Nashville SC joined MLS in time to play just two games before the league shut down earlier this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Walker Zimmerman, a defender and former member of LAFC, scored the club’s first goal in their inaugural match against Atlanta United. Although the club’s first win would come after their return from the shutdown, Zimmerman’s performances in their first two games proved to be enough to show his value: he signed an extension through 2023 with an option for 2024 before the team was back in action.
In addition to hosting one of the newest MLS teams, Nashville is also home to one of the country’s largest music hubs. Of course, country music is the first to come to mind, but in recent years the city has also become known for its live shows in all genres. So, now that Zimmerman is making his home there, we caught up with him to see what he loves about it, what influenced his tastes and exactly what’s playing through his JLab headphones before matches.
Is music an important part of your life?
Music is an important part of my life. It’s my companion in the car, it is patient with my pitch and it helps put me in all kinds of moods. Music has the ability depending on the day and the mood to create emotion inside of me.
What type of music do you like to listen to?
Some of my favorite artists right now are the usual suspects … Justin Bieber, Taylor Swift, Tim McGraw, Thomas Rhett, Dan and Shay, Ben Rector and Kenny Chesney.
What’s playing through your JLab headphones to get you ready for a match, and what’s been playing in the locker room ahead of matches?
I will occasionally listen to music before matches but the majority of the time I’m listening to the playlist that the team puts on when we get to the locker room. That means a lot of rap and a lot of Spanish pop.
Who has been in charge of the music in the locker room?
I’m not sure who exactly has been in charge of the music before the games … it changes hands between Daniel Lovitz, Brayan Beckeles and Derrick Jones, I believe.
What is a new artist or song you have been hooked on through your teammates?
I don’t know specifically which new artist I have been introduced to, but it’s definitely gotta be some of the mainstream Spanish stars.
What’s the best concert or festival you’ve ever been to?
The best concert I went to was in Dallas. We got to go to a Garth Brooks concert and then hang out with him and other members of his Teammates for Kids Foundation.
What’s your earliest music-related memory?
My earliest music memory is singing “bananas in pajamas are coming down the stairs.”