NMAAM and Nashville Airport Announce Emerging Artist Series

The Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority (MNAA) Arts in the Airport, in partnership with the National Museum of African American Music (NMAAM), launch an Emerging Artists concert series on October 30, 2013 from 12 to 2:00 p.m. on the Metro Airport Stage – next to Starbucks (Concourse C).  The inaugural event will launch with an opening reception event and then a live performance by songwriter and local jazz musician, Sonja Hopkins.

The Emerging Artists Concert Series serves as a platform to connect with travelers and feature Music City as home to several musical genres and cultivate a platform to introduce emerging artists.  This collaborative concert series showcases the talent and impact African Americans have on American culture and features musicians who embody diverse musical and cultural perspectives.

“We are proud to kick-off the Emerging Artist program with NMAAM,” said Rob Wigington, president and CEO of MNAA.  “The ability to raise an awareness that Nashville is home to many musical tastes, is a position we are glad to champion and what better way to accomplish this than by featuring music as it’s performed on one of our stages.”

In addition to Sonja Hopkins’ performance, the two organizations will collaborate for three additional performances:

  • December 11, 2013, Joy Styles – Raised outside of Philadelphia, Joy has had a love of music since the age of 4.  After finishing college and moving to New York, she quickly emerged as a rising star in the theatre scene, pursuing her passion for acting in Off-Broadway theatre, television, film and voiceovers.  She also starred as a “Raelette” with the Ray Charles Tribute Orchestra headed by Ray Charles manager, Joe Adams.  Finding her true voice in country music, Joy headed south to Nashville and began to sing and write with much success.  “The minute I landed, I knew Nashville would be home. It was just so peaceful. It felt right.”
  • April 2, 2014, Kiya Lacey – An Ella Fitzgerald Foundation award recipient, Kiya Lacey is a triple threat singer, songwriter, and producer.  Born and raised in Nashville, Tennessee, Kiya has taken in all aspects of the Music City.  A 2013 graduate of Harpeth Hall, she plans to enroll in Belmont University to study music business and further indulge herself in pop, jazz, country, soul, and rap.  The passion behind all of Kiya’s music demonstrates her ambitious nature and she hopes to continue to work with professionals in various aspects of the music industry.
  • June 18, 2014, Michael B. Hicks – Michael Hicks is an unique blend of talent and humility which is rarely found in today’s emerging talent.  As an artist, writer, and performer, Mike is revered as one of the best in the diverse Funk and Soul music scene in Nashville and beyond.  His Freshman album, This Is Life, highlights the talents of his writing ability, the moral message of his music, and the production talents of both himself and James Waddell.  When he’s not writing and performing his own original music, Hicks is on the road touring the world with Blues icon, Keb’ Mo.  International touring has lent him years of maturity that most young artists never get to experience. This interesting blend of influences and experiences have made him “the” artist to watch in Nashville.

“We appreciate MNAA partnering with us in this effort and look forward to broaden each artists’ story through this collaboration,” said H. Beecher Hicks, III, NMAAM president & CEO.  “MNAA has extended the ability of NMAAM to share the ability of music to emotionally tie people together – an undeniable component of American culture.”

For more information about the Emerging Artists program, please visit NMAAM.org/events.

About The National Museum of African American Music

As the only museum dedicated to the many offerings African Americans have made in music, the National Museum of African American Music serves a global landscape by commemorating and honoring the legacy, impact and influence of rhythm on over 50 music genres and styles.  Detailing the many dimensions of all types of music, NMAAM focuses on the musical impact on musicians and consumers around the world.  For more information, visit Facebook: theNMAAM or Twitter: @theNMAAM.

About Arts in the Airport

Created in 1988 by the Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority (MNAA), Arts at the Airport is an ever-growing, ever-changing showcase of cultural diversity and creative talent in Tennessee. The award-winning Arts at the Airport program selects and presents works by local, regional, and national artists for the enjoyment and enrichment of Nashville International Airport’s passengers and visitors. Because music is an integral part of Nashville, musical performances are located on stages in the passenger terminal. Performances feature a variety of musical styles including traditional and contemporary country, rhythm and blues, jazz, pop, gospel and bluegrass. The stages are located near the A/B meeter-greeter area, the C/D meeter-greeter area and in the Concourse C food and retail court (beyond security). View Airport invite here.