Thursday, February 12, 2009

Pssst: Here's the other side of Nashville

In describing his East Nashville neighborhood, songwriter Todd Snider says: "Shit man, we're living in a dream world over here.''

It's easy to roll into Nashville and never get past the honky tonks of Lower Broad. But just a few minutes from the glitter of downtown, heading east over the Cumberland River, there's a cool place with a vibe all its own. "Our skyline ain't very high, but we love it,'' says Snider in his talking tribute "From a Rooftop.''

Even though it's still gritty in places, "East Nasty'' has become a desirable hangout and home for songwriters, hipsters and people of all persuasions. And today we take you there with Pssst (Personal Six String Sanctuary Tout) No. 2:

Red Beet Records in 2006 released a two-disc compilation titled "The Other Side: Music From East Nashville'' featuring artists who live in or hang around the neighborhood. There are a generous 31 cuts, some by familiar names like Snider, Jon Langford, Thad Cockrell and Chely Wright.

But you also get Kevin Gordon, Jon Byrd, Eric Brace and Peter Cooper -- artists you easily could stumble on in popular East Nashville joints like the Alley Cat or the 3 Crow Bar. Cooper, the Nashville Tennessean music critic and master storyteller, offers "Ol' Strom'' an ode to the late senator from his native South Carolina.

For more information about Red Beet and its artists go to

Good stuff. May the Beet go on...


  1. Jon Byrd put out a great record about 2 yrs ago called Byrd's Auto Parts. He is an ex-ATLantan.

  2. Ya, I can't seem to ever get away from Broadway when I visit.

    I just jotted that album down on a post-it. I'll have to order it next time I'm in Barnes & Noble.