Tim Rushlow, former lead singer of the country group Little Texas, is really making waves. And we’re not talking just any waves – we’re talking great BIG BAND waves. The singer has transformed himself to realize his long-awaited dream of becoming a big band crooner. He has been building his “Big Band brand” for the past four years. You won’t believe where his dream is setting up shop for him for the next two months.
“Tim Rushlow & His Big Band” opened Friday, November 10 at the Nashville Palace and will run every weekend through the end of the year. In December, the shows will be performed Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights.
If you’re looking for something incredible and out of the ordinary for November and December, look no further than the newly designed supper club at the Nashville Palace just across the street from the Opryland Hotel. Yes, you heard that correctly. After being known for years as Nashville’s country-go-to place in the Music Valley Drive area– a place where Opry superstars hang out after their Opry appearances, the Nashville Palace is now opening its doors to a whole new feel. Instead of sawdust on the floor and chicken tenders in the deep fryer, you’ll now be able to experience a real, sit-down supper of prime rib or chicken béarnaise – all the while being entertained by Tim and his big band.
In addition to beer on tap, there will be a “Rat Pack” style martini bar, a “Let’s be Frank” Bourbon bar and you can even smoke cigars outside. So get your retro on, everybody. Put on your gowns and retro silk suits and let’s go for it. I may even buy myself a pair of lovely up-to-the-elbow white silk gloves, just for my dance back in time. According to Rushlow, it feels like walking into the Cobra room in Vegas back in 1965.
He said that putting the Big Band together and singing songs from the “Great American Songbook” has been a “labor of love for him.” His parents were both singers, and his dad was a crooner. Rushlow “cut his teeth” on songs by Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Bobby Darin, but he identifies best with Darin – no doubt because Darin too had a successful career in another music genre before he stepped out on a limb to record “Mack the Knife”—much to his label’s chagrin at the time, because they just didn’t think it would fly. But fly it did and “Mack The Knife” changed Darin’s music world forever. Rushlow may very well be following suit.
Rushlow, claiming to be “an entrepreneur trapped in a singer’s body,” says that many have reached out to him or his management, interested in his latest project and are seeking to book him. But with the unique position of working within Big Band music and performance, many are not aware of what the show would involve. To quickly resolve that issue, Rushlow went to work to create a show that he could proudly pull excerpts from to create a promotional video that would allow potential venues and talent buyers to see what they would be getting. As it turns out, Rushlow didn’t have to complete the work himself. PBS Television called and offered to help him present his entire Big Band show as a national pledge drive that has aired across the country, and it continues to do be broadcast. This allows Rushlow and his 24-piece orchestra opportunities to perform in every market where the special has been aired.
Rushlow has committed to a seven-week residency at the Nashville Palace with the goal of helping owner Barrett Hobbs change the landscape of Nashville’s entertainment vibe for the holiday season and to create a place that offers something very different than any other place in Nashville has to offer! And for you history buffs, there hasn’t been a Big-Band-Residency in Nashville since the early 1930s.
Rushlow will perform songs from his forthcoming Big-Band album, “Date Night,” during his upcoming shows at the Nashville Palace throughout November. When December hits, the Christmas songs will be added – and the supper club will feel more like a magical place out of “Wonderland.” Rushlow says it already has beautiful decorations and feels like an entirely different destination—a family-friendly and affordable venue that will still create a memorable and romantic night out.
In alignment with “Date Night,” Rushlow is discussing the possibility of hosting a new television concept with a major network that it will be “everything music,” but with a mega twist. And as part of the big twist? Both male and female audiences will love it!
But Rushlow doesn’t let his career revolve around a one-stop shop. He has been instilled with love for all genres of music – and to keep himself tip-toeing into the country-song garden now and then, he also continues his work with The Frontmen of Country, a trio consisting of Rushlow, Ritchie McDonald (lead singer of Lone Star) and Larry Stewart (lead singer of Restless Heart). Rushlow says it’s very low-key with just the artists and their acoustic guitars, a piano, a rug and some candles – and they sing their songs for the love of singing. One of his favorite things about being in the group is their three-part harmony, which could also be why many have donned them a “Super Group.” If you want to see them in person, you’ll be excited to know that in January and February, the trio will be touring together, follow them on Facebook and Twitter for more information.
Rushlow couldn’t end his conversation without commenting how grateful he was for Clif Doyal of the Clif Doyal Agency, a long-time music pro known for his honesty and loyalty. Perhaps we could call him “Loyal Doyal.” Rushlow says Doyal has stepped in to the role of booking and management. Rushlow is also excited that he’s met some incredible people from larger camps who are anxious to help – and says he hopes to have more to report on that later.
So if you’re a fan of the “Great American Songbook” songs, country music, and great food, great friends or just great company – please join Rushlow at the Nashville Palace to make some memories.