By Bill Link
Tucked away in the Linwood Greene Shopping Plaza on Route 9 is a gateway into multiple worlds, some are surreal, some are of days gone by, while others keep you grounded here in South Jersey. If you enter the Nashville North Studios and are not transported, then you need to dig deeper into yourself to find that part of you that appreciates the world of art. Whether it’s canvas, sculptures, framed photographs, or jewelry that speaks to you, or perhaps all of it, you will have found within you the quality of art appreciation.
Judy Saylor Allison discovered her desire to be an artist using various mediums in her 50s, and has now been hosting art exhibits on a monthly basis here at Nashville North Studios. Along with her own works of art are enlarged framed photographs by Paul Dempsey mounted on metal showing the preserved past located in Batsto. There are B&W photographs of jazz greats such as Stan Getz, and early rock and rollers such as Bobby Darin, along with a pre Experience photo of the late great Jimi Hendrix all part of the Popsie Collection which was part of the March Opening. This month’s opening , which I attended on April 28, and was open to the public, as are all Judy’s openings, was The Linwood Arboretum, in honor of Earth Day, and the one year anniversary of Nashville North Studios openings.
When attending an opening, you will not only get to meet some of the artists who are more than willing to discuss their art with you, additionally at these soirees you will hear some top-notch live music (this opening featured the husband and wife combo, War Twins, who are currently on tour across the USA), and be treated to a plentiful “Lite Bites” buffet of healthy finger foods and assorted beverages. They are events not to miss, and each month brings a new opening on the fourth Friday, so mark your calendars accordingly. All artists featured in the gallery are local, and more artists featured this month include Barbara Watson, Charles Wray Jr, and Cape May’s Michael Trenick.
Of course Judy’s paintings are also featured and include wondrous works of art on canvas depicting flora and fauna, most notably her capturing in oil a carnivorous plant, a sunflower, and other paintings on canvas like her trademark “skulls of endangered species” such as Loggerhead Turtles and the American Crocodile. Judy, who is a licensed Real Estate Agent, is a board member of the Ocean City Fine Arts League and the Biscayne Nature Center in Key Biscayne, Florida, an artist at the Noye’s Museum, and is involved in galleries in Manhattan and Miami, as well as an upcoming art exhibit in Atlantic City. Her art also adorned the walls of Shore Medical for seven months until August of last year, so there is a good chance you’ve already admired her work. She is also a Partner with NNS Records, a joint venture with her husband and childhood sweetheart, Nashville Songwriter and Record Producer Jim Allison.
Part of the goings on at Nashville North Studios is songwriting and the recording, mixing, and mastering of artists by Jim Allison who has written platinum selling songs for Reba McIntyre and Leann Rimes, has worked with the likes of Nashville Legend Del Reeves, Country Music Superstars Blake Shelton and Billy Ray Cyrus, and more recently the up and coming Todd O’Neill whose record just reached 59 on the Billboard Charts. He also had the pleasure of working with an 8 year old Hillary Scott, who is now of course the Grammy Award winning female vocalist of Lady Antebellum. Other well known celebrity recording artists who have recorded songs by Jim include Wayne Newton, Lee Ann Womack, Eddie Rabbitt, and BJ Thomas.
Judy and Jim are an amiable, accessible, creative couple who are delightful to engage in conversation, and who would be glad to discuss further opportunities they could provide for you in the areas of art and music. You can contact Judy at 609-504-5044 regarding art, and Jim at 615-268-1680 regarding music. Or just stop by Linwood Greene, 210 New Road, Unit #8 in Linwood.