Home of country music. Guns n Roses gig, anyone?

Trip Start Nov 04, 2011
Trip End Jul 04, 2012

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Flag of United States  , Tennessee
Friday, December 2, 2011

Nashville is fantastic! Both of us appreciate a bit of country music, and as we neared the home of it, the radio was pumping out some amazing, spirit-lifting and often hilarious tunes. We particularly liked Kenny Chesney's "She Thinks My Tractor's Sexy" and Justin Moore's "Bait A Hook" (about a local girl that falls in love with a city guy, who, according to the lyrics, doesn't know how to prep a fishing rod). We were raring to go! And we were not disappointed with our time in 'Music City'!

On our first evening we attended The Grand Ole Opry, country's longest running live radio show - didn't recognise any of the acts, or songs, but apparently they're all classics, and it did feel like we were witnessing real history in action.

Day two, and our bus driver informs us, casually, that Guns n Roses are in town for the night, and that's all we needed to hear. We booked our tickets, and later that evening sang our heads off to 'Sweet Child O' Mine', 'November Rain', and 'Welcome to the Jungle'. All good clean fun, spoilt only for 30 mins or so by a drunken cougar, high on some kind of drug, gyrating on the crotch of a clearly uninterested man as if her life depended on it. Poor old cow looked rather down in the dumps when the lights came up later on, and you could almost hear her thinking 'wtf am I doing ...?'

Earlier in the afternoon we'd visited the Country Music Hall of Fame, a museum and exhibition all about ... you guessed it. We were surprised how 'young' country was, and that it's roots were Irish, and how modest its performers were way back when - in stark contrast to the incredibly garish (amazing) outfits adorned by the stars of the 70s and 80s.

Our informative bus driver had also told us Nashville was in the 'buckle' of the Bible Belt, which made complete sense as we'd seen church after church, many of them "mega" i.e. with congregations of over 2,000. We promised ourselves we'd get to one at some point, and we did - it didn't disappoint. More on this in the Memphis post.

Evenings in this city are great fun, and we frequented many of the live music venues lining the main strip (2nd Avenue). They were all fantastic! There are young starlets everywhere, hoping to be the next Dolly, Shania or Garth, which means you're almost guaranteed one of these quality acts in any bar you go in to. And the cherry on the cake is that the locals absolutely love it, everyone sings along, dances, and just generally has a bloody good time, which makes you know you're not in some touristy trap pub, but real Nashville.

So far, our favourite US city.
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