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With Cancer Patients in Need of Support More Than Ever, Local Songwriters Tony Arata, Leslie Satcher, Jenny Tolman and Dave Brainard Step Up

April 14, 2020 – Nashville, Tenn. – This past year has been a difficult one for everyone, but cancer patients throughout Middle Tennessee and worldwide have experienced the strain, uncertainty and isolation brought on by the global pandemic like few others. Because of COVID-19, these individuals have needed – and will continue to need – additional emotional and social support, making the work being done at Gilda’s Club Middle Tennessee more essential than ever.

“The adults, teens, children and families we serve don’t have the luxury of putting cancer on hold. Cancer doesn’t quit – even in the face of COVID,” said Gilda’s Club Middle Tennessee President and CEO Harriet Schiftan, MSW, MAJCS. “In fact, in the first four months of the pandemic, we received a typical year’s worth of requests for resources and support – more than 1,500. Over the course of 2020, we served close to 8,500 individuals, both in-person and virtually. Gilda’s Club is increasingly a lifeline for your friends, families and neighbors being impacted by cancer.”

To help fund its critical mission, Gilda’s Club Middle Tennessee will host the 3rd Annual Songwriters Night on Sunday, May 2, and in typical Music City fashion, several award-winning singer/songwriters will take to the stage at The Reserve at Fat Bottom Brewery to champion the Gilda’s Club cause. Artists include:

Tony Arata, perhaps best known for “The Dance,” a chart-topping hit for artist Garth Brooks, and “Dreaming with My Eyes Open,” which reached #1 for Clay Walker.

Leslie Satcher, who penned hits “Troubadour” (George Strait), “I Said a Prayer” (Pam Tillis), “When God-Fearin’ Women Get the Blues (Martina McBride), and “Politically Incorrect” (Merle Haggard and Gretchen Wilson).

Jenny Tolman, a country newcomer whose 2020 debut album There Goes the Neighborhood was named “Best Country Debut Album” by Nashville Scene, while The Tennessean named Jenny an “Artist to Watch.”

Dave Brainard, a Grammy-nominated producer for Brandy Clark’s 12 Stories and who has produced LPs for artists including Jamey Johnson, Jerrod Niemann, and Sunny Sweeney. Songwriting credits include cuts by Brooks & Dunn, Neal McCoy, Sammy Kershaw, and Hunter Hayes.

“We are thrilled to have the support of these four talented and generous songwriters, all of whom answered our call for support with a quick and resounding ‘yes,’” Schiftan said. “We are also excited to be able to offer two ways for guests to experience this event: virtually via Zoom or in-person at the beautiful, indoor-outdoor space at Fat Bottom Brewing, which we chose specifically because it allows us to create a COVID-smart event.”

Among the COVID best practices that will be a part of the event:

• All staff and volunteers will be required to wear masks throughout the event, unless eating/drinking and/or safely spaced from anyone outside of their pod.
• All guests will be required to wear masks unless they are seated and/or safely distanced from anyone outside of their pod.
• An outdoor seating option is available at ticket purchase. In addition, the event location was chosen for its four large garage doors, which will be opened to allow for a constant flow of fresh air for all guests.
• The event will be held in a private space with a private bar and private restrooms.
• All seating (in pods) will be safely spaced.
• An option for “grab and go” beverages and appetizers, to limit the need for interaction with others, is
available upon request.
• Hand sanitizer will be available in multiple locations. Extra masks will also be on hand.
• In addition, the team at Fat Bottom Brewing will sanitize the event space prior to opening. The Fat
Bottom team has been doing events for the past several months and is well-versed in their COVID- prevention protocols.

Sponsors of Gilda’s Club Middle Tennessee’s 3rd Annual Songwriters event include Tennessee Oncology, American Paper and Twine, Studio 8 Design, Denise Alper, and Helen and Steve Lane – without whom this event wouldn’t be possible. Additional thanks go to the event committee, including Gilda’s Club Founding Board Member Ronna Rubin, current board members Samantha Saturn of SESAC and Flynn Tracy, and YLC Board Intern Ben Sutter.

Tickets to this very special event are $150 and include heavy appetizers; beer, wine and soft drinks; parking; and an evening of amazing music and storytelling for a great cause. Learn more and buy tickets here.

For more information about Gilda’s Club Middle Tennessee’s free cancer support program, go to

Laura Alabed-Olsson, Director of Marketing / Communications
615.329.1124 or 615.948.7682 (cell)