I very much enjoyed the March 11 cover story (“10 Things Nashville Needs”) and am pretty much in favor of all of them. I was especially intrigued by No. 3, a 30th anniversary tribute to the film Nashville and a pair of people listed in the “Who to do it section,” Scott and Mimi Manzler of Nashville Premieres.
In June 2002, Mimi Manzler put together a panel discussion about Nashville at the Belcourt Theatre. Moderated by Demetria Kalodimos, the panel featured Ralph Emery, “mayor of Music Row” Charlie Monk, Tennessean film critic Gene Wyatt and Scene writer Jim Ridley. The discussion was lively, informative and wide-ranging.
The screening of Nashville was part of a larger tribute to Altman at the Belcourt, for which Scott Manzler served as curator. Titles screened included California Split, The Long Goodbye, M♦A♦S♦H and McCabe & Mrs. Miller.
I’m not saying that just because this was done a couple or years ago that we shouldn’t do it again. (I’m in favor of an Altman fest every year.) But I do think it’s appropriate to acknowledge the work that has already been done. All of us who got to see the films and participate in the discussion certainly appreciated it.
F. Clark Williams Jr.
Praise for Grimey’s
Nashville doesn’t need an Amoeba or Virgin record store (“10 Things Nashville Needs,” March 11). If a great record store is what we’re looking for, we already have the place: Grimey’s. Although you’ve given props to Grimey’s in the past, you conspicuously ignore this little record-store-that-could in last week’s issue. Your Swan Dive piece (“Not So Automatic Sunshine,” March 11) says their CD is only available overseas and at their shows. Grimey’s has been selling this CD for months and has it on their listening station. (Incidentally, Molly Felder, Swan Dive’s singer, is sporting a Grimey’s T-shirt in the picture accompanying your piece.) On that same page is an enthusiastic review of the recent Dirtbombs show, a concert Grimey’s actively promoted and sold tickets for. In another article about local record producers, you mention numerous local releases, all of which are available at Grimey’s. Grimey’s knows about and whole-heartedly supports the local scene, its bands and its tastes. Would a new Virgin Megastore be so inclined? It’s nice to shop in an expansive music store. Grimey’s can grow into a Waterloo (Austin) or Ear X-tacy (Louisville). But this will only happen if we continue to give Grimey’s our support and the local press it deserves.
There goes my line
Did it really take three pages of print for the scene to state what its readers already know, that Kenny Chesney (“Why This Guy?” March 4) performs bland, watered-down “country” that only appeals to people with all the musical sophistication of a 13-year-old (which is actually an insult to many 13-year-olds I’ve known)? The entire feature on Chesney was little more than a struggle to find something redeeming to say about him and his songs. Meanwhile, the accolades for BR549, (“Their Aim Is True,” March 4) virtually jumped off the page. Next time you have articles about Chesney and BR549 in the same issue, please put the real country artist on the cover.
Bradley Val Buxton
“Progress” is the clue
I am writing regarding a journalistic detail in Matt Pulle’s interesting March 11 piece, “Unlikely Adversaries.” As a board member of Tennessee Alliance for Progress, I question his use of the single phrase “left-wing” to describe our organization. Why he feels that this term conveys any meaning in the context of this article, I don’t fully understand. Actually, we’re an organization that has arrived upon a set of principles specifically designed to appeal to a broad and largely moderate base of members. Because of the diverse background of our board, we strive to prevent any particular polarizing ideology from coloring our decisions and actions. Our goal is to ensure that Tennesseans remain informed and concerned about the directions our lives take as guided by both public policy and social interaction.
I would encourage Mr. Pulle to attend our upcoming conference: Campaign for Tennessee’s Future, where I suspect he will find a variety of political and cultural beliefs held on a variety of political and cultural issues. More information about the conference is available at our Web site (www.tennesseeallianceforprogress.org). Also available there is a copy of our principles, which I would encourage Mr. Pulle to read so that he might arrive at more useful descriptors should he ever mention our organization again in one of his articles. If moderation, however, has become synonymous with “left-wing,” then perhaps I stand to be corrected.
Thomas F. O’Connell
Tennessee Alliance for Progress
We miss you too
A friend returned from a trip to Nashville with a copy of the issue featuring Jim Ridley’s cover story “Saving Our Soul” (Feb. 26). It made the deep pangs of my northern exile throb unbearably. One, to be in a town with such a rich history and, two, to have someone write so movingly about it. Let’s just say the polka music and the lame local weekly (whose cover story this week is where to go on St. Patty’s Day and drink until green beer comes out of your nose) aren’t quite doin’ it for me. Someday I’ll return. I always said Nashville’s a great town to fail in, and your paper, with its fine writers, is one of the most compelling reasons for making that statement.
email@example.com (Milwaukee, Wis.)
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