Tennessee House passes contentious anti-discrimination bill

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) | Tennessee’s GOP-dominated House on March 21 approved an anti-discrimination business bill that some critics say is dangerous for LGBTQ people.

According to the bill, cities and state agencies would be banned from taking “discriminatory action” against businesses if they have internal polices in compliance with state law.

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Pioneering transgender singer Jackie Shane dead at 78

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) | Jackie Shane, a black transgender soul singer who became a pioneering musician in Toronto where she packed out nightclubs in the 1960s, has died. She was 78.

Record label Numero Group, which produced a Grammy-nominated album about Shane that brought her back out into the spotlight, confirmed Feb. 22 that she died in Nashville, Tennessee. The exact date and cause of death were not provided.

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Nashville becomes first Southern city to recognize LGBT-owned businesses

By : James Wellemeyer OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Nashville on Feb. 11 became the first city in the South to recognize LGBT-owned businesses.

Nashville Mayor David Briley signed an executive order including LGBT Business Enterprises certified by the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce in contracting and procurement opportunities throughout the city.

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Author writes of boy discovering he’s gay in deep South

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) | After service one Sunday, little Greg Howard wandered past one of the church ladies, who was confiding to another nearby.

“It would kill his mama,” the woman said, “if she knew he was funny.”

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Grammy-nominated album shines light on transgender pioneer

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) | For decades, Jackie Shane was a musical mystery: a riveting black transgender soul singer who packed nightclubs in Toronto in the 1960s, but then disappeared after 1971.

Some speculated she had died, but her legacy lived on among music historians and R&B collectors who paid big money for her vinyl records. But in 2010, the Canadian Broadcasting Company produced an audio documentary about her, awakening a wider interest in the pioneering singer. Today her face is painted on a massive 20-story musical mural in Toronto with other influential musicians like Muddy Waters.

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Nashville Police name 1st full-time LGBT community liaison

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) | The Metro Nashville Police Department has named its first liaison to the LGBTQ community.

Chief Steve Anderson announced Jan. 10 that Officer Catie Poole will serve in the new role. Poole is a five-year Nashville Police veteran who recently was a downtown bicycle officer.

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Nashville’s first gay bars remembered with historical marker

By : Wire Report
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) | On a wild stretch of Commerce Street, next door to Ira’s Barber Shop and just blocks from Ryman Auditorium, stood a pair of unique bars surrounded by a slew of beer dives.

Dimly lit and filled with cigarette smoke, The Jungle was a one-room club with a grill where cocktails were mixed and a piano often inspired a round of singalongs.

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Historical marker honors Tennessee LGBT activist

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A historical marker has been unveiled honoring a pioneering activist for gay and lesbian rights in Tennessee.

Media outlets report the marker was unveiled Saturday during a ceremony outside the former home of Penny Campbell in Nashville.

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Nashville mayor decries anti-gay statement named after city

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Nashville Mayor Megan Barry is denouncing a statement against same-sex marriage that evangelical leaders have named after the city.

On Tuesday, Barry tweeted that the “Nashville Statement” is poorly named and does not represent the inclusive values of the city and people of Nashville.

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“Nashville” returns with transgender actress, new plot lines

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The new season of Nashville starts with traditional songs rooted in gospel and folk music rather than big production country songs.

Rayna, played by Connie Britton, finds a revelation after hearing a blind man singing “Wayfaring Stranger,” an Appalachian tune estimated to be two centuries old. And Juliette, played by Hayden Panettiere, sees an angelic vision in white singing the hymn “God Shall Wipe All Tears Away.”

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Jo Dee Messina brings her career to Ybor Dec. 10

By : Zach Caruso
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Jo Dee Messina has taken her career into her own hands.

The country music star recently released her fifth studio album entitled ME, a project she completed without the help of a major label, and she is now hitting the road to tour in support of her latest offering and will be playing at The Ritz Ybor in Tampa on Dec. 10.

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Country crooners come out

By : Staff Report
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Country stars Ty Herndon and Billy Gilman are out of the closet.

Herdon went first, in interviews with People Magazine and Entertainment Tonight. His revelation inspired Gilman to go public as well.

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