In the new feature film American Folk, the character Joni (played by Amber Rubarth), on an unplanned cross-country road trip in the days after 9/11, makes a pact with her traveling companion and fellow musician Elliott (Joe Purdy), to “bring back the folk.” She shouts it out the window to a passing America - a cry for communication, unity and empathy invigorated through music.

Sierra Hull's Bluegrass Odyssey on The String

Feb 14, 2018
Jacqueline Justice

Sierra Hull resolved that bluegrass music would be her life’s work when she wasn’t even ten years old. Growing up in tiny Byrdstown, TN, the music was all around her, not at concert venues but in jams at the local cafe and at homes, including her own and her uncle’s next door. The precocious young talent was signed to Rounder Records and released her debut album at 16 years old. Less than ten years later, she was named the first female IBMA Mandolin Player of the Year, an honor she’s won twice in a row.





Chris and Oliver Wood built their singular sibling duo patiently, transitioning over several years from divergent and distant musical careers. Since moving from separate cities to Nashville and adding drummer Jano Rix about five years ago however, The Wood Brothers have enjoyed accelerating success.

NPR Music, WMOT and VuHaus Project Slingshot

Slingshot, an emerging artist spotlight brought to you by NPR and public radio’s local music discovery stations around the country


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  A Vanderbilt researcher says Metro Nashville Schools are “re-segregating,” a process he says has been ongoing since 1998.

Luke Rainey is a Research Analyst at Vanderbilt’s Peabody Research Institute. He’s involved in a long-term study of at risk children in Metro schools.

In preparation for that study, Rainey dove deep into the school system’s history and student data. Some disturbing trends were revealed.

Val Hoeppner

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (HAGGARD) — The Women’s March 2.0 in Nashville this past weekend may have been billed as a protest, but the focus seemed to be on voting and winning elections.

The march route from Public Square to the Bicentennial Mall was lined with election signs. Politicians were working the crowd and Mayor Megan Barry was a featured speaker.

Hazel Thornton with the League of Women Voters was just one several people on hand to register new voters.

  MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  A new report suggests smoking is not only hard on your health but also puts a dent in your bank account.


WMOT’S reporting partner has released its annual look at the costs of smoking by state. The study compares price per pack, taxes, health costs, lost wages and more.


Tennessee is actually one of the cheapest places to be a smoker, but Wallethub analyst Jill Gonzalez says the costs still pile up fast.

NASHVILLE: Tenn. (TNS/WMOT)  --  There's one more reason to read the fine print when buying your next car.

A new Tennessee law allows used car dealers to sell vehicles that are under a safety recall, as long as the buyer signs a disclosure form.

The Motor Vehicle Recall and Disclosure Act is the first and only law of its kind in the country. Similar legislation failed in four other states.

Andy Spears with Tennessee Citizen Action is concerned about the potential impact on consumers.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A prisons official says three executions are scheduled this year in Tennessee, which would be the first since 2009.

Department of Correction spokeswoman Neysa Taylor on Thursday confirmed James Hawkins, Billy Ray Irick and Sedrick Clayton are slated for execution. She says the department has the necessary lethal injection drugs.

Hawkins was convicted of murdering the mother of his three children in 2008. He is scheduled to die May 9.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Two Republican lawmakers have introduced legislation to make medical marijuana legal in Tennessee, but only in oil-based products.

Sen. Steve Dickerson of Nashville and Rep. Jeremy Faison of Cosby announced the bill's filing Thursday amid wide support for medical marijuana in state polls.

The lawmakers believe the change could benefit 65,000 Tennesseans. Patients would have to have certain medical conditions, from cancer to post-traumatic stress disorder.

The legislation would not allow use of recreational marijuana.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  A longtime analyst says one of Tennessee’s largest employers is headed for a downturn.

Nissan, General Motors and Volkswagen all have large assembly plants in Tennessee. Nissan’s North American headquarters is located in Franklin.

Mark Wakefield with the consulting firm Alix Partners has been researching automotive trends for 25 years. He’s predicting the industry will build some 2 million fewer cars and trucks over the next 24 months.

Can hackers tamper with a Tennessee election?

Jan 18, 2018

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  State officials say it would be difficult for hackers to tamper with Tennessee’s election system, but not impossible.

In a presentation Tuesday to a State Senate panel, Elections Coordinator Mark Goins told legislators Tennessee is not one of the 21 states federal officials say were targeted by Russian hackers during the 2016 presidential election.

He noted that the state’s voting machines are not connected to the internet and so are largely immune to hacking.

Top 2018 legislative issues: Tennessee ACLU

Jan 17, 2018

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE) — The Tennessee General Assembly is back in session and WMOT is exploring the legislative priorities of some of the state’s leading political voices.

WMOT News recently spoke Hedy Weinberg who heads the Tennessee chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union.

Weinberg says a major focus for the legal advocacy group this session will be the right to vote issue. Calling it the “cornerstone of our democracy” she says ACLU will proactively work on ballot box access.

A cabin fever cure: Nashville Reads 2018

Jan 17, 2018

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  If this week’s mid-state weather has you suffering a touch of cabin fever, here’s a suggestion to keep you occupied.

The Nashville Reads Program has made its 2018 book selection. Now in its seventh year, Nashville Reads is a partnership between the Mayor’s Office, Nashville Public Library, Humanities Tennessee, Parnassus Books, and BookPage.

This year’s selection is author John T. Edge’s The Potlikker Papers: A Food History of the Modern South.


Brent Cobb on Wired In

Brent Cobb on WMOT's Wired In

Cobb is a Grammy nominee for Best Americana Album

Tennessee Divided

Tennessee Divided: A WMOT News Series

An exploration of the cultural, racial and political discord across Middle Tennessee and the nation.

WMOT Membership Has Its Benefits

Become a member of WMOT and support locally programmed, community radio...and it's tax-deductible!


MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  FBI Director Christopher Wray says he’s concerned about a now common type of partnership between the Chinese government and American universities, partnerships that can be found on three Tennessee campuses.

The Chinese currently sponsor Confucius Institutes at about 100 colleges in the United States. UT Knoxville, the University of Memphis and Middle Tennessee State all host Institutes on their campuses.

Plant a tree this weekend...hugging is optional

Feb 19, 2018

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  Environmentalists are closing in on their goal of planting 250,000 trees across Tennessee this coming weekend.

The Tennessee Environmental Council has been hosting annual tree planting events for several years. This year’s 250K Tree Day is scheduled for Saturday.

Council President John McFadden says volunteers are being asked to plant trees on their own property and at pre-approved public sites as well.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee's attorney general wants the state Supreme Court to set eight execution dates before June 1, saying it's uncertain whether officials can get the lethal injection chemicals after that.

Attorney General Herbert Slatery's court filing Thursday says juries delivered death sentences decades ago, and each man has exhausted the three-tier appeals process.

The state's last execution was in 2009.

Slatery cited "ongoing difficulty" getting lethal injection drugs.

Music City Happenings

Roots Radio Event Calendar

Concerts, shows and events happening in and around Nashville

MTSU Jazz Network

MTSU Jazz Network Streaming

Listen to locally programmed Jazz from Middle Tennessee State University at 92.3 in Murfreesboro, 104.9 in Nashville or on our internet stream

Donate Your Car Online

Donate Your Vehicle To WMOT

Have an old vehicle sitting in your driveway? Donate your used vehicle to WMOT, we will do all the work, all you have to do is sit back and relax! Our qualified donation support team is ready to work out all the details of your donation. We will even haul your car away for free! Call 888-WMOT-CAR. 888-966-8227. You can also donate online .

Read More

Latest from NPR

Botanist David Fairchild grew up in Kansas at the end of the 19th century. He loved plants, and he loved travel, and he found a way to combine both into a job for the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

An outside legal review of NPR's handling of allegations against its former top news executive, Michael Oreskes, found that questions were raised about his behavior toward women even before he was hired. And concerns about misconduct were reportedly flagged throughout Oreskes' 2 1/2-year tenure at the network right up to the day he was fired.

Venezuela's downward economic spiral has led to widespread food shortages, hyperinflation and now mass migration. Many Venezuelans are opting for the easiest escape route — by crossing the land border into Colombia.