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It appears I'm going to be travelling to Nashville in September. Going to be there a week with a few possible side trips to Memphis and other surrounding areas.
With that limited time what would you all say is the "must see, must do" things while there.
I've never been so I'm thinking I'll be doing the usual touristy things and a trip to Gruhn's will be on my agenda. Any other suggestions?
 

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Ernest Tubb's record Store and all the honky-tonks on Broadway (especially Tootsie's). The selection of "western wear" is staggering...and very expensive. Some of the most amazing boots and embroidered shirts you've ever seen. Bring either a lot of money, a credit card or two with very high limits, or a LOT of self-restraint.

There's a cool arcade downtown that George Gruhn took me through, between 5th and 4th avenue, Union and Church St.

The Country Music Hall of Fame. The Ryman Auditorium. The Grand Ol' Opry.

Oh, and there's a guitar company based there that might have tours or something. Name slips my mind at the moment, but it starts with a G.

When I was there, I ducked out of a boring session at the convention center, and strolled down Broadway. Imagine my surprise when I saw live music...with an audience...at every club on the strip...at 11:00AM on a Monday morning. Where else in North America can you find a city like that?
 

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The first best thing is going down to Broadway and catching a breakfast show. Live music in the morning, live music for lunch, live music all night.

There are lots of other guitar stores, like Carter.

The Ryman, obviously, try watching that Lenny Breau documentary a few weeks before you go. A Predators pre-season game. They had tours of the RCA Studio, they were thinking of tearing that down Home. There was an exhibit of Gretsch guitars at one of the museums, I'm not sure when that ends...last July. But CMHOF.

They build cars not far from there.

I'm not a fan of Memphis, there couldn't be a more opposite city to the friendly and prosperous Nashville. But The Peabody ducks are pretty neat, don't be a good Canadian, if you find a nice spot up against a column, a thousand people will push in front of you, they will edge up close to the carpet and block all sight lines. And Sunn Records if they are giving tours. I know a good song about taking a bad trip on a tour of Graceland.
 

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I don't think it's there anymore since the big flood filled the parking lot and mall itself a few years back, but Gibson used to have an outlet at the Opry Mills Mall. It carried basically everything that bore the Gibson and Epiphone label, from strings and straps through to amps. But the best thing about the place was that the facility where banjos and mandolins were made was in the space beside the store, with a glass wall separating the retail space from the manufacturing. You could watch the craftspeople at work all day if you wanted to. All the tools and machinery were there along with instruments in various states of production, finishing, and assembly.
 

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Check out Carter's vintage guitars while you're here. Also every Monday night at 3rd and Lindsley The Time Jumpers are playing. It's a band filled with some of the best session musicians in Nashville. Vince Gill usually sits in with them. I'd say he's there about 80% of the time.
 

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The Union Station Hotel was like a beacon. The lobby is really pretty.

I didn't know about the Parthenon when I went. How can you miss that?
 

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Carter Vintage Guitars, great store, lots of vintage gear. Staff are very welcoming and accomodating. I actually enjoyed this store more then Gruhn's
Carter Vintage Guitars
Also, great blues bar with top notch talent, in Printer's Alley.
Bourbon Street Blues and Boogie Bar
www.bourbonstreetbluesandboogiebar.com
And there's BB Kings House of Blues
And of course, a multitude of great country music bars on Broadway.
If you're traveling past Memphis, Ground Zero bar in Clarksdale, Mississippi. It's right next to the Delta Blues Museum.
I love Memphis too, lots to see there. Gibson, Sun Studios, great blues bars on Beale St.

I hope to get out there again. Have a great trip!
 

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I'm not sure what resulted in the split, but Walter Carter used to work at Gruhn's when it was on Broadway (at least he did when I was there). Carter's opened up after Gruhn moved from Broadway to his present location.
 

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Some great sounding suggestions here! Thanks! Keep 'em coming.
I may have to whittle these down as we only have a week!
 

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Trip is coming up next week! Thanks again for the suggestions. Looks like we're doing a side trip to Muscle Shoals!
 
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Such an awesome towm/city...Music everywhere, great people, I am certain you will enjoy, I must get back there some day!
 
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If you get a chance go see Ottawa's Trevor Findlay. He moved there about 12 years ago.

Here he is in 2012 at the Calabogie Blues Fest.

 
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