Thursday, April 25, 2013

US road trip 2013: Nashville

The 2013 US road trip is up and running with four of us travelling from Nashville and down to the deep south. But it didn't get off to an auspicious start. Three of the four - John Howard, Alan Lloyd and me - set off from Heathrow, changing planes in Washington. But halfway into our connecting flight the plane was ordered back to Dulles airport because of a problem with pressure in the cabin. Fortunately another plane was available so we were only delayed by a couple of hours. We were due to meet the fourth member of our group, Lee Wilkinson, in Nashville but when we got to the hotel (the Knights Inn)  the desk clerk said he hadn't arrived and there was no answer on Lee's phone when we tried to call him. We killed time by having a hot dog and an English beer in a bar in Printer's Alley and returned to the hotel. The desk clerk refused to let us use the rooms that Lee had booked and the inevitable row ensued, resulting in the three of us being escorted from the premises by an armed security guard. So, at 1am, with no sign of Lee still, we had to find another hotel, eventually getting a suite at Comfort Inn.
Next morning we went back to the Knights Inn to find that Lee had been there all the time.He had been let down by Virgin which meant that his phone wasn't working. The desk clerk had simply lied to us. To great relief, and in pouring rain, we began our trip properly, visiting the Country Music Hall of Fame, which I must say is very comprehensive and interesting - if you're keen on country music that is, which generally speaking I'm not. As part of this visit we had a ride a to RCA Studio B, which I found a lot more interesting. This is where Elvis recorded many of his hits, along with Roy Orbison, the Everly Brothers, Don Gibson and a host of other acts. They claim 1000 top ten hits between 1957 and 1977 when it officially closed. We had lunch in Roberts bar on Broadway where there was a competent singer named Clay Canfield and then went for a hunt for records at thrift stores and record shops. In the evening we went into town for a few drinks and a meal at the Rock Bottom brewhouse, where John, at the age of nearly 68, was nearly refused admission because he didn't have photo ID. Later, we had some more drinks at Legends, a bar with hundreds of LP covers and posters on the wall.
Today the rain has stopped, the sun is shining and we're ready to resume our trip. I'll be putting some photos on later on.
Nick Cobban.


At 10:40 am , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds like the trip is making a dramatic improvement after the first night mate. I loved the country music hall of fame. great architecture on the building too. Never did Studio B - it was closed the day for refurb. Have a great time over there.
John S


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