Fans of Nashville’s Music Row Rally to Save it
Historic preservation groups and music industry urge Metro Nashville and the public to take specific steps to preserve and protect one-of-a-kind cultural district
The National Trust for Historic Preservation and Historic Nashville, Inc. announced plans today to hold a Rally the Row event next Tuesday, July 24 to raise awareness of the ongoing threats to Music Row’s survival and promote key actions Metro Nashville and the public can take to support it. Four years after the National Trust designated Music Row a “National Treasure” and commenced work with local partners to develop planning and preservation solutions, important historic resources continue to be demolished and music businesses continue to leave Music Row for other parts of the city or adjacent counties.
“The near-loss of RCA Studio A in 2014 was certainly the most high-profile example of demolition threats to Music Row, but unfortunately it was not the last,” said Carolyn Brackett, senior field officer with the National Trust for Historic Preservation. “We can’t just sit back and let Nashville’s unique history be destroyed and its present-day musical culture lost. There are practical solutions that would balance development with the preservation of Music Row’s historic fabric and retain the music businesses that fill them. We urge Mayor Briley and Metro Nashville leaders to adopt them before it’s too late.”
Extensive research conducted by the National Trust for Historic Preservation confirms the magnitude of what is at stake. Music Row’s cluster of more than 200 music-related businesses and the ecosystem they create is truly one-of-a-kind in the world. But this unique community has taken a huge hit in recent years. Since the year 2000, a total of 56 historic buildings have been lost and the demolition pressure continues.Currently, five buildings on 16th Avenue, in the heart of Music Row, are threatened with demolition.
In response, the National Trust for Historic Preservation and Historic Nashville, Inc., along with other key stakeholders, have proposed proven preservation strategies that ensure Music Row's sustainability as a center of music and creativity. These include designating Music Row a Cultural Industry District, freezing Special Plan exemptions that ultimately encourage demolitions, and creating incentives to keep music businesses on the Row.
“Music Row is an accidental, by-chance location where The Nashville Sound and the music business grew from scratch,” said Trey Bruce, vice president of Historic Nashville and award-winning songwriter, musician and producer. “From this small neighborhood came one of the world’s largest musical footprints. We have to act now to save this place that is iconic and historically priceless.”
Representatives from Historic Nashville and the National Trust for Historic Preservation will be on hand at the Rally the Row event to talk about these recommendations as well as the new Music Row Preservation Fund announced by Historic Nashville last week. The rally will be held at Bobby’s Idle Hour, one of the five properties on 16th Avenue South currently threatened with demolition and the last remaining watering hole on Music Row. The event will feature live entertainment from some of Nashville’s best artists, musicians and songwriters and information about how the public can join the effort to save Music Row. Actions include signing a petition to Nashville’s elected officials that urges their swift action to save what makes the district so special and the opportunity to purchase a new Save Music Row t-shirt and tickets for a guided walking tour of Music Row. Proceeds from both the t-shirt and walking tour tickets will support a new Music Row Preservation Fund.
July 24, 2018, 4:30 – 7:30 p.m.
Bobby’s Idle Hour, 1028 16th Avenue South
Admission is free
Food and drink will be available for purchase
Members of the media are invited to attend. Please RSVP to Erica Stewart at 202-207-6795 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the Music Row National Treasure
Nashville’s Music Row has had a profound influence on the growth and evolution of American music, shaping many genres of music and launching the careers of some of the biggest names in the business over the last 60 years. In January, 2015 the National Trust named Music Row a National Treasure—a designation made in recognition of Music Row’s importance to Nashville’s identity as Music City and to America’s cultural heritage as well as concern for its future in light of recent intense development pressure and demolition activity.
About Historic Nashville
Historic Nashville, Inc. (HNI) is a nonprofit 501(c)3 membership organization with the mission to promote and preserve the historic places that make Nashville unique. For 50 years, HNI has advocated for the preservation of such historic places the Ryman Auditorium, Union Station, Hermitage Hotel, 2nd Avenue & Lower Broadway, Music Row, neighborhood historic districts and many individual properties. www.historicnashvilleinc.org