There are only four cities in the world for a music program like Segue 61, one so closely linked with the music industry: London, New York, Los Angeles, and Nashville.
Of these, Nashville became the obvious choice for a music program with a real connection to the industry. For one thing, Nashville is the only city of the four that has a growing rather than a shrinking industry presence. It’s affordability and compact footprint also make it ideal for a young professional trying to break into the music industry. In addition, from the honky tonks of Broadway to the new music clubs of East Nashville, it has one the most active and diverse music scenes in the world.
And that’s just the start of the Nashville story. It’s way beyond boots, buckles, and banjos.
“Nashville is the coolest city in America.”
A Singular Global Center
Nashville is the 21st-century link of creativity blended with commercial success. Artistic excellence, authentic output, technological leadership, constant expansion of market success—these are the forces that have forged a city where the music and entertainment industry is the foundation of the economy and the essence of existence in Middle Tennessee. The world now also looks to Nashville as a singular global center of creativity and commerce. Music works in for and with all that Nashville is and is poised to become. Just as Los Angeles is the global center of film creativity and output, Silicon Valley for the computer industry and New York for world finance, Nashville is now unmatched in music creativity and output. It offers the perfect outlet and connectivity for the students going through our music program.
Nashville’s music landscape is so strong because of the high concentration of key decision-makers of industry, a super-abundance of activity & intensity unmatched in any global market, a proximity & relationships (Music Row phenomenon) that make the Nashville music system work as a dense compact of service with a purpose. Nashville may, in fact ,represent a perfect creative convergence….culture, business & innovation, sports and music creators of every genre.
Nashville is both the commercial center and the showcase of musical talent, performance, and delivery. No other US city is so linked to music production and performance as an identity, and none has a broad a base of genres involved at so many different industry levels. Clearly, the music industry is transforming structurally as consumption patterns change, new technologies emerge and operational models change. Nashville is well-positioned to react and thrive with the constantly evolving music industry picture.
The past 60 years have delivered enormous growth to Nashville through an industry that provides entertainment for tens of millions of consumers. The future suggests an even wider range of elements through which the music industry will impact Nashville as the city and Middle Tennessee region increasingly becomes a major cultural and economic focal point in the nation and the world.
“You have a proximity of some of the best studios in the entire world; a proximity to some of the best musicians in the entire world; and some of the best songwriters in the entire world…It’s kind of an easy call to come here.”
—John Paul White (Civil Wars)
“I definitely think that with music my favorite thing about Nashville is that it’s a music hub that accepts and allows all genres to be present, and I think there’s been a kind of fusing of genres lately that for me makes me really happy and excited.”
Facts & Figures
Research indicates the music industry helps to create and sustain more than 56,000 jobs within the Nashville area.
The music industry supports more than $3.2 billion of labor income annually & contributes $5.5 billion to the local economy for a total output of $9.7 billion within the Nashville MSA.
Nashville’s density of music industry activity is currently 20 to 30 times as great as that in New York and Los Angeles and much greater even than for other cities.
Core Nashville employment in Nashville’s music industry per 1,000 population, per 1,000 total employment (4.19) and earning quotient (4.30) exceeds all other U.S cities including Los Angeles [1.61] and New York [1.13] by 2.5 to 4 times.
The music industry heritage of Nashville merits formal and informal recognition of Nashville as an international cultural hearth for roots, country, folk, gospel, jazz and other musical traditions.
Nashville’s role in music education can be further leveraged to become the world’s premier music global music education center.
Industry linkages and specialization suggest a true quartet of music industry centers – New York, Los Angeles, London and Nashville – with commensurate needs for travel and other linkages to assure Nashville remains highly connected to the world.
Study interviews and research findings clearly point to Nashville having the resources to claim and further become a global media city. Already, Nashville’s identity is linked to its cultural output in an unparalleled way. Talent density and quality are unmatched in concentration anywhere in the world as acknowledged by performers across genres worldwide. Infrastructure and institutions are in place that anchor the music ecosystem for next steps in the industry. Investors and innovators continue to find ways that Nashville creativity and ingenuity in culture and business are consistently leaders.
Data provided by Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce & Music City Music Council studies.
“L.A. to me feels like music industry, and Nashville to me feels like music community.”
“Nashville has always felt perfect. It’s not too hipster and it’s not too fake; it’s something in the middle, which is really good ground for a place like Third Man Records.”
“I didn’t come to Nashville to put on a cowboy hat and pretend to be a country singer. My attraction to Nashville as Music City is the variety and flexibility: the fact that there are so many musicians at your disposal, so many amazing studios and talented people that you can draw from. … I try to be myself, but at the same time I’m learning a lot, and I’m pulling from not only from the well of inspiration that I’m getting from Nashville, but I’m pulling from my roots.”
“Contrary to received wisdom, the world’s most thriving independent music scene isn’t clattering away in the rehearsal rooms of east London or propping up the dive bars of Brooklyn, it’s in the heart of Tennessee – Nashville to be precise.”
“Nashville, Tennessee, used to be just a city of ten-gallon hats and the Grand Ole Opry. Now it’s the most electric spot in the South, thanks to a cast of transplanted designers, architects, chefs, and rock ‘n’ rollers.”
“One of the magical things about Nashville is just how many incredibly talented people are here and the way they support each other, Nashville is the place where I first realized how impossible it is to look at someone and know what is inside them, what special something they possess.”
—Callie Khouri (Executive Producer; Nashville, CMT)
“I admire Nashville a lot. They take care of their own. There’s not a lot of places in the world, much less America, that do that. It’s just a great place.”
“I’ve come to believe it’s the most exciting music city in the country right now. Nashville has it all: an incomparably rich musical legacy; a core of working musicians who’ve made lives here and are behind many of the past half-century’s most memorable recordings; and an ever-expanding group of younger musicians making the Nashville sound ever more wide-reaching and innovative, while still grounded in America’s musical roots.”
—Ann Powers (Critic and Correspondent, NPR Music)
“I think I had the same notion most people have, which is it’s simply a town that percolates around country music. Though country-music history is deep and richly steeped throughout the city, this is a place that’s been expanding musically and culturally…People coming from Europe and Canada-there are all kinds of different cultures and different music being represented here. It continues to blossom.”
—Joy Williams (Civil Wars)
“These people shred. That’s what I was saying about Nashville—you can go to an open mic night at the Holiday Inn and probably see more talented musicians than the ones touring. When we first came down here I was like, ‘Wow I’m glad we didn’t cut our teeth down here, there’s so much competition.’ You’re being challenged constantly because you’re surrounded by these amazing musicians.”
—Lzzy Hale (Halestorm)
“I just had to find all my friends that used to be in the business. As I say, the music business didn’t die, it just moved to Nashville.”
“Nashville may be famed for its country music, but this may well be the capital of rock and roll music in the United States of America.”
—Paul Stanley (KISS)
“It [Nashville] is basically a city of songwriters and that’s what gives it its strength, that’s what gives it its lasting ability. You’ve got people making all different kinds of music and that’s what attracts me to Nashville as Music City.”
“It really is a town of all genres of music that are represented here and have been forever.”
“There’s really no place like Nashville left….songwriters are still waking up every day, banging on guitars and pianos, staring at a blank piece of paper and coming up with what they think will be the next big hit. It’s very unique, I can’t think of another place in the world that’s quite like it.”
—Kix Brooks (Brooks & Dunn)
“I chose Nashville because No. 1 the musicianship is as good as it gets. Nashville is not about just banjos and fiddles. Its cellists and violinists and brass are equal to what I find in L.A. and London.”
—Steve Schnur (Worldwide Executive/Music & Music Marketing – Electronic Arts)
“Nashville has long embraced its history as well as the newcomer looking to make a mark. And whether in music or in food, the new is informed by the old.”
—The New York Times
“It’s the warmest, loveliest community I’ve ever set foot in. For me, it’s the perfect place to live. It’s the best part of America.”
Got What It Takes?
The talent of the young professionals who make up our first team has been inspiring.
So, if you’ve got the talent, skills, maturity, and motivation to make it in the music industry, if you’re poised to begin your career, if you want to work closely with top music professionals as mentors and faculty, let us know. If you’re interested in Year 2, apply now!
We’re currently taking applications for September 2017 – May 2018. Limited spots are available.