Music City Brand Champions
Brand Champions are so noted as local Nashville businesses that have successfully integrated the Music City brand into their day-to-day activities. The Music City brand represents all genres of music - from country to blues, rock to jazz, gospel to bluegrass and classical to songwriting. And the businesses below have used signage, events, advertising, exhibits, live music offerings and even language and nametags infused with what makes us Music City: the music. These honored businesses are recognized for their efforts and originality in building the Music City brand. Check back frequently to see new additions to this stellar lineup.
Strings for Hope
Strings for Hope, a non-profit organization brings hope to the community by providing financial support to food banks, medical clinics, and schools through promotion of uniquely handcrafted jewelry composed of recycled guitar strings. Strings for Hope partners with formerly incarcerated women from local transition centers to create their products. For partnering Nashville’s music brand with the message of hope and support for our community, we name Strings for Hope this month’s Brand Champion!
As MStreet's premiere Mexican restaurant, Saint Añejo features inspired Mexican cuisine, Latin mixology, and a premium tequila and mezcal menu of over 120 labels. Beginning in February, Saint Añejo will align their Happy Hour with a music program that exclusively features music from artists based in Nashville. Happy Hour will continue to take place every week day from 3-6 PM (excluding 2-for-1 Wednesday), with the addition of an extensive music playlist made up of a vast array of styles by over 80 different Nashville artists. The Local Music Happy Hour at Saint Añejo is designed to showcase what makes up Nashville’s thriving and diverse music scene, as well as introduce Saint Añejo’s varied audiences to more local music. For this reason, we name MStreet’s Saint Añejo February’s Brand Champion!
As the largest hotel in town, Gaylord Opryland takes their reputation for guest service seriously. They have recently taken a step further in that commitment by incorporating the NCVC's All Access disability sensitivity training into their orientation program and making sure each employee went through the training in 2014. In addition, plans are currently being made to bring the new Nashville Backstage training sessions to their staff. This is part of the NCVC Brand Ambassador program, which names those that have completed all five of the sessions offered official Brand Ambassadors. For keeping customer service and the Music City brand top of mind, we salute Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center as this month's Brand Champion.
Kidbilly Music offers musically driven team building programs and icebreaker exercises to organizations in Nashville both large and small. Started by award-winning Nashville songwriters, Kidbilly allows participants to write and record songs that reflect that organization's culture while meeting their specific needs and objectives. The programs are fun and educational and aim to keep employees engaged and entertained. By the time Kidbilly's work is done, employees have a song they are proud to sing and can anxiously await their own copy of the track! For keeping the music alive in the Nashville business community, we salute Kidbilly Music as this month's Brand Champion.
Acme Feed and Seed
Acme Feed and Seed is the newest concept from Nashville restaurateur Tom Morales. A repurposed feed and seed store with historic ties to Nashville, Acme now features four stories of multi-purpose space. Inside visitors and locals alike can enjoy great food, music and a cold beer while also shopping Acme's selection of gifts and products unique to Nashville. Private event space is available as well as a rooftop bar with stunning views of downtown Nashville and beyond. For keeping the connection with old Nashville and celebrating new Nashville, we name Acme Feed and Seed as this month's brand champion.
The Johnny Cash Museum
Dedicated to the life and career of the late "Man in Black", the museum features the largest collection of Johnny Cash artifacts and memorabilia in the world. Exhibits chronicle The Man in Black's life with stunning graphics, artifacts and interactive technology and include stage costumes, instruments, personal letters, artwork and handwritten songs. Guests are privileged to hear stories from staff members who include Cash family members and friends. The museum recently unveiled its first exhibition, The Legends of Sun Records, featuring Johnny Cash and other iconic rock and roll artists Elvis Presley, Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and drummer W.S. Holland. For putting a spotlight on Johnny Cash and Nashville’s music history, we name The Johnny Cash Museum as this month’s brand champion.
Live on the Green
Live On The Green is a FREE concert series, presented by Lightning 100, at Public Square Park in downtown Music City. The stage is always set up on the steps of the Plaza and the crowd gathers in the grassy area of Public Square Park to watch performances from local, regional, and national artists. Running three consecutive Thursdays - August 14, 21, 28 and wrapping up with a weekend finale on September 4, 5 and 6, the festival will feature headlining artists Cage The Elephant, The Head And The Heart, City and Colour, Jake Bugg, Ingrid Michaelson, G Love & Special Sauce, and The Wild Feathers. For embracing the Music City brand to offer free live music to Nashville and its visitors, we name Live on the Green this month’s brand champion.
Bonnaroo began in 2002 as a remarkable idea to serve a passionate fanbase and ended up becoming the premier multi-day concert destination of the summer. The four-day festival, which features over 150 musical performances, along with comedy, cinema, sustainability workshops and more, draws 80,000 fans each year. Bonnaroo has evolved into becoming much more than just a concert destination; it has become a cultural touchstone and, for two generations of music fans, a rite of passage. Now in its 13th year, the festival has partnered with Nashville once again to offer a daily round-trip shuttle program that offers Weekend, VIP, and Single-Day Ticket packages. In addition, the documentary, “For the Love of Music: The Story of Nashville” will screen at the festival followed by a panel discussion on the Nashville music scene featuring singer-songwriters and residents Brett James and Amy Stroup and moderator Butch Spyridon of the NCVC. Congratulations to Bonnaroo, which has been named Brand Champion for the month of May.
Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum
Located on the first floor of the Historic Nashville Municipal Auditorium, the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum pays homage to the musicians and session players across all genres who played with some of history’s most notable artists. These musicians had nicknames like The A-Team, The Memphis Boys, The Swampers, The Funk Brothers, and The Wrecking Crew and some actually became hit bands themselves, such as Toto and The M.G’s. Their famous recordings come to life at the museum where guests can see instruments on display, such as Jimi Hendrix’s guitar, Hal Blaine’s drum set, the bass guitar used to record "Born To Run" by Bruce Springsteen, or the studio drum set played on all of the STAX hits. For furthering the Music City brand, we name the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum as this month’s brand champion!
The Row Kitchen & Pub
The Row Kitchen & Pub is one of the newest residents to Midtown, located in what was formerly Longhorn Steakhouse, a hangout frequented by the singers and songwriters who shaped Music City. The Row celebrates this history with stories and pictures, Nashville-inspired food, and live local music. Guests can sit in the original "Harlan Howard booth" and fill up on flavorful entrees and the history of award-winning tunesmiths in Nashville told through vintage photos of Curly Putman, Bobby Braddock, Frances Preston, among others. Enjoy Nashville dishes including Nashville Hot Chicken, House Made Pickle Flytes, and Tennessee BBQ and the all local and Southern regional craft draft wall. For embracing the Music City brand and for offering a true taste of Nashville, we salute this month's brand champion, The Row Kitchen & Pub.
Music City Pizza
From the guitar pick-shaped logo and music-themed décor to clever menu items and live music, Music City Pizza is serving up Nashville’s music brand in numerous ways. While enjoying live music, patrons can browse the vinyl LP menu and partake in one of the delicious pizzas or calzones, such as The Roadie, The Green Room, or The Groupie Pocket. Music City Pizza also offers “record deals,” a unique opportunity for pizza and music fans to "support the musicians, artists, bands, local businesses, charities, entrepreneurs, and community leaders they believe in." Specific pies are named after a local group or artist and MCP donates a dollar to the pie’s namesake. The restaurant has joined forces and enhanced 12th & Porter, one of the longest standing music venues in Nashville, to offer live music almost every night. What started as a craving for pizza has evolved into an appreciation for all things Nashville! For completely embracing the Music City Brand and for making it so delicious, we name Music City Pizza as this month’s Brand Champion.
War Memorial Auditorium
The historic War Memorial Auditorium is located in the heart of downtown Nashville and sits directly in front of the Tennessee State Capitol. Exquisite, elegant, and versatile, this site has been making history since 1925. Originally built as a memorial to the 3,400 Tennesseans who died in World War I, the auditorium became the first performance home of the Nashville Symphony and the Grand Ole Opry. For nearly 90 years the musical legacy has continued with hundreds of celebrity artists across all genres performing there, including David Bowie as Ziggy Stardust, Procol Harem with opening act The Eagles, Ray Charles, Liberace, Jim Croce, KISS, R.E.M., Barry Manilow, Mumford & Sons, Jason Mraz, Atoms for Peace, Marilyn Manson, Robert Plant, and more. Upcoming acts include Tommy Emmanuel, Lee Brice and Randy Houser with American Young and Parmalee, Buddy Guy with Robert Randolph, The Southern Soul Assembly Tour, Switchfoot, and more. For playing a huge part in Nashville's music history and for keeping the tradition alive, we name War Memorial Auditorium this month's brand champion.
Grand Ole Opry
Nothing says Music City like a night at the Grand Ole Opry. What began as a simple radio broadcast in 1925 is today an entertainment phenomenon showcasing new stars, superstars and legends. Among the Opry's current members are Dierks Bentley, Charlie Daniels, Jimmy Dickens, Vince Gill, Martina McBride, Brad Paisley, Carrie Underwood, and Keith Urban. Known around the world as "The Show That Made Country Music Famous," you can count on things happening at the Opry you just can't see anywhere else. For promoting Nashville’s music brand internationally for more than 88 years, we name the Grand Ole Opry this month’s Brand Champion!
Hatch Show Print
Owned and operated by the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum, Hatch Show Print® has been showcasing performers of all types of music and the arts since 1879 and is one of the nation’s oldest working letterpress poster shops. Hatch has created original art for circuses, Grand Ole Opry stars, concerts, and sporting events. Today Hatch continues to produce restrikes of classic posters in addition to creating new work enjoyed by music fans, graphic designers, and art critics worldwide. Recently the shop moved into a custom-designed space within the expanded Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum, allowing for an expanded production area and retail space. The floor-to-ceiling glass windows allow visitors to watch the designers lay out type and print posters on the letterpress. We applaud this month’s Brand Champion, Hatch Show Print®, for embracing and showcasing Nashville’s music brand for more than a century!
Omni Nashville Hotel
Congratulations to the Omni for being named Brand Champion for the month of October! The Omni Nashville Hotel has been open for less than one month, but already it has delivered on its mission to be an authentic expression of Nashville’s vibrant music culture. The new 800-room hotel is located across from the new Music City Center and is fully integrated with the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum on four levels. Its design incorporates local artwork, natural materials, exposed steel and regional limestone – all modern expressions of the city’s distinct character. In addition, the hotel capitalizes on the city’s growing reputation as a foodie’s mecca with four dining options unique to Music City: Kitchen Notes, Barlines, Bob’s Steak & Chop House and Bongo Java Coffee Shop. Thanks to the Omni Nashville Hotel for embracing Nashville’s music brand and offering a one-of-a-kind experience to our visitors.
Tennessee Brew Works
One of Nashville’s newest microbreweries on the scene, Tennessee Brew Works has quickly embraced the music brand through its guitar logo, “Finely Tuned” tagline and even one of its signature brews, the herbal-infused Basil Ryeman. The brewery will be located in a former printing warehouse at Ewing Avenue and Fogg Street downtown – a stone’s throw from the Music City Center and blocks from Jackalope and Yazoo breweries. The company is aiming for an October opening of its Tennessee Taproom and its five brews (Southern Wit, Extra Easy, Basil Ryeman, Cutaway and Country Roots) will show up at bars and restaurants around town soon. Congratulations to Tennessee Brew Works, Brand Champion for the month of September!
Husk Nashville is the newest outpost of the Neighborhood Dining Group and James Beard Award-winning Chef Sean Brock’s renowned restaurant, Husk. Brock, a respected hero of farm-to-table and Southern cuisine leads the culinary team. The restaurant is housed in a building that dates back to 1895, is on the National Registry of Historic Homes, and overlooks downtown. The philosophy at Husk Nashville is to celebrate Southern cuisine, use heirloom produce and showcase regional specialties. Not to mention the Husk logo displays a guitar, honoring Nashville’s musical heritage. Welcome to Music City, Husk Nashville, and congratulations on being named the Music City Brand Champion for the month of August!
Music Moves Festival by PopCause, LLC
Twenty-nine musical acts hitched a ride to play for charity on Nashville Metro Transit Authority (MTA)’s free Music City Circuit blue and green routes on Saturday, July 13, in the 2013 Music Moves Festival, produced by PopCause, LLC. The free mobile music festival was a surprise to some bus riders, while others rode the bus for more than four hours simply to participate in the festival and hear multiple acts. All proceeds from the Music Moves Festival and resulting online donations will go to Notes for Notes, a local charity supporting youth and music. Congratulations to this month’s brand champion, the Music Moves Festival produced by PopCause, for showing locals and tourists that Music City is really living up to its name. Visit PopCause.org to see highlights of the festival performances.
Metropolitan Nashville Police Department
This month we salute the Metropolitan Police Department for incorporating the Music City brand into their promotional items and safety awareness programs. While many locals and visitors were enjoying CMA Music Festival, the police department distributed guitar pics with crime tips printed on them in conjunction with their Park Smart program. Park Smart is a reminder to visitors to put their valuables out of sight of would-be thieves, lock their doors and take their keys with them. The police department uses music-themed promotional items such as the pics to help spread simple preventative tips. For this and much more, we name the Metropolitan Police Department this month’s brand champion!
Music City Center
The Music City Center – Nashville's newest convention center featuring 1.2 million square feet total of public space, a 350,000-square-foot exhibit hall, a 57,000-square-foot ballroom and parking for 1,800 cars – opened its doors on May 19. The Grand Opening celebration featured public tours, free live music throughout the building and family-friendly activities, all culminating with a free outdoor concert headlined by Nashville resident and Grammy-winning artist Sheryl Crow on May 20. The MCC, which houses the largest ballroom in the state and the new Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame, will serve as a central meeting point for Nashville's visitors and residents. The center is located in the heart of SoBro, situated perfectly next to the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum and across the street from Bridgestone Arena, and just steps away from downtown's fantastic restaurants, shops and legendary honky-tonks. For this and much more, we name the Music City Center as May's Brand Champion.
Barbershop Harmony Society
Congratulations to the Barbershop Harmony Society, which celebrated its 75th birthday on April 11. Known for intricate harmonies and showmanship, the Nashville-based organization seeks to promote and preserve the art of barbershop singing worldwide and welcomes any man who wishes to have a life in music. The Music City Chorus members have been entertaining locals and visitors for more than 65 years and it's no surprise they consistently rank as one of the top 10 barbershop group choruses in the world. Nashville looks forward to hosting the organization's 2016 International Convention. We applaud this April's Music City brand champion, the Barbershop Harmony Society.
Bobbie's Dairy Dip
A tasty blast from the past, Bobbie's Dairy Dip has been serving up burgers, hot dogs and milkshakes for generations - all while promoting Nashville's Music City brand. Bobbie's iconic diner atmosphere consists of patrons enjoying treats at picnic tables while listening to old-fashioned music over the speakers. Don't forget to partake in one of the music-inspired menu items like the Ricky Nelson milkshake. Congratulations to this Nashville staple for staying true to the classic treats of the past and for incorporating the Music City brand into your menu and atmosphere!
The Listening Room Cafe
Congratulations to The Listening Room Café, which recently reopened at its new location in downtown Nashville. Since its first opening in 2008, the café has embraced the true Music City brand by offering visitors a place to eat great food while witnessing unforgettable performances by local artists and songwriters. The Listening Room Café recently opened at its new, larger location in downtown Nashville. The new spot at 217 2nd Avenue in SoBro is open for lunch, dinner, and offers live music Monday-Saturday. We applaud February's brand champion, The Listening Room Café.
Music City's professional ice hockey team, the Nashville Predators, has been entertaining families, visitors, and hockey fans for nearly 15 years. While in "Smashville," visitors can experience the raw, gut-wrenching excitement, and yes, even a little live music. The Preds offer in-game music to help the fans get pumped up between periods (and it's Nashville, so you never know who might show up). In addition, the organization has incorporated Nashville's musical heritage into its logos and uniforms. The team's newest logo was designed to represent the state flag of Tennessee and Nashville simultaneously, with a guitar pick shape incorporating the three stars of the state's three grand divisions. In addition, The "Predators Gold" sweaters include elements unique to Nashville – guitar strings in the numbering and lettering and piano keys on the inside of the collars. For embracing the Music City brand, we name the Nashville Predators as January's Brand Champion.
Renaissance Nashville Hotel
New sounds are coming from the Renaissance Nashville Hotel, which recently released volume two of its compilation series RStars. Designed to enhance the guest experience and illustrate the uniqueness of Music City, the album features original music from Renaissance employees, a few of which can be heard live at The Bridge Wednesday and Thursday evenings. RStars is not for sale, but is offered to Renaissance guests. For incorporating the Music City brand into its business, we name Renaissance Nashville Hotel Music City Brand Champion for the month of December.
As the largest professional ballet company in Tennessee, the Nashville Ballet has been entertaining Music City and its visitors since 1986. Throughout the years, the ballet has partnered with many other local artists across genres, including Ben Folds and The Civil Wars. This year the ballet has announced it will partner with two nationally acclaimed, Nashville-based musicians – cerebral singer/songwriter Matthew Perryman Jones and Americana music royalty Holly Williams – to create original works of art as part of its upcoming performance season and for its annual fundraising gala, Ballet Ball. The collaboration will create original performances that combine music and dance from Nashville Ballet company dancers. Williams' performance will be an exclusive, one-time-only opportunity at Ballet Ball, while Jones' performance will be a preview of his larger collaboration with Nashville Ballet to debut February 15, 2013, at TPAC as part of its winter contemporary series, Attitude. For embracing the music in Music City, we name the Nashville Ballet as this month's Brand Champion.
Music City Flats
With the goal of providing better service to Nashville and its visitors, one of Music City's restaurants has taken the meaning of "local" to a new level. The restaurant formerly known as Urban Flats Flatbread & Wine Co. has reinvented itself as Music City Flats Stoneoven & Bar. The restaurant has reopened with a new menu, keeping updated versions of favorite items and adding new items guests will love by concentrating on fresh ingredients. Music City Flats will continue to offer excellent happy hour specials and an ample wine list and will continue to participate in and sponsor charitable events in the community. Congratulations to Music City Flats Stoneoven & Bar, Music City Brand Champion for the month of October!
Tennessee Titans and LP Field
The Tennessee Titans have recently teamed up with Phil Vassar to revolutionize the game day experience at LP Field. The award-winning singer/songwriter and his band have signed on to entertain fans prior to kickoff, during selected breaks and during halftime on the new Titans Party Stage at every home game this season. In addition to Phil and his band playing chart-topping songs he's written for himself or other artists, he will also tap into the vast resources of Nashville's music scene and invite artists from rock, pop and other genres to join him on stage to entertain the crowds. This offseason the Titans made significant upgrades to LP Field, including the addition of a performance stage under the new video board in the north end zone. Congratulations to the Tennessee Titans and LP Field for being named September's brand champion!
Music City's minor league baseball team, the Nashville Sounds, have been entertaining families, visitors and baseball fans for more than 30 years at Greer Stadium. The team's name and logo perfectly capture what Nashville is all about – music. Fans can expect to get a healthy dose of music at every game. From the players, who have selected their own unique walk-up music, to the Music Industry Wednesdays with free live music and discounts for music industry professionals, the Sounds represent Music City well. Congratulations to this month's Brand Champion, the Nashville Sounds, for their use of in-game music, post-game concerts and music-themed logo and brand!
Metro Public Works
Nashville's Department of Public Works, which delivers a wide range of services that help define the quality of life for residents of Nashville/Davidson County, has added visitors to its list of customers. Earlier this year, Public Works rolled out a new website and added a new tagline to its logo referencing its efforts to improve the quality of life for both locals and visitors alike. The new tagline reads: "Metro Nashville Public Works: Improving the Quality of Life for Nashvillians and Our Visitors." For embracing the visitors of our city, we name Metro Public Works this month's brand champion.
This month's brand champion is Scarritt-Bennett Center, which receives the honor for incorporating the Music City brand into its programming. A tree-filled oasis located in the heart of the city known for its award-winning architecture built from vari-colored Crab Orchard stone, offers a music-shaped, experiential worship service inspired by jazz music. Vespers & All That Jazz takes place every Sunday at 6:30 p.m. in the Wrightman Chapel at Scarritt-Bennett and is free and open to the public. Congratulations and thanks to Scarritt-Bennett for embracing the Music City brand.
Opry Mills - the largest outlet, value retail, dining and entertainment destination in Tennessee - reopened its doors on March 29 after closing for two years following the May 2010 floods. The month-long, Tennessee-inspired grand reopening celebration featured a series of fashion, lifestyle, musical and family-friendly events, culminating with a free, live concert headlined by Josh Turner on May 5. In addition, the mall displayed musical instrument graphics on signage displays and offered live music in stores such as Old Navy throughout the month. For this and many other reasons, we name Opry Mills as this month's brand champion.
The Tennessee Performing Arts Center (TPAC) has consistently embraced the Music City brand through its marketing efforts and live musical performances. Recently, TPAC partnered with Nashville's Music Council to set a new stage in Music City. "The Attic Sessions" at War Memorial Auditorium's Attic Lounge showcases Nashville artists in a historical and intimate setting, offering guests the opportunity to delve into the stories and writers behind the music away from the hustle and bustle of downtown. TPAC has created a truly authentic space by incorporating local art, a bar made out of barn wood and a rug restored from the 2010 Nashville flood. For this and much more, this month's brand champion is TPAC.
Going "local" for Nordstrom didn't stop at opening a new store at The Mall at Green Hills back in September. The store also partnered with Music City's iconic Hatch Show Print to advertise its Grand Opening events and product catalog. The store showcased its connection to Music City with Americana-flavored typography and music-themed imagery. In addition, Nordstrom recently hosted a fashion show at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center as part of Nashville Symphony's annual education outreach program to raise money for the arts in Middle Tennessee schools. For promoting and embracing the Music City brand, thanks and congratulations to Nordstrom. "The Attic Sessions" are posted online at www.theatticsessions.com.
Local residents have likely seen the most recent advertising campaign for vitaminwater, and noticed that it is distinctively talking to 'Music City.' The campaign features music-themed tag lines such as "Music to Your Insides" to promote the popular, vitamin-infused, flavored drinks. The product has also used Nashville native and country superstar Carrie Underwood in its national advertising campaign and promotions. Congratulations and thanks to vitaminwater for embracing the Music City Brand.
Radisson Hotel at Opryland
The recent renovations at the Radisson Hotel at Opryland make it undeniable that you are in Music City. Beautiful art through the rooms and lobby area tout colorful musical instruments. The restaurant provides a tribute to the Grand Ole Opry, with guitars and other string instruments included on overhead light panels as well as benches from the Ryman in the waiting area. Customers are even treated to a live musical number every thirty minutes from one of the friendly servers. Congratulations to the Radisson Hotel at Opryland for embracing the Music City Brand.