Arts and Culture | Nashville Public Radio

Arts and Culture

Justine Avila
Mayor's Office

The Music City Music Council in Nashville has its first full-time executive director. Justine Avila was named to the position Tuesday after what officials described as an “intensive” search for a leader.

The council helps music businesses expand and relocate to Nashville and recruits music award shows, events, and conventions. The council also promotes music education in public schools.

Behind every successful musician in Nashville ... is someone who's negotiating his or her contract. 

For artists like Strurgill Simpson and Alabama Shakes, John Strohm is the guy hammering out recording and publishing deals. Being a music attorney isn't as glamorous as pouring out one's soul in song, but as he explains, it still requires creativity. He talked to reporter Emily Siner in WPLN's live journalism series Movers & Thinkers about helping artists get the best deal.

Emily Siner / WPLN

A Nashville technology startup thinks it can help classical music flourish in the digital age.

Right now, flourish is not the word most people would use to describe the genre. Classical music only makes up 2.1 percent of all album sales and less than half a percent of all streams online, according to Nielsen data.

But the founders of Dart Music say there's no lack of modern musicians and composers. The problem, they say, is that those artists have extra barriers to selling their music online, barriers that Dart is trying to break down.

Bobby Moresco REAL program Nashville
Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

An unusual play will be performed Thursday night — for one night only — at TPAC in downtown Nashville. It’s based on the idea of helping troubled teens by getting them to share a stage with successful people.

Stephanie Richard / via Flickr

The Nashville Symphony is nearly done digging itself out of a giant financial hole. After job cuts, salary reductions and restructuring, the symphony expects to no longer have a budget deficit, starting next year.

Emily Siner / WPLN

The hot chicken tradition of Nashville was served with a cultural twist this weekend. The Jewish Community Center hosted the first Kosher Hot Chicken Festival, geared toward Jews whose religious dietary restrictions prevent them from eating standard meat. 

Disney | ABC Television Group via Flickr / / ABC/Image Group LA

For the second time in a row, Luke Bryan won Entertainer of the Year at the Country Music Association Awards in Nashville. 

It’s been a good year for the singer of “Play It Again," who also won Entertainer of the Year at the Academy of Country Music Awards in April. This time, at the CMAs, Luke Bryan thanked God, his wife and, of course, his fans for the top award of the night.

“All the people that laid down their hard-earned money to come see my show," he said, "thank you so much."

Rob Gordon

On October 18, 2015, Charleston, South Carolina celebrated the opening of the Gaillard Center for the Performing Arts with a stunning inaugural concert and dinner. I was fortunate to be one of a reported 70 or so Nashvillians there and am delighted to share some photos and highlights of the day.

Nashville's connection to this endeavor centers in one remarkable woman: Martha Rivers Ingram. Martha has helped deliver to the people of Charleston a gift similar in scale and beauty to our own Schermerhorn Center.

Hip Hop Artist Makes History at Dove Awards

Oct 14, 2015
YouTube screenshot

The Gospel Music Association has been giving out Dove Awards for 46 years. Last night in Nashville, it charted new territory by naming a rapper as its "Artist of The Year."

Porch writers Nashville
Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

Amid Nashville’s storytelling culture — which tends to come out through song — a new experiment has emerged. It’s called “poetry on demand.”

A group of writers hangs out at events, including this weekend’s Southern Festival of Books, and quickly writes poems based on stories shared from passers-by. Whoever wanders up answers a few questions and then the poets go to work.