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VOL. 45 | NO. 15 | Friday, April 9, 2021

Charting a crossover hit

New National Museum of African American Music seeks broader audience – including country fans

Whenever proponents of the proposed National Museum of African American Music would hit a snag, they could take solace by looking south from their hoped-for home at Fifth Avenue and Broadway.

AUTO RACING

Knoxville partners race in to bolster Music City Grand Prix

Teddy Phillips knows a good investment opportunity when he hears it. But the chief executive officer of the Knoxville-based heavy civil construction firm Phillips & Jordan needed some questions answered before committing.

JOE ROGERS: MY TAKE

Legislative plan: Stoke fear, offer bill to soothe fear

If people could fight COVID-19 with a gun, Tennessee legislators would be health care champions. As it happens, though, the best weapons against COVID are masks, physical distancing and vaccines – none of which most legislators are keen on promoting. Instead, they’re keen on blocking them.

Local Weather
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EVENTS

Real Estate Investors Network. April Main Event: “Dynamic Deal Structuring, Investing with no Limits.” Multiple speakers at this investing event. Oak Hill Assembly, 5200 Franklin Pike, Nashville. Monday, 6-9 p.m. Registration required for in person and online. Information

more events »

RICHARD COURTNEY: REALTY CHECK

Cook, McKee ramp up commitment to Habitat

Paul Cook entered the real estate business in 1972 and quickly established himself as a man with a keen intellect and the eye of a visionary entrepreneur. Over time, his reputation as a builder was as sound as the foundations of his homes.

REAL ESTATE

Mortgage rates dip for first time since January

McLEAN, Va. (AP) — Mortgage rates fell for the first time in more than two months as buyers continue to be stifled by high prices and limited supply.

NEWSMAKERS

Rucker named VU chief HR officer

Cleo D. Rucker has been promoted to the new position of chief human resources officer for Vanderbilt University.

BRIEFS

NEC announces Amazon as supporting partner

The Nashville Entrepreneur Center, a nonprofit dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs and business leaders, has announced Amazon as a new supporting partner.

BEHIND THE WHEEL

Testing casts doubts on Teslas’ EPA range estimates

Edmunds’ test team recently published the results of its real-world range testing for electric vehicles. Notably, every Tesla the team tested in 2020 came up short of matching the EPA’s range estimate. Almost all other EVs Edmunds tested met or exceeded those estimates.

PERSONAL FINANCE

Money shame seen as cause of increased suicide rate

The U.S. suicide rate has risen dramatically in recent years, and certified money coach Tammy Lally of Washington, D.C., is convinced money shame is a contributing factor.

CAREER CORNER

Spring rebirth offers new hope for finding right job

How relieved are you that spring is here? After months of snow storms paired with a long global pandemic, seeing flowers and clear skies brings much-needed hope.

MILLENNIAL MONEY

Reboot your budget to prep for reopening

Picture cruising your car deep into 2021 and never glancing in the rearview mirror. Vaccines, travel and a hope of normalcy are finally on the horizon.

MUSIC INDUSTRY

Luke Bryan tests positive for COVID, sidelined from 'Idol'

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Luke Bryan says he's tested positive for COVID-19, which sidelined him from the season's first live "American Idol" episode on ABC.

SPORTS

Reed out, George in as TSU football coach

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee State announced Monday coach Rod Reed's contract will not be renewed after 11 seasons running the Tigers' football program with former NFL running back Eddie George reportedly poised to replace him.

NASHVILLE SC

Nashville extends coach Gary Smith's contract through 2023

NASHVILLE (AP) — Nashville has extended coach Gary Smith's contract through the 2023 season after leading the club to the playoffs in its inaugural season.

PREDATORS

Johansen's shootout goal leads Predators over Stars 3-2

NASHVILLE (AP) — Ryan Johansen was the lone scorer in the shootout, leading the Nashville Predators to a 3-2 victory over the Dallas Stars on Sunday night.

Predators' McCarron suspended 2 games for illegal head check

NEW YORK (AP) — Nashville Predators forward Michael McCarron was suspended two games Sunday for an illegal check to the head of Tampa Bay's Yanni Gourde.

NASHVILLE AREA

New State Library and Archives to host opening ceremony

NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee State Library and Archives will host a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the opening of its new 165,000 square foot building.

EDUCATION

Tennessee offering free online courses amid pandemic

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee labor officials are continuing to offer free online courses to help people without work during the COVID-19 pandemic advance their skills.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Biden sees `win' for US in electric vehicle battery deal

WASHINGTON (AP) — Two big South Korean electric vehicle battery makers said Sunday they have settled a long-running trade dispute that will allow one company to move ahead with plans to manufacture batteries in Georgia. President Joe Biden called it "a win for American workers and the American auto industry."

TECHNOLOGY

Microsoft buying speech recognition firm Nuance in $16B deal

Microsoft, on an accelerated growth push, is buying speech recognition company Nuance in a deal worth about $16 billion.

VIRUS OUTBREAK

Tweaked COVID vaccines in testing aim to fend off variants

Dozens of Americans are rolling up their sleeves for a third dose of COVID-19 vaccine -- this time, shots tweaked to guard against a worrisome mutated version of the virus.

Drivers wanted: Record demand at Uber as vaccinations rise

Uber is offering sign-up bonuses and other incentives for drivers as it faces record demand for rides and meal delivery.

Time to party? Events industry still uncertain about COVID

NEW YORK (AP) — Although weddings and other big celebrations are going back on the calendar in the U.S., business owners who make those events happen expect a slow recovery from the impact of COVID-19.

US colleges divided over requiring student vaccinations

BOSTON (AP) — U.S. colleges hoping for a return to normalcy next fall are weighing how far they should go in urging students to get the COVID-19 vaccine, including whether they should — or legally can — require it.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Stocks end slightly below latest record highs as tech slips

Stocks ended just below the latest record highs they hit last week as technology companies slipped.

Biden tells execs US needs to invest, lead in computer chips

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden used a virtual meeting with corporate leaders about a global shortage of semiconductors to push Monday for his $2.3 trillion infrastructure plan, telling them that the U.S. should be the world's computer chip leader.

US budget deficit jumps to record $1.7 trillion this year

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. government's budget deficit surged to an all-time high of $1.7 trillion for the first six months of this budget year, nearly double the previous record, as another round of economic-support checks added billions of dollars to spending last month.

Fed's Powell sees US boom ahead, with COVID still a risk

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy is poised for an extended period of strong growth and hiring, the chair of the Federal Reserve said in an interview broadcast Sunday, though the coronavirus still poses some risk.

Business faces tricky path navigating post-Trump politics

WASHINGTON (AP) — For more than a half-century, the voice emerging from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's monolithic, Beaux Arts-styled building near the White House was predictable: It was the embodiment of American business and, more specifically, a shared set of interests with the Republican Party.

CEOs gather to speak out against voting law changes

More than a hundred top executives and corporate leaders gathered online this weekend to discuss their response to restrictive voting laws under consideration in several states and already enacted in Georgia, according to a statement from organizers of the meeting.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

White House grades states' infrastructure as it pushes bill

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden White House is amplifying the push for its $2.3 trillion infrastructure package with the release of state-by-state breakdowns that show the dire shape of roads, bridges, the power grid and housing affordability.

Biden Republicans? Some in GOP open to president's agenda

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Jay Copan doesn't hide his disregard for the modern Republican Party.

'Clear the Capitol,' Pence pleaded, timeline of riot shows

WASHINGTON (AP) — From a secure room in the Capitol on Jan. 6, as rioters pummeled police and vandalized the building, Vice President Mike Pence tried to assert control. In an urgent phone call to the acting defense secretary, he issued a startling demand.


FRIDAY, APRIL 9
NASHVILLE AREA

Nashville lifts outdoor mask mandate

NASHVILLE (AP) — Nashville's top health officials on Friday tweaked the city's mask mandate to exclude requiring face coverings in outdoor spaces.

PREDATORS

Surging Predators rout Red Wings 7-1, have won 9 of 10

DETROIT (AP) — Viktor Arvidsson scored three times to lead the surging Nashville Predators in a 7-1 win over the Detroit Red Wings on Thursday night.

STATEWIDE

Hagerty huddles with Trump at Mar-a-Lago

NASHVILLE (AP) — In his first week, Tennessee's freshman U.S. Sen. Bill Hagerty watched in horror as the Capitol riots unfolded around him and decided to back down from his plans to oppose the electoral college results that affirmed President Joe Biden's win despite then-President Donald Trump's weekslong push to block the certification.

COURTS

Biden assigns study on delicate issue of Supreme Court

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden has ordered a study on overhauling the Supreme Court, creating a bipartisan commission Friday that will spend the next six months examining the politically incendiary issues of expanding the court and instituting term limits for justices, among other issues.

NRA trial opens window on secretive leader's life and work

DALLAS (AP) — Wayne LaPierre flies exclusively on private jets, he sailed around the Bahamas for "security" and he never sends emails or texts in the course of his work running the nation's most politically influential gun-rights group.

REAL ESTATE

Ready to buy a home? The trick is finding or affording one

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Nathan Long and Lili Chin have struck out so far in their four-month search to find an affordable home in the Los Angeles area — a cold streak that threatens to mess up their anniversary plans.

MEDIA

Study: Facebook delivers biased job ads, skewed by gender

Facebook is showing different job ads to women and men in a way that might run afoul of anti-discrimination laws, according to a new study.

TRANSPORTATION

Airlines pull Boeing Max jets to inspect electrical systems

Airlines pulled dozens of Boeing Max 737s out of service for inspections after the aircraft maker told them about a possible electrical problem, the latest setback for plane.

RELIGION

'How many of us will be left?' Catholic nuns face loss, pain

GREENSBURG, Pa. (AP) — The nuns' daily email update was overtaken by news of infections. Ambulances blared into the driveways of their convents. Prayers for the sick went unanswered, prayers for the dead grew monotonous and, their cloistered world suddenly caving in, some of the sisters' thoughts were halting.

HEALTH CARE

Biden's ambitious expansion of long-term care sparks debate

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is proposing a major expansion of the government's role in long-term care, but questions are being raised over his using the low-income Medicaid program and piggybacking the whole idea on an infrastructure bill.

VIRUS OUTBREAK

Biden to rush vaccinators, testing to hard-hit Michigan

WASHINGTON (AP) — Washington will rush federal resources to support vaccinations, testing and therapeutics, but not vaccines, to Michigan in an effort to control the state's worst-in-the-nation COVID-19 transmission rate, the White House said Friday.

No region in the world spared as virus cases, deaths surge

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Hospitals in Turkey and Poland are filling up fast. Pakistan is restricting domestic travel to bring a surge in coronavirus infections under control. Even Thailand, which has weathered the coronavirus pandemic far better than many nations, is now struggling to contain a new COVID-19 surge.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Tech companies help lift stocks, push S&P 500 to record high

Wall Street capped another week of gains with more milestones Friday, as strength in technology and health care stocks helped push the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average to all-time highs.

Virus knocks 80% off Atlantic City casino profits in 2020

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) — The coronavirus outbreak sent profits plunging at Atlantic City's casinos by more than 80% last year, according to figures released Friday by New Jersey gambling regulators.

Wholesale prices up 1% in March, energy leads the way again

SILVER SPRING, Md. (AP) — Wholesale prices jumped again in March pushed by another big increase in energy prices, the government reported Friday.

Amazon warehouse workers reject union bid in Alabama

Workers at an Amazon warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama handed the online retail giant a decisive victory when they voted against forming a union and cut off a path that labor activists had hoped would lead to similar efforts throughout the company and beyond.

US sanctions Chinese computer makers in widening tech fight

BEIJING (AP) — China's government on Friday criticized the Biden administration's curbs on access to U.S. technology for its supercomputer developers and said sanctions "only strengthen China's determination" to invent its own.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

Gaetz faces probe by House ethics over potential misconduct

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House Ethics Committee has opened an investigation of Rep. Matt Gaetz, citing reports of sexual and other misconduct by the Florida Republican.

Biden budget seeks more for schools, health care and housing

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden released a $1.5 trillion wish list for the federal budget on Friday, asking for an 8.4% increase in agency operating budgets with substantial gains for Democratic priorities like education, health care, housing and environmental protection.

Gaetz hires prominent New York lawyers amid federal probe

WASHINGTON (AP) — Rep. Matt Gaetz is retaining two prominent New York attorneys as he faces a Justice Department investigation into sex trafficking allegations involving underage girls.

Biden seeks a new view of infrastructure, far beyond asphalt

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is giving himself lots of latitude when he defines infrastructure for the purpose of spending money on it. It's not just steel, but home health care workers. Not just excavating dirt, but building "dignity."

Private sales emerge as obstacle to Senate action on guns

WASHINGTON (AP) — Democrats in Congress are trying to pass the first major gun control legislation in more than two decades with the support of President Joe Biden, who said Thursday that it is "long past time" to do so. But they are confronting a potentially insurmountable question over what rules should govern private sales and transfers, including those between friends and extended family, as they seek Republican votes.

'New strategy': Politicians in crisis refuse calls to resign

WASHINGTON (AP) — The mere whiff of a scandal once unraveled political careers with stunning speed. Not anymore.

Grim view of global future offered in intelligence report

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. intelligence officials are painting a dark picture of the world's future, writing in a report released Thursday that the coronavirus pandemic has deepened economic inequality, strained government resources and fanned nationalist sentiments.

Groups pressure Senate to end filibuster as Jim Crow relic

WASHINGTON (AP) — Nearly 150 groups are calling on the Senate to eliminate the filibuster, saying it is a Jim Crow-era relic that can be used to block an upcoming voting rights bill and other priorities, and should be relegated to the "dustbin of history."


THURSDAY, APRIL 8
STATE GOVERNMENT

Permits won't be needed to carry handguns in Tennessee

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee has become the latest state to soon allow most adults 21 and older to carry handguns without first clearing a background check and training after Gov. Bill Lee on Thursday signed the measure into law.

COURTS

NRA boss says he didn't tell group leaders before bankruptcy

DALLAS (AP) — Wayne LaPierre, the embattled leader of the National Rifle Association, said Wednesday that he put the powerful gun-rights group into bankruptcy without first informing most of its board members and top officials.

NRA exec sheltered on borrowed yacht after mass shootings

DALLAS (AP) — After school shootings that left dozens dead in recent years, National Rifle Association leader Wayne LaPierre said the resulting outrage put him in such danger that he sought shelter aboard a borrowed 108-foot (32.92-meter) yacht.

Ex-California man charged with $14M boiler room scam

SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — A former Southern California man was charged Wednesday with running a "boiler room" scheme that bilked more than 100 investors out of $14 million.

MEDIA

Netflix scores streaming rights to new top Sony films

NEW YORK (AP) — Netflix further beefed up its film catalog on Thursday in a multi-year deal that will make it the new streaming home to Sony Pictures' top releases in the U.S.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Chip shortage forces more production cuts by GM

DETROIT (AP) — The global shortage of semiconductors has forced General Motors to further cut production at six North American factories as chip supplies seem to be growing tighter.

TRANSPORTATION

2 new airlines await Americans looking to fly somewhere

Americans are traveling in the greatest numbers in more than a year, and soon they will have two new leisure-oriented airlines to consider for those trips.

REAL ESTATE

Pandemic impact might weigh on CRE recovery

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The distribution of COVID-19 vaccines is fueling optimism that Americans will increasingly return to the ways they used to shop, travel and work before the pandemic.

VIRUS OUTBREAK

Countries worldwide hit new records for virus cases, deaths

Nations around the world set new records Thursday for COVID-19 deaths and new coronavirus infections, and the disease surged even in some countries that have kept the virus in check. In the United States, Michigan has averaged more than 7,000 new cases a day.

Florida sues federal government to allow cruises to sail

MIAMI (AP) — The state of Florida has filed a lawsuit against the federal government to demand cruise ships be allowed to start sailing immediately, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Thursday.

Are some COVID-19 vaccines more effective than others?

Are some COVID-19 vaccines more effective than others? It's hard to tell since they weren't directly compared in studies. But experts say the vaccines are alike on what matters most: preventing hospitalizations and deaths.

Australia halts AstraZeneca vaccine for most people under 50

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia on Thursday become the latest country to restrict use of the AstraZeneca vaccine by recommending that it not be given to people under age 50.

UK cases drop 60% due to vaccines, lockdown

LONDON — Britain's COVID-19 vaccination program is beginning to break the link between infection and serious illness or death, according to the latest results from an ongoing study of the pandemic in England.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Stocks rise as lower bond yields help lift tech companies

Technology companies led stocks to more gains on Wall Street Thursday, nudging the S&P 500 to an all-time high for the third time this week.

IMF policy panel endorses $650 billion increase in resources

WASHINGTON (AP) — The International Monetary Fund on Thursday authorized a $650 billion expansion of the 190-nation lending institution's resources with the aim of providing more support for vulnerable countries as they battle the coronavirus pandemic.

Fed's Powell: US nears full reopening to 'different economy'

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy, boosted by quickening vaccinations and signs of rapid hiring, is headed toward a strong recovery, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said Thursday.

US jobless claims up to 744K as virus still forces layoffs

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits rose last week to 744,000, signaling that many employers are still cutting jobs even as more people are vaccinated against COVID-19, consumers gain confidence and the government distributes aid throughout the economy.

Vote counting to start in Amazon union election

Vote counting in the union push at an Amazon warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama, is about to begin, but hundreds of contested ballots could muddy the outcome if it's a close race.

What to know about the Amazon union vote count

Amazon is known for quick delivery. But finding out whether Amazon warehouse workers voted for or against unionizing is going to take some more time.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

Biden seems ready to extend Afghanistan troop presence

WASHINGTON (AP) — Without coming right out and saying it, President Joe Biden seems ready to let lapse a May 1 deadline for completing a withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan. Orderly withdrawals take time, and Biden is running out of it.

Biden tightens some gun controls, says much more needed

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden, in his first gun control measures since taking office, announced a half-dozen executive actions Thursday aimed at addressing a proliferation of gun violence across the nation that he called an "epidemic and an international embarrassment."

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