Nate Rau

Nate Rau

Nate Rau has a granular knowledge of Nashville’s government and power brokers, having spent more than a decade with the Tennessean, navigating the ins and outs of government deals as an investigative reporter. During his career at The Tennessean and The City Paper, he covered the music industry and Metro government and won praise for hard-hitting series on concussions in youth sports and deaths at a Tennessee drug rehabilitation center. In a state of Titans and Vols fans, Nate is an unabashed Green Bay Packers and Chicago Cubs fan.

Analysis: How Nashville can save its independent music venues

By: - April 14, 2021

However the situation at Exit/In plays out, Nashville has received a fresh reminder about the precarious nature of its independent music venues. The city’s oldest rock club is under contract to be sold to a company that focuses on boutique hotels, but has vowed to preserve Exit/In. The sale of the building is not final […]

A historical marker for the Elliston Place "Rock Block" is positioned just outside the Exit/In. (Photo: John Partipilo)

AJ Capital vows to preserve Exit/In in first statement

By: - April 9, 2021

AJ Capital Partners, the apparent purchaser of the Exit/In rock and roll club, broke its silence late Friday, vowing to preserve the music venue. The developer behind the luxury Graduate Hotel chain, AJ Capitol Partners said its plan was never to build a hotel where the 50-year-old venue is located. The company said in a […]

Exit/In owners Telisha and Chris Cobb with their son, Spike, sit on stage at the Exit/In. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Hundreds rally to save “Nashville’s soul”

By: - April 8, 2021

Supporters rallied on Wednesday in support of Exit/In, Nashville’s oldest rock and roll club, which is under contract to be sold to a hotel developer. Exit/In’s operators Chris and Telisha Cobb are hoping to purchase the property, which also includes the next door bar Hurry Back. In addition to the Cobbs, Metro Councilman Brandon Taylor, […]

Historic Nashville Courthouse. (Photo:

Legal battle returns over anti-tax Metro charter amendment

By: - April 6, 2021

Jim Roberts, the attorney and organizer for the 4 Good Government group seeking to roll back property taxes and overhaul how Metro government functions, filed a preemptive complaint last week over the number of petition signatures his group needs to force the measure onto the ballot. The legal filing came before the Davidson County Election […]

In December, a group of parents rallied in Nashville to get their kids back in the classroom. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Nashville schools likely to request waiver on TNReady 

By: - April 6, 2021

Metro Nashville Public Schools is likely to request a waiver from the state Department of Education on using the upcoming TNReady tests to evaluate the district as well as its schools and its teachers. A law passed during the special legislative session required districts to achieve at least 80 percent participation on the standardized tests […]

DETROIT, MI -Mary Barra, General Motors Chairman and CEO, speaks with Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee, at the reveal of the General Motors Cadillac XT6 three-row crossover SUV at the Garden Theater on January 13, 2019 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)

Gov. Lee, Ultium Cells to announce $2.2B electric battery factory in Spring Hill

By: - April 2, 2021

Ultium Cells is planning to invest approximately $2.2 billion for a new electric batteries factory in Spring Hill as part of a massive economic development project to be announced by Gov. Bill Lee’s administration in the coming weeks. The project will attract 1,300 jobs and put Tennessee firmly in the midst of General Motors’ ambitious […]

Southern Services Landfill in Nashville's Bordeaux community. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Waste Management landfill refused Nashville flood debris after expansion request rejected

By: and - April 2, 2021

Less than one week after the Solid Waste Region Board rejected a proposal to expand a landfill in Bordeaux, the landfill’s owner told the city it could not accept flood debris cleared by Metro crews. Metro reached out to the Southern Services landfill owner, Waste Management, regarding disposal of debris from last weekend’s floods, a […]

Exit/In under contract to be sold to hotel developer

By: - April 2, 2021

Exit/In, Nashville’s oldest rock and roll club, is under contract to be sold to AJ Capital Partners, the developer behind the Graduate Hotel chain and other tourist-focused projects in Nashville. Terms of the deal were not immediately clear. Multiple sources confirmed the contract to the Tennessee Lookout, which first reported last month the property was […]

A voter enters Trinity Baptist Church in Manchester to vote.

As GOP shifts strategy from election lawsuits to laws, voting rights advocates warn of Tennessee

By: - March 31, 2021

As Republican-led legislatures continue a systematic push to pass laws they say are aimed at ratcheting up election security, voting rights advocates in Tennessee worry the entire nation could soon look a lot like the Volunteer State where voter turnout and voter registration figures are among the lowest in the country. The policy debate over […]

In December, a group of parents rallied in Nashville to get their kids back in the classroom. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Bill empowering education commissioner to take over school districts advances

By: - March 30, 2021

A state bill granting broad powers for the commissioner of education to assume control over a local school district if certain benchmarks are not met regarding improving priority schools and spending federal grant dollars cleared a House subcommittee on Tuesday. Nashville Democrats bashed the proposal in a press conference shortly before the education instruction subcommittee […]

(Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Anti-smoking groups come out against state bills on e-cigarettes

By: - March 30, 2021

A group of public health organizations joined together on Tuesday to oppose state legislation they say would strip local governments’ ability to regulate vaping. E-cigarettes are the new frontier in the public policy battle over tobacco use. The legislation in question is sponsored by Sen. Steve Southerland, R-Morristown, and Rep. Lowell Russell, R-Vonore. In a […]

(Getty Images)

Education funding in TN reaches breaking point as BEP lawsuit advances

By: - March 25, 2021

In a legal maneuver that flew under the radar last year, a coalition of small school districts in Tennessee quietly joined the lawsuit brought by Shelby County and Metro Nashville schools over the adequacy of the state’s public education funding. It was a major development since Shelby County and MNPS had been going it alone […]