5 Archive #04 – Songwriter Jess Nolan

5 Archive #04 – Songwriter Jess Nolan

Music Valley Archive makes clothing & collectibles to help you rep Nashville's old school soul. Here on 5 Archive, Music City-based artists, creators and small business owners share their 5 current obsessions. 


The seeds of Nashville-based singer-songwriter Jess Nolan’s sophomore LP ’93, out now via Righteous Babe Records, sprouted in the height of 2020. Nolan, a member of Jenny Lewis’ all-female touring band, is an in-demand co-writer, vocalist, and touring musician for multiple artists. In the midst of the initially involuntary stillness, she planted a backyard vegetable garden, moved her involvement in mentoring young female songwriters online, and traveled back to her New Jersey hometown to stay with family for weeks at a time. In the face of uncertainty, strong, deeply-rooted feelings came pouring out, resulting in 10 poignant reflections on rebirth, reconnection, and mindfulness.

High Garden Sing Tea
High Garden "Sing" tea
the owners of High Garden, Leah and Joel, are angels among us. totally in love with their unique tea blends that are all made locally, and their instagram account has a ton of great information about ecoherbalism. the "sing" blend is specifically made for a singers' throat. it's my go-to before a session or a show. add a little honey and lemon - SO soothing.

SZA's album SOS
ok so this came out in December of last year but I legit haven't stopped listening to it. the lyricism, the vocals, the way the songs flow - the collection feels incredibly unique for a pop record and maybe that's why it's been so wildly successful and why I can't seem to go a week without listening to it. current faves are "Snooze" and "Conceited."

Grundy Lake
TN swimming holes
this summer I've made a point to dive into as many bodies of water as possible!! my friends and I will drive past Nashville city limits out to the country in search of good swimming spots. there's nothing better than the relief of cold river or lake water on a humid Tennessee afternoon. rock collecting, rope swinging, and watermelon eating days are so important for my mental and physical well-being. Grundy Lake is the most recent obsession.

East side American Legion
Honky tonk tuesday
if y'all haven't been to the east side American Legion on a Tuesday night, you are missing out. live music for two-stepping, a great hang and cheap drinks! I'm all about the community coming together and having a weekly place to go dancing with friends is incredible.

Volunteer tomato plant in my front garden
I've been composting for years and finally started moving some of the composted soil onto my front garden bed. this summer 3 tomato plants sprouted on their own from that soil. while I was out of town, they grew to be 5 feet tall without any extra watering or care. volunteer gardening is so lit!! now I've got tons of tomatoes ready for feasting that grew from tomato seeds I composted. a beautiful reminder about the cyclical nature of things :)


We invite every guest to add 5 songs to the WMVA 61.5AM Sunday Mornings Playlist, a collection of music for, well, mellow Sunday mornings. Here are Jess's picks:

  • Lydia Luce, "Never Enough"
  • Becca Mancari & Brittany Howard, "Don't Even Worry"
  • Jillette Johnson, "Dull Thud"
  • Angela Autumn, "Dancer"
  • Parker Millsap, "So Far Apart"

🔹Jess Nolan Instagram


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