Review: A trip to Nashville, Tennessee: 'Music City U.S.A.' Special

Posted Aug 31, 2013 by Markos Papadatos
In July of 2013, I was afforded the privilege to make my inaugural trip to Nashville, Tennessee, which is known as the country music capital in the world.
A view of Nashville  Tennessee from my hotel balcony
A view of Nashville, Tennessee from my hotel balcony
I have been a journalist for the past eight years, where I mostly review country music since it is my favorite genre of music. Serving in the capacity as journalist, I cover breaking news in the genre, as well as review radio singles, albums, videos or concerts, and I conduct interviews (in-person or via phone) and subsequently write spotlight features on musicians; however, being a New Yorker, I had never been to “Music City” before. In fact, I would wait for most country artists to tour in my area so that I would be able to see them live in concert.
This year, I took the advice of a world-renowned female publicist (who holds over 25 years experience in the business) to visit Nashville and I am extremely glad I did.
Living in hectic New York City, Nashville was a big change of pace for me: the people were a lot nicer, they stop and they greet you in the morning, and for the duration of my trip (the ten days that I stayed there), I did not experience any road rage from the drivers and nobody honked their horn at me, which is the antithesis of spending five minutes in “The Big Apple.”
Downtown Nashville  Tennessee
Downtown Nashville, Tennessee
I was able to visit all three of my favorite attractions that I set out to see which included The Grand Ole Opry on multiple occasions, which is the historic platform where all the greatest names in country history have performed, as well as the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, which consisted of artifacts from some of the most popular artists in the genre (both the legendary ones and the newer acts).
Nashville  Tennessee
Nashville, Tennessee
Finally, I also saw the Johnny Cash Museum, which was truly remarkable since it paid tribute to the “Man in Black,” who inspired me to get into country music in the first place. Particularly impressive about this museum is that it chronicled his life from his early career (at Folsom Prison) to his final days (“Hurt” video).
Music Row, which is situated in Downtown Nashville, is home to some of the biggest record labels, recording studios, booking agencies, as well as management and public relation firms in the country scene. It certainly is the “heart” of the country music industry.
The Yellow Porch s chocolate espresso torte
The Yellow Porch's chocolate espresso torte
My favorite places to dine in the area included The Yellow Porch and The Row, both of which featured the southern styles of cooking, as well as the Edgehill Café, which is worthy of praise both for its food and beverages (I am still craving their refreshing pomegranate tea since I returned to New York City).
The Verdict
Overall, visiting Nashville, Tennessee surpassed all of my expectations. It was such a pleasant environment and all of the people went out of their way to make this New York journalist feel at home.
With the exception of the Ryman Auditorium, I was able to see all of the attractions and people that I had intended to see, but I hope to accomplish that at some point in the future. I recommend a trip to Nashville to any country music fan. They will not regret it.