Tuesday, November 12, 2013

two days in nashville.

there's something about country music that just feels like home to me. i wasn't one of those kids who got to grow up listening to rap or rock; my parents were too strict for all that. i actually remember the first "rap" song i heard on a radio station i wasn't supposed to be listening to - it was shaggy's "it wasn't me." i remember thinking omg this is so dirty...what are they doing on the counter? or the sofa? shower? what? ew bathroom floor?! ... yeah i was that kid. 

shania twain, faith hill, and trisha yearwood's jams were my jams. there were countless times i battled my mom on who could sing "any man of mine" better. she usually won. i even named my childhood cat trisha yearwood, but that's a whole other story and sneak peek in to my weirdness. 


recently i got a chance to visit nashville for a conference for work and i live by the "work hard, play hard" motto. after the opening reception at the sheraton nashville downtown hotel, i went out with a friend i had met there, rachelle.

{rachelle & i}

the strip of nashville bars are booming with their neon lit up signs, cowboy boots, and my favorite part - live music. rachelle used to live in nashville i found out, so she was the perfect person to meet who could show me around the city. i don't think there was a bar we went to that didn't have some act on stage praying for the big break. typically, they just play cover songs of mainstream country artists which, after a few drinks, you tend to sing at the top of your lungs right along with them. 


we started at the stage - where rachelle taught me how to dress up your beer in a napkin tuxedo! 

{the stage}

{fancy beer}

after the stage, we walked down the strip and i ran into elvis. naturally the kid in me got thrilled and had to snag a pic. not 100% sure why i decided to go all rocker on elvis, but hey - when in nashville....

{elvis; 1 of 3}

we then landed at honky tonk central, which very quickly became a favorite place of mine. the next time i visit nashville, and yes there will definitely be a next time, i'll make sure to return to this place. on the stage was a sounds-like jason aldean accompanied by a band. he played plenty of songs we all knew including will smith's theme song from the fresh prince. the one guy who was on the fiddle KILLED his performance during the devil went down to georgia. he was jammin' out so hard the strings from his fiddle actually shredded. i got to see this because i was first row, naturally. they were a very talented band taking requests from the audience all night.



the next morning was rough. i mean the struggle was real. thank you to my hotel room at loews hotel for saving my life with a mini first aid kit that had tylenol! one thing i'd like to share about this hotel where my conference was held is this beautiful mason jar light structure that was located in their hotel bar. it was so simple and seemingly inexpensive to make. i'd love to make one for my house someday! 

{mason jars}

the other thing was the old time ballroom feel where the conference was held. it was an eclectic feel with touches of modern and vintage pieces. 

{event space}

after the event, my body was all amanda, go to bed. you're exhausted. but rachelle sent a text to meet up and downtown nashville was whispering in my ear you know you wannaaaa. so we decided to do round two. 

{rachelle & i}

i brought out the red lipstick and we hit up the some of the same bars as the first night and i'll let the pictures tell you the rest of the story.....

we found the second of three elvis's! it's to my understanding they move these statues all around downtown. after this i was dead set on finding the third. ps it was like 50 degrees outside so i wouldn't have been too heartbroken had we not.

i straight up stalked this guy to get a picture of his horse. i flippin love horses. he actually was very nice about it. this horse was named grace. he showed me her teeth and i attempted to get a picture. the horse wasn't a huge fan of the flash. fail.

we had apple pie moonshine shots. i repeat, we had apple pie moonshine shots. we literally walked into the bar where three old men sat watching some game on tv. rachelle said "we're just here for the apple pie shots." the bartender poured them up, we took them back, winced a bit because uhhh it is moonshine and walked out. because that was necessary. 

elvis number three baby! thankfully it was on the way to another bar.

this building is so the batman building and i believe it's known as that. it was so cool being near all the landmarks from the show, nashville! if only i could have ran into some of the characters...... or taylor swift. either would've worked.

the apple pie moonshine shots made me decide that it was a good idea to buy this ring for $5.99 and pretend i was engaged to the city all night because that's normal....

music city was a blast. never underestimate this city.

and i can say i was very happy to see this final view - meaning i was heading back home, sweet home, to charlotte. it's always nice to get away, but i always find pleasure in returning to a place that's comforting.