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The posters of Chief’s Tavern

A Career Road Map

Every square inch of Chief’s on Broadway is a testament to where Eric Church’s career has already taken him.

But if at any moment he forgets, there’s a very easy way to remember: walk through Chief’s Tavern on the first floor at Second and Broadway, where the walls, bar and ceiling are covered with gig posters from every show from nearly two decades on the road.

A poster from a Church show has always been a quintessential souvenir of seeing Chief in person. Especially in the last ten years, under the direction of merchandise wizard Matt Wheeler, they’ve been an integral part of each tour.

For the most recent journey on the road, the Outsiders Revival Tour, Wheeler helped devise an elaborate hidden code system that ran the length of the tour, with a different hidden word in the poster at each tour stop eventually forming a riddle.

You’ll find all of those posters at Chief’s, and you’ll also find artwork going back to some of the very first Church shows. In total, there are over 4,000 of them, all installed by hand throughout March of 2024. It’s easy to imagine fans wandering through the lower level, pointing out posters from shows they attended or posters that hang on their own walls at home.

Wheeler is so busy at headquarters in Nashville that he doesn’t make it to as many shows as he would like. When he does, though, there’s no bigger thrill than watching fans carefully protect their poster tubes while singing along with every word. And now, he won’t have to leave Nashville in order to see an entire gallery of his work—and maybe even get inspiration for what’s to come in the future.

“Having the posters all over the walls and floors on the first floor at Chief’s is beyond cool to me,” Wheeler says. “It gives me goosebumps just thinking about it right now.”