By Seamus Gallivan:
Tonight is a special night in The Good Neighborhood and for anyone else who’s a sucker for a homecoming. The Sportsmens Tavern will host a birthday show for Lake Shore High School grad and current Nashville resident Chris Nathan, a budding soul sensation bound to break out and bring Buffalo with him.
The singer/songwriter and die-hard Sabres fan will perform an intimate set accompanied only by ace Buffalo drummer Jeff Schaller – no word on whether or not Jeffro will be playing his Blue & Gold Sabres drum kit, but the two are definitely developing a LaFontaine/Mogilny-like chemistry that began when Nathan hired Schaller to complete his band for a show at the Tralf in late-July.
Folks familiar with the Tralf’s Facebook page might recall how Nathan’s fans blew up said page over the summer requesting to see him come home for a show. It worked, and some 200 people came to the Tralf show, scores following Nathan to the after-party at Pearl Street Brewery, where he performed with Type Relevant, Brownman, and DJ Cutler – with both shows supporting Music is Art. With the bond between Nathan and his hometown at a high-point, he declared that he would return to perform in Buffalo soon and more often.
Tonight’s show at the Sportsmens is part of the Tavern’s long-running “Private Party Series,” which offers a chance to see acts who normally play larger rooms in the cozy confines of the venerable Black Rock room that has hosted Rock ‘N’ Roll Hall of Famers, Grammy/Juno Winners, and countless more legends over nearly three decades rockin’ under the radar. Representatives from the YWCA of Western New York will be present running a raffle and spreading the good word about their educational programs.
Back in Buffalo on the morning of his Sportsmens debut, Nathan took a break from his birthday breakfast to talk shop.
What motivated you to move to Nashville?
A great friend and great songwriter partner Terry said one day, “Hey move to Nashville, there are so many opportunities to write with great songwriters!” So now I live in Nashville.
How have you been received there?
I really stand out because of my style. It’s really diverse, while still maintaining that sound I make, Soul!
What do you tell folks about Buffalo?
It’s cold, you don’t know how to drink, and Go Sabres!
Do you plan to ever move back?
Maybe a summer home…I hate shoveling! Since I left and have been traveling it’s hard to pinpoint where home really is.
What’s in store for this birthday show at the Sportsmens?
What happens at the birthday show stays at the birthday show.
What inspires you to support an organization like YWCA?
YWCA provides leadership and empowers our youth to become confident and proud of who they are – it helps them see a light at the end of the tunnel. That’s something I wanna be down with.