Adam Dread

Voted Nashville’s Best Attorney five times by the readers of The Nashville Scene

Areas of Practice

The Law Office of Adam Dread is a boutique practice, located both in Nashville, Tennessee and Nantucket, Massachusetts. Although skilled in many areas of law, Adam works primarily in Criminal Law, Entertainment Law, Hospitality Industry related law (such as liquor permitting and restaurant acquisition) and landlord-tenant disputes.

Adam also reviews contacts and does some Estate and family law. He also has a great network of fellow attorneys, and if he can’t help you with your problem, he will happily guide you to someone who can, free of charge.


Adam Dread has been voted “Nashville’s Best Attorney” a record 5 Times by the Readers of the Nashville Scene.

Adam Dread has been voted “Nashville’s Best Attorney” a record 5 Times by the Readers of the Nashville Scene.

Adam Dread has been licensed to practice law in Tennessee since 2004, and, as of 2017, is now also one of the few Tennessee attorneys admitted to practice in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Additionally, he is admitted to practice in the Middle District of Tennessee in Federal Court and is a trained Supreme Court Listed Mediator.

With offices both in Nashville and on Nantucket, and spends the majority of his time dedicated to Criminal Law, Hospitality Industry and Liquor Law, and Entertainment Law. Dread is known for successfully pursuing Menu Foods in the “Poison Pet Food” matter and a victory against the State of Tennessee when they mistakenly legalized the possession of “open carry” guns in bars and anywhere liquor is served.

Prior to becoming a lawyer Adam Dread was elected to and served two terms as a Nashville City Councilman-at-Large, chairing both Public Safety and Conventions and Tourism Committees. He also worked in the entertainment industry, in television, radio, in stand-up comedy, and is published author and songwriter.

He been involved with countless not-for-profits and civic groups and has served on the boards of several nonprofits including the Community Resource Center, The Belcourt Theatre, The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, and the Davidson County General Sessions Drug Court Foundation. On Nantucket, he supports the Nantucket Safe Harbor for Animals and volunteers to clean beaches most Summer and Fall Saturday mornings with “The Nantucket Clean Team.”

Adam also operates, an online site where his books and novelty items can be purchased. Always accessible, Adam is available 24/7 on his cell phone at (888) 384-ADAM, or via email at

Adam Dread Timeline

1986-1993 Professional Touring Stand-Up Comedian


During the comedy club “boom” Dread was a frequently requested feature act across the US and the Caribbean. In addition to performing at “Improvs,” Punchlines” and other clubs on the circuit, Dread spent time in Los Angeles working on television and film projects. Dread returned annually to his alma mater, Vanderbilt University, to host the week-long Rites of Spring Celebration.


1993-1996 Morning Drive Radio Host


My name was consistently listed among the Nashville Scene’s Best of Nashville Radio Personalities while on the air. Dread hosted the morning shows on FM stations Thunder 94, Lightning 100, and did fill in work on Supertalk 99.7-WTN.


1996-Present Columnist/Author/Songwriter


Dread wrote a monthly piece for Nashville Life, regular columns for Golfer’s Tee Times, Dish Magazine, and a weekly “Dread This Column” for In Review. Dread have published two popular Nantucket gift books, entitled “You’ve Obviously Spent Time on Nantucket If…” , and “You’ve Obviously Spent Time on Nantucket If…ACK’t ” and You’ve Obviously Spent Time on Nantucket If…ACK’t 3.” In the music department, Dread penned Cledus T. Judd’s title track, “Did I Shave My Back For This?” Dread also wrote the “Fairways, Follies, and Fantastic Shots” video for the PGA.


1996-1999 Television Producer/Audience Warm-Up


Recruited from radio by Dick Clark Productions, Dread was the Feature Producer for TNN’s Prime Time Country. In addition to producing, Dread ran the audience warm-up and controlled much of the billboard advertising.


2004-Present Freelance Spokesman, Consultant, Speaker, and Talent


Clients included Jack Daniels, Fruit of the Loom, America’s Dumbest Criminals, Showtime, and Richmond Title Services. Dread regularly emcees major charity events and speaks and many community events.


2002-2007 Metro Councilman-At-Large


Elected in 2002 in a special election, Dread won a total of four countywide elections in under two years, a Metro record. My campaign was endorsed by all newspapers, the police, firefighters, and teachers. While serving on the Council Dread was Chairman of the Public Safety, Whiskey, Beer and Wine Committee, Conventions and Tourism Committees, and drafted and passed numerous pieces of legislation including “The Sensible Sidewalk Law” and “The Taxi Passengers’ Bill of Rights.” This law made Nashville the only city in America codifying safety factors that include all taxi drivers speak English, stay off of cell phones, and do not smoke in the cab. This law was adopted by Bermuda and several smaller island Nations.


2004-Present Attorney/Mediator


After passing the bar Dread was invited to set up shop at Jackson, Kweller, McKinney, Warden & Hayes. Fifteen months later opened Durham & Dread, PLC. Dread became TSC Rule 31 certified in both Civil and Family Mediation.


Honors Etc..


  • 2009, 2010, and 2012 voted BEST ATTORNEY IN NASHVILLE by the readers of the Nashville Scene
  • 2012 voted 2nd place “Best Local Celebrity” by the Reader’s of the Tennessean
  • 2011 signed with FOX Studios-LA and shot the pilot for the reality show based on Adam Dread.
  • 2010, 2011, 2012 Host of Nantucket’s “Charity on Ice” with Dorothy Hamill & Jim Craig
  • 2007 Nashville Scene, Writers’ Choice, Winner, “Best Metro Councilman Out the Door (Due to Term Limits)”
  • 2007, 2008 Nashville Scene, Readers’ Choice, Third Place, “Best DUI Lawyer”
  • 2007 Community Resource Center Volunteer of the Year
  • 2004, 2005, 2006. Nashville Scene, Readers’ Choice Winner “Best Politician You Love to Hate”
  • 2004, 2005 Nashville Scene, Readers’ Choice Top Three “Best Local Politician”
  • 2005 Invited by the Bermuda Parliament to speak concerning Nashville’s Taxi Laws.



Palm Beach Academy
Vanderbilt University, BA, 1985
Nashville School of Law, JD, 2004

From Wikipedia

Adam Dread (born February 1, 1963, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) was a city council member-at-large for the Metropolitan Council of Nashville and Davidson County until September 2007. Born with a different birth name, he had his name legally changed to Adam Dread as an adult. He is currently a practicing attorney and businessman in Nashville.[1]

Adam Dread was elected to the Metro Council in December 2002 Since then, he set a Metro record for winning the most countywide races in the shortest period of time (he won 4 races in one year, including run-offs.) He was endorsed by every major newspaper, union, and trade organization.[2] Prior to that, he had run for a Metro Council at-large seat in 1999.[3] He Chaired the Public Safety-Beer and Regulated Beverages Committee and also served as a member of the Public Works Committee and the Traffic and Parking Committee.[4] He was at one point Chair of the Convention and Tourism Committee.[5] He is also known for building the live music stage at the airport, in conjunction with the Convention-Tourism Bureau, to welcome visitors and locals to Music City with live music. Popular with the public, in 2008 he was voted “The Best Metro Councilman Out the Door”, as he was term-limited, and could not run again.


Education and Career




Adam Dread graduated from Palm Beach Academy and Vanderbilt University with a Bachelor of Arts degree. He obtained his J.D. when he graduated from Nashville School of Law in 2004.[1][3][6]




Adam Dread works as an attorney at Durham & Dread, PLC. [1] They are well known for being one of the first Tennessee firms to go after the makers of tainted pet food from China. Since 1999, he has worked as a freelance consultant and corporate spokesman for numerous clients including Jack Daniels and Fruit of the Loom. From 1999 until elected for Metro Council, he was on the Metro Beer Permit Board. In 2007 and 2008 the Readers of The Nashville Scene voted Dread one of the Top 3 DUI Attorneys in Nashville.


Journalism and Radio


Dread was a freelance columnist between 1996 and 2000. Between 1996 and 1999, he was the feature producer of TNN‘s Prime Time Country. Between 1992 and 1995, he was the radio host of the award-winning “Man of Leisure Mornings” on Thunder 94 and Lightning 100 Morning. Between 1986 and 1992, he worked as a professional touring stand-up comedian in the US and abroad.


Author and Songwriter


He is also a published songwriter and book author. His two books, You’ve Obviously Spent Time on Nantucket If… and ACK’t 2 are still popular on the resort island. One of his parody songs, “Titans #1”, was performed at the 2000 Super Bowl festivities. Another parody, “Did I Shave My Back for This?” was the title track of a popular Cledus T. Judd country comedy album.




Prior to his terms on the Metro Council he served on the Boards of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundations, The Community Resource Center, and The Belcourt Theatre. He still hosts the annual “Oyster Easter” event for the CRC and was named their “2007 Volunteer of the Year.” In October 2009 Adam Dread wast voted “Best Attorney” in Nashville by the readers of the Nashville Scene.




In the summer of 2009 Dread became very involved in the controversial new gun laws enacted in Tennessee. When the Legislature passed a law allowing people with carry permits to take their handguns into bars, Dread, and a team of lawyers, sued the State of Tennessee. They alleged that the law was passed due to fraudulent facts provided by lobbyists. In addition to the public safety and economic arguments, the team argued that the law was unconstitutional on its face, and created an unsafe work environment, thus violating OSHA standards.[7] Dread debated this issue multiple times on Fox & Friends. The case is still pending in Chancery Court.[8] In September 2009, Dread joined Brady Campaign President, Paul Helmke, in a debate with NRA lobbyists at the University of Tennessee at Martin campus.




    1. ^ a b “ – Metro Councilmember at Large Adam Dread”. Archived from the original on August 10, 2007. Retrieved September 11, 2007.
    2. ^ Schrade, Brad (December 13, 2002). “Dread wins runoff vote for at-large council seat=The Tennessean.
    3. ^ a b Bottorff, Christian; Shrade, Brad. Burke, Sheila (2003-05-31). “Council’s Dread in critical condition”. The Tennessean.
    4. ^ “ – Metro Council Committees”. Archived from the original on August 22, 2007. Retrieved September 11, 2007.
    5. ^ Boerner, Craig (2004-08-30). “Taxis focus of tourism chair”. Nashville City Post.
    6. ^ “Durham & Dread, PLC”. Retrieved September 11, 2007.[dead link]
    7. ^ Humphrey, Tom (June 5, 2009), “SENATE OVERRIDES VETO; GUNS ALLOWED IN BARS JULY 14”, McClatchy-Tribune Regional News,,1,6&docsInCategory=2&csi=227171&docNo=2
    8. ^

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Contact Info

Office (615) 252-9937
Fax (615) 277-2277
Cell (615) 300-7666

1709 19th Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37212

Nashville / Nantucket