Out & About Today Nashville Channel 5
Happening in Nashville
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by Steve Ramos (aka Veronika Electronika)
Inside Out Nashville
This year Pat Blaylock, owner of The Cabaret Episode 2 will receive the Grand Marquise’s coveted Lifetime Achievement Award for his long-standing involvement in the entertaining world of female impersonation and his efforts helping to launch many famous careers.
The Miss Grand Marquise Pageant is a national pageant which highlights the glamour, elegance, prestige and beauty of female impersonators with more than $3,000 in cash and prizes will be held this Sunday, March 25 at Play Dance Bar.
Popular female impersonator Veronika Electronika interviewed Pat recently, here is the interview.
Picture it, Nashville, Tennessee, at the Cabaret Episode 2, it’s about 7pm on a Wednesday. The staff of the popular Nashville nightspot is getting the venue ready for the first night of pillow fighting and the regular Wednesday night crowd. I find Pat holding a wrench and a screwdriver inside of the dressing room, on his usual tour of duty to keep up the place. I ask if he has the time for the interview that we had talked about previously, he obliges and we retire to the pool room.
Veronika: What in the world made you get into the gay bar business?
Pat Blaylock: It all started in Printer’s Alley in a small bar on the upper lever of the alley. Back then Printers Alley was ‘the place to go’ and the only thing on Second Avenue was the Spaghetti Factory. Along with business partners Joel and Jerry, Pat made a very popular tourist attraction out of the Printers Alley bar.
V: How long ago did you start?
P: The original Cabaret was born in 1974.
V: Over the years the ‘Cab’ has gone through some changes, do you regret closing the original venue on Printers Alley, or Hayes Street?
P: Not the Printers Alley location, we had a good two years there. The Hayes Street location had a great 19 years. It opened on June 15, 1977. Within the first month it was packed. The reason that we closed in 1993 was because we found out that Linda (Pat’s wife) was pregnant. After I had been approached several times about my building being for sale, when officially it had not, I told them to show me the money, and someone finally did.
The day that the Hayes St. deal went through we got the good news from the hospital. Shortly after the sale of the Hayes Street bar, the Connection on 4th Avenue opened, and I was standing at the front door watching all of my old customers walking in.
V: If you weren’t running this place what would you be doing?
P: I don’t know.... Real Estate
V: So many bars have come and gone what’s the Cab’s secret?
P: You’ve got to be there... Be at the Bar!!! If you are going to run a nightclub then you have to be a part of the club... not a customer, an active manager. And remember there is only so much money that you can get out of people.
V: So this is a lifetime achievement award, anything that you think you’ve missed?
P: That’s hard to explain... I ain’t dead yet! For starters.
V: Lots of local and national talent has worked for you over the years, and that stick out?
P: Carmella Marcella Garcia, and Charlie Brown... both from Nashville, and both started at the Cabaret. These new girls now-a-days won’t promote themselves, you really need to get out there, be motivated, be flexible and take the good advice that’s given to you. Gary Broderick, now there is a talent! Awesome stage presence, greatest Emcee that I ever had, and he turned down producers time and time again... and did it all without doing drag...except that one time... but we wont go there....
V: What next?
P: I have something in the works and I have my feelers out.... Stay tuned for details!
P: I don’t want to retire, I don’t want to close the bar, and I want to keep doing things!
V: Long live Pat Blaylock! LOL... What in the business changed over time?
P: Everything! I started in the bar business in California in the 1960’s working with bands at different venues, then moving to Nashville I started working with they guys down here. The 1960’s, 70’s and 80’s were very good years. In the 1980’s the rents started going up, and overhead charges were on the rise. I just recently raised our cover charge here to $8.00 on Saturday nights. Things are always changing!
P: HIV and the Internet. In the 1980’s it seemed like we were going to funerals every week. People got scared and really changed their routines.
V: Is there anything that you’d like to say to Nashville in regards to receiving this award?
P: I don’t know that I deserve it, but thank you! There’s more I’d like to do!
V: People have been known to think of you as stubborn, cheap and an all around ass...your comment? (Yes I went there)
P: There’s not a name that I haven’t been called! The people that think of me that way, probably really
V: How’s your old friend Jungle Jim?
P: He’s a trip!
V: Is the Cabaret a Lesbian bar?
P: It is not a Lesbian bar, it?s a show bar... but lesbians have seemed to call it home. Everyone is welcome here! The girls separated themselves in the 1980’s, I think because of the HIV, you see men were getting it, and women weren’t. So there became a divide in the crowd. The divide seems to still be there, even though times have changed.
V: Any advice to anyone that might want to open a bar in town?
P: Don’t do it... what are you thinking besides your own ego?...We wrapped up the interview with a few laughs and just a couple interruptions from cast members, and phone calls, but all in all I would have to say that Pat is a nice guy that you just have to take the time to get to know. Don’t let the Hawaiian shirts, cigars, and quick wit turn you off at the door. don’t know me...just don’t try to get one over on me!
V: Over time, what have been the most radical reasons for change in the community?
The Cabaret is and always will be one of my ‘spots’ and I always feel welcome there, and I know that you will too. So, if it’s been a while, stop on by and give him a quick hello and catch a show or too with a friend ...because What good is sitting alone in your room, come hear the music play... Life is a Cabaret, ole chum... Come to the Cabaret!
For those with a thirst to celebrate, Red Bull Unlocked is the key. In city after city, the most exciting bars, clubs, mixologists, performing artists, and more take over a local landmark building to showcase their signature ambiance while also collaborating for a must-see mashup. And now it's Music City’s turn to seize the spotlight, as the event brings 10 bars together in East Nashville’s Five Points neighborhood.
Fueled by the best of Nashville’s thriving music scene, Red Bull Unlocked has curated an eclectic night of show-stopping entertainment performances including a pop-up Whiskey Jam show, DJ sets, musicians, and more. The full lineup is here:
- Whiskey Jam (feat. Dozzi, Willie Shaw, and Johnny Hayes)
- A.B. Eastwood
- Daisha / Rap Girl
- Boom Bap (DJ Collective feat. DJ-Rate, Case Bloom)
- Whiskey Disco (DJ Collective feat. Coach, Jim O'Shea)
- Old Crow Medicine Show’s Jerry Pentercost (DJ Set)
- DJ Stretch
- DJ Griffin Green
- The Play Mates (Drag Show feat. Sasha, Vanity, Deception, Aura Mayari, Corlis Todd, and Carmin Triple C)
Counting down to the epic celebration, Daisha shares, “I never thought I’d have the opportunity to perform in so many of Nashville’s top spots all in the same night. Fans can expect a lot of bops and high energy. I want people to dance and have a good time.”
Ward Guenther, Whiskey Jam Founder, adds, “Red Bull has been enjoyed at Whiskey Jam since the very first night, so it's only fitting Whiskey Jam is enjoyed at Nashville's first Red Bull Unlocked. Looking forward to this!”
Red Bull Unlocked Istanbul
Photo courtesy of Red Bull
Local favorites including Pearl Diver, Tin Roof, Lipstick Lounge, White Limozeen, and more will join forces for one epic night. Full list of bars and partners below:
- The Dive Motel
- Lipstick Lounge
- Pearl Diver
- Play Dance Bar
- Rosemary & Beauty Queen
- The Stage
- Tin Roof
- Whiskey Jam
- White Limozeen
- Woolworth Theatre – Opening Fall 2022!
- Eleven Eleven - Opening 2023!
Date: August 21, 2022
Time: 6 PM – 11PM CT
Location: 1102 Forrest Ave, Nashville, TN 37206
Entrance: Ticked event
Rumble Boxing, the boxing-inspired group fitness studio, opened its doors for the first time in Nashville on June 20 at 609 Overton St, Nashville, TN. The hottest workout on the block is hosting its official grand opening from August 4th-7th with daily classes, membership specials, and prizes from local vendors. The new Rumble Boxing studio is currently offering a buy one class, get one free promotion for the Nashville community.
Rumble Boxing delivers 45-minute, 10-round, strength and conditioning group workouts, crafted around teardrop-style aqua boxing bags and high-intensity strength training circuits. This brings all fitness levels together to experience what Rumble is known for: combining the sweet science of boxing with high energy and positive vibes.
Rumble Boxing Fitness Studio
Photo courtesy of Rumble Boxing Gulch Nashville
This boutique fitness brand offers serious benefits like increased stamina and strength, with cardio that’s actually fun. The seasoned trainers at the new studio are thrilled to serve their local community while offering this fun, new modern approach to boxing and welcome members of all fitness levels to the Rumble family.
The new Rumble Boxing studio is owned and operated by Blake Baskin and Antonio Compton. With their background in the fitness industry, this dynamic duo is excited to bring their passion for boxing and group fitness to Nashville. As business and life partners, Blake and Antonio aim to create a strong community within their new Rumble Boxing studio and share their message of non-apologetic inclusivity.
Black and Gay-Owned Business
Rumble Boxing Store with Dolly Parton Mural
Photo courtesy of Rumble Boxing Gulch Nashville
“We own who we are, and this brand aligns with that perfectly,” said Antonio. “This is what we want to create and bring to this community: a fitness class that is designed for anyone and a place for people to be who they are. As a Black and gay-owned business, we want to help lower the division we see in the world right now. Our goal is to bring people together through Rumble, set everything aside, and have fun.”
To echo their message of acceptance and inclusion, Blake and Antonio commissioned a local Nashville artist to paint an 11 X 6-ft. mural of Nashville icon and philanthropist, Dolly Parton. The massive portrait features the country star in Rumble Boxing gear in the lobby of the studio.
The excitement and buzz around Rumble allowed Blake and Antonio to recruit top-tier trainers to head up the new studio, including Head Trainer Oronde Jones, a well-known celebrity trainer in the Nashville market.
Rumble Boxing Fitness Studio
Photo courtesy of Rumble Boxing Gulch Nashville
“Compared to other fitness classes, Rumble is a class you can truly get lost in for 45 minutes. With the dark room, you don’t have to worry if anyone is paying attention to you. The music is awesome and inspiring, and the beat drops right when you need it the most. Also, with boxing being a sport you can never truly master, you’re always improving and crafting your skill. On the floor, you’re consistently doing something new, which prevents you from ever hitting a plateau.” Said Oronde Jones about his favorite part of Rumble.
Rumble has massive brand loyalty and widespread appeal, partly thanks to attracting top names like Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, Kendall Jenner, Hailey Baldwin, Jason Derulo, David Beckham, and Kevin Hart to its studios.
About Rumble Boxing
Founded in New York City in 2017, Rumble is a group fitness concept delivering a mix (or combination) of boxing-inspired circuits and the transformative power of resistance training. Pro and amateur fighters glove up together, no matter their fitness level or skill, to reveal their inner fighter. The experience is a 45-minute, 10-round, full-body cardio and strength workout crafted around specially designed water-filled, teardrop-style boxing bags. Rumble was founded by Noah Neiman (former Barry’s Bootcamp Master Trainer, and cast member of Bravo’s Work Out New York), Eugene Remm (Co-Founder of Catch Hospitality Group (Catch Restaurants, CATCH STEAK, Lexington Brass), Andy Stenzler (Co-Founder Cosí, Kidville), and Anthony DiMarco (13-time IRONMAN, former Managing Director, Google).
Who would have thought that we would have to get through a pandemic in order to appreciate the small things we have, such as the ability to simply pack our bags and hit the road?
For two years, there’s been nothing left for us travel junkies to do but sit at home and try to find new destinations that we will conquer once we defeat what appears to be the biggest villain of the 21st century. But once that happens, hold your bags tight because we will be up for some of the most interesting travel experiences. Take a look at some ideas for your post-COVID traveling plans:
A Gay Cruise
One of the best options to have in mind when all of this passes is a good, nice and long (pun intended) gay cruise. Or cruise in general, for that matter. Bear in mind, social distancing will still be a thing in the post-COVID world. But COVID-19 likely doesn’t mean that cruises will cease to exist. On the contrary, though cruise ships will probably keep the number of passengers smaller than before, it is believed that they will become an even bigger hit in the following period, especially because they are all going to go a lot more environmentally-friendly. On the bright side, is there any better way of celebrating the end of the pandemic than by cruising around some magnificent seas, stopping by at great cities and having romantic dinner nights at nice restaurants?
A getaway in nature
On the other hand, there is always the option of stepping away from the hustle and bustle of large cities, and spending some time in a place that’s not only healthy, but also beautiful. Some of the destinations that plenty of people will look for are the ones that can cater for both peace of mind and amazing things to see or do. One such destination is New Zealand, one of the greenest countries on Earth right now. Not only will you be visiting the magnificent country that gave us the beautiful Shire from Lord of the Rings; this is also a destination that’s excellent for everyone who prefers relaxing to partying. If you’re up for some partying, you will be able to hit Auckland, while if you’re for something calmer, there’s plenty of amazing places that you can see and visit.
Dancing Around at Pride
Pride parades are also events that you want to have in mind for the post-COVID world. Such events have always been quite important, but it seems that they are now more important than ever. The virus has canceled more than 75 Pride parades all around the world, which is one of the reasons why we must support the ones that will see the light of day once the pandemic stops. Truth be told, the upcoming Prides will perhaps be the best Prides ever organized. Give the gays a couple of weeks of quarantine, then let them outside and see what kind of party they are able to throw!
A road trip
If you’re, as well, waiting for the day to wake up and say “long gone are the days when we were not allowed to go wherever we wanted?”, and if staying at one place gave you a lot to think about, then your first post-COVID travel experience should definitely be a nice road trip. You can practically choose which country you want to tour, and you can either take your own car (you have probably missed it so much), or rent one at your destination. Australia is an amazing country for this, though, as it offers the possibility of seeing the Great Ocean Road, which is an amazing thing to see and experience. On the other hand, if you do not want or cannot leave your country, you can also choose to go on a domestic road trip – there are amazing things to see in your vicinity as well.
Holiday for a single guy
If you’re single, or you’re traveling someplace with another single friend, then you should definitely organize a nice vacation for yourself or for you and your single friend, and hit one of the best European cities. Europe has been greatly affected by the virus, which means that now it’s time to pay it back and get it back on its feet by traveling there and seeing all the amazing things it offers. Any city you choose in Europe – you will not make a mistake. Apart from being able to see great landmarks, you will also have the chance to have a drink at great gay clubs and pubs, and join unforgettable gay parties. And if the gay scenery is not your forte, worry not, as Europe indeed has to offer so many different and magnificent things.