"Interested Party", this is money out of all our pockets funding the Commission. Do you not choose a business on the merit of its service and value? If you're unsatisfied do you just say, "well, they still want my money so I'm not going to complain"?
The author of this article has been "behind the scenes" and "in the trenches" before there was even a mainstream idea to support Memphis music. His passion has been mimicked, his ideas "borrowed", and his efforts thwarted and sadly, it was often done by those who claim to champion the Memphis creative industry with their non-profit all the while still wondering why so many musicians, artists, and filmmakers still see greener pastures elsewhere. You're way off to frame the author has a bully in this scenario.
I won't shed a tear for constructively scrutinizing any publicly funded agency or non-profit organization. Their funding should live and die by thorough results driven evaluation, honest criticism, and accountability. Too many "support the arts" rackets here make the wine and cheese crowd happy while the creative class is likely to make more of a living working the catering than the stage.
And "ProgressiveMemphis", I doubt there's a single musician in this area code who remains here for the great commissions and foundations for their career. If the commission wants to truly bolster recording and live music in Memphis, the best course of action is to get the hell out of the way of private enterprise.
What are the names that made Memphis a music holy land? Stax, Hi-Records, Royal, Sun, American Studios...in other words, not non-profit organizations. It was entrepreneurs wanting to make money in Memphis with the talent that was here. If the current local small businesses that cater to the Memphis music industry got a fraction of the attention and economic assistance that vacuum factories and hunting stores received here then there'd be a renaissance of Memphis music industry that will profit many now and later in tourism dollars.
Jumping from Collins' statement, then let's use our imagination and get creative. Let's imagine Memphis in the future and what's appearing to thrive and what's not. Reuse and historical preservation of architecture has proven to be a successful method and cause championed by citizens. Broad Avenue (add on today Loeb's plan to reuse warehouse space), TN Brewery, Chisca, Sears Crosstown, & Overton Square are looking to be examples of the public knowing what's best for their city and for the investors and developers to see the opportunity in that.
Let's just try and see what can be done with the existing buildings of the Fairgrounds and see the financial opportunities in that. In the future Memphis can be a city praised for how they preserved architectual history and kept their city thriving and unique or if we don't do our homework, we can be the capitol of public/private sector funded eyesores and bad ideas.
♪ Don't stand, don't stand so, don't stand so close to the greenscreen. ♪
"The only goal is to try and save the building, but if we can't, we've given it a great shot. That's where we are right now," Rasberry said.
Bianca, any chance you can do a follow-up and ask Rasberry if he still stands by that statement after turning down a genuine offer that would save the building?
If a tree falls in the woods and no one instagrams it with the official hashtag, what's the point?
Well, Memphis doesn't have financial support. The state incentives aren't there (see an earlier Flyer story on those details). And honestly, incentives are just prop ups for the bigger budget films to have a somewhat stance of legitimacy (referring back to that Weekend of Bernie's corpse comment further up by someone). If those incentives in the current hot-spot cities are slashed by the next elected officials then the film industry bolts from those towns too, no matter how scenic and soulful and magical the area is. And trust me, we haven't accepted it as our fate, I'll prove it by letting you fund my next film.
I think Bill you are not seeing that in the picture above, it is a majority of storytellers and creatives with a varying range of technical production experience ranging from professional quality to still learning the craft. No, you wouldn't hire most of those in the article to be your Assistant Camera or Key Grip. But the above want to make movies that will eventually have the need for a local crew profesisonal. You don't "crew up" with a writer. There might be some stepped on steel-booted toes on this article because some of those creatives up top are for now acting as their own grip & electric, assistant director, production assistant, editor, whatever… but they eventually want to hire you and the experienced pro crew to make their movies (and I count at least 15 filmmakers in that photo that did pay crew positions on their last productions).
All this is showcasing is that there's a pool of storytellers looking to still make movies in Memphis despite some challenges, get good at it, and make bigger and better movies in Memphis, which is good for all of us.
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By Chris Davis, Susan Ellis, Toby Sells, and Maya Smith
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