Thank YOU, thank YOU, thank YOU. Hello Again! Welcome to another wonderful collaboration between East Side Story and The Post. Let me be the first to officially, whole-heartedly welcome you to the recap and recording of the 94th epic edition of East Side Storytellin’! Like the 93, I repeat … 93, previous shows East Side Story has put together, we all decided to take a break from our busy schedules all over town in order to sit back and relax and get everyone cultured up just right in the form of a Nashville writer reading from original prose, followed by an amazing local musician performing and talking about their original music, and then a round-up creative conversation with all featured guests of this event to talk about their individual journeys and personal ties to Nashville. Without further ado, fulfilling the entertainment portion of your day, this is East Side Storytellin’ 94. Let us begin, again.
Actually, befoer we get all further ado, I have to give a big salute to the main maestro, the first voice you hear on every single East Side Storytellin’ recording we’ve ever had, Dave Eastman. He made his annual trek to the live microphone feed to give the audience a feel for our humble beginnings to our humble present state of the show after 93 other trial periods of creative experimentation. Dave is dear friend of the show and to Tom and myself. He’s had to face a handful of personal hurdles this past year, more than most in years past, so it was a tremendous delight to see him back up on his feet and entertaining people with his words and wit as he was gifted to do. We are forever grateful for his part in our ongoing and growing story, and we look forward to seeing and hearing all of the great things he is gonna do in the upcoming year. Side note, I felt pretty official getting an introduction from the big guy. I’m not saying I’m Johnny Carson or anything, but what I am saying is that Dave is a true professional and always knocks it out of the park. Having him start the show was a wonderful way to kick off the 5th year of East Side Storytellin’.
Now, back to the show at hand. Our first featured artist of the evening is a poet, writer and teacher. He has taught 3 years in Metro Nashville at Antioch High School, and, like our last show’s featured author, has helped countless students grow creatively and with great, successful leaps and bounds with their levels of literacy. Not one to confine himself in the traditional school setting, this guy also contributed towards an award-winning curriculum design with the Frist Center for the Visual Arts. He pursued his MFA in Creative Writing at San Diego State University (shout out to Marshall Faulk). He and his wife live in East Nashville and write beautiful songs (some you may hear soon enough) with their dog, Lucky (who you will not see soon). Ladies and Gentleman, I’m talking about the one and only Kyle Martindale.
Before the show, Kyle was having a minor difficult decision to either read from one of his usual go-to short stories or to break out a newer one that was more relative to the holiday season. And when I say holiday season, I’m not fast-forwarding to Christmas like Walmart. I’m talking about staying in the Halloween season. That’s right. Kyle opted to read a story titled, The City in Holes. He told me it included vampires, so you know I was all game.
Kyle jumped up to the mic and jumped right into the story after laying down a minor preface to the crowd and letting them know that the story would include a piano tuner and a wealthy vampire. Typically, from my experience from 93 shows in the past, I’ve found that if an author reads straight through one narrative piece for their entire time that the vibe will eventually lull at any given point after ten minutes in. With Kyle, that was never the case. Kyle took us on several trips with Nashville as the backdrop and, at times, a character of the story he was sharing (mind you, it was only one chapter of it too). There was a moment, the passage where Kyle described the city through beautiful and poetic descriptions and metaphors of music and landscape and holes, where it felt like we are all flying over the city and taking it in an entirely new perspective. It was quite wondrous. I’ll let you take a listen to him in the recording below and let him personally guide you on said trip and get you sucked into the story about a vampire you’ve never heard about before. This guy is such a talented writer and reader.
Our featured musician of the night is a singer/songwriter who, who am I kidding. The best person to introduce this woman is her husband. From the words he wrote, “This lady is more than a songwriter. There is courage in her pulse, an aching wisdom in her voice. She has been a behavioral therapist, rising HR guru, struggling artist and has sometimes staggered through seasons of life.” Back to my words, we are very thankful to have this songstress superstar bring her beautiful melodies and messages to the forefront of our very special anniversary show. The room was packed with family and friends and they erupted in a big applause for the talented Jessica Martindale.
Jessica immediately gave mad love and respect for the featured author, her husband. She shouted, “How hot was that reader?” It was the perfect way to get her set going in a comfortable manner. Side note, I just found it out right before the show, Jessica had surgery 3 weeks ago to take out her tonsils. She was unaware about how the show would even go the week prior, if at all. But, as fate would have it, her voice was in great condition and the setting was right for her to knock us all out with her beautiful music. She sang about honest and pure songs written about a quarter-life crisis, a song inspired by Huckleberry Finn that was written and recorded for a special project within 24 hours, a sad song about finding closure with a friendship that needed to close, a tribute to an experience in India helping and honoring victims of sex trafficing, another about finding the reasons and purpose for making art, and then she came back full circles to Kyle’s holes in the city with a song with the lyrics of walking around with holes in her shoes. Again, I’ll let you listen to her tell it how it is and how it should be in your world with the recording below, but it is truly something special.
When the just applause faded, I was able to ask Kyle and Jess a few personal and professional questions to get to some of their stories under the surface. You know, like the how did they meet and how do they help each other as two creatives married to one another in the same household kind of thing. It wasn’t too much like the Newly Married Game Show, but I thought it had a nice flow to it. This was the first time in our history where the author and the musician were married. We’ve had duets before, but nothing like this. It was definitely a treat. For instance, I mention it in the recording, but it was so sweet to see Kyle mouthing the words to Jess’ songs in real time, like he was Will Smith mouthing every other actor’s lines in the same scene in the early years of The Fresh Prince of Bel Aire (anyone who is a fan knows what I’m talking about). See evidence below –
Kyle and Jess were so candid and cute and everything that a creative couple should aspire to, at home and when performing together. They said this event was the first time they had shared the stage and shared their original work in that manner. I told them they shouldn’t stop from here. I see many house shows and tours together with stories and songs in the near future. We are honored and so glad to have been given the oppportunity to give them such a stage and platform to share their gifts as they continue to grow as trendously talented artists and loving people.
I’m serious though. Take a listen to the recording below and listen to some of the amazing, altruistic efforts these two souls are doing for the world, locally and globally. From teaching creative writing at the Frist Center for the Visual Arts alongside the current exhibitions and both helping teach the youth about stories through A Novel Idea Nashville to washing the feet of victims of sex trafficing in India with the Rescue Freedom International organization, these two people are worth your time and energy and friendship to get to know better. But before you go following them online and finding out where you can see them live next, check out this recording (appreciate it fully and then share it with others).
So here it is, the edited recording of East Side Storytellin’ 94, the 4 year anniversary show that featured Kyle and Jessica Martindale at The Post on Tuesday, November 1, 2016. Please listen to it and share with everyone you know, over and over again.
Before I say goodbye for this round of fun, I’d like to give a big round of thanks for Kyle and Jessica for sharing their stories, talents, and time with us.
You can read more about Kyle’s writing here- https://twitter.com/kyle_martindale
You can listen to more of Jessica’s music here – http://jessicamartindale.com
I’ll keep the gratitude going for Tom Eizonas, my lovely wife and most talented artist in Emily Harper Beard (efharper), and everyone that came out live to support the show … and to everyone who has helped continue to spread the word and support the show online afterwards.
A big thanks to Dave Eastman, again, for being the main voice and introduction for us to our fans every time out of the gate. You’re the man, and your friendship is greatly appreciated.
I’d also like to show much love to Clay Brunton for the beautiful artwork online to promote the show.
Last, but certainly not least, I’d like to give one last shout out to Tonya and Chris for making The Post so welcoming and positively life-changing for the East Nashville community at large.
Our next show will be …
That said, that’s all for East Side Storytellin’ 94 and another fabulous event at The Post with East Side Story at the helm. That’s also all for four years of epic shows in the bag. Thanks for coming out and sharing the good word and giving some love to all of these great Nashville artists and our creative ideas.
Please remember to be nice to one another out there.
PS- Tom Eizonas & Dave Eastman, as another surprise gift to mE (Chuck Beard), put together this very special compilation of one song from each show from the 4th year of East Side Storytellin’. Now I give it to you to enjoy and share and spread the word about every show in the past and future.