“Nashville” Season 3, episode 14 changed the music industry. Edgehill Records was being dissolved after Jeff (Oliver Hudson) was fired last week. That meant artists were all released from contracts and all the other labels -- including Rayna's (Connie Britton) Highway 65 Records -- were in a frenzy to scoop up the successful musicians.
Jeff was busy coming up with a master plan that involved Rayna’s ex-fiance Luke (Will Chase). Jeff met with Luke and asked the artist to buy his own masters. Of course, Luke owning and releasing his own music sounded great, but there was a catch. He’d need a businessman, and that was where Jeff came in. After a run in with Rayna, Luke was feeling competitive. He wanted a small label that could compete with Rayna’s, so he agreed to work with Jeff.
Unfortunately, Luke didn’t want to sign Layla (Aubrey Peeples). Jeff and Layla weren’t clear on what their relationship was, but they wanted to support each other. That left Jeff with only one option: send Layla to Rayna. Despite not having an appointment, she waited in the Highway 65 waiting room all day. Bucky (David Alford) didn’t want to see her, but Rayna was willing to give her a chance.
Rayna had promoted Bucky to head of A&R, but the Edgehill situation caused tension. Bucky wanted to sign someone who would make them money. However, Rayna wanted an artist who represented what their label was about. Bucky didn’t want to give Layla a chance, but Layla seemed to be the only artist who wanted to sign to Highway 65.
They eventually offered her a deal while her ex-husband Will (Chris Carmack) was offered deals all over town. Even Taylor Swift’s label wanted him, but Will feared working with new people. Jeff knew Will was gay, and Jeff protected the singer. Will wasn’t sure if he could leave that.
Will went to Deacon (Charles Esten) for advice since Deacon had figured out Will was gay. Deacon couldn’t tell Will who to sign with though. “Having a choice isn’t the same thing as having control. When you don’t have that in your life, that can make a person pretty crazy,” Deacon said.
Will decided he had to sign with Luke and Jeff. Unfortunately, Will didn’t realize that Jeff was already being let go. Luke thought Jeff would bring bad publicity to the new label.
Deacon realized he was having trouble giving up control as well. He certainly didn’t have control over his cancer. Deacon was offered a spot in a clinical trial, but it was risky. He wouldn’t be able to have a transplant surgery for six months once he started the trial. Deacon didn’t like that option, and he eventually turned it down. He tried to throw himself into music by working with Avery (Jonathan Jackson) on Sadie’s (Laura Benanti) album, but he wasn’t listening to Avery’s direction. He wanted to control the song, but it wasn't his project. He realized he was being ridiculous and apologized.
Yet Sadie’s album had a much bigger problem. Pete’s (Jay Wilkison) cease and desist ordered all work on the album to stop. Avery convinced Sadie to talk to Rayna about her abusive ex. Rayna’s lawyers were her only shot at getting Pete’s case tossed out of court.
The lawyers didn’t have good news. A signed bar napkin counted as a real contract, and they were better off trying to settle. They’d need to give Pete half a million dollars, but Rayna thought it would be worth it. “If we can get him away from you for good, get you in the studio, we win,” Rayna said.
Still, Sadie was angry and ashamed. Rayna told her that it wasn’t her fault and the only person she should be angry with is Pete. They met to sign the settlement, and Rayna stopped Pete before he left. “You ever try to contact my friend again or in any way try to hurt her, I will make it my mission to ruin you,” Rayna warned. “And unlike you, I actually have the power to do it.”
Meanwhile, Gunnar (Sam Palladio) and Scarlett (Clare Bowen) were trying to escape the drama of their lives by writing. Gunnar found Scarlett in the studio writing songs. When he realized she was crying, Gunnar suggested they start making music together again with Avery.
They went to an open mic night, and it went great. Gunnar even offered to call a manager to get them more gigs. “If you need something for yourself and you want it, why not make it happen?” Gunnar said.
Scarlett decided that she would do something for herself. She asked out Deacon’s doctor, Caleb (Nick Jandl).
Meanwhile, Juliette (Hayden Panettiere) had a Vogue photoshoot, but she was nervous about her body. She decided to do the shoot without much clothing at all, and it finally gave her a little self-confidence.
Juliette’s sexy photos won’t be a new scandal in Nashville. They're pretty tasteful, and the town will probably be too busy focusing on the mayor anyway. Teddy (Eric Close) went to Natasha’s (Moniqua Plante) house after Jeff made him paranoid. Teddy said they needed to come up with a cover story, but he didn’t realize that her house was under surveillance. It seems the authorities were already investigating Natasha.
“Nashville” airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. EST on ABC. Do you think Teddy’s secrets will come out? Sound off in the comments section below!