Nature's Table Collection, 1979-1999
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Brief Description:

Series 1 consists of t-shirts and sweatshirts highlighting Jazz and Rock performances that took place at the Nature's Table Restaurant in Urbana, Illinois. The t-shirts also highlight specific musical acts that performed at the restaurant including the Catfish and Carter Band and the Sorgum Quartet. In addition many of the t-shirts contain images of healthy foods and vegetables highlighting the restaurant's mission to serve natural and healthy foods. The textiles were collected by Jeff Machota.

Series 2 consists of records pertaining to Nature's Table as a restaurant (cookbooks, recipes, business records, health evaluations, and food supplies) and as a music performance venue. The latter category includes concert schedules, flyers, performer and band photographs, appointment books, set lists, and the promotional material and biographies of many artists including Tony Brown, Herb Ellis, Kristin Lems, Peter "Madcat" Ruth, and Guido Sinclair. This series also includes digital audio recordings and images. These materials were donated by Jeff Machota and Sean Kutzko.

Held at:
The Sousa Archives and Center for American Music
236 Harding Band Building
1103 South 6th Street
Champaign, IL 61820 6223
Phone: 217-244-93093
Fax: 217-244-8695
Email: schwrtzs [at]
Record Series Number: 12/9/144
Created by: Nature's Table (1971-1979)
Volume: 4.0 cubic feet
Acquired: 08/17/2015.

Textiles are arranged by date, with undated items following.

Paper and photographic records are arranged according to the original order of the materials.

Biographical Note for Nature's Table (1971-1979) : Nature's Table was a small health food restaurant and jazz club in Urbana, Illinois, that was operated by Terry Masar from 1979 to 1991. It was located on Goodwin Street across from the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. In addition to providing customers in the local and campus communities with reasonably priced meals, inside the restaurant patrons could attend live shows and also view and purchase art produced by local artists.  Featuring live performances by many local and regional bands, the restaurant created a lively environment for budding new musicians and artists.  Nature's Table was known for attracting nationally recognized jazz artists, such as Von Freeman, Herb Ellis, Richard 'Groove' Holmes, Peter 'Madcat" Ruth, and Jon McNeil, who frequently performed there. It was also considered a home for many local jazz, blues, alternative rock, and bluegrass ensembles, including a young Alison Krauss. Nature's Table was built on campus property, and in 1991 the university forced the closure of the restaurant and venue to make way for a new Chemical and Life Science Lab building.  Numerous reunions of the Nature's Table staff and the artists who frequently played there took place after its closing until Terry Masar passed away on October 23, 2011.
Subject Index
Bluegrass Music
Blues-rock music
Clothing and Textiles
Local History
Popular Music--Illinois--Urbana-Champaign
Languages of Materials
English [eng]
Acquisition Notes: Donated by Jeff Machota and Sean Kutzko  Gift.