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Say goodbye to Beantown, Nola heads to Music City USA

By Nola Rose Shepherd, December 1998

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It was on one of these nights that I got up on stage to sing while Rosie Flores played guitar.

Now for a little big-name dropping...my Reba experience. Visiting NSAI (Nashville Songwriters Association Inc. - an excellent organization for networking with other songwriters and people in the business as well as organizing frequent seminars) one night, a woman came in looking for background singers for a video.

Linda spoke up to volunteer me, and the woman tells us that Reba is doing a video next week of "What If" and needs people for her choir. We're thinking, 'right, Reba sends some woman out looking for anybodies to be in her video,' but hey, that's the way it happened.

It wasn't a glamorous experience, (long days standing around with lots of other choir members and practically no money), but I did get to meet Reba, and now I get to tell people I was in a Reba video. Good padding for the resume. These things happen in Nashville.

I was lucky in that I had a 'risk free' opportunity to go to Nashville - 'risk-free' thanks to a supportive boss and understanding husband. Knowing that I was more than a bit apprehensive about leaving Boston for Nashville at this point in my life, not being a fresh faced kid and all, my boss asked me last year "why don't you go to Nashville and give it a try and see what happens, we'll hold your job for you."

And although Kit wasn't able to go with me at first since he was finishing up a gig which ran through December, he reminded me Nashville was the place to pursue a serious career in country music.

He held onto our apartment in Brighton and visited when he could - and often enough to decide that he'd love to relocate and as soon as possible. I, on the other hand, took a little more convincing - I'm going to really miss my old Beantown!!! Once we found a house (real estate is a steal in Nashville even with pay being considerably lower), the decision was a lot easier.

Maybe I did learn somethingŠ regardless, we're off in December, ready to live life in the south and immerse ourselves in the time-honored tradition of paying our dues in Nashville. A magical town where anything can happen - if you're there long enough.

But wait, there's moreŠ. I couldn't pass up an opportunity to have something in print and not include my gratitude for all the people who have supported me and the band in the past. From Hillbilly at Harvard to the MCMAA to the folks at Johnny D's to the many musicians I've had the pleasure to work with, the people who showed up to our gigs and made us feel so appreciated, thanks a million.

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