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the newsletter for Nuçi’s Space, a nonprofit musicians’ support/resource center

It’s All in the Output


few weeks ago Terrance, a former Nuçi’s Space co-worker, invited me to join him during a rare night out to see Neutral Milk Hotel at the 40 Watt Club. Prior to the show Terrance and I took the opportunity to catch-up with one another over dinner and a couple of drinks. A classically-trained flautist at the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, a Navy veteran and now a Senior Software Engineer with a Master’s degree in Computer Science, Terrance is a great example of the unique group of people that I’ve had the pleasure to meet and work with at Nuçi’s Space. After finishing our meal, Terrance and I made our way down to the club. It was the first night of three soldout shows that Neutral Milk Hotel had booked at the 40 Watt and the first time, following a “15-year break”, the band had performed in their hometown of Athens, GA. As expected, the club was already packed with fans brimming with anticipation. When the band finally took the stage to begin their set, a hush fell over the crowd, allowing the room to fill with music. The moment was striking. The band continued to deliver one of the best performances that I’ve been fortunate to witness from a live band. I remember thinking during the show that something about Scott Spillane, one of the band’s horn players, stood out from the rest of the group. Having seen Scott perform a handful of times with various bands and projects over the years, his exceptional musicianship wasn’t a secret. However, there was something notable in the timbre of his horn, his energy, his presence—it was special. The next day, while talking with friends and acquaintances about the show, it became apparent that my observations of Scott’s performance were not unique. Every conversation included a statement like “Scott was on fire!” or “That horn player killed it last night.” Others flocked to Facebook to applaud Neutral Milk Hotel for a great show and echo Scott’s praises. It was agreed that we had witnessed something extraordinary. This morning, as I settled into work with a cup of coffee and a quick “check-in” on Facebook, I read a post by one of my friends, a local musician and record store clerk. He shared, “I’ve got such a soft spot for musicians and artists that work day/night jobs in addition to


Bob Sleppy

creating beautiful works of art. It all becomes part of their output—staying in touch with real life. I was touched by all the comments I saw saying ‘Scott E. Spillane is king’ etc. after the Neutral Milk Hotel shows at the 40 Watt. That man has put in years as a carpenter—crawling into nasty crawlspaces, sweating and straining, and it’s all in his sound. That majestic beautifully round and heartfelt tone.” He continued by citing several examples of local and world-renowned musicians and artists that had similar experiences. His observation struck a chord with me. He touched on what I’ve experienced during my time at Nuçi’s Space—the core of what makes Athens and other “creative communities” so incredibly special. Creativity, passion, love and beauty are not things that people turn “on” and “off.” Whether you’re a carpenter/musician like Scott or a software engineer/musician like Terrance, those qualities live in every thought and action of those who choose to embrace and practice them. Just as individuals manifest these qualities, they are then carried over into organizations—like Nuçi’s Space. The culture of an organization is dependent upon the convergence and evolution of the shared values and experiences of individuals with the espoused values of the organization. Over 14 years ago, when I picked up my first piece of Nuçi’s Space literature, the words “Nurturing, Understanding, Compassion and Insight” were prominently displayed across the top of the brochure. Linda Phillips, using her son’s name to guide her, offered these four qualities as the tenets in which the foundation of Nuçi’s Space was to be built. This foundation has been responsible for attracting the employees, board members, volunteers and donors that have nurtured and cultivated its growth. To this day, whether we are developing a new program, making a financial decision or simply welcoming a guest into the Space, we are mindful of the foundation we’ve been entrusted with and ensure that it all becomes part of our output and can be heard in our sound. To all of those musicians and artists who continue to work so hard to bring joy and meaning into our lives by “creating beautiful works of art,” and to all of you who support their efforts through Nuçi’s Space, we’d like to say ‘thank you.’

nuçi’s space 396 Oconee Street Athens, GA 30601 706.227.1515 nucisspace Newsletter Contributors

Bob Sleppy Chris Byron Laura Ford Will Kiser Design & Layout

Larry Tenner

Recent Donors

Nuçi Phillips

Memorial Foundation

Board of Directors

President: Rebecca Hood Secretary: Ellie MacKnight Treasurer: Helen Pinson David Barbe Barrie Buck Julie Cheney Patterson Hood Bill Orr Todd Emily Beth Hall Thrasher Anna & Ken Zankel Founding Family

Linda Phillips Pierre Phillips KP Devlin Executive Director

Bob Sleppy Legal Counsel

Jim Warnes Mike Lavender Nuçi’s Space Staff

Will Kiser Laura Ford Chris Byron Lesley Cobbs Matt Hudgins Peter Hill Dave Chamberlin

Amici Italian Café Aurum Studios Avery, Bill Avid Bookshop Barbe, Kathy & Randy Baxendale Guitar Big City Bread Café Chase Park Transduction Classic Hair & Spa Community Connolly, Ed Cotlar, Betina Kaplan & Leo Couillard, Josh Country Fried Rock Dawe, Sylvia Decker, Patsy DePalma’s Dirty Girl Pottery Echo Vegan Restaurant Emily, Todd Eskridge, Will Foundry Park Inn & Spa Gibbs, Steve Hale, David Harvey, David & Nancy McDuff Hines, Stephen Jackson, Sarah Julian, Rachel Kitchens, James Koch, Christian Kohnen, Martin Last Resort Grill Lester, David Little City Diner Loco’s Grill Lucky Savannah Lumpkin Cafe McCoy, David Medina, Terrance Mermaid Cottages Model Citizen Salon Nettles, Victor & Charlotte Quist

Nicholson, Dr. Peter Peach, Jason & Jane Perry, Jason PHIL-Athens Raque, David & Susan Renew You Massage Therapy Reynolds, Brandon Roberts, Don Siebentritt, Joel & Carter Vest Simeon, Renee Sleppy, Janet Sommer, Marc Starrs, Chris Suttle, Albert Taqueria Del Sol Tate Mountain Ted’s Most Best The Grit Thomas, Kecia Thrasher, Beth & Jason Total Training Center Viva Argentine Cuisine Warnes, Jim & Carol Waterman Spring Water Watts Magness, Leigh Ellen White, Jim Wildwood Tree Professionals Wright, Allison & Gene Zeiler, Marlene & Mike In Memory of A. Nuçi Phillips Dr. & Mrs. Pierre Phillips In Memory of Adora Mills John & Marianne Stipe In Memory of Alexander D. Stefanou Christina Papakirk In Memory of April Bachtel Susan Paul In Memory of Bill Doss John Lane

In Memory of Bo Tompkins Leslie Tompkins In Memory of Casey Wood John & Noleen Casey In Memory of Craig Lieske DBT Recording Inc Dickson, Beth & Edward Gavney Lieske, Dale & Elaine Roberts, Don Sanderlin, Bob

Gold, D Good, George Ireland, Scott Leathers, Leon Martin, Houston Olivo, Peter Phelan, Dan Ross, Hardy Stack, Josh In Memory of Herb Guthrie Arthur Johnson & Donna Ashley

In Memory of Danny Esposito James & Sandra Boyles

In Memory of Ian Brussack Bob & Pat Brussack

In Memory of Doug Bachtel Bates, Hortense Bickley, Greg & Pam Bower, Don & Julie Burch, Charles Burkett Smith, Linda Department of Housing and Consumer Economics Glass, Tom & Anne Houston, Jack & Jacquelyn McGough, Michael & Courtney Meehan, Michael & Mary Morris, Van & Libby Patrick, Adele Paul, Dorothy Paul, Susan Ragsdale, Micky Robinson, R. Mixon Turner, Pamela

In Memory of Jack Sweeny Foundry Park Inn & Spa Wolford, Murphy & Elizabeth Mettler

In Memory of Garrie Vereen Cooper, Gordon Davidson, Jennifer Davis, Richard Dearwent, Steve Draper, Eric Forche, Jon & Nadine Garrison, Shaw

In Memory of Ted Hafer Arthur Johnson & Donna Ashley

In Memory of James Bruce Ford Bruce & Lisa Ford In Memory of Meredith Leigh Kinard Watkins Adele Patrick In Memory of Norman & Bea Page Bonnie Bachtel In Memory of Richard J. Sleppy David Sleppy

In Memory of Vera Greve Damien Tank

Nuçi’s Space Roadie Fund The Nuçi’s Space Roadie Fund was started in 2013 in memory of Garrie Vereen, Widespread Panic’s equipment manager for over 20 years, but it is dedicated to ALL of the people behind the scenes who help keep the show on the road. Set up to help behind the scenes at Nuçi’s Space, proceeds from the Roadie Fund will pay for general operating and maintenance expenses so that we can continue our mission without interruption. If you would like to contribute to the Roadie Fund in memory of Garrie Vereen or anyone you know who has helped “keep the show going” for you, please donate online or send a check with the memo “Roadie Fund” and any memorial dedication you would like to include.

Asking More Doesn’t Always Subtract from the Greater Good by

Will Kiser

Note to self: remember what you have, not what you don’t have. On September 1st, Nuçi’s Space began asking our uninsured musicians and artists to pay a larger copay for visits to a counselor or psychiatrist. It was the first time in 13 years that we’ve ever raised the rates on anything that wasn’t coffee (which went from $1 to $1.25). Our rehearsal rooms have stayed the same price and in some cases, gone down over the years. Since we opened in 2000, the number of people using our mental health services has risen dramatically, and in response we continued to raise our counseling budget and fundraising goals—all while keeping the well-being of our clients as the top priority. Our healthcare providers shouldered the responsibility of adequately treating our clients while remaining aware of our financial limitations. Raising the copay was our last option. But at the rate we’ve been growing, without raising the co-pay we ran the risk of not being able to help anyone at all. But when we announced the change I flinched, waiting for a negative reaction. I know that typically we tend to focus on distress more than optimistic feelings—so we’ve tried to look at the positive side of this situation. One way of seeing it is that people are asking for (and receiving) the help they need for mental health treatment. Part of our mission statement is to combat the stigma of mental illness. Seeing as the amount of people approaching us for help has increased exponentially over the years, one could say that we’ve—if even slightly—altered the way that musicians in Athens view mental health. Also encouraging was our client’s reaction to the news that their co-pay would increase. 100% of the response we got was positive. The reaction was not opposition—it was gratitude for the help they’ve been given in the past. Some were concerned about our financial burden and some reminded us that the co-pay

was still a dramatic discount in terms of what they would normally pay out of pocket. Two people even wrote in to say that they would pay even more than we were asking. Here are a few of the responses we got: I hope you get this and read this to everyone involved. THANK-YOU from the bottom of our hearts for this, you do a wonderful thing. The price should go up, I know how hard it can be, and hope no one gives any grief. Nuçi’s has done great things for all of us. I am responding with the purpose of letting you know how very much I appreciate yours and Nuçi’s help in an incredibly difficult time. I will always be grateful. Thanks again for all you at Nuçi’s do. I think when I was going last year; the purpose was more for damage control. I’m looking to make progress currently. Today was the first time back and I have an improved outlook, so I’m hopeful. How can I make a donation to the fund for other musicians? I have friends who need help and I am more than happy to make a donation to Nuçi’s to support this program. Thank you for your e-mail. That is still way less than the usual costs! I have benefited so much from Nuçi’s Space thus far. Thank you for all that you do! Thanks for the update. I am happy to pay a little extra to keep this valuable resource available. I greatly appreciate what you guys do, and the mental health services that I’ve received over the past year have been so good for me. Expressing gratitude is revitalizing, not just through words but in action. The words say that we’re thankful for people like you—concerned community members and supporters. We put that gratitude into action by coming to work every day and continuing our mission of fighting against depression and suicide. We are so thankful for your help and in turn, we’re helping those in need. Will Kiser is the counseling advocate for Nuçi’s Space. For more info on our Counseling Assistance Program please contact him at or at 706.227.1515. You can also leave a message on our confidential line at 706.227.6141.

CAAS Fall 2013 Halloween Session Wrap-Up As anyone in Athens would tell you, Halloween is an important local holiday. It seems that almost everyone in town goes all-out for Halloween, and Nuçi’s Space decided to take part in the fun this year too. From October 21st–27th, twenty middle and high school-aged musicians took part in a 1-week Halloween-themed Camp Amped After School session that concluded in a costume party Grand Finale at Hendershot’s Coffee. The participants were split up into 4 smaller bands as well as 2 larger groups, and they learned and performed songs like Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition,” Black Sabbath’s “Children of the Grave” and Screamin’ Jay Hawkins’ “I Put a Spell on You.” The Finale was a frightfully good time, with an audience of costumed parents, friends and community members packing the house in support of the next generation of Athens musicians. We’d like to send a special thank you out to Hendershot’s for hosting the Finale, to Directional Dimension Productions for filming the show, and to Camp mom Jennifer Bielli and Nuçi’s Space volunteer Cindy Nash for providing Halloween-themed snacks for the participants all week long. Thanks to our sponsors The George Link Jr. Charitable Trust and the Jackson EMC

Halloween Session Participants Parker Allen Drew Appleby Dominic Bielli Connor Byers Paulina Hafer Cat Hennessey Ethan Houseman Alex Kozlosky Annabelle Martin Dhruv Prakash Jordan Rhym Seamus Rosenberg Jacob Samuelson

Kallen Simpson Sascha Smith Emily Rose Thorne Sean VanMeter Everett Vereen Carter Watson Jordan Wilmoth Instructors Dan Nettles Shauna Greeson Allen Owens Thayer Sarrano

Foundation, funded by members of Jackson EMC’s Operation Round Up program, Nuçi’s Space was able to award $1,200 in scholarships to participants in financial need to attend CAAS. The 1-week CAAS format was very popular with participants and parents alike, so Nuçi’s Space is planning on offering more of these condensed sessions in the future. Please email laura@ if you’d like to be added to our Camp Amped programs mailing list.

Camp Amped Summer 2014 Nuçi’s Space will be offering 2 sessions of its popular Camp Amped summer program again during the summer of 2014. Camp Amped is a 2-week summer day camp for young musicians in middle and high school. During Camp Amped, participants are put into bands that work with an instructor to write, learn and perform songs for a Grand Finale show on the last Saturday of each session. In addition to working with their bands, participants take part in special workshops, have their band photos taken by Jason Thrasher and spend a day at a local professional recording studio. Session 1 will take place June 2–14, and Session 2 will take place July 7–19, and applications will be available online at starting January 13th. For more information, email

ATHENS BUSINESS ROCKS Returns on February 27, 28 & March 1st!

Just a couple of weeks after the 40 Watt Club were crowned the 2013 Athens Business Rocks Champion in February; Nuçi’s Space staff began laying the groundwork for the 4th annual Athens Business Rocks event. We’re very excited about the improvements we’ve made and expect next year to be bigger and better than ever. Athens Business Rocks is an annual fundraising event for Nuçi’s Space that encourages local business owners and their employees to shed their mild-mannered workplace personas and reemerge as rock stars to perform on February 27th, 28th and March 1st. The idea behind the event is simple and starts with local business owners encouraging and supporting their employees to form bands that will compete against other businesses onstage at the worldfamous 40 Watt Club in downtown Athens. Our hope is to attract a wide array of owners, managers, employees and loyal customers of local businesses to participate and help us celebrate the creativity and independent spirit that makes our community so unique. However, the ultimate goal of Athens Business Rocks is to raise money for Nuçi’s Space. During the first three years of the event, we’ve had over 24 bands participate each year, representing a total of over 50 local businesses. Want your business, employer or co-workers to participate in 2014 Athens Business Rocks? Here’s a guide to taking the first steps… • Talk to your employees and/or co-workers and start forming a band. If you don’t think you have enough employees to form a band, no worries, you can reach out to former employees, suppliers, regular customers or anyone that is closely tied to your business. • Register your band and sponsoring business on The registration cost is $75. We recommend asking the sponsoring business to cover this cost for you. In exchange for their support, the business name and logo will be included on all marketing materials where the band name is featured. We only have 24 spots for bands so register early.

• Create an unforgettable theme for your band by choosing a band name, prepare 15 minutes (3 cover songs) of music and include costumes if you’d like. Check the website for ideas that businesses have used in previous years. If you need some help just give us a call. • Start fundraising! Bands are scored by giving 1 point for every dollar raised by each business/ band. They are encouraged to ask friends, customers and fellow employees to donate online at or make contributions the night of the event. We’ll include some suggestions in your information packet that each band will pick up at Nuçi’s Space after you register. Once all businesses have registered their bands, performances will be randomly scheduled during one of three nights on February 27th, 28th and March 1st. The bands will be evaluated in three areas; scores from “celebrity” judges (Judges Favorite), audience favorite (Crowd Favorite) and fundraising (Fundraiser Award). The judges scores are based in three categories; Showmanship, Creativity and Badassness. The audience favorite is selected by how many fans they brought to the show and a (not-so-scientific) reading of the “applause-o-meter.” Lastly, as mentioned above, fundraising is scored by giving 1 point for every dollar raised by each business/ band. Contributions will be encouraged each night of the event by donating to the “bribe jars,” located in front of the judges. For those businesses that would like to participate in Athens Business Rocks but may not be able to form a band, we encourage you to sponsor one of the 3 nights of the event. For only $250, your business can sponsor a night at Athens Business Rocks. Please contact us for details. The dates for 2014 Athens Business Rocks will be February 27th, 28th and March 1st. All shows will be hosted at the Fabulous 40 Watt Club. The website will be open for registration on Monday, November 18th at noon. Start forming your bands, choose an unforgettable band name, ask for support from your work place and most of all… start practicing!

nuçi’s space Recent volunteers

Al Fargione Alex Blankenship Chris Saucier Cindy Nash Dave Chamberlin Deborah Jacobellis Emily Hansford Glen Reece Jacob Beckham Janet Wilson Julie Davis Justin Unbehaun Katelyn Binder Kristen Chamberlin Lingman Guo Payne Adam Raven Hinson Sallay Jabbie Sascha Smith William Kissane Nuçi’s Space Interns

Hannah Campbell Emily Dingus

Widespread Panic’s Rock ’n Raffle New Year’s 2013 Enter for a chance to ring in the New Year with Widespread Panic, December 30th & 31st in Atlanta! The prize package includes two General Admission concert tickets and an autographed event poster for the Tunes for Tots concert at the Atlanta Symphony Hall at The Woodruff Arts Center on 12/30/13, two Floor Tickets, VIP passes and an event poster for the New Year’s Eve show at Phillips Arena on 12/31/13, two nights of accommodations at the Embassy Suites Atlanta at Centennial Olympic Park—check in 12/30/13 and check out 1/1/14, and $250 cash. You may purchase tickets online now through December 6th at

our ReWired gear sales are used to help Nuçi’s Space continue its mission of preventing suicide and providing support to the music community. If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation of musical instruments or equipment to Nuçi’s Space, just give us a call at 706-227-1515 or stop by the Space during our business hours.

Win a Golden Ticket to the 40 Watt Club

ReWired: Get a Great Deal on Music Equipment We’re excited to announce that there will be another Nuçi’s Space Rewired gear sale coming up in December. During this “garage sale” style event, Nuçi’s Space will be offering great deals on drum kits, guitars, studio FX processors, band instruments, various cables, and much more! We’re planning on Saturday, December 7th from 12pm–4pm as the official date but make sure to check our Facebook page for updates. All proceeds from

Upcoming Events at Nuçi’s Space November

For the second year in a row, the 40 Watt Club is sponsoring a Golden Ticket Raffle to benefit Nuçi’s Space! The winner will receive a golden ticket which will allow entry to any and all shows taking place at the 40 Watt Club from January 1–December 31, 2014. Tickets are $5 each and can be purchased online at or in person at Nuçi’s Space.


Monday 18th: Athens Business Rocks 2014 Registration Opens Monday 18th: 40 Watt Golden Ticket Raffle Begins

December Friday 6th: Widespread Panic Tunes for Tots / NYE Raffle Ends Saturday 7th: ReWired Gear Sale at Nuçi’s Space Friday 20th: 40 Watt Golden Ticket Raffle Ends

January Monday 13th: Camp Amped Summer 2014 Applications Available

February Saturday 15th: DBT Homecoming Silent Auction Saturday 23rd: Herb Guthrie Drum Scholarship Benefit Show @ Hendershot’s Thursday 27th through Saturday, March 1st: Athens Business Rocks 2014 @ 40 Watt Club

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163 E. Broad Street Downtown Athens


right side glows the newsletter for nuçi’s space, a nonprofit musicians’ support/resource center

2013 November  

Nuci's Space Newsletter

2013 November  

Nuci's Space Newsletter