Bobby Karl Works The Room: Rising Women On The Row Hits An Emotional Bullseye
Bobby Karl Works The Room: Chapter 666
Rising Women on the Row celebrated its 10th anniversary in style on Thursday morning (March 23).
Staged as an annual breakfast gala by MusicRow at the Omni Hotel’s ballroom, the event honors worthy women in the Nashville entertainment business. Rising Women on the Row provided inspiration, encouragement and an emotional-support gathering for its attendees.
This event has become a key date on the music-biz social calendar, which was evidenced by a capacity crowd of 550 and sponsorship tables hosted by more than two dozen top Music City firms.
“Welcome to the 10th anniversary of ‘Rising Women on the Row,’” greeted MusicRow Owner/Publisher Sherod Robertson. “You have supported this event…and brought your positive energy.” He noted that Rising Women has honored 55 women to date who have “inspired us every step of their careers.”
This year’s keynote was sounded by previous honoree Lynn Oliver-Cline. During a Q&A with Robertson, the River House Artists exec advised, “You have to have a thick skin in this business. You have to learn to manage the highs and the lows. You just have to work through it. And you’re not in in alone.” When bad times come, “You’ve gotta stay strong for everyone around you. Tomorrow is a new day.”
Nearly all of this year’s speakers, including her, spoke of “having it all,” combining a successful career with raising a family.
“They represent a commitment to excellence,” said Robertson of the six 2023 honorees. He brought on MusicRow Director of Operations LB Cantrell to assist in the Rising Women presentations.
Many of the honorees brought their children to the event, including Big Loud Records promotion exec Stacy Blythe. “Stay confident in your vision, and you will achieve great things,” she advised. Blythe noted that many of her label’s department heads are female and that her own promotion department is 70% women.
Neon Coast owner Martha Earls brought her 9- and 11-year-old daughters on stage. “You can accomplish all that you want to accomplish,” she said. “Be the person now that you needed when you were younger.”
“I’ve been coming to this event for many years,” reflected WME agent Beth Hamilton. “I love it. [This community] is a daily source of encouragement.”
The RIAA’s Jackie Jones suggested, “Be kind to others and leave things better than you found them.” She, too, introduced her daughter to the crowd. “We want to make bringing our families [to work] the rule rather than the exception.”
Brittany Schaffer recently left her executive position at Spotify to become a dean at Belmont University. She grew weepy as she talked about her husband and family. “You can have it all,” she promised.
“This season, the mountains are way higher and the lows are so much lower,” said Sony Music Publishing VP Anna Weisband. “Thank you for honoring me. I love this event so much, and I always leave here so inspired. I am lifted up and encouraged.”
And that, my friends, is what it’s all about.
Erika Wollam Nichols, Shannan Hatch, Rachel Whitney, Diane Pearson, Lori Badgett, Tiffany Dunn, Leslie Roberts, Kelli Currier, Ebie McFarland, Sheree Spoltore, Preshus Harris, Caryl Atwood and many more femme fabulons attended, as did such male supporters as Rusty Gaston, Jon Platt, Mike Molinar, Woody Bomar, Charlie Cook, B.J. Hill, Jimmy Wheeler, Kerry O’Neil, Dale Bobo, Allen Brown, Jay Williams and Todd Cassetty.
Presenting sponsors City National Bank and Loeb & Loeb filled their tables with greats, as did such folks as Red Light, Warners, Tri Star, BMI, SESAC, BBR, CMA, Spotify, The AMG, Safford Motley, Oh Creative, Black River, Wrensong, FBMM, Opry Entertainment, Pinnacle and Riser House.
We all feasted on the Omni’s perfectly scrambled eggs, sausage balls, biscuits, bacon, melon, strawberries, pineapple and cheesy potatoes.