Bad news for the local club scene: Kim Webber is stepping down after two years as club booker for The Sutler. Under her guidance, the cozy Franklin Road club booked some of the coolest indie rock and roots-music acts to pass through town in recent years. Among her coups were shows by Velvet Underground drummer Mo Tucker, Freedy Johnston, Calexico, Ladybug Transistor, Edith Frost, and the first Nashville club appearance by R&B iconoclast Swamp Dogg. She’s leaving to manage rocker Tommy Womack, to work full-time for The Press Network, and “to get a little bit of my life back.”
October will be the last month Webber books for The Sutler, and it’s already shaping up as a blowout. Playing his first Nashville show is Johnny Dowd, the upstate New York furniture mover whose stark, gripping 1997 LP The Wrong Side of Memphis was a cult sensation. He’ll play Oct. 16 with Tom House. Other shows include Vince Bell and Paul K. (Oct. 9), a David Bowie tribute night (Oct. 12), the Indiegrrl tour in support of women in independent music (Oct. 14), Peter Case (Oct. 15), and Danielle Howle with Those Bastard Souls (Oct. 21). Texas yodeling king Don Walser returns for a Halloween show Oct. 31.
Let’s hope whoever follows Webber shares her good taste, her sense of adventure, and her genuine love of music.
The top honors at this Wednesday’s CMA Awards may go to Garth, Shania, Faith, and Tim, but the biggest non-marquee story in Nashville this past year has been that of Music Row renaissance man Randy Scruggs. A song from the picker’s 1998 album, Crown of Jewels, won a Grammy for best instrumental earlier this year. Scruggs is also a nominee for Musician of the Year at the CMA Awards. And “Passin’ Through,” a Dylan-esque number that he cowrote with Johnny Cash and recorded with Joan Osborne, is the lead single from Arista’s new Happy, Texas soundtrack CD.
As if this weren’t enough, everybody and his cousin seems to want to play with Scruggs, who has toured as Dwight Yoakam’s opening act for most of the summer and will open for Trisha Yearwood this fall. Scruggs was also behind the board for The Nashville Sessions, the new album from the eclectic bluegrass quintet Leftover Salmon that includes, among other guests, Bela Fleck, Taj Mahal, Del and Ronnie McCoury, Lucinda Williams, Waylon Jennings, and Randy’s dad, Country Music Hall of Famer Earl Scruggs. Not only that, Scruggs just finished work on Loretta Lynn’s forthcoming CD and is about to go into the studio with pop singer Lisa Loeb.
Others will walk away with more trophies at the CMAs, but Randy Scruggs has, hands down, demonstrated more vision and commitment to musical diversity than anyone else on Music Row all year.
I just got done reading your article, and really enjoyed it, thank you. Here is…
I hope Bonnie and Clyde is better than Mob City, which was - as far…
The only website you can call directly is 1-800-FLOWERS.com.
Not the first time Mario Lopez has been snubbed (see Kapowski, Kelly).
I was all like "how do you get the phone number for TMZ?!?!" you can't…