Nestled in the heart of Tennessee, not far from the Great Smoky Mountains, Nashville has remained the hub for musical talent for over 200 years. Giving rise to country stars of yore such as Johnny Cash, Loretta Lynn, Tammy Wynette and George Jones, Nashville is the songwriting capital of the world. Welcoming new talent on a daily basis, many have found their dreams as many more have fallen into the nooks and crannies of settling their musical flair into a small bar or coffee shop. Not everyone gets to be a star in Nashville, a select few succeed, as others simply move on down the road.
Nashville is a place where musical souls start to blossom and grow, form new friendships and everlasting memories. It long has been dubbed Music City and is a way of life with endless possibilities and reservoirs of hope. The well of untapped talent is immense, as producers and managers sort through the watershed of guitar toting singers, demos and auditions. Once in a while, some of the lucky ones break through the cracks of the city and find their forever home in Nashville. The stars of tomorrow are ripe and ready to rock their own unique style. They have finally been discovered and people are paying attention.
As bigger and better things are in the works for musicians that pound the pavement in hopes of a break, the daily routine of music practice, meeting with producers and promoters and lining up weekly gigs never stops. Faust N’ The Family Bargain have been learning the ropes of the city since arriving in Nashville last summer. The father and son duo simply packed up their guitars and some clothes, hitting the road from northwestern Pennsylvania to the music capital.
Growing up with a big family in a small town, Clyde Faust III and his son Buffalo agreed it was time to make the move. Performing together for many years in local establishments under the name of Sage, the pair had developed a unique blend of vocals and musical prowess. It was time for a change of scenery as their rock music had grown to a new level.
Upon entering the city limits of Nashville, their eyes opened to new possibilities and excitement. They had their work cut out for them but were ready to tackle the challenge. It was an adjustment of sorts as they settled into their new hometown. As Buffalo says….
I did not come to Nashville to sell my soul, I came here to save it.
Recognizing their strong family bond, they had also become partners in a new venture. A blessing and a deal as they took the name ‘Bargain’ to reflect the talent within that was blossoming with integrity, purpose and professionalism. The two said goodbye to Sage and became Faust N’ The Family Bargain.
Meeting people along the way started to happen quickly as Faust and Buffalo were in the same boat as many others in Nashville. Nick Cross, another singer/songwriter, became a close friend and comrade. Hanging out together, singing and sharing stories, Cross and the pair are working on joint efforts as they continue to perfect their craft.
Chiming in with friendship, advice, connections and overall support have been Chad Fowler, Will Bond and numerous other friendly residents and musicians of Nashville. Getting around the city requires knowing the ins and outs and being familiar with knowing which door to knock on. More than tour guides, a wealth of information has been gleaned from these associations. T.C. Davis has gone above and beyond to welcome Faust N’ The Family Bargain to Nashville. Davis knows the ropes and has made a lasting impact in the city as manager for Shaun Murphy, a blues singer formally with Bob Seger. Connecting with old souls of music is part of mastering the game of success in Nashville.
Viewing one’s talent as a business instead of a hobby makes all the difference in Nashville. Even if someone has a great voice with super song writing skills, the work behind the scenes can turn out to be a huge puzzle or a lingering statistic. Connecting with a person who can relate and promote a song or a singer can mean the difference between a one night stand with the microphone or a mega hit career that lasts a lifetime. The music capital can shut a door or open a window in a heartbeat.
Faust N’ The Family Bargain jumped into the action full speed ahead. Giving up old habits for grinding at the gym, their stamina and dedication are proving that they are a class act. Mostly writing all of their own music, they also include popular rock standards from Three Dog Night and The Rolling Stones. The band has been a regular at various venues and bookings at other Nashville hot spots are in the near future, including The Silver Dollar. An upcoming gig at The Basement is scheduled for May 6 at 9pm. Many times just hanging out in the audience, Faust N’ The Family Bargain has been called up on stage. It is an ongoing musical buffet under the bright lights of Nashville.
The band has worked with many talented musicians including Rich Russo on drums and Mike Pisculli, a bass guitarist. It is an easy task to find someone who plays music in Nashville. Regulars with Faust N’ The Family Bargain are Brandon Roberts on bass and AnnMarie DelRossi, from Boston, on trumpet. Adding their flair and dimension to the vocals of Buffalo and the rhythmic strum of the guitar from Clyde, each performance is a rocking powerhouse of entertainment.
Living the life of a striving musician often includes giving up luxuries, appreciating the little things and being willing to sacrifice. As sleep is almost optional in Nashville, there is much to be done and be accomplished. As a side line to music and for a break in the routine, there are plenty of other gigs to consider. Clyde has been enjoying a small role as an extra on the hit ABC-TV series Nashville, which has turned out to be an added bonus on top of the overall experience. Others can clearly sing the menu as they wait tables at local diners, while waiting for their next gig.
Following a proven formula of success has guided Faust N’ The Family Bargain to the place they are today. Rising quickly by Nashville standards, the band has been mentored and anchored by Jamie McNay of the McNay Music Group. A former musician himself, McNay knows what a ‘want to be music hound’ needs to know and the secrets of the industry. He has experienced it first hand and is qualified to lead others to the spot they desire with thoughtful management, expertise and promotion. Getting to know each musician personally, McNay works closely with his many clients, claiming victories in the commodity of music as a business. Singing is the easy part. Working towards fame and recognition requires hard work, long hours, business skills and tenacity.
McNay has developed successful strategies that have benefited multitudes of rising stars, including Faust N’ The Family Bargain. McNay is a busy man and not fond of holding the hands of uncommitted artists. He saw something worth reaching out to with Faust N’ The Family Bargain. An impressive work ethic, drive and talent not to be denied is a rare occurrence and is not to be passed up. He echoes the sentiments of many who have enjoyed the talents of the new band as he has quoted:
Faust N’ The Family Bargain is a rock solid, go to classic rock act that will knock your socks off.
McNay has been there every step of the way and every mile of the road as he is confident in the successful journey of Faust N’ The Family Bargain. Helping to produce and promote their EPK (Electronic Press Kit) video is only one of the many services McNay has offered.
The road traveled so far has not been all work for Buffalo and Faust. They have enjoyed the walk of fame and the ghosts of the past, reliving memories of the Nashville hierarchy as they create their own strides to sing and strum their music. Meeting well known people in the music business has spurred them on with a driven force. Quick hellos or extended visits with the likes of Shooter Jennings, Spike Lee and Peter Keys of Lynyrd Skynyrd fame, has encouraged the duo and their band towards enlightenment and success.
Following in the footsteps of Elvis and George Jones, haunting encounters have proved to be the whisper of destiny. Hanging out on the couch of the late George Jones and riding the elevator Elvis used each night at Spence Manor, has confirmed the choice they made to enter the Nashville scene.
Connecting with promoters who know the underbelly of the city serves to keep the hum and drum of everyday life well above volume. Staying on top of things only helps the rhythm continue its beat. Competition can be a real work hazard in Nashville, but endless opportunities are always still there with the right strategy.
Outside of the clubs, bars and restaurants, special events are always being planned to showcase new talent in Nashville. As Faust N’ The Family Bargain, Nick Cross and many, many others develop their own fan base and achieve success, the sky is the limit. New talent is constantly being introduced to the world by Nashville, the Songwriting Capital of the World.
By: Roanne FitzGibbon