The Power of a Good Cause: An Interview with the Founder of ReTune Nashville

The Power of a Good Cause: An Interview with the Founder of ReTune Nashville

By Joel Widmer | Nashville

Jul 27

One of the amazing things that came of out the Nashville Flood was how the Nashville community came together selflessly to help each other. It was incredible to watch the news (which I never do) and see story after story of people going the extra mile to reach out to those in need. One of my favorite stories is about Sheri O’Neal, who is still working around the clock to raise money for those in need. Even though you might not see the damage as much anymore, it’s still very real for a huge amount of people.

I feel like we often forget how many resources we have at our fingertips and what they’re capable of. We get bogged down in the “what if’s” and ideation phases when a majority of the time all of that planning is really just excuses we’re feeding ourselves. That’s one of the things I love about Sheri’s story. It started with only an email.

Tell us a little about yourself
My name is Sheri O’Neal and I am a commercial photographer, a visual artist and a writer here in Nashville…a storyteller of sorts!

What is ReTune Nashville?
ReTune Nashville is a Tennessee Non-Profit organization helping provide relief for uninsured musicians through the sale of artwork created from flood damaged musical instruments.
How did it start?
It started by accident when I saw a photo of an instrument in the trash 4 days after the flood and though it might be cool to round up some art friends, pick up some disposed instruments from the flood and make a piece of art to sell for relief money.  I send out an email to about 50 friends and associates to see what they thought and in 2-4 hours the email had been passed along to over 4000 email boxes.  I started receiving phone calls from VP’s of music companies and associations wanting to get involved.  At that point I felt I should turn it into something bigger and ReTune was born.
Who are some of the people already getting involved?
Joe Glaser of Glaser Instruments, Bruce Bouton, Mark Montgomery, Ed Beaver  were the first and helped me to recover many of the instruments.  Misicians Rich Eckhardt of Toby Keith’s band, studio musicians Michael Spriggs, Chris Leuzinger, Brent Mason among others as well as Raul Malo have all offered gear.  Debbie Carroll of MusiCares, Ann Brown of the Arts Company and Jay Franks of CMT have all been following up with us on the details over the past few months.  Soundcheck has offered to let us have the event at their facility.  And we have over 50 visual artist wanting to participate such as Manuel Cuevas, Brother Mel, Rachel Kice, Jason Lascu and so many others.

What are some of the ways people can get involved?
Visit our web site at join our FB and twitter sites and spread the word and

Any other ways the tech & marketing community can get involved?
We can use as much internet exposure as we can get because we want to get national attention when we release the event and auction information in a few days through a press release we are putting together now.  Our hope is to raise awareness for the art we will be selling outside of nashville in order to have more people participate in the online auction.  Spreading the word is key!

When and where is the auction?
We are still working on all the details, the event and start of the auction will be October 23, 2010, all the details will be released later this week on our FB page and through press releases.
Where can we learn more and connect?


About the Author

Joel Widmer is the Founder & CEO of Fluxe Digital Marketing—a content marketing shop that helps smart businesses create, produce and promote their content through a unique one-on-one interview process. When he’s not working, Joel can be found trying new restaurants with his wife, son, and daughter.

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