If you’re ever lucky enough to score a date with Caitlin Rose, be sure to bring some Dylan, or maybe some Gram Parsons—in other words, stay away from anything recorded after the 20-year-old songstress was born. Boasting a vintage croon that would feel right at home alongside Loretta and Patsy, Rose writes songs with a coy, soulful sensibility—and happens to be pretty darn cute. “I’ve been playing music since I was 16,” says Rose, who used to perform under the moniker Save Macaulay the Band. “I think I just started writing songs about boys—I was kinda boy crazy.” Rose was born in Texas and moved to Nashville when she was 6 or 7. “I love Nashville,” she says. “I wouldn’t live anywhere else, except maybe Austin, Texas.” If you’re looking to make beautiful music with Rose, you should try to nab her now. The next couple months will bring the release of an EP and an LP, which means this sublimely talented young lady is going to be beating them off with a stick. But pretty boys aren’t her type. “I don’t really date attractive boys,” says Rose. “I just date funny ones. I like funny people because they’re easier to get along with—plus, pretty people often aren’t so funny.”
Nashville transplant Isaac Kimes is attractive, altruistic and unattached—at least as of the Scene’s press time. And while the Seattle-born Kimes never thought he’d live in the South, only eight months after moving to Nashville he’s happy with his new digs and his new job as field organizer for the Tennessee Coalition to Abolish State Killing. Growing up, Kimes, 23, planned to become a doctor, but despite the allure of big bucks, eventually decided medical school wasn’t his calling (a conclusion he admittedly came to after too much partying his freshman year of college). Unsure what to do next, this good-looking do-gooder took a few social justice classes and was inspired: “I began to feel compelled to do something about everything that was going on around the world.” After graduating from Arizona State University in 2007, Kimes applied for a job with TCASK on a whim, and after a brief visit to Nashville, he was sold. And lucky for us. Despite a love of traveling—he’s already visited his mother’s birthplace of Korea five times—these days Kimes’ travels consist mainly of preaching against pro-death “justice” across Tennessee in a teal blue, early-’90s sedan dubbed the “TCASK-mobile,” a rather dorky appellation that he somehow manages to pull off. When he’s not organizing anti-death-penalty rallies or mobilizing volunteers, Kimes plays flag football and soccer, seeks out live music, especially bluegrass, and socializes at the watering holes near his East Nashville home. Eventually Kimes plans to attend law school, but don’t worry, ladies, this cute and clever catch hopes to remain in Tennessee for a while.
Curvy, cute as hell and undaunted by hail—that’s Lisa Patton, a steadily moving bright-red front on Middle Tennessee’s erogenous Doppler radar. We’ve always suspected other people shared our obsession with WKRN-Channel 2’s unflappable longtime weathercaster, but we didn’t know how much until we posted an ode to her tropical heat last year on a Scene blog. The heavens opened. “I’ve thought Lisa was the hottest woman on televised news since as far back as I can remember,” wrote one commenter. Gushed another: “That first shot they show of Lisa Patton in the weather newscast, when she’s still sitting at the desk. With her sparkly green eyes. No matter what the thermometer says, it’s hot in [my] household.” It helps that Patton, a Mt. Juliet native who lives on the same street she grew up on, gives off a reassuring mix of professional cool and downhome warmth. Drawling, voluptuous and clearly assured—somehow she finds time to home-school her three kids—she’s the opposite of the stereotypical tornado twinkie hoping to parlay some jerkwater weather gig into a guest-host slot on Access Hollywood. What makes her prime Lust List material is the one-of-us quality she exudes on camera—the sexiness of someone who’s comfortable with exactly who she is, even when she’s warning the citizens of Berry Hill they have 10.5 seconds to hit the basement. Her response when we called her—a startled laugh, then, “Why are you calling me?”—just clinched it. There is no woman hotter than one who doesn’t know her own hotness. Alas, she’s been happily married since 1990 to her stay-home husband, Eric. Bet he knows the meaning of tornadic activity.
Pupil-teacher ratios. Service-learning opportunities. Core habits of leaders. Whoa, baby, don’t stop. If you find discussion of school reform hot, Jeremy Kane’s your man. And if you don’t—preferring instead the flawless build of a former college swimmer, what with the broad shoulders, the trim waist, the…where’s the cold shower?—he’s got all that too. The 29-year-old founder of Nashville’s third charter school, LEAD Academy, which is now in its first year, has been a speechwriter for Sen. John Kerry, a Montgomery Bell Academy teacher, a consultant to the Tennessee Democratic Party, director of training for Teacher Corps and executive director of Tennessee Charter School Resource Center (and, interestingly enough, the managing partner of consulting outfit Kanwe, Dohim & Wear). The Stanford University grad, who went on to get a master’s in education at Vanderbilt, once romantically courted Chelsea Clinton, though he’s now married to a tall, dark-haired beauty who is finishing up at Vanderbilt Law School and who has legs that Gwen Stefani would kill for. So, ladies, he’s taken, but that won’t stop us from sitting in the front of the class.
Hey boys, if you like what you see, you better act fast: This little lass is blowing this popsicle stand. Twenty-seven-year-old Brynne Bowden is hitting the road in a couple weeks with local punk rockers Be Your Own Pet, and no, not as eye candy—she’ll be earning her keep as the quartet’s road manager, a job she calls “travel agent, babysitter, bookkeeper and driver all in one.” If you’ve spotted this brunette beauty around town, you’ve not doubt noted her quirky vintage wardrobe—that is if you can pull your gaze away from her perfectly proportioned features. “My biggest fashion inspiration would be my friends,” Bowden says. “Occasionally I’ll look at street fashion blogs, but I don’t really read fashion magazines or anything. I’ve had a unique sense of style since I was younger and people have commented on it my whole life. People always say, ‘You can pull anything off. I could never wear that,’ and I say, ‘The only reason I pull it off is because I try it.’ ” Bowden moved to Nashville from L.A. when she was 5 because her dad had a gig with Emmylou Harris. Her favorite thing about Music City is the close-knit arts and music community. “It feels like a big neighborhood—though that creates some creepy aspects in terms of dating.” So what is this recently single gal looking for in a dude? “A unique sense of humor is absolutely No. 1 on my list, hands down,” she says. “I definitely find intelligence more important than looks. And I like really unique people, people who are unlike anyone I’ve ever met.”
Jason isn’t the only one with a thing for Friday the 13th—and this guy definitely doesn’t need to don a hockey mask. Nashville’s own D. Striker never misses the chance to commemorate the unluckiest of unlucky days with the release of his self-produced RR magazine. Usually celebrated with a stacked bill of local rock favorites, RR release parties have become a reason to look forward to that cursed day. The project started when Striker was still in Georgia. “I was living at my folks house in Atlanta, and I was getting ready to go to Athens for the weekend, to have fun,” Striker explains. “I’m not sure what made me do it, but I jotted down all these ideas and thoughts that I had kicking around and printed it out, took it to Kinkos, stapled it together and wrote an RR on the front. That night I handed it out to my friends. It happened to be Friday the 13th.” Striker eventually moved to Nashville—bringing the RR franchise with him—and has grown to love his adopted city. “Every living room that you enter in this town, you’ll look in the corner and see a guitar,” he says. “It feels like everybody is into music—they all either do it professionally or for fun, and I think that’s terrific.” Unfortunately for all you D.I.Y.-loving ladies out there, Striker (a.k.a. Jeff Melteson) spends his offstage hours with his two children and wife Kristen. But if you’re lucky, maybe he’ll include his lovely picture in his rag’s next edition, due in June.
Diana Holland is the kind of sultry beauty that used to star in old detective movies: dark eyes, smoky voice and a lilting accent that hints of forbidden destinations. Her physical charms are well-matched by a sharp intellect and an even sharper tongue, both of which are put to good use at Hispanic Link Consulting, the private business she founded. But Holland is probably best known as the founder of Tango Nashville, a nonprofit that promotes the most sensual dance in the world through exhibitions, events and classes. Her events, called “milongas,” have drawn hundreds of dancers to experience the passion of what Holland calls “the fiery romance of the tango,” which, when she says it, makes us want to have a fiery romance with her.
Sign us up! We’ll answer phones, we’ll scrub floors—hell, we’ll watch Bill Moyers if it means spending some time with NPT volunteer coordinator Miguel Otero. Chances are, he’ll have us stick to the phones—the perfect opportunity to use those skills we acquired at our other job. This 28-year-old Puerto Rican vegetarian has been staffing pledge drives for over a year-and-a-half, and he loves every minute of it. “It’s tons of fun,” Otero says. “You get to meet a ton of different people around the city that you’d never meet going out to bars or anything like that.” A dog lover with a hearty laugh, an infectious smile and an athletic, gentle-giant physique, Otero recently moved from Germantown to a condo in East Nashville that he shares with his black lab Pete. He came to Nashville from Clarksville, after spending his childhood moving around the country as a military brat. So, what does Otero find lust-worthy in others—besides volunteer work? “I love people’s laughs,” he says. “That sells me. I also love teeth—if they’ve got good teeth, that’s a very good thing.” As for hidden talents, the ever-modest Otero mentions racquetball and yet another attractive selling point: “I can make a good martini—I am proud of that.”
When Claudia began chiming in on Bites, the Scene’s food blog, we could tell instantly that she knew her way around a kitchen, a menu and some of the finest restaurants in the country. But when we logged onto Claudia’s own website, we realized that her recipe for lamb shanks with three-hour polenta wasn’t the only thing in her gourmet kitchen that was lean and hot. With a broad smile and wavy mane of dark blond hair, her photograph leaps off the cyber-page, where it is posted among photographs of her daily culinary exploits, from bottarga (sun-dried mullet roe) to tarte tatin. A native New Yorker and veteran of songwriting circles, Claudia, 46, works from home, where she can be close to her kitchen and computer. In between running her “multi-hundred-dollar enterprise,” she spends her time cooking exquisite meals, eating them and then fretting about everything she has eaten, hence the name of her appetizing and amusing blog. Desperately seeking a domestic goddess? Log onto cookeatFRET.com. You may not win Claudia’s heart, but if you enjoy pretty food and pretty people, you’ll definitely find quite the dish.
Nashville, who loves ya, baby? District 18’s Keith Durbin, whose beautiful baldness gives great head to Metro Council, that’s who. Durbin made history last fall as Tennessee’s first openly gay person elected to public office. But sorry, boys, if you want to be that sucker: Keith moved here from Paducah nearly 13 years ago to be with his partner Gary Bynum. When asked if Bynum is jealous that we’re pimping Durbin to our readers, Durbin replies, “We have both gotten the biggest chuckle out of it.” He works as a consulting business analyst for HCA Information and Technology services, but he’s anything but cocky—he describes himself as a “big geek”—and admits that a pair of Bluetooth headphones makes him look like Lobot from The Empire Strikes Back. Durbin started shaving his “folicularly challenged” dome around seven years ago after attempting numerous balding hair styles, citing that it was cheaper and didn’t “look half-bad.” We counter that it’s all good. And what about his role in gay history? “What I’m doing is serving the district and the city. It’s not about me, and frankly, I think the fact that I am the first is long overdue.” Durbin’s biggest interest is in the anal world of planning, zoning, codes enforcement and historic preservation—he’s been the president of the Belmont-Hillsboro Neighbors Inc. for five years—but he’s found a new concern for the city’s social services, citing his admiration for last year’s Lust Listee Charlie Strobel. As for having a name that sounds similar to another prominent Nashville resident, he never avoids articulating the “D” in his last name when making reservations over the phone, but he wouldn’t mind if the confusion led to meeting Nicole Kidman. “She’s spectacular.”
With his white 10-gallon hat and sheepishly nasal twang, it’s surprising, to say the least, that Merle Hazard is getting more international ink than most new acts in Music City. Then again, with heartrending ballads such as “H-E-D-G-E” and “In the Hamptons,” odes to the financial hardships of the super-rich, Hazard provides unique—some might even say “sexy”—editorial fodder for outlets such as The Guardian, Der Spiegel and The New York Times, which have all featured his Tammy Wynette- and Elvis-flavored paeans to Milton Friedman and sound monetary policy. With a musical style described as “not too much reverb, and not too much monetary expansion,” and a music video featuring a former economic advisor to Ronald Reagan, Hazard puts the laugh in the Laffer Curve. He calls himself the Man in Beige; we call him Hee Haw’s answer to CNBC. And we think he’s hot, in a Greenspan sort of way. Hazard’s videos on YouTube and his aw-shucks brand of financial-market commentary are the product of Josh May, Tom Noser and Jon Shayne, who portrays him—rhinestone belt buckle and all. No stranger to oddball lyrics and strained vocals, Shayne was a member of the short-lived ’80s-era garage band The Young Nashvillians, known for hyper-local ditties such as “Vanderbilt in France.” These days, the lanky and bespectacled Shayne splits his time—and his personality—between a buttoned-down day job as an investment manager and a more boot-cut after-hours existence as a subprime serenader, the first and only country music star to sing about mortgage-backed securities, derivatives and leveraged buyouts. When told that he’d been nominated for the Scene’s Lust List, Hazard—or was it Shayne?—responded schizophrenically, “Well, the market’s going to hell, but I better go get some tight-fittin’ jeans.”
There’s nothing hotter than a man who knows how to use his hands. But Eric Workman, 28, would wince at such an unseemly suggestion. The sweetly shy Southern gent, a hearing man who has been a professional sign language interpreter for about six years, is all about helping the deaf and hearing communicate with each other at doctor’s visits, court dates, concerts and the like. But as Workman, who now serves as vice president and director of interpreting services at Nashville’s League for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, talks about how he couldn’t imagine not working with the deaf, you can’t help but swoon. “The deaf folks are intelligent, they are capable of doing whatever they want to do,” he says. “It’s just that sometimes there’s that communication gap...prohibiting them from reaching their goals. So it’s great to know that we can be that bridge.” Heart of gold aside, Workman’s passion for the language is downright dreamy. “Just the fact that the deaf community speaks without using any sort of voice or noise at all—that their hands and what comes from them is just so precious to them—that fascinates me,” he says. But alas, there’s no sense in trying to get Workman to sign sweet nothings. This devout family man has been married for nearly six years to a woman he “instantly fell in love with” while the two were serving up plates o’ steaming gravy at a Kentucky Cracker Barrel. Along with raising his two sons, he says finding his wife has been his greatest accomplishment. Still, you can’t blame us for sweating his skills. “We always gets comments that it’s a beautiful language,” Workman says. “It’s an attraction for so many people.”
Karma Eve is a self-proclaimed “Fuck Goddess” and ably uses her pen to prove her point. This striking, ebony beauty also writes plays and short stories that are steamier than an LL Cool J lyric. Doubling as a performance artist, Eve, whose real name is Karyn Owsley, reads her poetry at swingers’ events, male reviews and private “toy parties” (like a Tupperware gathering but with more buzzing). Though the venues are hyper-erotic, Eve says that the performances are about more than just sex, which we would be a little easier to believe if she didn’t call herself—oh, I don’t know—“a fuck goddess.” Still, she says, her writing “lets me put life into my characters—I like to make each character’s voice (or moan) leap from the pages to tell the tale of erotic adventure they are living.” Her book Erotic Bloom is due out in March and is full of chaste poems such as “Stripped Raw” and “Thunder Cat,” which, not surprisingly, has very little to do with the ’80s-era children’s cartoon of the same name. With lines like, “I slam you down, mount on top and ride you feverishly with that ghetto motion,” she may not win points for grace, but if she doesn’t burn up the best-seller list, she’ll be heating up our bedrooms.
with assistant LeeAnn Simmons
Remember the brainiac in high school who walked around with Marx in her backpack, with a head full of Broadway show tunes, with a snappy comeback at the ready for any sorority girl who dared look crosswise at her combat boots? You know, the one you wanted to kiss until you knocked her horn-rims askew? She grew up to be Rachel Lowe (on the left), three parts Amelie to two parts Juno, the pixieish proprietor of the 12 South boutique Two Elle. A petite almond-eyed wisecracker who runs the only fashion shop in town—maybe in the world—where you can get a copy of Kafka’s The Trial to go with your Converse high-tops, Lowe presides over a four-room enchanted kingdom of hip couture and a glamorous staff of well-read, culturally aware (and endearingly attitude-free) hotties. But it’s her personality that comes through in the store’s mix of geek-chic ’90s retro, high-style jeans and distressed college T’s, and slim silver pendants that depict girl-power superheroes. “I was always ‘Most Intellectual’ or something like that—science team, debate team,” giggles Lowe, totally rocking a slate-blue tunic, a knit beanie and striped leggings that disappear into (yes!) her combat boots. Apart from her beloved Phoenix Suns (whose purple and orange she wears without fail every game day), she says her only significant other is Vanderbilt Law School, where she’s in her second year. A crushing audition for Hairspray on Broadway convinced her she’d had enough of a struggling actor’s life in New York. “I wanted to do something where people didn’t get treated like that,” Lowe says. Pause. “So I decided to go to law school.” Her perfect deadpan gets the expected laugh—and if she weren’t already as hot as the sun’s surface, that would seal the deal. Rachel, we’d unlace your boots any day.
Truth be told, even Meatloaf would look pretty sexy sharing the stage with Big & Rich, so when MuzikMafia mate Damien Horne is up there, all eyes are on him. This North Carolina native’s sultry good looks are as smooth as his eclectic, soulful tunes. Just a few weeks after he arrived in Nashville, the singer-songwriter was discovered while busking on Second Avenue. “John Rich ran into me, and said ‘Come to a Mafia show. We’ll put you up there and see what people think.’ I guess people liked it.” Thanks to his country music connections and the versatility of his sound—which combines elements of R&B, rock, soul and even hip-hop—Horne (a.k.a. Mista D) has had the opportunity to play with artists as diverse as Robert Randolph, Velvet Revolver and Kid Rock. He says playing for the uninitiated is his favorite thing to do. “I’m always trying to test the boundaries of music,” he says. “We are living in a world right now where everyone is really eclectic—it’s just about good music. I see those shows—playing in front of a Hank Jr. crowd, a Keith Urban crowd or a Dwight Yoakam crowd—as a challenge.” It’s hard to believe Horne has any trouble winning over the ladies, and fortunately for them, the 29-year-old is single and looking for someone with a great laugh, integrity and “good, down-South morals.” (Not to brag, but we’ve got the “good, down-South” part covered.) Girls take note: Horne’s flexibility extends beyond his music. “I’m a real big gymnastics fan,” Horne admits. “If you come to a show, you’ll see Mista D doing back flips onstage.” And where did he hone this secret talent? “On my mama’s bed—I got in a lot of trouble.”
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