Neighborhood Revitalization Music Video Project

Project created a music video of the song Displacement Blues featuring an aspiring songwriter and a black mother and her kids who were evicted from their Section 8 housing. (This mother and her three kids are now living in one room in a boarding house since they have not been able to find suitable housing. There is a 14,000-person waiting list in Nashville for Section 8 housing.) Nashville-based Shelby Bottom String Band provided the music on the video. The Project partnered with two non-profits: Tennessee Alliance for Progress and Nashville Organized for Action and Hope (NOAH), both working on affordable housing. The video premiered on the big screens at a NOAH Mayoral forum attended by 1,800 people. It has also been shown at neighborhood meetings and featured on a widely-read Facebook page on affordable housing in Nashville. It has also been viewed on YouTube by people in other cities that are facing an affordable housing crisis. Since the NY Times declared Nashville the “It City” in 2013, real estate has boomed. Expensive condos and apartments are springing up, especially in the urban core. Affordable houses have been torn down and replaced with more expensive houses, often two on a single lot. (You can see footage of a home demolition in the video.) Over half of Nashville homeowners and renters are paying more than 30% of their income on housing and are thus considered cost-burdened. Homelessness is increasing. As the Nashville Scene put it in a recent issue: “Priced Out of Nashville: Can the people Nashville hopes to attract afford to move here? And can the residents who made it desirable afford to stay?”

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