By Chuck Whiting
During the 2013 Nashville Film Festival, Nashville CVB head Butch Spyridon exclaimed: "This is the coolest damn city in the world."
Just about all of us would agree. But when it comes to telling Nashville's story, the CVB's documentary "For The Love of Music" has "authentic" hits and misses. It moves us... kinda.
The hits: "For the Love Of Music" features an impeccable cast of artists, including The Black Keys, Fisk Jubilee Singers, Kings of Leon, Kris Kristofferson, Emmylou Harris, and a barefooted Vince Gill. All do an excellent job raving about Nashville's emergence as an "authentic, multi-genre city".
The movie is likely to make musical and tourist waves in certain places when it airs on CMT. But it doesn't tell the whole story. Missing are a number of key ingredients: The Symphony's impact on the collaborative wonder of Nashville's musical landscape... the appreciation of CCM/gospel greats like Amy Grant (although Michael W. Smith was quoted briefly in the film)... the multitude of struggling songwriters who take nightclub stages every night (not just at the Bluebird) with the dream of landing a label or publishing deal.
The movie's focus is on the musicians and songwriters who've already made it. While this is probably the best direction to promote the city overall, it leaves a few "emotional" gaps in Nashville's story for me and some of the writers/musicians I work with. That opens the door for a sequel.