The Hip Nashville Music Scene

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TOP PLACES TO LIVE IN TENNESSEE

Baby Boomers and families of all ages looking for a musically driven city to live should consider relocating to Tennessee, to THE Music City of Nashville. Music empowers the soul and allows those seeking new homes in Nashville Tennessee the opportunity to experience the “fountain of youth” associated with the incredible musical experience found throughout Nashville neighborhoods.  Nashville is a city built on music and it’s a place where folks can enjoy a variety of great music 24/7, 365 days a year with over 150 live music venues available.  There are also multiple events that are offered FREE to the public year round and a multitude of concerts offered weekly with a wide variety of artists to choose from.  Nashville has music virtually everywhere and the energy radiates throughout this magnificent city keeping individuals “toe-tapping” daily.  It is a perfect place to retire and enjoy the finest entertainment offered throughout the world.  Nashville definitely has a strong heartbeat and draws retirees worldwide because of that fact.  Music represents a vibrant and youthful lifestyle, and Nashville is the place to be.  Here are a few of the FREE Nasheville events offered:

MUSIC IN THE VINES – every year April through December, Saturday 5-9pm; May through December Friday 5-9pm, Saturday 5-9pm and Sunday 2-6pm.  It’s all free with live music and wine tastings.

NASHVILLE SYMPHONY COMMUNITY CONCERTS at the beginning of each summer offering a series of free performances at parks around town.  Bring a picnic and enjoy the music.

MUSICIANS CORNER takes place each Saturday May-June and September-October.  Free and family friendly from 1:30-5pm Preshow activities start at noon with food trucks, beer, wine garden and “Kidsville” activities.

CMA MUSIC FESTIVAL has 7 stages throughout downtown Nashville hosting FREE live music daily during the 2015 CMA Music Festival.

BIG BAND DANCES are held Saturday nights during the summer with dancing to live big band music by some of Nashville’s finest musicians.  Lawn chairs and picnic baskets are encouraged.

TOMATO ART FESTIVAL is free and takes place in East Nashville’s Five Points area and is an art show celebrating the tomato in late summer.  Even is hosted by owners of the Art and Invention Gallery.

LIVE ON THE GREEN MUSIC FESTIVAL is held Thursday evenings in August and September at the Public Square Park in front of the Courthouse. 

OKTOBERFEST, Nashville’s Original German Festival features live German music, authentic polka dancing, accordion players and great German food and beverages and is held in the Historic German neighborhood.  It features 4 stages of FREE entertainment.

ABOUT THE HONKY TONK HIGHWAY

Nashville is known as Music City because it was built by musicians and artists that were drawn to this historic town.  One of the famous areas is the “Honky Tonk Highway” that is located in the Broadway Historic District between 300 and 500 Broadway.  The area is family friendly until 8 or 9pm and then becomes an over-21 venue due to the stretch of bars that have made this location famous.  Upon entering the “Honky Tonk Highway” at the corner of Fifth and Broadway, folks will find Legends Corner.  Meandering down the block, music lovers will find Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge which has been called “home” by many famous artists.  Next is Robert’s Western World where “Brazilbilly” is the norm which combines traditional country music with a Latin flair.  Located between Second Fiddle and Robert’s, Layla’s Bluegrass Inn provides a welcoming atmosphere with traditional bluegrass music.  At the Second Fiddle visitors will find Grand Ole Opry memorabilia and at The Stage, energetic Boomers can dance the night away at one of the largest stages on Broadway while enjoying authentic “honky tonk” tunes.  

While visiting the “Honky Tonk Highway” with hours that open at 10am and close at 3am, music enthusiasts can virtually “dance the day and night away” without ever paying a cover charge.  Music is always live and performers make a living on tips so be sure to support the fantastic entertainment found here.  Music generally starts early afternoon and young children can enjoy the music until the 8pm curfew.  Known as “Honky Tonking”, this is a great way for some incredible fun for the entire family. The Music City Star train makes it easy to get to and from downtown for those considering relocating to Tennessee without the worry of driving into a big city. 

ABOUT MUSIC ROW

The next point of interest is called Music Row and can be found southwest of downtown Nashville.  Here folks will find hundreds of businesses related to the country, gospel and contemporary Christian music industries.  The Music Row is centered on 16th and 17th Avenues South and is called “Music Square East” and “Music Square West” and is also situated along several side streets in the area.  Music Row is known as the heart of Nashville’s entertainment industry and here numerous record labels, publishing houses, music licensing firms, recording studios and video production houses can be found.  For over 30 years, MusicRow Magazine has covered the area and it is still a respected resource for happenings here.  Dolly Parton’s 1973 “Down on Music Row” made the area famous as well as Lacy J. Dalton’s “16th Avenue” which was dedicated to the region.  Some other points of interest include the historical RCA’s Studio B where hundreds of famous artists recorded their music.  There are streets named after legendary country singers Roy Acuff and Chet Atkins and Music Row once housed the “Country Music Hall of Fame” which was relocated in 2001 to downtown Nashville.  Today, first class restaurants and bars are scattered throughout Music Row.  In the region, visitors can also take a stroll through the Owen Bradley Park which was dedicated to the infamous singer, songwriter and publisher whose statue graces the park.  At the end of Music Row, Belmont and Vanderbilt University campuses can be found.  The Belmont “Mike Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business” is popular with students pursuing musical careers.

ABOUT PRINTER'S ALLEY

Another place to visit is Printer’s Alley located between 3rd and 4th Avenues which run from Union to Commerce Streets.  Here, folks relocating to Nashville will find a historic nightclub district that dates back to the 1940’s.  Once a thriving publishing district which was the home to 2 large newspapers, 10 print shops and 13 publishers in the early 20th century, in the 40’s the area became a nightclub and entertainment district when the sale of liquor was illegal.  The clubs sold liquor regardless often under the demise of “brown bagging” until the sale of liquor was legalized in 1968.  One popular spot found on Printer’s Alley was a jazz venue called Jimmy Hyde’s Carousel Club.  Many famous country performers frequented the club and would jam after the music ended.  The likes of Chet Atkins, Floyd Cramer, Bob Moore, Buddy Harman, Brenton Banks and Boots Randolph were known to frequent the spot.  Randolph ended up purchasing the Carousel.  Currently, visitors to Printer’s Alley can enjoy, 2 live band bars, 2 karaoke bars, a soccer bar and one adult entertainment club.  Some great clubs to explore are the Bourbon Street Blues and Boogie Bar, the Fiddle and Steel Guitar Bar, Lonnie’s Western Room, Ms. Kelli’s, Fleet Street Pub and The Brass Stables.

In addition to the great places to visit in Nashville, the city prides itself in offering its residents and tourists free annual events throughout the year.  The events are scattered throughout the Nashville neighborhoods and Boomers shopping for new homes in Nashville are rapidly finding that this is the perfect place to have an action packed retirement.  Here are some annual events to enjoy in Nashville:

  • In April the celebration of spring is marked by Awesome April with a month of “awesome” weekend events featuring a variety of music and the performing arts which take place center stage.
  • Music City July 4th is a city-wide party held in downtown Nashville and is an event packed day filled with food, drink and entertainment for the entire family.  The amazing fireworks display is accompanied by the Nashville Symphony.
  • Holiday Harmony is held Thanksgiving through New Year’s Eve provides a magical holiday experience with a wide array of events that range from concerts to theatrical performances.  It’s a great way to celebrate the holidays with the loved ones!
  • On December 31 is Jack Daniel’s Bash on Broadway: New Year’s Eve in Music City where thousands of revelers flock to downtown Nashville for this FREE live music, firework and a Music Drop at midnight.  A must for all to see!
  • Music City Connection: Heroes Behind the Hits is a radio show recorded and produced by the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corp in Music City.  The show is also broadcast exclusively by SiriusXM Radio.  The series presents songwriters of all genres during an informal showcase.
  • The Music City Walk of Fame is a landmark tribute to all musicians who have contributed to the world through song and other industry collaborations in Music City.  A project by Nashville CVC Foundation (Music City, Inc.) honors inductees at a special ceremony.
  • In February, The Antiques & Garden Show of Nashville is held.  Bringing together horticulturalists, garden displays and world-renowned lecturers, this annual event draws gardeners from all over the world.  Nashville is the largest show in the country and it runs for 3 days.
  • The Country Music Marathon & 1/2 Marathon is held the last Saturday in April with over 50 bands that play live on 27 stages throughout the race course while hundreds of high school cheerleaders cheer on the runners.  A post-race concert is held in the downtown’s Bridgestone Arena.  The marathon begins at 7am at Centennial Park and finishes at the home of the Tennessee Titans, Nissan Stadium.
  • The Iroquois Steeplechase is held the second Saturday in May and is a premier spring race with 7 races in American steeple chasing are held throughout the day and typically draws more than 25,000 spectators.
  • In June is the CMA Music Festival which is “Country Music’s Biggest Party”.  Held over 4 days with over 70 hours of musical performances, autograph signings, celebrity sporting competitions and over 400 artists and celebrities participating this event draws country music fans from all over the world.
  • In June is the Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival takes place in neighboring Manchester, TN.  This 4 day annual event combines music, stand-up comedy and arts for the community.
  • In August is l’Ete du Vin which is a series of events hosted by the Nashville Wine Auction to raise money to fight cancer.  Celebrating a unique wine making style, the event includes wine tastings, a gourmet dinner, auction and more.
  • The Music City Festival & BBQ Championship is also held in August.  This annual 2 day event combines live music, BBQ tastings and competitions and is sanctioned by the Memphis BBQ Network and the Kansas City Barbeque Society.
  • The Nashville Home Decorating & Remodeling Show is held in September and is the largest home show in Nashville. The weekend event has everything for the home and outdoors all under one roof
  • Also in September is the Music City Food + Wine Festival. Annually star chefs from around the country, local Nashville culinary talent, winemakers and beverage crafters for a weekend of panels, demos, samplings and more.  Another great outing for Boomers relocating to Tennessee.
  • CMA Music Awards is held in November and represents “Country Music’s Biggest Night” as country music artists, musicians, producers, publishers, songwriters, video directors and industry executives are honored for their achievements in the country music industry.  Another great evening for country music fans.
  • CMA Country Christmas is also held in November and offers a magical holiday experience for country music lovers.  The event features Christmas songs and holiday memories from the performance.  It is taped at Bridgestone Arena each year prior to the CMA awards and aired later during the holidays on ABC.
  • A Country Christmas is held November through January at Gaylord Opryland.  Here families can see Santa, The Rocketts, enjoy concerts, dinner shows, crafts and shopping.
  • In December, Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl is held.  An SEC football team meets an ACC team in a post-season matchup at Nashville’s Nissan Stadium.  The night before there is a MusicFest and Battle of the Bands along with mixers, parties and more.

There are so many fun and exciting happenings going on in Nashville, Boomers and families of all ages should take the time to visit this spectacular “Music City”.  (There is even a FREE Nashville Live Music Guide App to download.)  With historic Nashville neighborhoods and new homes in Nashville, it’s no surprise Baby Boomers worldwide are relocating to Tennessee to enjoy the many wonderful events offered in this “one-of-a-kind” town.  Music lovers worldwide will enjoy a fruitful and exciting retirement when choosing the great city of Nashville, Tennessee as a place to call home.

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