Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Week One in Music City (6/17-6/26)


My moving truck rolled in to town on Friday, June 17th sometime in the evening.  I want to point out the irony that the song playing on the radio when I crossed the Ohio river into Kentucky was the same song playing on the radio as I drove through downtown Nashville entering my new home - Garth Brooks "Friends in Low Places", which by the way is an awesome song!  The next several 2 days were spent unpacking and arranging furniture and hanging all my stuff on the walls.  My parents and I were on the ball and got me all settled in 2 days! And of course it would not have been possible with out the help of some great friends down here as well, without them my truck would have never even got unloaded!  I only hope that the Miller Lite and Pizza Hut was a somewhat decent form of payment.

Saturday was spent unpacking pretty much all day, only one quick trip to Target.  Went to Jack in the Box for dinner that night, my parents had never been and I hadn't had Jack since 2008 in California.  The guys messed up everyone's order but we moved on.

That Sunday the 19th was Father's Day so my parents and I actually went out to dinner near the Vanderbilt campus to a place called J. Alexander's, it has several locations so you may have been to one where you live.  It was delicious, steak and mashed potatoes (and boy do they give you a lot of mashed potatoes!)  None of us could finish our meals and I luckily got to keep all the leftovers since my parents were leaving in the morning (score!)

Food had during moving weekend: Jack in the Box, J Alexanders


Monday June 20th was my very first day at my new job.  By lunch I felt like I was home, I knew I made the right decision coming here.  I love the station and the people and I was learning everything quickly and easing my way into my new setting.

As it turns out one of my very best friends from Purdue happened to be in town on business my first week in town.  So, Tuesday night we decided to meet up.  We had dinner at a restaurant near Vanderbilt again, the place is called Amerigo's and it's an Italian restaurant (funny story there is that Monday night a taxi actually drove through the front window of the restaurant after being hit from behind, there was a giant tarp over the window that night when we ate there).  The food was good and not too pricey either, and again I scored all the leftovers since my friend was staying in a hotel and had no way to keep them!  After dinner we drove downtown and decided to walk
View of Honkey Tonk Row at night
around lower Broadway aka Honkey Tonk Row, or as some call it "NashVegas" and from what I can gather, they call it that b/c of all the neon lights and signs it looks similar to the way the strip in Vegas is lit up.  We parked down closest to the river and walked up the street as far as Bridgestone Arena (which is where the Nashville Predators hockey team plays and also where the NKOTB/BSB concert was going on that very night).  We hit a little tourist type gift shop and looked around (I grabbed a new postcard for my collection), while inside the store employee started telling me about a lot of great places to check out (of course I can't remember any of them but it was nice of her to share) and also said that the guy playing tonight at The Wheel was really good and we should go listen.  After walking all the way down to the arena we circled back on the other side of the street a ways and decided to just pick a bar and go in.  So my very first bar in Nashville was Tootsies Orchid Lounge.

Tootsies was really fun, it has two levels and there were two different bands playing, one on the first floor and one upstairs on the second.  Tara and i made our way upstairs since the downstairs area seemed pretty crowded.  It amazed me that both of those bands could be playing and you couldn't hear the other one where u were!  The band upstairs played cover songs, dedicated "Courtesy of the Red White and Blue" by Toby Keith to all members of the military (which my friend Tara is - Air National Guard) so she really enjoyed that, AND the lead female singer's name was Tara as well so she had a double whammy that night.  The lead male singer did a little walk through the bar sing-a-long to the song that was following me around "Friends in Low Places" which of course I participated in because I actually know the words to that song (Tara didn't want to sing in the microphone).  After a few drinks we decided to check out another bar.

Our next stop was the bar the girl at the gift shop recommended The Wheel.  This place was not very crowded at all, maybe 10 other people in there.  The band hadn't started to play yet when we got there so we got a beer and just chilled out and watched the band set up.  The guy had a really good voice but probably catered to a more middle aged crowd.  The weirdest part was when this group of girls came in with a camera man.  I'm still not sure what was going on and the band even asked her if she was filming a reality show but not sure what her answer was because she was up near the band and we were sitting kind of far back.  No matter what she was doing with her own camera man it was a strange sight to see.  We only stayed long enough to drink one beer then decided it was time to hit another bar.

Next on the list was another big name bar on Broadway, The Stage.  I had heard of this place (as well as Tootsies) from watching CMT's Next Superstar, the contestants performed here on night (which reminds me I need to find out when they start filming the next season).  This place was probably the biggest of the 3 we hit, and by the time we got here the NKOTB/BSB concert had let out so the bars had gotten more crowded (even for a Tuesday night).  The band here was also playing cover music they played a lot of really fun songs.  There was this shorter guy in the band that jumped around a lot it was crazy, Tara said she wanted to hire him for when she gets married lol.  When the lead singer took the tip jar through the crowd the little jumpy dude sang some old school hip-hop like "This is How we Do It" by Montell Jordan and then some relatively new stuff like "F-ck You" by Celo Green.  Although the band was really just beginning, midnight rolled around and we had to leave because we both had to be at work at 8am Wednesday morning.

All in all it was a great night...the bars on Broadway are really fun but you can tell that most of the people who go there are out-of-towners but still a fun place to go every now and again and there are so many more bars downtown for me to hit up in the future!  Tara and I tried to arrange another time to meet up but work kept us both pretty busy through Thursday night so that night was it for us for the week.  I had Friday and Saturday off work my first week (originally I was supposed to have Saturday and Sunday off but we changed it since I was learning so quickly my sr. director wanted me to learn the weekend morning show).  Considering I will probably not see many Friday and Saturday nights off you would have thought I would go out and enjoy the weekend but alas I stayed home and watched TV hehe.  Sunday I had to be at work at 4:30am anyway so Saturday night was a no go, I almost went to the movies on Friday but couldn't convince myself to get off the couch.  I did spend all day Friday running errands like getting my car title and plates switched over to Tennessee (I know you might say you just got there why rush it, but my OH plates expire on my birthday which is July, 11 so I really only had a few weeks to take care of it).

After one week in Nashville I was already in love and had gone out downtown to the bars...the future only holds many more adventures.  Soon I will post an entry for week two in Music City, eventually I will be in real time with my adventures, and the posts will be shorter :-)

Food during week one: Amerigo's
Bars/Music during week one: Tootsies, The Wheel, The Stage

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