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Old 02-22-2011, 11:42 AM
 
8 posts, read 16,233 times
Reputation: 13
Default Nashville Not-for-tourists Music

I've been to Nashville once. I was really just passing through, but on my night there I was hoping to catch some live music. To give an idea of my tastes, I enjoy classic country (Hank Williams/ Johnny Cash/ Patsy Cline/etc.) as well as blues from the 20s-50s (everything from Robert Johnson to Howlin' Wolf) as well as rockabilly (Roy Orbison, etc.) and early rock (Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Bo Diddley). I realize the era of this music is over, but in other places (Clarksdale Mississippi/ New Orleans/ Cajun Country) I've been able to find live music that suits my liking. However in Nashville all I could find was what seemed like tourist traps...really bad cover bands of the classics. But I really didn't know where to look. So if anyone has an idea of where to see an interesting show that's a bit more genuine, I'd love to know.

I'd be interested in knowing if some of the dive bars also occasionally have live music...I'm less into official music venues, and find I enjoy more informal shows at bars. I hope that distinction makes sense.

Also, any good/cheap places to eat around Vanderbilt's campus? I like a variety of ethnic foods, and BBQ.

Thanks!
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Old 02-22-2011, 12:23 PM
 
Location: Hendersonville, TN
2,832 posts, read 3,399,309 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prospective UMich Grad View Post
However in Nashville all I could find was what seemed like tourist traps...really bad cover bands of the classics. But I really didn't know where to look. So if anyone has an idea of where to see an interesting show that's a bit more genuine, I'd love to know.
You must have hung out around Broadway/2nd Avenue. That area is fine for "pop" country and for the tourist crowd, but not for everyone. Although, Robert's Western World on Broadway is a good place to find rockabilly...and if you come back I'd take a look there.

But yes, you'll find the more authentic shows off of Broadway. The Station Inn is a great spot to hear live bluegrass. The Bluebird Cafe is where lots of songwriters get their start. Not necessarily the genre of music you're into...but definitely authentic.

I'd also look at places like The Exit/In, The Basement, 3rd and Lindsley, 12th and Porter for their upcoming acts. All of those places have a variety of acts...one night might be alternative, blues the next, punk the next. If you're into Americana, the Family Wash usually has good Americana/folk acts. In fact, there are a lot of places around that feature this genre too. Check out the local alt-weekly for bands/venues: Nashville Scene music page. That is the best resource around for who's playing where and what they sound like.

Quote:
Also, any good/cheap places to eat around Vanderbilt's campus? I like a variety of ethnic foods, and BBQ.
I'd check out South Street for BBQ. Nearby is Broadway Brewhouse & Mojo Grill that serves cajun food pretty cheap. San Antonio Taco Co is also a popular cheap-eats place...although the food isn't necessarily memorable.

I'd definitely check out Hillsboro Village (http://www.hillsborovillage.com/HVmerchants.htm - broken link). There are a number of restaurants and bars in the area there. The Pancake Pantry is always popular for breakfast.

Hope that helps. Please let us know if you have questions!
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Old 02-22-2011, 12:40 PM
 
Location: Music City, USA
5,032 posts, read 4,693,933 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonCorleone View Post
You must have hung out around Broadway/2nd Avenue. That area is fine for "pop" country and for the tourist crowd, but not for everyone. Although, Robert's Western World on Broadway is a good place to find rockabilly...and if you come back I'd take a look there.

But yes, you'll find the more authentic shows off of Broadway. The Station Inn is a great spot to hear live bluegrass. The Bluebird Cafe is where lots of songwriters get their start. Not necessarily the genre of music you're into...but definitely authentic.

I'd also look at places like The Exit/In, The Basement, 3rd and Lindsley, 12th and Porter for their upcoming acts. All of those places have a variety of acts...one night might be alternative, blues the next, punk the next. If you're into Americana, the Family Wash usually has good Americana/folk acts. In fact, there are a lot of places around that feature this genre too. Check out the local alt-weekly for bands/venues: Nashville Scene music page. That is the best resource around for who's playing where and what they sound like.



I'd check out South Street for BBQ. Nearby is Broadway Brewhouse & Mojo Grill that serves cajun food pretty cheap. San Antonio Taco Co is also a popular cheap-eats place...although the food isn't necessarily memorable.

I'd definitely check out Hillsboro Village (http://www.hillsborovillage.com/HVmerchants.htm - broken link). There are a number of restaurants and bars in the area there. The Pancake Pantry is always popular for breakfast.

Hope that helps. Please let us know if you have questions!
I fully endorse this post!

There are tons of places in Nashville to hear good live music OUTSIDE of the touristy honky tonks. Many bars and restaurants in the area, and even into the suburbs offer live music on certain nights of the week. Puckett's in downtown Franklin generally has live music. There is even a [incredibly expensive] jazz bar called F. Scotts in Green Hills.

Point is, Nashville is very much a live music city. It may not have the reputation of, say, Austin, TX, but there is certainly more to be had than "just country."

As DonCorleone said, check out the Nashville Scene (alternative weekly paper)...they are usually pretty in touch with local happenings in the arts and music world.
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Old 02-22-2011, 12:52 PM
 
8 posts, read 16,233 times
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Thanks for the info! Just for the record, I do enjoy country, folk, americana, etc...just not the stuff I heard wafting through the doors as I walked down Broadway. I can get into bluegrass too, so thanks for that....really, authentic (for lack of a better term) is what I'm looking for...the exact genre is less important.
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Old 02-23-2011, 02:53 PM
 
Location: Nashville
34 posts, read 35,564 times
Reputation: 22
Based on your music tastes described above I would urge you to go to Robert's which is in the "tourist" district but the best music on Broad. The house band there, Brazil Billy, is one of the best Rockabilly bands I've ever heard. Also Springwater and the Station Inn would probably suit you. Springwater is the definition of a dive, and there just so happens to be some of the best BBQ in town right next door at Hog Heaven. Both of these are right on the edge of Centennial Park. The Bluebird is dull, pretentious, and a ripoff IMO so I would not recommend.
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