Well that was fun. I enjoy Nashville a ton. The people there are super polite and even though everyone is a songwriter, they are polite songwriters.
Our Backup Plan Plane
Getting to Nashville was a bit hard because even though we were at the airport about an hour and a half early, the security line was SO LONG and we had that movie-esque moment of trudging up to our gate and watching the plane back out. Except Angelina Jolie wasn’t there and Tom Hanks wasn’t flying the plane, so it wasn’t very cinematic at all. Southwest Airlines are champs, though – we were re-checked in and told to book it to gate 7 where they held the plane for some of us. We weren’t the only ones…about 25 on our plane missed it and then there were seats on our new flight because about 30 of those folks were stuck in security. Weird, Austin Airport…weird. Anyway, instead of a 2 hour direct flight to Nashville, we went to Dallas and San Antonio and THEN Nashville. But we made it and we had fun anyway.
Those safety cards are hilarious.
On Tuesday night we went to a writer’s night at the Hotel Indigo. In Nashville they have writer’s nights everywhere and as far as I can tell, they are like “open mics by invitation.” It was fun, and I picked up a loaner guitar from our friend Virginia at Voyage Air Guitars because I don’t have one that will fold up on a plane and didn’t want to gate check my Martin for it to be crushed. Yay Voyage Air!
Wednesday was Bluebird Cafe gig night. This venue has seen EVERYONE. The walls are plastered with hit songwriters and artists. I found Mary Chapin Carpenter’s photo on the wall (one from the 80’s no less) and felt better about my nerves for whatever reason.
Lone Loaner Guitar.
The gig was fun – I was in a square (they call it a round but there are 4 people and that, dear friends, is a quadrilateral) with Susan, Dana Cooper, and Michael Hearne. The crowd surrounds the circle-square, and I was looking directly at Susan the whole time. It was fun and exciting and then again it was just like every other gig ever except you’re staring at your square-mates and there are people seated RIGHT BEHIND you staring at your back. The Voyage Air worked like a champ and all too soon it was over.
Susan and Michael
I loved playing with those 3 giants of songwriting-dom…they all have very artistic bents to how they write. Most of the folks we have seen at writer’s nights and whatnot are definitely writing commercial songs for a cut, which I am not doing. There’s nothing wrong at all with either path or joining your paths as long as you’re aware of your intent for things (and oh do I love me some country radio sometimes). I just liked playing my songs in a legendary venue for a night and I am SUPER GRATEFUL WITH HEARTS AND STARS to Susan for asking me to come along.
On Thursday I had an evening flight out so I walked down to the Country Music Hall of Fame in the morning and took in the Nudie suits and embellished cowboy boots on display. The thing that interested me most was that you could see their archive area behind glass, and they had thousands of vinyl albums on motorized shelves. THOUSANDS. I cannot even give you a picture of how many albums I saw. Also guitar cases – hundreds of instrument cases, most probably full because they didn’t come close to displaying them all. Very cool and important work.
CRUSHED DIAMONDS AND FISH SCALES.
Highlights were Elvis’ Cadillac (complete with record player and TV in the backseat…hi-tech for 1960)…Chet Atkins’ guitar collection, and yes…they had Taylor Swift’s laptop on display which she used to edit her very first videos. The walls are covered with gold and platinum records, and I thought there was no chance I’d find anything I’d be interested in. Just then my eyeballs landed on MCC’s Stones In the Road. I’m like a homing pigeon or something.
After some time spent at the airport trying to size up which blonde girls in Ugg boots were possible country singers with development deals, I am back in Austin. It’s raining. This is good.
I’m saving the laptop this blog was typed on just in case some Hall of Fame comes calling someday.