It takes an artist with a soul to understand the soul of a city. Nashville-based soul/pop artist Elliott Blaufuss has done just that with his new single, “Nashville.” “Nashville” arrives with a music video that portrays an authentic and fitting representation of a city dealing with massive expansion and migration. Blaufuss composed the video as a visual montage, capturing many of the city’s vibrant neighborhoods.

The song embodies the melting pot of melodious styles, genres, and personalities that Music City lives and breathes. Whether it’s the hipsters in East or the boujee business professionals in the Gulch, “Nashville” incorporates it all. 

The single was influenced by list-form and stream-of-consciousness writing from the likes of Bob Dylan and Jack Kerouac. “I’ve been observing my neighborhood for years now and wanted to tell some of that story, but mostly I wanted to give an honest portrait of my time here in Nashville,” says Blaufuss. 

What’s your story as an artist? 

I grew up across the lake from Prince in Minnesota, and I started a band at 10 years old.  I’m a multi-instrumentalist and songwriter who was on the road for many years as a sideman and musical director to acts like Gavin DeGraw and Eric Hutchinson.  I have always written my own material and am finally putting time and attention into getting it out there.

What inspired this single?

I felt a need to create some portrait of my time in Nashville, down to naming some of the people in my neighborhood and things I see and do every day.  I also wanted to get a larger feel of the city, the hopes and dreams, the heat, the class divides, the tourism…

Music is often about creating something open ended so that the listener can interject their own story, this song was about telling my own and seeing music city through my eyes.  

What are some sources of inspiration for your storytelling?

Jack Kerouac’s stream of consciousness writing,  Bob Dylan’s “Last Thoughts On Woody Guthrie,” and mainly my time living in Nashville and in the south.  I was also trying to combine my feelings for the modern scene along with my love of the classics of this town like: Loretta Lynn, Conway Twitty, John Hartford, Keith Whitley along with others.

Any funny anecdotes from the time you were recording or writing the single?

While filming I was: invited to church, made friends with pedal pub tourists, discovered a LARGE colony of cats that live in Peeler Park, and found out that my neighbor Billy and his family was often looked after by Waylon Jennings. I ended up meeting more people and getting deeper into the history and the neighborhoods while filming the video on my own.  I discovered a lot of new information I wanted to put into the lyrics, though the track was already mixed and mastered – it just gave me more love and insight for the city I was already trying to portray.  

Tell us about the music video and the idea behind it!

I wanted to capture everything I was saying in the lyrics and invite the listener to see what I see every day.  I tried to have every shot actually in the place I was singing about. Though one or two may have been in another part of town, the video took me all over the city over about a two-month span.

What’s a record that shaped your creativity?

God Shuffled His Feet (Crash Test Dummies)

Who is an artist or band you look up to today?

The Punch Brothers, PJ Morton, Dr. Dog, Bob Schneider, Caleb Hawley

Any future projects?

Currently finishing up a single about the time I ate an edible and saw aliens… but it turned out to be Elon Musk. Very excited about that little puppy. Also finishing up my first full length release as an artist!

Top 3 dream collaborations?

Chris Thile, Chaka Khan, Napoleon Bonaparte

What does music mean to you?

Everything. Music is to be shared and experienced. It’s there to illuminate or wash over you.  It can spread light and love, or embolden pain. It can heal hearts and break up kingdoms. It can foretell the future of a culture…or it’s a bangin’ little beat by the pool with some lemonade. It’s whatever I need it to be.

How would you describe your sound to someone who has never heard you?

Awesome, really friggin’ awesome my friend… and I like your shoes – you should definitely check it out!!!