Music Row’s long history of commercial country hits is synonymous with many icons recognizable by just their first names — Dolly, Patsy, Johnny, Hank. But thrice-named singer, songwriter, producer, label owner and painter Robert Ellis Orrall is emblematic of the irreverent, eccentric spirit …

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It starts as a familiar story. A local boy dreams about moving to the big city. He works hard, strives for success and plans an exodus from his hometown. His new home is his Emerald City. He accesses the things his hometown didn’t offer — job opportunities galore, culture, creative people of…

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If you live in Nashville and spend much time on the internet, odds are good that you’ve seen Josh Black by now. The stand-up comedian issues short videos that have taken Nashville by storm in recent months. In them, Black takes on all manner of topics — from what Nashville newcomers need to …

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On Sept. 10, 2019, I asked Mary — then my girlfriend of five years — to marry me. Earlier that day, I’d picked up our matching engagement rings from Consider the Wldflwrs, with plans to surprise Mary on our anniversary later that month. Never one for patience, I made it all of six hours befo…

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We’ve all heard it before — relationships take work, even in normal times. Throw in a global pandemic, an economic crisis and prolonged restrictions on what we can do and where we can go, and the lifting gets even heavier. And that’s whether you’re newly dating, in a long-term relationship o…

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It’s when I think back to my birthday party at Bavarian Bierhaus last February that I most feel the absence of my friends. 

It’s been a year of tests — tests of our patience, our fortitude and our capacity to care for others. Our annual Love Issue, a paean to matters of the heart, celebrates love in its many forms. This year, we reflect on love in the time of coronavirus. We talk with a sex therapist about how th…

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Some 3,400 Black athletes played in the Negro Leagues from 1920 to 1948, but it took 100 years for Major League Baseball to recognize them as major-league-caliber players and to enter their achievements in the historical record. Author Andrea Williams loves the sport, but early on, she found…

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For many musicians, fans and music-biz folk, 2021 began with a sigh of relief — COVID-19 vaccines are rolling out, and Congress approved federal aid for independent music venues that haven’t been able to conduct business as usual since March. But it’s clear that we’re far from out of the woo…

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For decades, the Southern Festival of Books has been a huge and fundamental part of the literary scene in Nashville. Similarly, the Nashville Film Festival has offered local moviegoers the opportunity to see spectacular new works from an array of international filmmakers, right here in our o…

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In Afterlife, the latest novel by Julia Alvarez, the recently widowed protagonist Antonia Vega finds herself unmoored and alone, forced to figure out her way in the world after the sudden loss of her husband. An immigrant herself, Antonia ends up befriending and helping the undocumented work…

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In his introduction to A Better Man, Michael Ian Black tells the story of sending his young children off to school one morning and a short while later seeing reports that shots had been fired at another school nearby. That school was Sandy Hook Elementary, where 20 children and six adults we…

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Just because international travel is currently discouraged doesn’t mean other cultures can’t share their worlds with us, especially when it comes to food. Organizations across the city are keeping the lines of culinary communication open with a series of virtual events and carryout options d…

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Autumn in Nashville is a fickle mistress. We never know when she’ll tuck us into her embrace — and when she’ll shove us back into the sweaty bear hug of summer. But in this singularly awful year, she’s granting us a reprieve. The weather is temperate, the breezes are plentiful, and nights ar…

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Based on how 2020 has gone, you might not expect to see a music events section in our annual Fall Guide. The major tours, late-season festivals and smorgasbord of intimate club shows we typically highlight can’t happen safely while the pandemic rages on. But musicians have been trying their …

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The International Black Film Festival lands this week, offering films from a bevy of up-and-coming filmmakers. Here’s a quick rundown of what we’re looking forward to at the Nashville-based festival. You can access the full slate of streaming features and shorts — and view the schedule, whic…

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In the first chapter of Wayétu Moore’s memoir, The Dragons, the Giant, the Women, it’s Moore’s fifth birthday. “Tutu,” as her family calls her, wears a purple linen dress for the party and begs to help wash collard greens. “In those years, turning five tasted like Tang powder on the porch af…

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“It’s like a big, in-the-way kickstand,” says JB, describing her 4-year-old cat Ludog’s fifth leg. “The end of the leg is fused to her spine, and then four of her vertebrae are fused together. So when her leg moves, her spine moves. It’s crazy. You’d think that it would be more painful for h…

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It wasn’t until I was tasked with hosting a dog-treat taste test that I realized just how great my friends are. That’s because when I rolled up to the puppy party with five bags of locally made dog treats — all boasting all-natural and human-grade ingredients — not a single person flinched w…

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The black-and-white newspaper ad is so wholesome-looking that at first you might dismiss it as an ironic meme. “Uncle Sam Expects You to Keep Hens and Raise Chickens,” it reads. It features a drawing of two children — the boy building an A-frame coop, and the girl surrounded by her flock. “T…

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Fostering pets is a rewarding experience. Whether it’s leading a puppy or kitten through its first few weeks of life without its mom or socializing an older animal to transition from shelter life to its forever home, there are usually smiles at the end. 

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Nashville currently has a bumper crop of stand-up comics, but can it stick around? With some of its leading figures settling in town instead of leaving for bigger comedy cities, there’s reason to believe it can. (Read more on that here.) Dusty Slay is one such figure.

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Nashville’s winter dance season will seem remarkably contemporary, with some of the world’s finest choreographers presenting a slew of new works and area premieres in a breathtaking variety of styles. 

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Nerve is the latest iteration in local and national trends of group art exhibitions by and about women. It’s also the first installment of Adult Contemporary, a Scene-sponsored exhibition series curated by our arts editor, Laura Hutson Hunter. Nerve focuses on one of art’s most enduring subj…

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Painter Dana Oldfather’s latest show at The Red Arrow Gallery presents the female body as a locus of action as opposed to an object of decoration. Beast finds the Cleveland, Ohio-based painter embracing an almost surrealist perspective to examine the spaces between figuration and abstraction…