A Quiet Giant of Roots Music, Randy Scruggs, Is Dead at 64

13 hours ago

Randy Scruggs, a soft-spoken, multi-talented musician and artist from a great American music family, died on Tuesday at age 64, reportedly from an illness.

A Guitar Pull Of Greatness For A Merle Travis Centennial

Apr 16, 2018

As birthday parties go, this one’s a bit on the late side, but nobody, least of all the late great Merle Travis, will notice or care. He was born on Nov. 17, 1917 in Rosewood, Kentucky, so this week’s tribute show on April 18, 2018 at the City Winery is more of a centenary celebration, but there’s a lot to acknowledge and the lineup of musicians pulled together by the Grammy Museum and Travis’s son Thom Bresh is a guitar pull of the gods.

Kelly Christine Sutton

The critical reception to Golden Hour, the third major-label, non-holiday album from Kacey Musgraves, reminds me of a particle accelerator - an atom smasher they used to call them - where we learn about something invisible by observing where the sparks fly after a collision. The quantum system at issue involves a unique artistic vision colliding with the ways music writers tend to frame the music business.

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Check out Liz Brasher's song 'Body of Mine' recorded in-studio with WMOT


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  A new report suggests the fortunes of Tennessee women continue to fall, in spite of the recent #MeToo movement and other efforts to improve their lives.

Our reporting partners at Wallethub.com are out with their annual ranking of 2018’s Best and Worst States for Women. The study looks at 25 metrics, including wages, employment rates, social well-being along with health and safety.

Not only does Tennessee rank in the bottom half, coming in a 38th, but analyst Jill Gonzalez says the state’s ranking has fallen three years in a row.

Katie Armiger

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP/WMOT)  --  A country music singer-songwriter is lending her support to a bill introduced in the Tennessee Legislature.

The measure would provide better workplace protections against sexual harassment specifically for those working in the music industry.

During a press event Monday, artist Katie Armiger spoke about the harassment she encountered after coming to Nashville to start her career.


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  The State Senate has passed a bill that would keep Tennessee courts from making birth control a part of sentencing agreements.

The measure comes in response to revelations last year that a White County judge was offering reduced sentences to defendants who agreed to have birth control procedures.

General Sessions Judge Sam Benningfield offered 30 day reductions on jail time in exchange for men having vasectomies and women getting long-lasting birth control implants.

Should Tennesseans be able to see autopsy reports?

Mar 5, 2018

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  A bill before the Tennessee Legislature seeks to hide autopsy reports from the public.

During committee testimony, Knox County Medical Examiner Dr. Darinka Mileusnic recalled the autopsy of an infant who died from Herpes inherited from the birth mother. Dr. Mileusnic believes the mother’s right to privacy was violated by making the autopsy public.


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Electrolux says its plans for a $250 million plant expansion in Tennessee are on hold, and the Swedish appliance maker is citing President Donald Trump's tariff announcement as the reason.

Electrolux's investment plans included modernizing and adding 400,000 square feet to the plant in Springfield. Construction was slated to begin later this year.

Last November, Concord Music, the world’s largest independent music company, announced that musician turned attorney John Strohm would be the new president of Rounder Records and its associated Sugar Hill Records. For roots music fans and artists, this is a big deal because each label has a distinguished and influential history.


2 Trump gun proposals divide Tennessee governor GOP field

Mar 2, 2018

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee's leading Republican gubernatorial candidates have mixed feelings or aren't taking firm stances on President Donald Trump's ideas to ban bump stocks and bar people under 21 from buying semi-automatic guns.

U.S. Rep. Diane Black said she's not sure she'd vote to ban bump stocks at this point. She said states should determine semi-automatic weapon age requirements, but didn't specify her preference.

Businessman Bill Lee said he'd be open to a possible bump stock ban, but not to raising the age limit.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WMOT/AP)  --  A proposal is moving ahead in the State Legislature to allow more teachers to carry guns in Tennessee schools.

Testimony during a hearing yesterday in the House Civil Justice Subcommittee largely opposed the measure. Among those panning the bill were speakers for the state Department of Education and the Tennessee Sheriff’s Association.

Concerns ranged from how well trained armed teachers might be to whether some school systems might opt to replace expensive school police officers with less costly armed teachers.

Metro Schools go digital to meet student needs

Feb 28, 2018

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WMOT)  --  Metro Nashville schools are using a new charity website to connect the community with its neediest students.

Purposity.com was launched last year and is already working with schools and non-profits in 30 states to aid the poor. The website name is a combination of the words “purpose” and “generosity.”

While protecting the identity of both donor and recipient, the site allows the donor to immediately purchase an item that meets the specific, requested need of an individual in the community.

The SPLC releases updates to the Tennessee Hate Map

Feb 28, 2018

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (HAGGARD) — Tennessee added new white supremacist groups in 2017, the Southern Poverty Law Center says.

Though the overall number is down, Heidi Beirich with the SPLC says the state has seen a shift in hate groups.

“New organizations have popped up in Tennessee: the Loyal White Knights, for example, which is a Klan outfit; there are three new League of the South chapters, that’s an organization that’s a neo-Confederate hate group; there’s a group called Identity Evropa that does a lot of recruiting on college campuses that’s now in Tennessee."


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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  Nashville’s population continues to grow, and that’s causing housing costs to rise dramatically.

Federal data shows the rate at which Metro’s population is expanding peaked in 2015, but there are still more people moving into the city each year than moving out. That’s allowed property owners to sell homes at ever higher prices and raise rental fees.

Kathy Trawick with the Tennessee Fair Housing Council says those rising housing costs are especially hard on the working poor, college graduates with student loans, and people with disabilities.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  The Tennessee House has passed a $37.5 billion state budget, but not before making a change intended to punish the City of Memphis.

The new budget includes millions of additional dollars for education, opioid addiction treatment, and school safety. But the Republican majority in the House also added a last minute amendment that takes $250,000 out of the budget.


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessee House passed a $37.5 billion budget, but only after arguments over whether to take money away from the city of Memphis as punishment for removing Confederate Statues last year.

Gov. Bill Haslam asked for $211.8 million more for K-12 education, including $55.1 million for teacher pay raises. He added $30 million to fight opioid abuse and another $30 million for school safety following the shootings in Florida in February that killed 17 people. The governor also included $99.1 million for higher education.

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Tennessee Divided: A WMOT News Series

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

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

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