Wednesday, July 23, 2014


Nearly seven years ago, I met my wife (she's the beautiful one at center-left in the picture above) and my concepts of music -- among other things -- changed drastically. Before then, I kept my genre preferences firmly held within the rock tradition: classic rock, punk rock (admittedly "poppy" as far as punk goes), and alternative rock were the flavors that I enjoyed. (I shied away from metal, being a relatively passive person.) But when Sarah came along, she not only brought along the promise of lifelong happiness, but also a knowledge of indie music, folk artists, and a broad spectrum of more "underground," non-commercial sounds that eventually shaped my overall musical tastes. And with the indie genre came a new method of listening to music, a medium that at one point seemed dead, then became characteristically "independent" and counterculture, and now shows more promise than it has in the last forty years: vinyl. 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Frothy Monkey

Just out of high school, when my friends and I were at our most industrious and adventurous, we thought about starting a business: we wanted to give our little town in South Carolina a local, "grassroots" coffee shop. No shopping mall location, no corporate affiliations, just a place for people to hang out, drink coffee (if they wanted it; we weren't going to discriminate against loiterers), and enjoy a friendly, native atmosphere. Had my friends and I lived in Nashville at the time (and if we hadn't all been terrible procrastinators), that idea might have come to fruition as a place much like The Frothy Monkey, Nashville's own hometown coffee shop.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Editorial Post: Vacation's Over

Even though Sarah and I have only been in Nashville for a few weeks, we've managed to get quite a lot done. We found some favorite places around town, and then quickly realized that those preferences will likely change as we discover more of what the city has to offer. We even did some of the touristy things that visitors "just have to do," like visiting the Grand Ole Opry, walking through downtown, and relaxing on the grass in Centennial Park. We even visited the Opry Mills Mall for an afternoon and ate at tourist central, Dave and Busters. More recently, we did something that I still consider to be a an experience that bridges local excursion and tourist attraction: touring the Yazoo Brewing Company. (Speaking of which, we also got to relish Craft Beer Week, proving that we certainly did move here at just the right time.)

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Yazoo Brewing Company

There are certain attractions that people visit when they are a tourist in a new city. Often, those attractions are iconic of the city, and anyone who's around for a while -- a few days, a week, whatever -- would be remiss if they did not visit them. "You went to New York and didn't go to the Empire State Building?!" "What do you mean, you didn't see the Golden Gate Bridge?!" "The Pyramids were right there and you didn't even go check them out?! What's wrong with you?!" Yes, the interrobangs are noticeable in the accusers' voices. However, there are certain monuments, events, or places that locals call their own. They transcend tourist attractions because they are such an appreciated part of the overall community. The Yazoo Brewing Company is one such location that bridges the gap between tourist attraction and point of local pride, and we had the opportunity to tour it yesterday. 

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Book Reviews!

In addition to writing about our Nashville escapades, I also write reviews for books I'm reading. If anyone is interested in reading any of my takes on novels of various genres, then check out my Goodreads feed (also in the sidebar of my main page). And to give you a sense of what kinds of reviews I write, I've included my most recent review below, on The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling's pseudonym). Enjoy!

Monday, June 30, 2014

Franklin Farmer's Market

All pictures in this post courtesy of my amazing wife, Sarah Scott. Check out the rest of her photography at

When some people think of summer, they think of the beach, and tans, and digging their toes in the sand. Some people think of ice tea and lazy weekend afternoons in a hammock. Other people think of road trips and freedom. I tend to count myself among that last group, but living in a city where there are farmers markets everywhere, its easy to imagine that many people here think about fresh fruit and vegetables, flowers and local goods when they think of summer. To kick off what might turn out to be the "Summer of the Farmers Market" in the Scott household, we traveled a little further south than usual to the Franklin Farmers Market this weekend.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

El El

That's El El, an eclectic (I'm sure they hear that a lot, actually) gathering of amazing musicians that form a swaying, bouncing, joyful band that prove that Nashville is churning out some of the best indie bands in the nation. And we got to see them for free.

Friday, June 27, 2014

5 reasons living near the J. Percy Priest Lake is the "best"

The following post contains some but not a predominant amount of sarcasm, hence the quotations in the title. Anyone with difficulty deciphering such a tone should proceed with caution. 

You've just moved to Nashville, whether for a job, a spouse's career, or simply the silent tug of opportunity. More than likely, you've moved from a less popular, less populated city, perhaps another metropolitan area that just hasn't had the same development or community investment as Nashville. There was nothing wrong with your old home, in general. In fact, in a lot of ways, you quite liked it. But now you're living somewhere with a fun, youthful, unique atmosphere and seemingly endless chances to succeed and build a life. So, where do you live? While the city offers several unique neighborhoods, all with their own signature style and atmosphere, don't count out some of the less popular options that may not initially be on your radar. One such location is near the eastern shores of J. Percy Priest Lake.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Woodland Wine Merchant

All photos by my lovely wife, Sarah Scott. To see more, visit
At first glance, five points in East Nashville seems like a funny mix of unique and typical, with a specialty bike store on one corner and a standard bar on the other, a gas station on another corner and a local pizza joint right next to a Family Dollar. And across from that Family Dollar is another funny mixture of form and function: Woodland Wine Merchant, located in what looks like it could have at one point been a local post office, a standalone brick building with glass windows on front and parking in the back. Fortunately, what they offer is itself a mixture of things that work very well: wines, spirits, and beer from all over the world, including many from right here in Tennessee. 

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

East Side Hootnanny

All photos in this post courtesy of my brilliant wife, Sarah Scott. For more photos like this, check out her awesome blog at
Possibly the greatest thing that we've discovered about Nashville is the plethora of free, music-themed events that happen seemingly every weekend, and occasionally on those typically slow midweek nights. And, luckily for anyone with less and less disposable money lying around (like us), some of those events are free. Probably the one that we have enjoyed the most, though, is the East Side Hootnanny. With free music, food trucks, a photo booth, several local vendor tents, and the best scenery in the area, this just seems to epitomize Nashville.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Treehouse

At some point during childhood, if one is lucky enough to have a treehouse, he or she reaches an age when hanging out in a tree just isn't enough. For me, that moment came quickly, which was a shame since my dad spent a lot of time making the thing. I opted to hail my electronics -- CD players, portable TVs, etc. -- up the wooden slats that were fastened to the tree's trunk. Some people, however -- and I knew a few kids who did this -- choose to turn their high place of floral refuge into clandestine getaways, dragging up spirits and booze and all other manner of legal (well, maybe not at their age) and possibly illegal substances. And, honestly, there's something comforting about the image (if you ignore the illegality of underage drinking and possibility of intoxicated, high-fall-related injury): sitting in a small, cozy, wooden box, surrounded by warm memories of summer days and comic books, drinking some version of warmth from a glass. That fuzzy feeling is captured pretty accurately by The Treehouse in East Nashville.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream

While in East Nashville to visit the Honey Festival (that wasn't actually happening, mysteriously), Sarah and I stopped by Jeni's for a pre-dinner snack. And since the temperatures in Nashville have been hovering in the mid-90s for the last week, the ice cream was well-received -- and quickly devoured.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Musician's Corner at Centennial Park

All images in this post courtesy of my lovely wife, Sarah Scott. Check out her blog (along with more pictures of Musician's Corner) at

Last Saturday (the 14th), Sarah and I had the chance to enjoy two sets of live, outdoor music in two different locations around Nashville. The first, Musician's Corner at Centennial Park, was nearer to the city's center and had a much more polished, "official" feel to it. The area was bigger, the food trucks were more plentiful, and there was even a "beer garden" where participants could exchange tokens for craft beer (among the normal, commercial brews, but no one's going to talk about Budweiser when they go to one of these things) and sit at picnic tables with their food, or just their slightly inebriated friends. We sat in said garden -- minus the inebriation and friends -- and enjoyed some time together, with the addition of our dog, Kashmir, who was warmly welcomed when we arrived.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Las Paletas Gourmet Popsicles

Image courtesy of Tennessee Home & Farm
An American original goes to Latin America, then comes back as something unique and exciting. No, this isn't the story of a Nashville band who found their Mecca south of the border and came back transformed.

I'm talking about popsicles.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

3rd and Lindsley

This Sunday, Sarah and I went to our first official venue-specific, paid show in Nashville. (I say "paid" very loosely though, because the show was only $10 a person. We didn't stretch ourselves much, and it was worth way more than that measly cover price.) The venue was 3rd and Lindsley, and the act we paid to see was Valerie June, a semi-local artist who is seemingly at the precipice of making it "big" and who just came into town from Bonnaroo. The opening act was great, too (Laura Reed, but I'll get to that), but Valerie was the true star, a musician you can't help but remember.

Review: Valerie June @ 3rd and Lindsley

(Valerie June played on Sunday, June 15th at 3rd and Lindsley. To view my take on the venue, click here.)

Valerie June. Sarah knew her music, I did not; so, when she came out on stage, the contradictions were fresh to my ears and eyes. Physically, she's thin as a rail, but her body is topped with weaving dreads that appear to weigh more than her slim neck could support. Like snakes on Medusa or knotty roots of an upturned tree, they flowed up and around to the right of her head, rigid but alive. She wore a white, lace dress with long strands stretching from her hip to the floor, like a lampshade. These she played with occasionally, letting them run out of her hands like streams of water. Sarah said the dress made her look like an angel, and I agreed.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Porter Flea Market

One of the first things to welcome us to Nashville was the Porter Flea Market. We just happen to get in town two days before the event, and since most of the things we needed unpacked were nestled in their new homes, we decided to check out what a flea market was by Nashville standards. There were many elements that we expected, but there were also some things that were surprising, perhaps simply because we are new to the area. (Who knew prints were such a big deal around here?)

The Grilled Cheeserie

We finally found it.

When you hear about food trucks in Nashville, one keeps coming up as the King (or Queen; no need to be gender-specific, I suppose): The Grilled Cheeserie. We had seen it once, outside of Porter Flea Market, but the line spanned most of the parking lot, passing several other, lesser food trucks along the way. Because of the heat and the long wait (plus, we had already eaten lunch), we gave up and moved on, determined to keep up with its course over the next few days and catch it at another, more convenient location.

Enter Movies in the Park.

Movies in the Park

Not to be confused with Grassy Knoll Movie Nights, of course.

If there's anything that I've learned about Nashville in the week that I've been here, it's that it loves to support its people. Community is stronger in this big city than in any place I've every lived, and it's beginning to wear off on me. I'm loving the communal feel of sitting in a park with 100+ of your city-mates, eating food from one of the nearly dozen food trucks lined up on either side of the fairway, and watching people enjoy themselves in the cool of the summer evening. Movies in the Park (sponsored by Nashville Scene) brings all of those elements together with one delightful addition: it's free.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Grassy Knoll Movie Night

Movies now require a substantial investment, of both time and money. When you walk into a movie theater, you can expect to spend about $7 - $8 a ticket, plus at least $3 - $4 per item at the concessions. That means for a date for two at the movies, you can expect to spend anywhere from $35 to $40. Plus, with previews taking approximately an hour and a half of your time before the movie even starts, you'll be lucky to leave within two and a half hours for an hour and a half movie. All in a confined, cold, dark room. Take away the entertainment value and that's essentially paid torture.

The Pharmacy

Image source: Southern Living
Whether you spent some time online looking for the best places to eat in Nashville, or you talked to a local about the same issue, more than likely you found The Pharmacy on the top of most people's lists of best food in town.

It's that way for a reason.

Biscuit Love Truck

Food trucks. Ten years ago, I might have thought of an old man selling boiled peanuts and pork rinds out of the back of his pickup truck. Now, there's a growing, serious appreciation of mobile eateries that is spreading the country. As it is with most things that spread the nation, Nashville is at the forefront of the movement, and at the front of the pack is the Biscuit Love Truck. 

Grand Ole Opry

You're in Nashville, but you don't want to do all those touristy things that everyone always does. You want to see the city the way that locals do: stay where they stay, eat where they eat, drive down the roads that they drive to stay off of the interstates. It's understandable; it's cliche to go to New York and stand on top of the Empire State Building, or to visit San Francisco and take a picture of the Gold Gate Bridge.