Walking approximately 1 mile total throughout the day; periods of standing up to 1 hour at a time in museums; some inclines on roads in town. Getting on/off motorcoach; driving approximately 10 miles total; about 1.5 hours, with stops for field trips.
In the hotel meeting room.
Arriving by motorcoach, we will visit Studio B – originally RCA Studios – home of thousands of hits that helped to define the “Nashville Sound.” Chet Atkins was one of the originators and Elvis mastered more than 200 songs here. Our docent will share many of the quirks and idiosyncrasies of this unique space where so much history has been created using the pianos, mics, and accessories on site. We will continue our morning on the motorcoach with an introductory driving field trip through the heart of downtown Nashville. A local expert will provide enlightening and entertaining commentary as we ride, learning about colorful history, and seeing distinctive architecture. Highlights we will see include historic Ryman Auditorium, Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge on Honky Tonk Row, the original Ernest Tubb Record Shop, the Tennessee state capitol building, and more. As we drive through Music Row, we’ll hear about aspects of the recording industry from songwriting to record producers, famous recording studios, and the performance rights organizations ASCAP & BMI that monitor airplay of songs all over the world so the songwriters get paid. We’ll also learn about Tennessee’s rich history with a drive through Centennial Mall Park to see the world’s only exact-scale replica of the Parthenon in Athens, Greece. Nashville’s Parthenon dates from 1897. We’ll conclude our drive at the Country Music Hall of Fame.
There are several restaurants that surround the Country Music Hall of Fame and are within easy walking. There are also some restaurants located within the CMHOF. We will have a list available for you and our group leader will be happy to assist you with a restaurant of your choice.
After lunch, we’ll enjoy time with educational audio devices for independent exploration of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, a non-profit educational organization that includes the Taylor Swift Education Center, as well as permanent and rotating special exhibitions. There are stage costumes, instruments, photographs, and many artifacts highlighting the history of country music and musicians. Since 1961, the Country Music Association (CMA) has recognized performing artists and others who have made significant contributions to country music throughout their careers. The first inductees were Jimmie Rodgers, Fred Rose, and Hank Williams. There are now more than 100 who have been recognized with country music’s highest honor, each commemorated with a bronze plaque in the Hall of Fame Rotunda that includes Thomas Hart Benton’s iconic painting “The Sources of Country Music” — his final work. You can spend all afternoon in this museum, just listening to the music and viewing the exhibitions. We will be able to stay as long as we like and not be rushed with this independent self guided look at the Country Music Hall of Fame. If we are feeling the need for a break, the hotel is located just across the street.
At a specially selected restaurant off Broadway, we’ll walk to dinner.
At leisure. You may wish to walk back to the hotel with the group or stick around to enjoy more of Nashville’s nightlife.