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Natalie’s IS the Music Scene

Natalie's in Grandview

Chances are that if you are in the music scene then you've either attended a show at Natalie's, worked there, and/or performed there.

Natalie’s is as local as it comes. The community that has been created by Natalie & Charlie Jackson (a daughter and father team), her staff, and patrons, keep people's hearts and love for great music and food at the CENTER. Music is something that Natalie hopes can bring people who might not have the same ideologies and beliefs together. She strives for a diverse range of music to help this come to fruition. “We present a really diverse mix of music and I’ve always loved that..last week we had our first metal show, on one side, and then Pete Mills (a jazz trio on the other side)...and I never want to be pigeonholed into one genre of music,” stated Natalie. The music scene in Columbus is ever-evolving, and Natalie’s is at the forefront of leading the way in giving those musicians a fighting chance to be heard.

With our March spotlights on empowering female-owned businesses like Natalie Jackson from Natalie’s, we’ve found that the local community plays a huge part in making these businesses successful. I had the honor of not only sitting down with Natalie a couple of weeks ago to chat with her about the past, present, and future of Natalie’s but also with Kara Jones, General Manager & Talent Buyer, Crissy White, Bar Manager, and Meghan (Megs) Hodges, Kitchen Staff & Pastry Chef.

(from left to right) Meghan (Megs) Hodges, Kara Jones, Natalie Jackson, and Crissy White

Not only is Natalie herself a force to be reckoned with but she brings with her a staff of kick-ass women. While chatting with these incredible humans, Clarrisa brought up Natalie’s strength during covid, “I’m really proud of the actions Natalie took during did during the Pandemic, like making the to-go cocktails, something she gave us the opportunity to do since we weren't open…” being innovative is half the battle of being a good leader. Thinking quickly on your feet with the cards that you were dealt.

Natalie Jackson, Owner of Natalie's

Natalie helped support her staff through the pandemic by selling T-shirts, specialty cocktails to go, and with her loyalty. Loyal to her customers, friends, family, staff, and what Natalie’s stands for. She would give the shirt off her back to anyone in need and go to battle for equality.

“There is a lot of thought of care that goes into these decisions, and I think the biggest thing, like what Clarrisa said about the Covid situation, is what do we feel good about when we lay our heads down at night. What can we do for the greater good? It’s such a bigger picture. It’s not just Natalie and Charlie, it’s not just the management team, it's beyond that- its the hourly, its the musicians, its the crew that runs with the’s so many things that go into these decisions, we put a lot of thought and care into it..because we really do care,” stated Kara while chatting about how Natalie’s handled the pandemic and the BLM movement.

“There is always the decision of using your platform, and I guess by platform I mean… you know that you have respected the community so you hope that if you put out a message that’s going to be it will be well received by your community,” Natalie said as we talked about the BLM movement that Natalie’s supports and continues to make it clear that Black Lives Matter.

“There are certain issues where you just have to say, I don’t care, this is important enough to just say your piece and stand for something..”- Natalie

Natalie for me is such a beautiful example of not only a business owner but also a fierce leader. I’ve seen photos, heard stories, and even witnessed myself, Natalie, in the front of the house greeting people when they walk through the door, bussing tables, making pizzas, throwing dough, bouncing inappropriate goers, and washing dishes. Natalie isn’t afraid to get her hands dirty- and she also isn’t afraid of standing up for what she believes in.

All photos are taken by Emma Parker Photography & Tom Lotozo.

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