Tayls announced to play Nashville Pride. Photo by Jake Matthews

East Side Buzz, July 23

Did you see, did you see? The East Nashvillian launched its first annual Best of East awards! Vote for all your favorite places, people, and things in the 37206, 37216, and 37207 area codes in East Nashville right here. What’s your favorite bakery? Who’s your favorite teacher? Where’s your favorite place to buy gifts? And who’s got the best happy hour? You can also vote for the best bartender! Best non-profit organization! Best personal trainer! Best restaurant! There are literally dozens of categories where you can shine a light on what makes this neighborhood so great! Is this enough exclamation points for you?! GO VOTE! (And please read the ballot requirements!)

Speaking of great things in East Nashville, the Tomato Art Fest is happening next month, August 13-14, and our latest issue includes an interview with festival director Brittany Carlberg. Get to know Brittany, and learn more about what it takes to organize an event that draws 60,000 people (!), here. The print edition of our July/Aug issue also has the official Tomato Art Fest map as well as an event guide.

Speaking of Tomato Art Fest, Good Neighbor Festivals have relocated to Five Points Alley Shops in Five Points. Plus, they’ve announced the Tomato Art Fest art show returns to its original home at 1106 Woodland St., for this year’s festivities.

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Ironwood Grove Hotel Community Open on Riverside

The Ironwood Grove Hotel, Nashville’s new (and only?) micro-house hotel concept opened this week at Riverside Drive and Rosebank Avenue. The “hotel” is actually comprised of six tiny homes designed by New Frontier Tiny Homes, which is owned and operated by Nashville native David Latimer, and styled by designer Angela Goedde, owner of the local vintage shop Turchese. 

Despite the homes being “tiny,” property operator Erin Wolff says Ironwood’s rentals are “more robust” than a traditional hotel — some rooms have full kitchens with a dishwasher, and guests also have access to a communal courtyard with a fire pit, a dining area, and other outdoor seating to accommodate small, private gatherings.

Wolff says Ironwood also highlights several East Nashville-based businesses in every room.

“All of our soaps and bath and body products come from local, zero-waste shop, The Good Fill,” says Wolff. “We partner with local coffee roaster Good Citizen for our Ironwood Coffee Blend that is stocked for all of our guests. In addition, guests can add on boutique fitness classes with local studios like 7 Minutes Fitness and Cycle Haus, local catering folks at In Good Company can stock your tiny house with midnight snacks or breakfast pastries, and we have partnerships with a local tour company to take guests to the favorite local hot spots.”

Selfishly, I wondered if yet another boutique rental option would result in even more waves of bachelorette parties and vacation bros clogging the streets and local bars, but Wolff, a resident of East Nashville, hopes to avoid that.

“Since our management lives here, we know the area well and know which businesses can better handle groups without being overwhelming to the business or to locals,” she says. “For example, we’d refer a group looking for drinks to Smith & Lentz or East Nashville Beer Works over, say, Attaboy.

“Our approach is all about providing a one-of-a-kind experience and connecting our guests to the best that East Nashville has to offer that is appropriate for the customers and what they are looking for,” she adds. “I think couples or a pair of friends will love knowing about the local’s favorites, and those businesses appreciate the business without there being a big impact on regulars.”

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Up-Down Arcade Bar Opening Soon

Another new business is about to open its doors in Five Points — earlier this week the Nashville Post reported that the Up-Down Arcade has finally moved into 927 Woodland Street after having to pause construction for more than a year due to the 2020 tornado and COVID-19.

The bar, which also has locations in Des Moines, Kansas City, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, St. Louis, and Oklahoma City, didn’t immediately respond to our questions via email, but they did write on Facebook that they’ll be opening “very soon.” They’ve also used social media to share some of their initial game selection, which will include Contra, Galaga, Tapper, Killer Queen, and my personal favorite, BurgerTime. (Fuck you, Mr. Pickle!)

There will also be pinball, skeeball, patio games including oversized Jenga and Connect Four and a dog-friendly rooftop bar, as well as dozens of different beers on tap and pizza by the slice, topped with things like macaroni and cheese and jalapeno poppers. Whoa.

Follow Up-Down on Instagram to get the latest regarding their opening date. And if they don’t have Monster Bash pinball we ride at dawn.

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SBA Grant Money Is Still Available to Venues

There is still about $4 billion left in the Small Business Administration’s Shuttered Venue Operators Grant fund, according to News Channel 5. Live venue operators and promoters, theatrical producers, live performing arts organization operators, museum operators, movie theater operators, and owners and talent representatives are all eligible to apply for up to $10 million in grants. 

To find out if you or your business is eligible, visit the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant Application website here. Funds can be used to cover a variety of costs, including payroll, rent, utility payments, and more. Those who were already received mone

Go get your money, music venues, and arts folks! There are literally billions of dollars waiting for you!

Quick Bits


Love Buzz

Last week Nashville Pride organizers announced the entertainment lineup for September’s Pride Festival* and it! Is! Great! Salt-n-Peppa, Orville Peck, Kim Petras, Shelly Fairchild! Also on the bill are local posi-party punkers Tayls, who will release their new album Have You Ever? I’ve Always on July 30.

When I say I cannot stop listening to the album’s first single “Have You Ever,” I mean I CANNOT STOP. It is on loop. It is the serotonin my brain cannot make itself. It is the hopeful, “you’re not alone” anthem we all need in 2021 and, honestly, I’m devastated that audio can’t be transformed into an edible format because what I really want is to eat this song like the melatonin gummy I take every night before bed.

Have You Ever? I’ve Always was produced by Jake Ingalls, who is in the similarly colorful and wild bands The Flaming Lips and Spaceface, and it was engineered by Calvin Lauber, who has also engineered several of Julien Baker’s records and singles, which explains how the song can be at once an explosive confetti party and stream of nuanced #feelings.

Tayls will celebrate the new music with an album release party at The Basement East on July 30, with Nordista Freeze and Namir Blade opening. Tickets are available here. 

*Wondering why Nashville Pride is being held in September instead of June? Revisit the June 4 installment of East Side Buzz for our interview with Nashville Pride president Alex Foley.