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Music Industry Rallies to Preserve Nashville’s Historic RCA Studio A

photo by Bob Paxman

A crowd of Music Row artists, songwriters, technicians and other concerned citizens gathered at a rally inside the famed RCA Studio A in Nashville to rally support for the studio and other historic buildings, Monday morning (June 30). The rally was planned when news reports noted that the studio building was being bought and would possibly be demolished by a Nashville developer.

Preservationists were able to breathe a little easier when the developer shared that the company intends to save the studio, should the impending purchase go through. But the rally continued as planned, taking on the bigger picture issue of preserving other buildings in Nashville’s iconic Music Row area.

Rock musician Ben Folds, who rents and operates the studio, addressed the supporters who filled the studio at 9 a.m. “We bought time for the studio,” he announced. “Thanks to the support of everyone here and the media that’s helped, we did what I didn’t think could happen a week ago, which is, we saved this place for a certain amount of time. I understand that what we have accomplished is very rare.”

Ben added that he sincerely thought the building would be demolished when he received the notice from the developer about the purchase of the building. He also said in a Facebook post that he is not against progress, but simply wishes to have a balance between growth and preserving history.

RCA Studio A is certainly packed with some compelling musical history. The legendary Chet Atkins and producer Owen Bradley built the studio, which has been home to thousands of classic recordings. Elvis Presley, Dolly Parton, Carrie Underwood, Willie Nelson and Alan Jackson are just a few of the stars who have recorded at Studio A over the years.

Deana Carter attended the rally and recalled how fond her father, musician and producer Fred Carter Jr., was of the studio. “Dad worked here a lot. He was part of the A-team crew of session musicians,” Deana said. “The history here means everything. It’s so important that we don’t lose this place.”

For now, though, it looks as though Studio A will be on solid ground


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