Stories on Screen:
Bluebird: The Movie
Sponsored by Visit Mississippi, Mississippi Arts Commission, & SouthGroup Insurance
Apr 18, 2021 Doors: 2:00 P.M. Show: 2:30PM
GRAMMY Museum® Mississippi will host its first live public program since the COVID-19 pandemic with a special screening of the film Bluebird: The Movie, a documentary about the famous club considered an “accidental landmark that changed music history.” The screening will start at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, April 18 in the Sanders Soundstage at GRAMMY Museum Mississippi, and tickets are $20. A moderated conversation with award-winning singer/songwriters Ashley Cleveland, Karen Staley, Kathy Mattea and Tricia Walker, plus Amy Kurland, founder of the Bluebird Cafe, and current Bluebird manager, Erika Wollam-Nichols will take place immediately following the screening.
Amy Kurland was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, but her family moved to Nashville when she was eight years old. She graduated from George Washington University in Washington D.C. with a BA in American Literature & American Studies and did what one does with such degrees – she began working in the food and service industry. Returning to Nashville, Kurland operated her own renegade food cart downtown until it was shut down by “the man” and then a lunch stand called “The Bakery” on 2nd Avenue. In 1982, she transformed a defunct Green Hills game- room into a cozy little eatery for the ladies who lunch in that upscale shopping district.
Thanks to her soft spot for guys with guitars it became something else entirely. The Bluebird Cafe became THE listening room songwriters in Nashville and eventually the world. Countless country artists got their start at the little club and the “in the round” format pioneered there would become the template for acoustic shows everywhere. It has been featured in books, movies, and television, praised by industry and fans of all genres of music and won more awards than Meryl Streep. After 25 years under her direction, Kurland entrusted the club to the folks at Nashville Songwriters Association International and began to devote more of her time to her philanthropic pursuits, which include social justice and alcohol and drug recovery.
Erika Wollam-Nichols has been President and General Manager of The Bluebird Cafe since 2008, overseeing all aspects of the venue’s on-site and off-site operations along with marketing, sponsorship and brand development of The Bluebird Cafe name. Prior to her position at The Bluebird, she was Director of Development for the Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) where she oversaw the organization’s fundraising, marketing, and community relation’s efforts.
An alumnus of Leadership Music, Wollam-Nichols serves on the Board of Directors for the organization along with the boards of the ACLU of Tennessee. She has also served on the board of the Folk Alliance International and the Nashville Chapter of the Recording Academy. She was a three-time recipient of the Nashville Business Journal’s Women in Music City Award, was honored with the Maggie Cavender Award of Service and recently inducted into the SOURCE Hall of Fame.
Wollam-Nichols received her Bachelor of Arts with a major in philosophy and a minor in journalism from Belmont University and a Master of Fine Arts from Vermont College of Fine Arts. She is a former adjunct instructor for Watkins College of Art, Design & Film in Nashville.
Additional Support From
- Sunday, April 18, 2021 at 2:30pm Add to Calendar