Tom Adkinson bio
Tom Adkinson, a Nashvillian for almost all of his life, began his career as a journalist, spent the majority of it in public relations and now has returned to journalism – specifically travel writing. He worked 20 happy years in public relations at Opryland/Gaylord Entertainment (“And out of 22, that’s not bad,” he says) and 14 enjoyable years at the Bohan agency in Nashville, where he spent most of his time promoting Pigeon Forge and the Great Smoky Mountains region. He is the weekly travel writer for the Knoxville Daily Sun and the twice-a-month Tennessee Traveler columnist for Main Street Nashville. He maintains his own travel writing website, Corners Of the Country.com.
Les Kerr Bio
Les Kerr is a songwriter, recording artist and performer who brings blues, New Orleans music, Zydeco, rock and bluegrass together to create his “Hillbilly Blues Caribbean Rock & Roll.” A Nashville resident since 1987, Kerr was born in Louisiana and raised on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. His strong ties to the Gulf Coast and New Orleans are reflected in his music.
Les has recorded eleven albums, including his latest, Part of the Show. About Les’ music, national music publication No Depression’s Lee Zimmerman wrote, “Les Kerr creates a sound that’s both jovial and cerebral all at the same time…Kerr takes his stylistic additives from a variety of genres — reggae, country, folk, blues and rock ‘n’ roll — and meshes them into a hybrid that’s philosophical [and] sunny.”
New Orleans-based OffBEAT magazine’s Kathleen Rippy wrote, “Kerr’s musical stylings aptly cover the gamut from rockabilly to boogie to Caribbean beats with ease. Kerr hails from Mississippi and developed a deep love of the blues while growing up. His deep voice is reminiscent of a bluesy Johnny Cash and his well-crafted guitar playing lays down the perfect accompaniment for each song…Les Kerr is no stranger to the Crescent City.”
Every Fat Tuesday since 1992, Les has headlined annual Mardi Gras celebrations at Nashville’s famed Bluebird Café. He performs other shows at the venue throughout the year. Other venues and events where he has performed include Nashville’s Official Independence Day Celebration, the Grand Ole Opry House, the Country Music Hall of Fame, Southern Festival of Books and the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Nashville (formerly the Country Music Marathon).
Les’ performances include shows at the Maple Leaf Bar, Louisiana Music Factory and Carrollton Station (New Orleans, LA); Decatur, Alabama’s Historic Princess Theatre; The Peoples Room (Mobile, AL); The Railyard (Decatur, AL); Hal and Mal’s (Jackson, MS); Atlanta Dogwood Festival; Knoxville (TN) Dogwood Festival; Southern Festival of Books (Nashville and Memphis) and Mobile, Alabama’s First Night Mobile New Year’s Eve celebration.
Also an author and poet, lyrics of several of Les’ songs have appeared in four volumes of Maple Leaf Rag, a New Orleans Poetry Anthology. In June, 2019, Les performed at the Maple Leaf Bar during the launch celebration for the 40th Anniversary edition of the anthology. His books include The All-American Truck Stop Cookbook (Thomas Nelson/Harper Collins), co-authored with Ken Beck and Jim Clark, and Tennessee (Graphic Arts Press), featuring photographs by George Humphriess.
Corey Webb, editor of Nashville Experience, wrote, “Les takes you on a journey with lyrics that tell tales of places you’ll want to see and people you’ll want to meet. It’s a good mix of the exotic and familiar.”
The title song of his 2015 Contributor album was inspired by Nashville’s street newspaper and the premier event of the video raised money for the newspaper, The Contributor. The video for Contributor was seen worldwide and was included on CMT.com.
Les was a three-time award nominee of the Music City Blues Society. Mackinac Blues, from Les’ New Orleans Set CD, was included in NPR’s All Songs Considered. He was featured in the TV documentary Civil War Songs and Stories broadcast on PBS stations across the U.S. For more, visit www.leskerr.com