons of No. 308

The

Foxglove THE GOODS 1 oz. Bénédictine 3/4 oz. Carpano Antica (sweet vermouth) 1/4 oz. Nux Alpina Walnut Liqueur 2 oz. Cava

F Combine Bénédictine, Carpano Antica, and Nux Alpina Walnut Liqueur in a wine glass with ice. Gently stir ingredients. Garnish with Cava and orange zest.

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photo by danielle atkins


PINTS • BOTTLES • WINE & SPIRITS HIGH GRAVITY • GROWLER FILLS • BREW SUPPLIES 2502 FRANKLIN PIKE


burgers

Come check out ouu nee bbb li!

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craft beer

BB B t f a r D 30 GULCH:

420 11th Avenue South (615) 915-1943

shakes

BB B t f a r D 20 LENOX:

6900 Lenox Village Dr. Ste 22 (615) 499-4428


HOW TO: COOK A POT ROAST

WITH FRANZ ARNOLD OF ARNOLD ’ S

THE GOODS: 2–3 lb. boneless beef chuck pot roast 2 medium potatoes, peeled and quartered 3 carrots, chopped 2 small onions, cut into wedges Salt Pepper 2 tbsp. cooking oil 1 cup beef stock

DIRECTIONS: F Set the meat out 30 minutes

before cooking to allow it to come to room temperature. This ensures that it will cook evenly. F Add vegetables to the bottom of a slow cooker. F Trim excess fat from the roast. Heat oil in a pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Season the meat liberally with salt and pepper on all sides. Sear to create a crust on all sides. F Place the roast on top of the vegetables in the slow cooker. Pour stock over meat and vegetables. Set the cooker to low heat, cover, and cook for 10 to 12 hours. Add water or more stock if roast becomes dry. Check for doneness/tenderness toward the end of cooking time.

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WITH THE RELEASE OF JUST BECAUSE (JAPANESE IMPORT), LIT AND KABY EXPERIMENT WITH PSYCHEDELIC SWIRLS OF SOUNDS BROUGHT TO LIFE WITH THE HEARTBEAT OF AN 808 DRUM. THERE IS NO BOX FOR NASHVILLE HIP-HOP, AND THAT SUITS THESE TWO JUST FINE BY HENRY PILE | PHOTOS BY JESS WILLIAMS

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JUST SOUTH OF GRIMEY’S and north

of the shiny new Melrose community, a row of beautiful, turn-of-the-century homes hides nearly out of sight. A massive concrete wall diffuses the highway sound. Neighbors sit on the porches with coffee. This little street oozes with To Kill a Mockingbird character. Except for one house. Wedged in the middle of this row of Southern charm, a dilapidated old home with a yard two weeks overgrown leans with swagger and a healthy dose of caution. Somewhere, a mother has told her young daughter to ride her bike on the other sidewalk. Every time. The front porch is spotted with chipped paint and an art piece midway through completion. Gluttonous ashtrays vomit out cigarette butts. Empty bottles lay like heaps of bodies, war torn and circled with buzzing flies. To knock on the door is to bang on the door. The looseness of the hinges foreshadows the willy-nilly, strung-together, make-it-work refrain of this home. Despite my barrage of knocking, the only sound is the hushed highway out back and the little girl’s bicycle bell as she speeds away on the other side of the street. Maybe Kaby is out for coffee or occupied, so I call. “Hey man. I thought we were meeting at one o’clock?” says the grave voice on the other end of the phone. I assure him we were meeting at eleven. “Hang on,” he responds, sucking in air. By the time the door opens, I’ve double-checked our correspondence. I discover he was right, but he tells me not to worry about it. His red eyes are surprisingly bright, and he shakes my hand as I walk over the threshold. Inside, the house is a circus of vintage finds and sideshow oddities. Thrift store lamps and tiny tube televisions are mixed with classic posters, photos, paintings, and personal memorabilia. Moving from the entry through the living room to the kitchen and bedrooms feels like flipping through a scrapbook. The French doors in Kaby’s room barely close due to the cartoonishly crooked door frame. Even the pictures on his wall are hung at an angle. I follow the slant in the floor, and we head back to the living room. Kaby has only lived here for a short time and explains that Wally Clark, one of his producers, has lived here for years. Wally, better known as the

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mastermind behind Gummy Soul Record Company, made his mark through mash-up work. His 2012 release Bizarre Tribe combined A Tribe Called Quest’s source samples with Pharcyde’s lyrics. Sony Music believed Wally simply ripped Tribe’s record and slapped Gummy Soul with a lawsuit. I settle into the sofa just as Lit slips out of his room to join us. He sinks into a chair near the front door. His wide-rolled dreadlocks curl up like vipers on his head. On the other side of the room, Kaby lights a cigarette. He’s wearing a slightly oversized button-up shirt printed with flags of the world. They are both serious (or they’re slightly dazed because they just woke up), but welcoming. First, the names. There is no magic ring for decoding the meanings of their names. In hip-hop, braggadocio is wrapped up with a riddle, and to know someone’s name is to know their backstory. Lit explains, “My name was Cashville Literature because all I did was write, write, write. That was shortened and became P.A. Lit. Eventually that became Lit.” “I started out as AK Spray,” says Kaby with a laugh. “I tried to rap real fast when I was young. You know, words comin’ at you like AK bullets.” Both Lit and Kaby laugh. “Eventually, I shortened it to AK. As a playful thing, I called myself Kaby. This girl I was hookin’ up with for a little while . . . I always liked the way she said it.” Lit, with a smile, says, “I didn’t know that.” Though these guys are only twenty-five years old, they have been in the game for more than ten years. In and out of various groups and working on home projects, they’ve each developed a reputation for skill and style. “We met through a mutual friend, John Doe,” Kaby tells me. “John said he wanted to work with me as an artist. I’ve had plenty of people say that to me but no one that I knew so well. He told me he was working with other artists, and that’s when I met Lit.” “We got together at an apartment in Bellevue,” Lit says. “There ain’t shit in Bellevue. There were some interesting characters out there though.” But Bellevue wasn’t that unfamiliar to them. They’re from here. All of their friends are from here. They went to high school together and came up through cooperation and healthy competition. These musicians aren’t transplants. Artists like Petty Kane Jr., Gee Slab, S.T.A.N., and Brown have


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deep Nashville roots. But that doesn’t mean the soil like, ‘What am I going to do with this?’ It’s like a diary is fertile. Growing a thriving hip-hop music business entry. Now I don’t even like writing when I’m not in the studio.” requires more than a hometown pedigree. As Kaby explains the studio experience, I mention What does Nashville hip-hop need? “Outlets,” says Lit flatly. Kaby adds, “We need people like Pitchfork, the importance of partnering with producers like MaFader, Complex, VICE—people who cover hip-hop. We tic Lee. “Hold on,” Lit cuts me off. “Matic is a genius. I don’t want to put him in a box as a producer, ‘cause need the attention from these outlets.” Lit explains that today, these media sources don’t you’ll be hearing from him shortly. He’s working with take Nashville hip-hop seriously. “If you’ve lived in Yelawolf now.” “When we work with a producer, he does the whole Nashville for fifteen years and you don’t know about what we’re doing, then you already know we need album. That’s the way we do it,” Kaby tells me. Unoutlets,” Lit professes. “That’s why we’re taking these like most mainstream hip-hop, Kaby and Lit prefer a steps to put the time and planning into our music. It monogamous relationship as they birth a body of work. needs to be at the level of art people take seriously.” It Such is the creation of the litkaby EP Just Because (Japseems like that planning is working—by the time this anese Import). Partnering with producer and engineer article is published, both Complex and Fader will have Nate Zensen at Gold Cassette, the duo created a pastoral bed of synth, layered disparate beats on top, and featured the video for “ProAM 92.” When working with producer Matic Lee in LaVergne, let the music erupt into chaotic frenzies. Every track Lit and Kaby walk in with a few ideas and open minds. feels like an extension of the one before it. “Any proj“I used to be the kind of person who wrote during the ect we do, if it’s with Nate, it’s all Nate,” Kaby explains. day,” Kaby says as he smashes his cigarette. “But I’m “When people don’t like a hip-hop album, it’s probably

“AS A PLAYFUL THING, I CALLED MYSELF KABY. THIS GIRL I WAS HOOKIN' UP WITH FOR A LITTLE WHILE . . . I ALWAYS LIKED THE WAY SHE SAID IT.”

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LITKABY: soundcloud.com/litkaby Follow on Twitter @the_kaby and @PA_Lit native.is/litkaby

because there were thirty different producers on that album.” Continuity is the focus of the first release from the unit now called litkaby. All lowercase and combined to show their unity, litkaby marks a starting point on a much longer journey for these two artists. Just Because (Japanese Import) is the prologue. The pending self-titled, full-length album is due this winter and represents the jump from the starting line. “If the

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album does what we think it will do, we need to be ready,” Kaby explains. “Sometimes artists go too far too fast, so we’re planning the progression. We know we have to hold the listener’s hand and guide them. We know where we want to go, but we don’t think people will get it if we did it right now.” The new album is a tribute to winter. Introspective and brooding lyrics flow over beats and samples that you can sit with. Lit walks me through it. “It feels

like you got more time to sit around with things instead of everything being on the move like in the summer,” he says. “You’re paying attention in the winter.” The room is silent for a moment as I look at these two young men striving to be relevant artists in a town drenched in Americana and rolling out the red carpet to radio-friendly rock musicians. With so many people trying to be right on time, litkaby wants to be ahead of


the curve. They want to be something you’ve never heard. Shadowed in a crooked house crowded with random vintage decorations and waxy candle drips, these guys have a plan. Moreover, these guys are like an old married couple. They sit across the room from each other because they don’t need to sit together. They complete each other’s sentences and brag about the other’s unique skill. Kaby paraphrases Missy Elliott when he explains, “We’re so tight, our styles get tangled.” They talk about each other with words like “genius,” “classic,” and “individual” and embrace their emotions. To make art, to be artists, they tap honest and raw feelings, they consider the canvas, and they challenge the listener. litkaby, as an album, is meant to be dark like winter. Upcoming releases may be bright, retro, or straight trap, but they will definitely follow a plan. Lit and Kaby are the architects poring over the blueprints of their masterpiece. Nothing is an accident. “We think about everything,” Kaby says with a smile. So, if this winter you find yourself at The End, Mercy Lounge, or any other club, stop for a moment. You might not be listening to the next great Americana act or a two-piece blues/rock band. Instead, you might bear witness to the emerging hip-hop underground led by local veterans litkaby. Feel free to dance. Stand on a table. Yell at the top of your lungs. These guys spent years digging their way out of house shows and looking for a foothold in a crowded music scene. They have dedicated themselves to an art underappreciated by mainstream Nashville, and they’re just getting started. When it’s cold outside, take a moment to appreciate the winter and turn to the deliberate songscapes litkaby built to wrap around it.

Pause

&

refresh

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OW N ES BLE! M HO AILA AV

��.. . ... . . . .

R I C H L A N D S TAT I O N H O M E S.CO M S Y LVA N PA R K | N A S H V I L L E

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STUPID

GOOD FOOD The 404 Kitchen and Executive Chef Matt Bolus garnered high praise and awards in their inaugural year. And they’re just getting started. Are you ready?

By Jonah Eller-Isaacs | Photos by Blythe Thomas

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It is the last gasp of summer. With the autumnal equinox

has come a mild respite from the heat. Still, as I drive through The Gulch, my car struggles to keep cool. The warm September air is dusty with concrete and thick with the hum of heavy machinery. I pass one construction site. Another. And another. Through the haze I see my destination: the sleek black and orange exterior of The 404 Kitchen and its sister, The 404 Hotel. To the north, adjacent to the 404 compound, sits legendary bluegrass and roots music venue The Station Inn. In the restaurant’s southern shadow is an empty lot adorned only with a large sign: Another Available Property. It won’t be available for long. Particularly if 404’s executive chef Matt Bolus keeps up the pace of the restaurant’s remarkable first year, which culminated in a semifinalist nod for the prestigious James Beard Award for

Best New Restaurant. People eat in a shipping container? is my first thought as I cross The 404 Kitchen’s threshold. The Trainspotting orange of the repurposed container and the ebony timbers that surround it are striking, even in the crowded modernity of The Gulch. The shipping container, this humble conveyance that carries the commerce of the world, is only the entree (or appetizer, I suppose) to 404’s petite dining floor. Inside, the tangerine steel is lined with blonde wood, and monochromatic abstractions are placed sparingly in corners. The cozy space, with room for just fifty-six, is intimate and minimalist—“more of a living room than a dining room,” as Matt tells me when we sit down to chat. It’s Friday afternoon. Matt is busy preparing for the weekend rush, but he generously takes a break from seating charts and phone calls with sup-

pliers to talk with me. His dark eyes are wide and welcoming, like an embrace from a distant, much-loved relative. His face, topped with spiky black hair and lined with stubble, sits at a default smile that broadens when he gets passionate. Which is constantly. Matt tells me excitedly about discovering the joy of cooking. He grew up in Knoxville with two working parents, where he prepared meals to help out around the house. He adored being in the kitchen, and his passion led him to study at Le Cordon Bleu in London before returning stateside for stints at Charleston’s FIG and Nashville’s Watermark and Flyte, among others. Southern cuisine, with all its countryfried goodness, shaped his vision of what he calls “honest food,” and he explains that “the food that I love, the food that speaks to my heart, is just what you would call peasant food.” Though Matt’s seventy-day dry-

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aged bistro steak is far from poverty-stricken kitchen fare, he still imagines that his cuisine is “like your upscale grandmother’s food.” When we look over the evening’s menu together, he says he’s taken off the rabbit and pork dishes and added a lamb sugo. He can’t wait to serve the lamb that he’s braised all day. He tells me, “It’s stupid good . . . it’s like a hug on the inside.” I ask him why he’s made the changes, and he responds with a shrug. “’Cause it’s time to,” he explains. “It’s fall, you know? It’s about season. It’s about what’s fresh . . . It’s about ingredients. What can you get? Is it good, is it bad? That’s why I always say we’re as local as possible, but we’re not gonna compromise quality for locality. Because local dog shit’s just that. It’s still dog shit . . . I’m not serving a tomato in January, ’cause they suck.” Matt and his coconspirators in the kitchen are hopeful that by the spring they’ll have ultra-local ingredients; they’re planning a rooftop garden that will bring figs, plums, lavender (“one of my very favorite things in the world,” Matt remarks wistfully), and more to the patrons dining below. The roof, and the restaurant itself, are sheltered, like a hermit crab, by the angular margins of The 404 Hotel. It’s a boutique spot, with only five king-sized rooms, and the hotel offers what they call “invisible service.” Guests book their rooms online and are given a key code that opens both their room and the front door of the hotel, which is hidden in plain sight on 12th Avenue, tucked into the black planks that line the outer wall shared by both 404 properties. There’s no front desk. There’s no check-in. Privacy is paramount. Elevated windows assure an escape from the constant foot traffic. And soon, you’ll have one less excuse to leave your room: The 404 Kitchen will provide room service. Though the restaurant and hotel are two separate companies (albeit with a single owner, retail developer Mark Banks), the intertwined nature of the businesses initially made Matt reticent to sign on to the project. “At first I almost said no, because there’s gonna be a hotel attached,” he asserts with a hearty laugh. “I worked in a hotel before . . . It’s not my gig. But once I heard the entire concept, the thoughts behind it and the autonomy that I would have, it was kind of a no-brainer decision.” Before the kitchen could begin delivering meals to hotel patrons, Matt explains, “We needed to open up and figure out how things go. No matter how much you plan, you never plan for it all. Which is fine, man. It’s part of what I like about this business. It’s Groundhog Day with a twist. It’s like, you have

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“BECAUSE LOCAL DOG SHIT'S JUST THAT. IT'S STILL DOG SHIT.”

your routine, you know what’s gonna happen, and then every day’s somethin’ different.” Matt and his staff have to hustle to prep for tonight’s Groundhog Day, so I leave them to their work. By the time I return to 404 for dinner, the sun is sliding slowly behind the Urban Outfitters across the street. A friendly hostess named Kit greets me warmly, and I sidle up to the bar and settle in. The place is just starting to come to life as the first few tables are seated. My bartender, Damien, wears metal rings in his half-inch-gauged earlobes along with his 404 uniform, a smart ensemble tied down by the cross-hatched straps of a charcoal-grey bar apron. Damien fixes me a Flight 404, reaching up into the shelves of the narrow bar and pulling bottles from an array of obscure liquors. 404’s take on the Aviation arrives forcefully shaken to an icy, crystalline purple, with just the right amount of crème de violette and a house-cured rehydrated cherry (far, far superior to the usual nauseatingly sweet maraschino) floating toward the bottom of the glass. As I study the dinner menu, Travis Brazil, 404’s dashing, pony-tailed general manager, walks me through the wine list. He quietly shows me the range and breadth of their cellar, and his British-inflected sotto voce is alluring. I’m tempted to impress him by ordering a bottle of the Tempranillo, a steal at a mere $580. Instead, I focus on the meal. I start with a cobia crudo, and the simple, delicate fish is marvelous, particularly the garnish of Magness pears soaked in mulled vinegar. Travis suggests a glass of Viognier with my appetizers, and the soft fruit tones meld perfectly with both the crudo and my next course, a pâté of pork and rabbit liver accompanied by house-made benne wafers that may well be the best crackers I’ve ever tasted in my entire life. 404’s tables are filling up quickly. Two gentlemen seated close behind me are starting in on “The Three Little Pigs,” a plate of aged Tennessee hams. We exchange glowing appraisals of our meals, and I mention that I’m a writer. “Oh, I’m a food writer too,” one exclaims. “I’ve got 140 reviews on TripAdvisor!” This sort of table talk is exactly what Matt had in mind when he called the dining floor “more like a living room.” “Come here on a Friday night, or come here any night,” Matt had told me earlier, “and you’ll see


CHEF MATT BOLUS: the404nashville.com Follow on Twitter or Instagram @the404kitchen native.is/matt-bolus

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ENHANCE YOUR EYES

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G E R M A N TO W N

tables talking to each other and food being passed, and one getting up and comin’ over here and talkin’ . . . This is fantastic, ’cause that’s what I want.” Now here I am, chatting with the ham-eaters about our wine and entrée choices. Though they offer me a taste, I politely decline and turn to my lamb sugo. It’s a remarkable dish. Matt shows me the recipe, a stained scrap of paper that looks more like a map to buried treasure than culinary guidelines. The all-day braising liquid includes orange Agrumato, a wholefruit olive oil, and my first nibbles of the juicy, tender lamb are redolent with citrus. Each bite starts sweet and ends with a rich, meaty finish. Alongside a glass of a Grenache blend selected by Travis and the dollops of creamy ricotta gnudi, a dumpling similar to the potato-based pasta gnocchi, the lamb sugo is very much “a hug on the inside.” Before I dive into my dessert, a deconstructed PB&J with peanut butter truffles, wine grape sorbet, and a cinnamon toast drizzle, I take a break and let the sugo sink in. I enter the shared courtyard between the restaurant and the hotel, where two manhole covers are labeled in large block letters: GREASE TRAP. I climb the wroughtiron spiral staircase to the roof. The garden is still in process; there are a few bags of potting soil and a handful of neglected plants. Standing at the railing, I can see a half-dozen construction cranes looming high above condo complexes. One recently opened building is draped in a banner that reads, “Are You Ready?” Along with The 404 Kitchen, the James Beard Award semifinalist list featured Tandy Wilson of City House (in the Best Chef: Southeast category) and local hotspot Pinewood Social. Matt Bolus and his celebrated restaurateur cohorts are working hard to provide residents of our evolving city with dining of the highest caliber. So, are you ready for some good food? How about stupid good?


IF YOU THINK THE ONLY WAY TO MAKE A CAREER IN MUSIC IS AS A PERFORMER, YOU’RE ONLY SEEING HALF THE PICTURE. Our hands-on Music Business and Audio Technology Programs will help you make a career behind the scenes recording or producing music.

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COO We could tell you it’s a good idea to shop local because you’re investing in the local

economy, creating jobs, and keeping more money within the city. And that’s true. But when it comes to giftgiving, there’s more to it than just that. The items we’ve featured in this issue have lots of love and hard work behind behind them. It’s stuff that’s taken hours to make or hours to find. And on top of that,

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it’s stuff that’s just really cool. We’ve got rabbit skulls, hand painted Nashville baseball bats, vintage typewriters, handmade custom hats, hand spun blankets, skateboards made by teens, alligator heads, and Star Wars socks. We were lucky enough to grab this stuff—and much, much more—around town and mess with it. We think they’re all really great items, and we hope you do too.


OL PHOTOS BY

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1. Sobre Leather Clutch, Nisolo | 2. New York to Nashville Pocket Square Handkerchief, Hey Rooster General Store | 3. Hammerpress Wrapping Paper, PULP | 4. 1980s Vintage Red Glasses, Wink Wink Eyewear | 5. Mitchell Bat Co. Nashville Pennant Baseball Bat, Haymakers & Co | 6. Vintage

Suitcase, Savant Vintage | 7. Oliver Oxford Scarlet Women’s Shoes, Nisolo | 8. Elvie Creations Baby Infinity Scarf Bib, Anderson Design Group | 9. Meinl Tambourine, Fork’s Drum Closet | 10. Black and Red Houndstooth Collar, Baxter and Bailey | 11. Plastic Toy Gun, Old Made Good | 12. Vintage

Camera Tie, Old Made Good | 13. Faribault Buffalo Check Pillow, Haymakers & Co. 46 / / / / / / / / / / / / / / //////

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1. Antique White Dog Lead, Baxter and Bailey | 2. Vintage White Kidskin Gloves, Savant Vintage | 3. Turkish T Beach Candy, White’s Mercantile | 4. WOW! Oatmeal, Milk & Honey Soap, The Willow Tree | 5. “Don’t Touch My Shit” Jewelry Jar, Old Made Good | 6. Blackbird Press Wood Thank

You, Hey Rooster General Store | 7. Courtney Webb Vintage Tube Necklace, Hey Rooster General Store | 8. Auraria Crocheted Air Plant Hanger,

Hey Rooster General Store | 9. Fringe Supply Triangle Leather Coin Pouch, Hey Rooster General Store | 10. Rabbit Skull, HAIL Dark Aesthetics

| 11.Vintage Shaving Kit, Savant Vintage | 12. Sincenineteen88 Women’s Zipper Cowl, Scout’s Barbershop | 13. Carved Bone Dagger, HAIL Dark Aesthetics | 14. Furry Bag, Sisters of Nature

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1. Handmade Custom Hat, HatWRKS | 2. Blackbird Boundless Scarf, The Trunk Nashville | 3. Mata Traders Gold Geometric Beaded Clutch, Sisters of Nature | 4. The North Face Women’s Gloves, Cumberland Transit | 5. Black Vegan Leather and Alpaca Fringe Clutch, Sisters of Nature | 6. X

Apothia Candle, imogene + willie | 7. Sunmodes 1960s Vintage Sunglasses, Wink Wink Eyewear | 8. Underwood Vintage Typewriter, Savant Vintage

| 9. Iced Coffee Growler, Barista Parlor | 10. Vintage Umbrella, Savant Vintage

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1. Large Handbound Journal, Linen Laid & Felt | 2. Vintage Toy Truck, Savant Vintage | 3. Olivia Frankenstein Vinyl Wallet, Old Made Good | 4. Bow Tie B348, Otis James | 5. Grant Batson Handmade Pipe, Smokers Abbey | 6. Vintage Glasses, Specs Optical Nashville | 7. RockStar Nest Ring and

Stone Cuff Bracelet, Judith Bright | 8. Christys’ London Pork Pie Hat, The Trunk Nashville | 9. Airscape, Barista Parlor | 10. Luca High Top Sneaker in Nero, Peter Nappi | 11. Large Handbound Journal, Linen Laid & Felt | 12. Marmot Retro Pom Hat, Cumberland Transit | 13. Meinl Maracas and Vic

Firth Backpack Drumstick Bag, Fork’s Drum Closet | 14. Allspice, East Nashville Spice Company | 15. Piera Double Monk Shoe in Fiama, Peter Nappi

| 16. Campfire Cologne & Matchbox, White’s Mercantile | 17. The Monkey Project Otis the Love Monkey, The Frothy Monkey | 18. Vintage Campaign

Button, Old Made Good | 19. Playing Cards, The Farm Store at ACME Feed and Seed |20. Eva Bracelet Scarlet, Nisolo | 21. Defender iPhone Case, Griffin |

22. Elvie Creations Baby Infinity Scarf Bib, Anderson Design Group | 23. Vintage Patches, Haymakers & Co. | 24. Leather Guitar Strap, Gruhn Guitars

| 25. Layrite Super Shine Pomade, Scout’s Barbershop | 26. Red Plus Cap, imogene + willie | 27. Cufflinks Inc. Star Wars Socks, Haymakers & Co. | 28. Handmade Custom Hat, HatWRKS | 29. Vintage Sunglasses, Specs Optical Nashville

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1. Jamie and the Jones Marbled Pouch, Hey Rooster General Store | 2. Hutton Tuck Leather Clutch, Ceri Hoover | 3. Custom Motorcycle Bag, Garage

Coffee Company | 4. Blow Vintage Whistle Necklace, The Trunk Nashville | 5. Gray Watch Cap, imogene + willie | 6. Activated Charcoal Bar Soap, Little

Seed Farm | 7. Shimia Pottery and Gifts Handmade Honey Pot, The Farm Store at ACME Feed and Seed | 8. Hammerpress Wrapping Paper, PULP | 9. Shutters & Shuttles Handwoven Linen Tea Towel, Hey Rooster General Store | 10. Handmade Fishing Fly, Jones Fly Company | 11. White Sage

Smudge Stick, Red Feather Gallery | 12. Paramount Volume 2 Box, Third Man Records | 13. Brawler Cap, Otis James | 14. Large Leather Instagram Photo Album, Linen Laid & Felt | 15. Armo Backpack in Graphite, Peter Nappi |16. Head Massager, White’s Mercantile | 17. Timothy Bucksom

Handmade Bison Journal, Haymakers & Co. | 18. Vintage Sunglasses, Specs Optical Nashville | 19. Levi’s Vintage Suspenders, Haymakers & Co. |

20. Handmade Fishing Fly, Jones Fly Company | 21. Carpe Diem Soldier Necklace, The Trunk Nashville | 22. Vintage Glasses, Wink Wink Eyewear | 23. Juniper Ridge Trail Crew Soap “Big Sur,” Scout’s Barbershop | 24. Necktie 338, Otis James | 25. Selvage Pencil Case, imogene + willie | 26. Claw Necklace, HAIL Dark Aesthetics | 27. Vintage Glasses, Specs Optical Nashville | 28. Owl Skull Necklace, HAIL Dark Aesthetics | 29. Elvie Creations Baby Infinity Scarf Bib, Anderson Design Group

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1. Smith & Wesson Pocket Knife, Red Feather Gallery | 2. Summer Gal Hand-Stitched Leather Hip Pouch, Hey Rooster General Store | 3. White

Sage Smudge Stick, Scout’s Barbershop | 4. Military Issue “Birth Control Glasses,” Wink Wink Eyewear | 5. Mesquite Box, Red Feather Gallery | 6.

Alligator Head, Savant Vintage | 7. Blackbird Press Nashville Notepad, Hey Rooster General Store | 8. Vintage Leather Boots, Savant Vintage | 9. Handy Dandy Productions Wood Tags, Hey Rooster General Store | 10. Capek Handtooled Leather Mandolin Strap, Gruhn Guitars | 11. Handmade

Custom Hat, HatWRKS | 12. Handmade Arrowhead Necklace, Red Feather Gallery

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1. Shutters & Shuttles Handwoven Blanket, Hey Rooster General Store | 2. Hammerpress Wrapping Paper, PULP | 3. North to South Messenger

Bag, Tucker & Bloom | 4. 1950s Vintage Eyeglasses Case, Wink Wink Eyewear | 5. Mexican Style Wraps, Title Boxing | 6. Saturdays NYC Seed

Stitch Scarf, Haymakers & Co. | 7. Shutters & Shuttles Handwoven Pillow, Hey Rooster General Store | 8. Custom Boxing Gloves, HOTBOX | 9. Handmade Custom Hat, HatWRKS | 10. New York to Nashville Pocket Square, Hey Rooster General Store

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1. Brawler c224 Hat, Otis James | 2. Mitchell Bat Co. Nashville Flag, Haymakers & Co. | 3. Sienna Handbag in Navy, Peter Nappi | 4. B065 Bow Tie, Otis James | 5. Shutters & Shuttles Handwoven Scarf with Hand Painted Cotton, Hey Rooster General Store | 6. Blackbird Silk and Wool Jersey

Dip-Dyed Boundless Scarf, The Trunk Nashville | 7. Indigo Plus Bandana, imogene + willie | 8. Shutters & Shuttles Handwoven Pillow, Hey Rooster

General Store | 9. Shutters & Shuttles Handwoven and Hand-Dyed Scarf, Hey Rooster General Store | 10. Upright Cruiser, Salemtown Board Co. | 11. Mack Patch, Haymakers & Co. | 12. Vintage Campaign Button, Old Made Good | 13. Shutters & Shuttles Handwoven Blanket With Hand-Painted

Cotton Thread, Hey Rooster General Store | 14. Vintage Glasses, Specs Optical Nashville | 15. New York to Nashville Pocket Square Handkerchief, Hey

Rooster General Store | 16. Virgin Vintage Wool and Onyx Stones Clutch, Sisters of Nature | 17. Hammerpress Wrapping Paper, PULP | 18. Garner Blue Indigo Dyed Scarf, Hey Rooster General Store | 19. Foldover Clutch, Ceri Hoover | 20. James Bow Tie, Otis James

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1. Handbound Leather Journal, Linen Laid & Felt | 2. Eastern States Optical 1960s Glasses, Wink Wink Eyewear | 3. Brawler 6029 Hat, Otis James

| 4. Organic Punk Boutique Raw Crystal Rings, Sisters of Nature | 5. Amanda Valentine by Margaret Ellis Oculus Cuff, Valentine Valentine | 6. Layrite No. 9. Bay Rum After Shave, Scout’s Barbershop | 7. Mata Traders Hammered Brass Bangle Cuff, Sisters of Nature | 8. Paddywax Tobacco

& Patchouli Travel Tin Candle, Moxie Fearless Furnishings | 9. Pontiac Motor Patch, Haymakers & Co. | 10. Amanda Valentine by Margaret Ellis

Eternal Eye Hand Chain, Valentine Valentine | 11. Original Spice, East Nashville Spice Company | 12. Electric Alice Labradorite and Feather Necklace,

HAIL Dark Aesthetics | 13. Geometric Birds Greeting Card, Pop-In Greetings | 14. Lavender Farmstead Milk Soap, Little Seed Farm | 15. Postcard,

Anderson Design Group | 16. TruBee Honey, The Farm Store at ACME Feed and Seed | 17. Dead Chick, HAIL Dark Aesthetics | 18. Leopard Clutch, Ceri

Hoover | 19. RockStar Rings, Judith Bright | 20. Stone Cuff Bracelet, Judith Bright | 21. Voz Collective Gold and White Geometric Wooden Bracelets,

Sisters of Nature | 22. Layrite Deluxe Pomade, Scout’s Barbershop | 23. Simon and Ruby Ary Earrings and Gypsy Bracelet, The Willow Tree | 24. Paddywax Tobacco & Patchouli Travel Tin Candle, Moxie Fearless Furnishings | 25. Smith Wiley Bamboo and Metal Necklace, Sisters of Nature |

26. Labradorite Slave Bracelet, HAIL Dark Aesthetics | 27. Vertical Sticks Necklace, Consider the Wildflowers | 28. Arroyo Horsehair Tassel Necklace,

The Farm Store at ACME Feed and Seed | 29. Handmade Gold Necklace, Old Made Good | 30. Mata Traders Gold Geometric Beaded Clutch, Sisters of

Nature | 31. JD Howard Reserve Cigar Box, Smokers Abbey | 32. Peter Stokkebye Devil’s Dish and Virginia Mary Tobacco, Smokers Abbey | 33. Four Kicks, Jericho Hill, JD Howard Reserve, and Headley Grange Cigars, Smokers Abbey

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Your table is ready.

©2014 Omni Hotels & Resorts

Savor Southern dishes with a modern twist at Kitchen Notes, a farm-to-table concept open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Don’t forget to stop by Nashville’s only Biscuit Bar. Reservations available at opentable.com.

615-782-5300 • omnihotels.com/nashville COMPLIMENTARY VALET FOR EVENING GUESTS

LOCATED IN THE OMNI NASHVILLE HOTEL

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The Ghoul of the Arcade

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At night, the back alley near 5th Avenue downtown seems lined by solid walls, but

that is a trick. The wall is actually a door that lifts to reveal the Arcade—a walkway with shops, restaurants, and art galleries that sit vacant in the evening. Vacant except for the night watchman and Adia Victoria. “I’m the ghoul of the Arcade,” she says. She is slim, so she looks like she slips through the air when she walks. Her delicate pretty face belies her ferocity. Her band hangs out in a room upstairs that feels like another illusion—a lived-in, Southern hideaway above the right angles of the commercial level below. The room has grand windows with hairlinecracked paint and a floral upholstered couch with stuffing that’s starting to show. It is mostly space—a carpeted floor bordered by books and the stray instruments of up-and-coming musicians. When Adia leaves the room in the daytime and peers over the railing, the tourists swarming underneath belong to a Nashville that exists on a different dimension. Adia’s Nashville is built on the bones of restless souls. She wakes up early nearly every day and stays up late serving food downtown or rehearsing with her band. She moves with other creatures of the in-between hours—cats in heat and graveyard-shift commuters. The music she makes sounds distant from the earnest twang of the country hopefuls on Broadway a few blocks away. Her voice is sweet and viscous—it’s molasses with a feather rasp. It hits notes dead-on but dips, congeals, and splits when she wants it to. She is working on an album, due sometime in the near future, full of tracks about the world that inhabits her head. Adia’s songs ring rich with blues and rock and roll. They are smart and story driven and unapologetic in their exploration of the macabre. Sure, they can call to mind the barre-chord soul of R. L. Burnside or the frenetic electric guitar of Jack White. But to a South-

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erner, they reference something much deeper—our old, familiar demons. They have the low-country clang of a New Orleans funeral march. They call up the gorgeous and tragic decay of Flannery O’Connor and Faulkner’s screaming crickets and air that waves in the heat. Her melodies often melt into discord, then either resolve and leave you wondering where the foreboding feeling came from, or hang and leave you jarred. She references lynchings, hell, girls who drink tea made from crushed bones, and boys who eat glass. Adia does not believe it is her role to make the listener, or anyone, feel comfortable. It can be hard for her to relate to others. If you bore her, she will not raise a ruckus or manipulate you to entertain herself. She will pull out a book— she always has one close—and fade into it. But on stage, she is almost alarmingly present in a society that teaches us to sit nicely and nod. Her music works as the bridge from her head to the rest of us, she says. She clicks into humanity when she performs. “Sometimes you are just a channel for something going on inside you—something intangible. You are a conduit, an aqueduct, and it’s got to get from part A to part B.” Often, the force Adia channels contains versions of her former selves coming to form in song. One of those selves is her at age five in Spartanburg, South Carolina, the child of strict Seventh-day Adventists. She sang in the church choir—she always knew she could sing. She belonged to the only black family in an all-white town. “My mother taught us how to present to white people,” Adia says. “We had to conform because we were the only black family around, so dammit, we had to be flawless. We had to be the perfect kids, have the perfect tights every Sabbath for church. We had to have our hair done and speak better and read more because we were black,” she remembers. “My whole life was spent making up for a deficit


ADIA VICTORIA: Follow on Facebook or Twitter @AdiaVictoria native.is/adia

HERE COME THE MUMMIES: herecomethemummies.com Follow on Facebook @HereCometheMummies Follow on Twitter or Instagram @hctmummies native.is/mummies # NAT I V ENAS HV I L L E

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“I DON’T THINK I’VE EVER BEEN ABLE TO GROW OUT OF A VERSIO N OF MYSELF ; I JUST KIND OF CARRY THEM ALL WITH ME.”

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that I had nothing to do with. I had to be the most pleasant little girl, because the same people who said I was just the sweetest thing, if I did something wrong, they would say, ‘See, I told you, she’s nothing but a n*gger. I knew it all along.’” Adia was required to fly straight, and she did. But she was large inside, she had big questions, and parts of her struggled against the rigid order that felt like a straitjacket. As a girl, she would shut off the lights and sit in her closet, wondering what she was underneath her name, her parents’ expectations, and the church. The church was particularly powerful and confounding. Take the story of the Second Coming of Christ— accepted among Seventh-day Adventists as a day of joy. But to Adia at five, it was a horror. It looked like Jesus, who watched you through the unblinking eyes of angels, could storm into this lowly realm with a tally of your sins in hand. When he did, legions of rotting dead would rise from their graves for judgment. You would burn or go to heaven. Your loved ones could be wrenched from you for eternity. This was a good thing. You must prepare for it. You must try to purify your every thought to earn your place among the righteous. But this story, presented as truth, did not hold up to a child’s questions. Adia could not fit herself in the rules that confined her. To cope, she split into several people, whom she preserves as separate, whole beings to this day. “Internally, there’s an Adia that’s five that’s still alive and there’s twelve-year-old Adia and a nineteen-year-old, very much alive. I don’t think I’ve ever been able to grow out of a version of myself; I just kind of carry them all with me,” she says. Five-year-old Adia grew up, and small-town teen angst began to pile on top of her unrelenting selfreflection. She started sneaking cigarettes and listening to Nirvana—normal enough stuff, but heavy against the demands of her religion. Finally, she broke away. “I was like, man, I’m not going to sit here in this crappy town and listen to someone tell me that they figured out the universe and how it was fucking started,” she says, channeling her fifteen-yearold self. “If you knew that, genius, you wouldn’t be in Spartanburg.” At nineteen, she flew to New York City, which gave her a panoramic view of her upbringing. She measured herself against the size and beauty and depravity of the metropolis. At twenty, she moved

to Atlanta with her best friend from home. In Atlanta, she locked herself up in her mind. She didn’t shower much—didn’t see the point of brushing her hair or her teeth. She stayed up all night and took bong hits every morning. She went to work, selling cable, reeking of pot. But no one who saw her disregard for the world intervened, partially because she was good at her job, sharp and willing to lie. It felt like a superpower—words that came out of her mouth, based on nothing, could change how people around her would act. The contradiction between being an artist and a pawn in a cubicle gnawed at her. She blew most of her money on weed. It felt extravagant. She and her roommate painted the interior of their house an abrasive, glittery gold. Adia rarely slept. She stayed up for days on end writing fever-dream poetry. Oh girl, she thinks when she reads it now, but she doesn’t look down at her old self. She says the words she wrote were real for the woman alive at the time. In the haze, a friend gave her a guitar, which she believes saved her from severing the last thread tying her to the rest of us and getting killed or committed. She played obsessively at home and formed the shapes of chords with her hands while on the phone at work. With songs, all the people she kept in her head finally had a chance to sing. They had something to say. “I can’t lose contact with them. I have to document my existence,” she says. “Nobody knows why I’m here. So I’ll just investigate and show you what I’m finding. That’s art to me.” Adia lost her job in Atlanta in 2010 and started collecting unemployment. Her mother, who lives in Nashville, called and suggested she come home. Adia’s two older brothers helped her move her things here. In early 2011, Adia enrolled in Nashville State and started reading her poetry at Cafe Coco. Eventually she brought her guitar along and sang in front of people for the first time. This August, Adia performed along with Those Darlins and Tristen at a concert at 3rd & Lindsley. She wore a long black skirt, white T-shirt, and red lipstick. Her bandmates Ruby Rogers and Mason Hickman flanked her, facing her. Drummer Tiffany Minton kept an earnest pulse in the back. Adia’s shows are like performance art, and she says anything could happen on stage. “No one knows what to expect when they see my show. I don’t know what to expect. I just hope Tiffany

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holds down the beat while it happens.” At one point, she put her guitar down. “Let’s dance,” she said, and jerked her limbs, freeze-framing every several seconds to make a dead-eyed face at the audience. When she finished her set, a bearded boy in a gingham shirt put down his beer, looking a little frazzled. “That was intense,” he said to his friend. Adia likes that. She says when she sees the audience shuffle, their spines on edge, she knows they are alive. “We do a good job as a culture trying to pretend that we are more comfortable than we really are,” says Adia. “To me, it’s only when we’re uncomfortable that we can be honest. The truth is not very comfortable. It’s terrifying.” She is terrified by plenty—the old threat of losing her loved ones forever, not to the Second Coming, but to an equally crushing normal death. She still fears the silence that answers the questions of the child inside, sitting in the dark. But Adia believes the vast and cold unknown troubles the sleep of each and every person. She says this is why her music can reach people, even if the parts it touches are dark. Her truth is stark but liberating: No one will answer your noise in the void. You cannot bank on the afterlife to wash you clean. The color of your skin does not define you, nor does your wealth or poverty. There are endless parts of us all that do not fit neatly into one personality. If you don’t harm others while you do it, destroy social norms at will. If that seems unhinged, consider the alternative. Consider hiding inside yourself because you were born black. Consider relenting, ever, to the hateful ghost of Jim Crow, whose lies still fester in the brains of too many. Consider cowering, petrified by the imminent wrath of a fickle God. Adia roiled against all that. She split into selves that she protected. She began to build her own reality that yes, contains spectres, but they are hers and not the strange undead she feared as a child. There is discord. But above all, there is music.

mon. - fri. 6am-7pm || sat. & sun. 7am-7pm

3431 murphy road - dosecoffeeandtea.com

Find it at:

Unique Gifts & Home Decor # NAT I V ENAS HV I L L E

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& 11.4 JAMES VINCENT MCMORROW with Kevin Garrett Mercy Lounge

11.4 THE NEW PORNOGRAPHERS featuring Neko Case and AC Newman Cannery Ballroom

11.10 CHRISSIE HYNDE

(OF THE PRETENDERS)

Ryman Auditorium

11.11 YO GABBA GABBA! LIVE! Two shows: 3pm & 6pm Andrew Jackson Hall

11.11 INTERPOL

with Rey Pila Marathon Music Works

11.13 JOHN BUTLER TRIO with Monica Heldal Ryman Auditorium

11.16 DAUGHTRY with Mike Sanchez Ryman Auditorium 64 / / / / / / / / / / / / / / //////

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facebook.com/aegtmg @aegtmgpresents


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A Hike Down Memory Lane THE STORY BEHIND THE WOMAN BEHIND THE GAME THAT YOU NEED TO BE PLAYING RIGHT NOW BY MATT COLANGELO | PHOTOS BY CHRISTOPHER MORLEY

YOU ARE ALONE AT A TRAIN STATION. Where, you do not know. Someplace deserted. Through a window you can see a “blank expanse of marigold sands.” Apparently, you have “sparse belongings” with you. That is all you know. You wonder, is this a dream? Then you feel a gentle wind on your arm, a wind that blows “small tumbleweeds across the empty rails” in front of you. This is not a dream. This is the beginning of The Inbound Lands, a text-based interactive fiction game by Megan Kelley. The easiest way to describe how the game works is to describe one’s experience playing it. You start by going to The Inbound Lands website (heretherebe.com) and, if you’re a total newbie like me, clicking on the “About” tab. There, you learn what interactive fiction is (“a style of gaming that draws upon literary text as a source code”) and how to play (you type simple commands into the game, like “go north” or “look down,” which the program interprets and responds to). It’s basically a choose-your-own-adventure novel in online video-game form. Once you wrap your head around this concept, you click on the “Play the Game” tab, where you’re greeted by a list of possible commands. These nine verbs are your means of explor# NAT I V ENAS HV I L L E

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Over a cup of coffee and organic bar snacks, she exing Megan’s text-based world: go, look, take, enter, exit, eat, drink, lock, and unlock. You can also type in “inventory” to plains that her dad was a career Army Ranger. He made see what you are carrying on your virtual person at any the map on her wall for an Army training exercise. He given moment. Depending on the command you type didn’t have to, she says, but he has always been fasciand the objects you have in your possession, the text you nated with the process (and helpfulness) of mapmaking. get back will be different. You might walk into a mysteri- The two of them used to go on “hikes” together, which ous, poorly lit building, or you might be told that, no, you from her descriptions sound more like Army orienteering trips. Items they used to carry with them included cannot “eat the finch.” What Megan has created is a literary fantasy world that a compass, a bottle of water purification tablets, solar you must imagine with your mind’s eye. Though there blankets, and a lightweight tarp and hatchet (if they were exists a clear logic and a very detailed map behind her de- staying overnight). Unlike my family, which lived in a sheltered, suburban scriptions, she does not give you any pictures or guides to help you along your journey. Your understanding of bubble where kids weren’t even allowed to trick-or-treat the world depends on your reading comprehension and by themselves, the Kelleys charted their own paths and maps of your own creation. In this sense, The Inbound made their own maps. As an Army family, the Kelleys also moved a lot. This Lands is like text-based orienteering. Walking into Megan’s office in the Platetone Printmak- meant that Megan was frequently put in situations where ing, Paper and Book Arts building on 4th Avenue South, she had to explore, learn, and adapt to new places— I can tell that she’s done her fair share of real-life orien- which is what you have to do in The Inbound Lands. She teering. A large four-by-five-foot map hangs on the back was born in Amberg (not Hamburg), Germany, and lived wall like a tapestry, its weight suspended on two little there till she was three years old. Her three memories of nails about seven feet up from the ground. I don’t rec- this place are the smell of freshly baked German bread, ognize any of the places on the map, which makes me the feel of soft white snow under her feet, and the image think that it’s a guide to a made-up world. To the left of a dark stone building that she can’t identify. After Germany, the Kelleys moved to Barstow, Caliof the map is an old wooden walking stick that looks sturdy enough to double as a weapon. Above the map is fornia, which lies at the desert-y halfway point between some sort of small rifle, probably a BB gun. I feel like Los Angeles and Las Vegas. If you recognize the town, I’ve walked into the bedroom of Sam Shakusky, the main it’s probably from the first line of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas: “We were somewhere around Barstow on the character of Moonrise Kingdom. The other three walls in her office are covered in prints edge of the desert when the drugs began to take hold.” and postcards from The Inbound Lands. My eye is drawn Though she wasn’t a heavy mescaline user, Megan also to a print of the Crow Folk, characters from an area of used to hang out around the edge of the desert: “I rethe game called The Fingers. It looks like an oversized member visiting ghost towns such as Calico and loving stamp that probably has some meaning in the game that the atmosphere.” These ghost-town memories distilled I don’t yet understand. Megan explains to me that these themselves in her brain over the years and found their souvenirs, or “feelies” as they’re known in the world of way into The Inbound Lands, where the world is deserted interactive fiction, are part of the “outbound” world of and postapocalyptic. Megan lived in Barstow on the edge of the desert until the game. People can buy prints if they want to or even send real-life postcards while playing the game online— the age of seven, when her family moved a few thousand postcards that invite people to play the game. Besides miles west to the suburbs of Honolulu, Hawaii. I ask Mebeing a source of income for Megan, these offline, out- gan what she remembers from her childhood in northbound souvenirs make the online, inbound world seem ern Polynesia, and she gives me a one-word response: “beach.” Anything else besides beach? “No, just beach, more real. Looking around, I also notice: a spool of rough-hewn really. I used to hang out on the yarn, a bowl of assorted sticks and stones, a rope bracelet beach a lot.” She lived in Hawaii that can be unwound and used like an actual rope, and until the age of eleven, when her a wolf ’s paw that’s been fixed onto a block of wood and parents moved to their current hung above her door frame, like a hunting trophy. The home in the contiguous United room is filled with little found objects like these that States: Hodgenville, Kentucky, she’s picked up on her travels around the world. She tells known to history buffs as the me that she’s found most of them while hiking, an activ- birthplace of Abraham Lincoln. One of the most formative and ity she grew up doing with her dad.

YOU MIGHT BE TOLD THAT, NO, YOU CANNOT 'EAT THE FINCH.'

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MEGAN KELLEY: studiomnivorous.com Play The Inbound Lands at heretherebe.com native.is/megan-kelley

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fortuitous things about Megan’s journey was the variety of environments that she encountered. She went from the Bavarian forest to the California desert to the Hawaiian beaches, only to end up in the flatlands of Kentucky. Hiking with her dad on a regular basis, Megan experienced these environments like few others would have. She didn’t just see them on postcards from the comfort of her living room; she explored them, mapped them, and came to terms with them physically. She recalls tasting the difference in the air when she moved from Germany to California, demonstrating a sensitivity to place that comes through in The Inbound Lands. For example, this is how she describes the sand in an area called The Petrified Forest: “The sand here is strange: whitish in tone, and when you kneel, fingers running through the pale, you realize that the thin yellow sand is thoroughly mixed with ash.” Rather than simply describing the color of the sand, she looks back into the geographic history of the place and what might have caused the sand to turn that color. There is ash mixed into the sand, which means that there was some sort of fire here, which is supported by Megan’s later speculation about volcanic activity under the soil. Is this a clue that will help me win the game, or just a red herring? Speaking of which, I still haven’t explained how you “win” The Inbound Lands. Let me do that. The goal of the game is to escape Megan’s fictional world in an oldschool Wright Brothers– style biplane. To do that, though, you need to learn how the game works and where everything is, including the key to start up

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the biplane. The goal of the game is therefore to understand the world so well that you can escape it—which sounds like a pretty dark, nihilistic metaphor for life. The irony is that by the time you learn how to escape the world, you might want to remain in it. You’ve probably explored it so much that you’ve become attached to it. This tension between the joy of exploration and the ultimate goal of escape makes the game feel like a text-based version of Myst, which, if you didn’t spend your childhood wasting away in front of the computer screen like me, was the biggest-selling PC game ever until The Sims eclipsed it in 2002. Both Myst and The Inbound Lands take you on a first-person journey through a fictional world; both make you solve puzzles in order to escape that world; and both are played on a computer. The main difference between them is that Myst’s fantasy


world is made up of amazing earlynineties 3D graphics and Megan’s is made up of words. When I verbalize this connection to Megan, her eyes light up. “I loved Myst and Riven and basically everything the Cyan team ever did,” she says. “I played those games a lot as a kid.” In addition to being an outdoorsy family, I’m learning that the Kelleys were also a computer family. She tells me that her dad did computer programming while he was enlisted, which puts everything into perspective for me. I feel like I’ve solved part of the puzzle that is Megan’s mind—how she got from hiking with her dad to programming an interactive fiction game. I can see the pieces of her life coming together in this artistic endeavour. Not that she’s always been a computer whiz. To program the game, Megan first had to learn something called Inform7, which is a design system that turns simple language into Javascript commands (e.g. the words “unlock door” into language that your web browser can understand). She learned it while she was creating the game, which adds another crazy meta layer to her story: she had to learn a programming language in order to design a game that forces you to learn the language and geography of a fictional world. Like the experience of playing the game, the process of making the game was also one of exploration and discovery. Speaking of the game, I’m starting to make slow and steady progress (emphasis on slow). I’ve found a “signal lamp” that will hopefully let me see inside a poorly lit room in the train station. I suspect there will be some clues in there. I’ve also discovered the hangar that houses the biplane I will eventually need to win the game. All I need now is the key to the plane and I’m sure many other things in order to procure that key. Before that, though, I need to make a better map. It’s been two hours and I’m already forgetting

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what’s what and what’s where. I’m at the beginning of my journey through The Inbound Lands—I have many miles to go before I sleep. But I’m almost at the end of my story about the making of The Inbound Lands. While she was a teenager in Kentucky, Megan spent a lot of time drawing and painting, when she wasn’t hiking with her dad, that is. When it came time to go to college, she enrolled in the Art Department at Western Kentucky University, which she describes as a warm, collaborative program compared to others she visited. After graduating in 2008 with a BFA in painting, she followed Interstate 65 down to Nashville. That’s when she started writing about postapocalyptic fantasy worlds. Before it was an interactive fiction, The Inbound Lands was a fiction. Its first incarnation was a short writing project she did for the Brooklyn Art Library in 2010 called “The Inbound Lands (Abridged).” Abridged, because she was still adding to the world that she had created. The project existed in various text-based forms until January 15, 2014, when she officially launched the game online. That’s when a small percentage of Nashville stopped going out and started developing astigmatisms from staring at their computer screens for too long. I’m becoming one of those people now, or maybe I’m just reverting back to my sleep-deprived Myst-playing days. If I ever beat this game, it will be a bittersweet victory. I’m having fun getting to know the world Megan has created and reading her surprisingly insightful descriptions of lifeless desert landscapes. For now, the world hasn’t gotten old. It’s subtly transforming as I discover new objects and unlock new parts of the game. Sure, I haven’t hit the inevitable wall of frustration yet where I can’t seem to find something even though I’ve checked every room in the game, but when I do, I’ll just imagine Megan’s Army Ranger dad staring at me, judging me for even entertaining the possibility of quitting. This puzzle must be solved.

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THE RHINESTONES SHOW , I TOOK THE BLOWS, AND DID IT MY WAY MANUEL CUEVAS ON A LIFETIME OF DESIGN BY CHARLIE HICKERSON | PHOTOS BY WILL MORGAN HOLLAND MODELS: MARGO PRICE, CALE TYSON, ANGEL SNOW, AND KELSEY WALDON

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IF YOU DON’T KNOW HIS NAME, YOU KNOW HIS WORK. Manuel Cuevas—or simply Manuel, as he is more commonly known around Nashville—creates the meticulously embroidered rhinestone suits, jackets, and dresses that line the windows of Manuel American Designs on Broadway. And if you don’t know his work, you know his clients: Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, Waylon Jennings, Roy Rogers, Michael Jackson, Elton John, Gram Parsons, Neil Young, and four generations of Williamses—and that’s just the (very) short list. Over the past fifty years, Manuel has not only helped shape the face of Western wear, but the face of show business as a whole. His name is synonymous with the honky-tonk aesthetic that epitomizes all things country: loud, flamboyant, and, of course, unabashedly American. No one— except perhaps Nudie Cohn, Manuel’s mentor and former father-in-law—has impacted cowboy couture the way Manuel has. Now, at eighty-one years old, he’s looking to give back to the city he’s dressed since the ’50s. When Manuel isn’t busy cutting, sewing, and designing for current clients like Jack White, he’s working with his nonprofit, the Friends of Manuel Foundation. Through the foundation, he hopes to establish a fashion institute that will teach interns to design and sell clothing in an industrial, massproduction setting. I found Manuel in the back of his shop with scissors in his hand, signature ascot around his neck, and interns sewing on either side of him. After he gave the interns direction on a black suit (which he continued to do throughout the

course of our conversation), we headed to the fitting room, where Manuel discussed his life as the Rhinestone Rembrandt. ON ENTREPRENEURIAL SPIRIT: My first business was building shoe boxes and filling them up with all of the necessary things. That was when I was like, eight and a half years old. I rented the boxes out and had everybody shoe shining. I was working with wood since the age of seven, and I thought, I could make a nice shoe-shine box and rent it out. It started out as a hobby, but it ended up being a good business. I made twentyfive of them, and I’d lease them out totally covered with the stuff—the grease, the potions, the fabric that you need. Apart from being fun, it was really a business. I think I was making more money than the bank was. I wasn’t going to be a professional shoemaker or boxmaker or shoeshiner, but it was a business. When you have that type of a brain, you just do it and you make money. What’s wrong with that, right? I had a year and a half of experience doing clothing already in the town where I was growing up—pants and shirts, stuff like that. In fact, I used to make the shirts for the guys that would rent my shoe-shining boxes. I liked that. I knew that if you had a good idea and you put it to practice, you could do just about anything in the world. ON STARTING IN THE FASHION INDUSTRY: In this little town of Coalcomán, Mexico, I decided that I was going to make prom dresses because it was a college town. So between weddings and

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Then I started looking at magazines tally bored of making tuxedos. I wasn’t proms, I ended up making seventy-seven dresses the first year. But of course I like Glamour. I looked at these people, like that. I like to make more [pauses] . . had this habit of knowing that I can do and then I started looking at the prices . other types of clothes. So I went on and it, and then I get somebody to do it. So of the dresses. I said, “You know, I am dressed the horse and rider. And then I I got about twenty-five more people— tired of being rich. I really want to give ended up doing so many Western movlittle old ladies doing it in their homes into myself now. I’m going to impart my ies and Western shows. And then dressown personal human into this. I’m going ing Nashville and rock and rollers. That . . . I was twelve. was just the topping on the cake. I was People could have bought Sears-made to go to the United States of America.” So I went to the bank, put $40,000 in doing just fine. dresses, but they [the dresses] all looked one way. I could see the grouch on the a paper bag, and put it in my brand-new ON HIS CELEBRITY CLIENTELE: girls’ faces when they were wearing 1950 Cadillac convertible. I crossed the these. But they were proud when they border, got my papers in line. “Welcome It was always about the candor of great bought a beautiful princess dress . . . to United States of America” was repeat- people—like Mr. Richard Harris, like Mr. Henry Fonda, like Robert Taylor, Frank So my idea of innovation got this thing ed again to me. Sinatra, Bob Hope, the grand people . . . I started with all the girls that were graducould not care less about the fame. ON WORKING WITH SY DEVORE, ating. I would charge seventy-five pesos I was really worried about the items THE “TAILOR TO THE STARS”: for a dress that would sell in the store for probably fifty [pesos] at the most. So He was dressing the Rat Pack and all that they were getting—I wanted to I was super expensive, and it would only these important people. [When we first make them pretty, make them proud of take me a couple of hours to make the met], he was really interested in me, and wearing my clothes. That was it. They he looked at my nails—you know, my could be a beggar, a buffoon, a king, a dress. So that became an enterprise. We manicure—and my suit. And he said, queen, whoever is famous for three would make three hundred to four hun- “You made that suit?” I said, “Yessir, I weeks on TV or in the news. I dealt with dred dresses a year from that point on. make my own suits, my boots, my belts. so many people . . . I could go on forever and ever. Not because I want you to And I never had to sew. But I did the first I make my jewelry.” He says, “Do you like to drink?” I say, mention the names, but because those ones, ya know what I mean? “Of course!” He says, “I want you to do people made me in a way, so it’s not like this job for me: I want you to drink with I made them. So why should I have a big, ON IMMIGRATION: I came to Baja, California, at the age of my clients and do fittings. And every fit- big pride about that, you know? nineteen. Then I started a new business: ting that you do, I’m going to pay you ON GIVING ARTISTS WHAT THEY I would provide all the services to peo- $55. I’ll guarantee you three fittings a day NEED: ple who were immigrating to the United . . . I want you to drink and never sound People that think I’m looking for cliStates of America . . . all the documents American! I want you to sound foreign!” that you need to walk in there and say, He was Italiano, you know, hard-core. ents—they’re so damn wrong. I don’t He wanted me to sound foreign because want that. As far as many people know, “Give me a damn passport.” I’m the only designer known for fighting It took forever to get a forma trece—a there were no American tailors. I played the game, and sure enough, clients. In plain talk, it’s this: I let them form thirteen—to come across and just visit and shop in the United States. I the first person I met was Johnny Weiss- write their own songs; I let them sing said, “I just got an idea. Why don’t we muller, who played Tarzan. And then their own lyrics. But I sew my own pants rent an office and we create a net all over I met Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., and jackets . . . Some of them might the country where we can talk to the lo- Dean Martin, you name it . . . I didn’t say, “I want ‘em blue. I want ‘em tight”— cal government and get birth certificates, know who the hell Frank Sinatra was. some of them might mention the other police reports—all the things they [im- I was a boy of twenty-one, and I was guys’ or girls’ clothes. You know, “I want migrants] need?” What cost us twenty- swinging the chicks to Tommy Dorsey this to be like this.” I say, “No, you’re gofive pesos, we sold in Baja for $25. So we and Glenn Miller. This Rat Pack thing ing to have your own.” It’s gonna be a real cold day in hell the were making a heck of a business! My had no connection to my life. That was a lot of money, but it was day that I make you a Johnny Cash suit if partner and me would make a little bit kind of boring. You know, making tux- you don’t look like Johnny Cash . . . You over $2,000 a week. But I still insisted on making dresses. edos and fitting straight suits all the must have, you must create your own And I still had ladies sewing dresses, and time—that’s not really what I wanted to style. I got so many people that wanted do . . . I quit the Rat Pack ‘cause I was to- to look like Johnny Cash, but they’re I was making money.

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MANUEL CUEVAS: manuelcouture.com Follow on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter @manuelcouture native.is/manuel

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in front of the mirror, three hundred pounds, 5’1”. What am I gonna do with that? Gimme a break! That’s not right. But Johnny Cash is iconic, so people want to be like him. ON DRESSING THE MAN IN BLACK IN BLACK: He [Johnny Cash] said, “How come my nine suits are black?” And I said, “Well, there was a special on black clothes.” I think it might have been Barbara Walters or something—she said [to Johnny Cash], “So, Manuel put you in black.” And Johnny said, “Well, I wore black before, but Manuel put me in a better black.” Which was kind of permanent. I was hesitant to admit that I was right until he called me and said, “I want more clothes.” The color was no longer in question. I knew Johnny Cash very close. Very dear friend, almost a brother. The respect that we generate for each other [trails off] . . . I showed him it was the style. It wasn’t the color black; it was the style. ON FUTURE PROJECTS: I want to make a series of classics: suits I have made through the years for people. I’ve never made copies of anything—[but now] I wanna make similar pieces. They cost so much to make, but I don’t mind if anybody buys them. Johnny Cash would be one of them; Lone Ranger would be one of them; Robert Mitchum would be one of them. There’s so many that I want to make serious—it could be a couple hundred of them, honestly. I don’t think anybody will buy them because they’ll be so highly priced. But I kinda want to see them together when I go. I wanna see them. They were meaningful in my life. Because I was happy when I finished them, I was like . . . I didn’t know I was making clothes for a great man when I made for Hank Williams Sr., Rose Maddox, people like that. I always have regrets that I didn’t grab it. ON HIS INTERNSHIP PROGRAM AND PROPOSED FASHION FOUNDATION: A dream is a dream, no matter what size.

What I want to do is create designers that can compete with European designers, believe it or not. You know why? The simple reason is that in five-hundredplus years of this country, America has never produced an international designer. American designers have somehow become designers of name, but never really international designers. You can hear Americans claiming, “Oh, this is Italian, this is French, this is English” . . . I love Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger, I know them personally, but . . . they are not international. People go and get international designers’ clothes everywhere in the United States of America. They think that is the biggest luxury because they can afford a flight to France or Italy. But that doesn’t make the clothing better. But I think we have some bad clothing in America . . . Americans, they came from the poor. So when they had a dollar or two, they’d go out and brag all over the world. That’s cool, there’s nothing wrong with that, but let’s not turn it into an American tragedy. Entrepreneurs are buying clothes from different parts of the world, and they are forgetting their own working class. They make their fortune—and I don’t blame them, oh my God, God bless ‘em—but they sacrifice the little people for that.

will never give you happiness, money will never give you love, and money will never give you health. Money is a manipulative object. I figure if I had followed the path of many other people, I’d probably be gone by now. But I never had that kind of stuff—I had my own way of thinking to the point that at one point or another, I recognized that I would be the architect of my own destiny. You know what, you kind of have to manipulate your way in life, and you can really do whatever you want to do. ON HIS HEALTH: I’ve never had a hangover in my life. I’ve never had a headache, ever, in my life. I’m just a happy go-around boy. ON HIS LEGACY: I want them [people remembering him] to say, “It could never have happened to a better fellow.” No regrets, no nothing. I’m fine. When people become argumentative, this and that, I feel weird about that. I say, you know what, they should have lived a better life. What do I care, really? I don’t worry, because I want self-expression to reign forever, ya know? To give serenity. Because self-expression is the greatest thing. Scream if you’re happy, scream if you’re angry. Ya know? Just scream! Because communication is the mother of understanding. If you don’t communicate, nobody knows you’re happy, and nobody understands your pain. I love what I do; I love the cloth; I live in devotion to what I do. But if fate changed that, I wouldn’t at all be disappointed. I just think that life has its turns, and I am very agreeable to whatever might happen. It’s never been for the money. A lot of people might say well of course [it is], which is fine . . . I decided to stick with what I love to do, and I’ll probably have scissors in my hands the day I croak off because I love it so much. I hope so, ‘cause that’s what I like.

“I’LL PROBABLY HAVE SCISSORS IN MY HANDS THE DAY I CROAK OFF BECAUSE I LOVE IT SO MUCH.”

ON AGING AND LESSONS LEARNED: There have been revealing times of reality lately— you realize you’re mortal; you realize they’re a lot of things that might affect or change you. Not because you want to change, but because of the circumstances. Now I realize I need to work for a living . . . I’ve been very successful in my life, but the work hasn’t provided enough for the way of life. I call that feo, which is ugly. I really believe in this picture life, and I believe in the good things. Money

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The Face: Daniel Crotts for AMAXTalent.com | Concept, Hair, Grooming, Clothing Styling: Melanie Shelley at TRIMNashville.com for AMAXTalent.com.

FIT TO BE TIED Anyone who knows a lariat from a lark’s head will have style advantage this season. It’s official: zippers are out, knots are in. Belted morning jackets are also enjoying their moment, so the cravat is giving the pocket square competition as the front-row detail of choice. “It’s easy to fail this look by layering stiff, formal fabrics. You don’t want to look like a runaway groom,” says multimedia stylist Melanie Shelley. “Choose a silk daywear cravat and pair it with a wool cardigan or chunky knit sweater to keep it casual.”


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ANIMAL OF THE MONTH

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# NN AT AT IVE N ASH VI LLE # IVE N ASH VI LLE


Open daily @ 11 am for lunch.

# NAT I V ENAS HV I L L E

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# N AT IVE N ASH VI LLE


# NAT I V ENAS HV I L L E

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98 / / / / / / / / / / / / / / //////

# N AT IVE N ASH VI LLE

Native | November 2014 | Nashville, TN  

Featuring Nashville's Manuel, The 404 Kitchen, Adia Victoria, LitKaby, and Megan Kelley.

Native | November 2014 | Nashville, TN  

Featuring Nashville's Manuel, The 404 Kitchen, Adia Victoria, LitKaby, and Megan Kelley.

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