East Nashville still recovering from 2020 tornadoes

It’s been two years since the tornadoes of March 2020 ripped through Middle Tennessee.
Published: Mar. 3, 2022 at 10:09 PM CST
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - It’s been two years since the tornadoes of March 2020 ripped through Middle Tennessee. This week, WSMV 4 has been returning to the areas hardest hit. In east Nashville, some of the buildings are still damaged.

“It feels like 10 years ago at this point,” Phil Simpson said.

Two years ago, Simpson, who is the general manager of The Basement East, said a show had just wrapped up. Simpson said all but six staff members left.

“Our sound engineer stepped outside to smoke a cigarette and saw the tornado,” Simpson said.

That tornado tore their roof off and destroyed almost everything. When they looked all around them, trees were uprooted, cars were damaged and so were businesses.

“Within two minutes, we are like a family here, and our home was gone,” Simpson said.

While The Basement East has since rebuilt and reopened a year ago tomorrow, Simpson said those memories are still difficult for him and his employees.

“I know every time there is a severe thunderstorm warning on the news, we all get a little anxious,” Simpson said

Throughout East Nashville, buildings are still being repaired. Owner Nina Brito at Thunder Moon Collective said her business just moved in to one of the locations that was damaged in the storm.

“This literally just came up for me to move into in September when obviously the tornado was so much before that,” Brito said. “Both sides of me, it still looks like a construction zone because on both sides, things are still not completely done.”

Simpson said a lot has happened in two years. “East Nashville is stronger than ever, and we are still the same old place,” Simpson said.

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