Song of the Music City
Navigating Music City USA by ear
May 22, 2013
Nashville struck a chord in my soul. It made me want to dance in the streets - tunes play everywhere, even in hotel elevators - and walk around with a karaoke mic to broadcast my spontaneous songs. In search of what makes Music City USA sing, I embarked on a country-crooning quest of Dolly Parton proportions!
I didn’t expect my first music moment to be in the airport. Walking up the jetway I heard a tune so true, I turned to my husband and asked “is THAT live” to which he replied “it might be!” Yep, there was a gent singing and strumming on a little stage beside a leopard-print baby grand. Four steps later we passed a sign that stated “you’re in the global headquarters of Gibson (guitars).”
It gets better. As soon as we merged onto the highway in our rental car, we cruised beside five music tour buses. As a Nashville first-timer, I wondered who might be behind the tinted windows. When we passed another group of buses on our 15-minute airport-to-hotel drive - an average of about one bus per minute - I stopped hypothesizing.
You know, I know, and Taylor Swift knows Nashville hits a high note on the music front - I mean, it has a namesake TV show and is home to the world’s largest concentration of songwriters. Intent to get the inside track, my husband and I met with my childhood friend-slash-rocker - now a Nashville resident - within hours of my arrival.
Over three dollar beers, he told us Nashville’s a music magnet due to the worldwide talent it woos - musicians are to Nashville what actors are to LA. “People don’t sing or song write here because it kinda pays the bills, they do it because their voice, their fingers, and their spirit knows no other way” he told me. Before I knew it, he had to leave for a 12.45 a.m. departure with his band on a tour bus.
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