Metro council members approve initiative to support independent music venues and artists

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Posted at 6:10 PM, Apr 20, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-20 19:46:31-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — They are what makes Music City, Music City: the artists and iconic venues that are the backdrop of Nashville.

"If you don't support those that actually create then you are impacting, negatively, the billions of economic impact that they make to this city," said Metro Nashville Council Member Jeff Syracuse.

That's why he is looking to the past to help shape Nashville's future. He's spearheading the return of the Music City Music Council.

Syracuse said this comes on the heels of a negative trend in Nashville where many music venues are struggling to survive and artists are moving elsewhere because of the high cost of living.

"But now one of the needs is, for sure, to help the working creatives be able to sustain a living here and sustain a lifestyle here," said Syracuse. "We have so many of our creatives that are starting to leave."

Syracuse brought the resolution before Metro council members to revive the Music Council. Council members voted to approve it.

"We see a negative trend happening with our venues and our long-time venues — our iconic venues — that have helped put the music city brand in Nashville," said Syracuse.

The Music Council was once meant to help grow the music community. But now it's the city's booming growth that could give the council a new purpose.

"Frankly it's a critical time in the development of this city," said president of the Nashville Musicians Association, AFM Local 257, Dave Pomeroy.

Pomeroy was a member of the original 2009 council that went dormant over time. "We just, we need to keep those things that make Nashville special in tact," he said.

Metro Council also approved another resolution to help fund a $300,000 study. The study will take a look at ways to help independent music venues recover from the pandemic, as well as other challenges they face in this rapidly growing city.

"To me the Music Council is just a reflection of what we call 'the Nashville way' which is, we can respect each other, we can talk and work our way through these problems, because if we just stay in our own corners we're going to lose the very thing that made this city so special," said Pomeroy.