Steve Haruch, editor of Greetings from New Nashville: How a Sleepy Southern Town Became “It” City and People Only Die of Love in Movies: Film Writing by Jim Ridley, recently spoke with Rick Rojas of the New York Times and Frank Shyong of the Los Angeles Times about changes in Nashville.
Rick Rojas’s New York Times article—“In the Heart of Nashville, Rolling Parties Rage at Every Stoplight”—looks at the “transportainment” business in Nashville, which many in the city think has grown out of control.
In his Los Angeles Times column “I Went Searching for Hot Chicken and Rediscovered Nashville Instead,” Frank Shyong writes about visiting Nashville now after having felt alienated by the city while growing up there, and about the mythology of new Nashville:
At Hugh Baby’s, a burger place that serves burgers with pulled pork as a condiment (unsurprisingly delicious), I met Steve Haruch, a Korean American journalist and editor of the book Greetings from New Nashville, which has been an invaluable text for understanding Nashville’s rise.
From Steve’s book, I learned that the statue I had driven by nearly every day on I-65 was not just some dusty Civil War figure, but in fact depicted Nathan Bedford Forrest, the founder of the Ku Klux Klan. Also that floods and tornadoes have accelerated Nashville’s gentrification through the process of disaster capitalism.
And I learned that much of Nashville found out about hot chicken around the same time as I did. Until about 2012, there were only two restaurants, patronized primarily by Black Nashvillians, that served hot chicken.
Cover image credit: Mark Humphrey/Associated Press