Interview: Tim McNary


Tim McNary is a seeker; always with a book in tow—Rainer Rilke, Beat poetry from the likes of Lawrence Ferlinghetti as of late, and facing challenges with resolve and curiosity.  After college, he ventured alone to South America, backpacked through Peru and Bolivia, eventually landing in Brazil, teaching English to children.  “I got my mom to pawn my car so that I could stay there longer.” he says with a laugh.

Being a musician then seemed far-fetched to McNary, yet he knew in his heart that pursuing music was want he wanted to do.  “When I came back to the States, I was pretty lost.  I wanted to play music, but I didn’t know how to go about doing it, it takes a long to develop things,” he recalls.  “So, I got a desk job at a bank, and I auditioned to be the singer in a southern rock band who wasn’t great at writing lyrics.  I would work all day at the bank, and then go home to my tiny 300 square foot apartment in Atlanta and try to write lyrics for their songs for hours.  I was going into debt trying to make that band work, but I wasn’t scruffy or badass enough of a rocker dude for them; I didn’t have a leather jacket or a motorcycle,” he laughs.  “We parted ways.  Then my relationship ended.  I just basically lived in my car for seven or eight weeks. I got really depressed.  I realize that there are people with way worse problems in the world, but that was awful.  I decided it was time get up and go out on my own.”

Within two years, he was pursuing music full time, playing gigs, writing songs, and learning the business side of things in his hometown of Atlanta.  “I felt really disconnected in Atlanta, the community is really disjointed,” he explains. So, he began researching and planning a move to Nashville for community and growth opportunities.  “I lived in my van for three months, camping in a Walmart parking lot in town,” he recalls.  That same van was stolen shortly thereafter, as were his possessions and music gear.  Not one to stay down for long, McNary decided to put his Spanish skill to use and worked in a Mexican restaurant in Nashville.   “I just dug in, worked as hard as I could to make and save money for two years, and continued to write music.”

Finally, he raised the funds needed to release an EP, Above The Trees, which came out on April 8th.  The songs were recorded in a cabin nestled in the rural mountains of Georgia, an environment which inspired him to transmit the the perfect amount of emotional attention to the songs.  In Above The Trees, McNary embraces his past while recounting his hardship and experience with conviction, but reminds us, with his music and the way he lives his life, that the real beauty is found in the wandering.

You can see the adventurer himself on tour this spring and summer:

Apr 27–House Show, Monticello, IL

Apr 28–Crescendo Espresso Bar, Madison, WI

Apr 29–House Show (location to be announced), Minneapolis, MN

Apr 30–Evangeline’s Bistro & Music House, St. Louis, MO

May 06–Milltown Coffee, Moline, IL

May 09–Private Event – The Bridge, Nashville, TN

May 13–Aloft Greenville, Greenville, SC

May 15–Secret House Show, Atlanta, GA

May 16–The World Famous, Athens, GA

May 18–The Regeneration Station, Asheville, NC

May 19–Moe’s and Joe’s, Greenville, SC

May 20–The Tree Bar, Columbus, OH

May 21–Two Deep Brewing Company, Indianapolis, IN

May 24–The Cloverdale Playhouse, Montgomery, AL

May 27–Doyles, Cherryville, NC

May 28–Crane Creek Vineyards, Young Harris, GA

May 30–The Evening Muse, Charlotte, NC

Jun 03–Foxy Loxy, Savannah, GA

Jun 05–WXRY 99.3, Columbia, SC

Jun 05–British Bulldog Pub, Columbia, SC

Jun 12–The Basement East, Nashville, TN

Jun 16–The Country Nashville, TN

Jun 22–Franklin Park Concert Series, Franklin, TN

Jul 01–Vienna Coffeehouse, Maryville, TN

Jul 23–Secret House Show, Columbus, OH

Aug 02–Daytrotter, Rock Island, IL

Sep 06–The Player’s Pub, Bloomington, IN




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