MUSIC CITIES AT RISK: Gentrification’s Threat to Artistic Creativity
Austin, Nashville, and New Orleans have long been known for their vibrant music scenes. As these cities see rents rise and neighborhoods gentrify, as in other popular cities, their artists and musicians face displacement. How do these creative cities deal with the paradox of their seeming economic “success” ruining the creative edge that made them famous in the first place?
“I just didn’t want him to think that the person that he was was not important, the person was more important. If he never sang another day in his life it would be everybody’s loss, but he was so… important. For some reason i think he wasn’t sure about that, he knew that he had the gift, but i’m not sure that he knew that if he didn’t have the gift, that he was still okay, that he was of a great value anyway. ”
“There was so many people telling him that he was the greatest thing on earth. Sometimes i’d see him get real quite and introverted. New York magazine wanted to do a cover story about him, New York’s next big thing. He was really upset because he felt, ‘What have i done to deserve this?’. He felt he hadn’t done anything yet and that his reputation was getting ahead of itself. Why did he have this big reputation? It’s because people saw the talent. But he wasn’t convinced because he hadn’t sold any records yet. He was getting uptight about that. ”
I’ve been feeling lots of love for Texas the past few weeks. Everything is turning so green, there are flowers everywhere - the blue bonnets and paintbrushes have even bloomed early - and the weather has been more or less divine. Spring is positively enlivening me, and I think this vibrant tropical punch color scheme reflects that. Also discovered a musician from Austin last week, and very pleased to be out here for SXSW this weekend!