NASHVILLE v MEMPHIS
We finally started our journey to Colorado where we plan to reside for the summer. It took us over a week to get through Alabama and 2 weeks to get through Tennessee.
Believe it or not, some of our most difficult driving since the start of our trip has been on the hilly roads surrounding 2 Alabama State Parks-Monte Sano & Cheaha (Chee-ha). These steep roads with tight turns seemed out of character for Alabama and presented quite a challenge in our rig.
|US Space & Rocket Center|
|US Space & Rocket Center|
We also visited Florence, Alabama. Apparently, this region is famous for being the home of the "Muscle Shoals" style of music which is a blend of Blues and R&B (Funk?). One day we went to a free concert performed by the "Muscle Shoals Brass." This was a semi-famous group from the 60's & 70's. They played on over 300 albums and toured with and backed-up some huge musicians such as John Lennon, Elton John, Willie Nelson, Paul Simon, etc. It turned out that no music was played at the "concert" as it was just a Q&A session with the band. The Q&A was lively and interesting. However, there we were in the 2nd row of a standing room only audience and we had never heard of these guys. After the session we felt compelled to purchase one of their CD's just to figure out what everybody was so excited about. The interesting thing was that 2 days later and over 100 miles away from Florence while listening to the Muscle Shoals Brass and traveling down the Natchez Trace National Scenic Parkway we stopped at the Visitor Center. Standing right next to our rig was Harrison Calloway, one of the stars of the group. Of course, we had to talk to him and he was elated to hear that we were listening to his music at that very instant.
|The Rattlesnake Saloon.|
One of the more interesting bars in the Florence area.
The bar features nightly music.
Now on to the "fun" part of our journey. Nashville is in the center of Tennessee and Memphis is at Tennessee's western edge. They are separated by 200 miles. Yet their music is entirely different. In "The District" section of Nashville, you can't walk 50 feet without stumbling onto another music venue playing some variety of country music. While on Beale Street in Memphis you can't walk 50 feet without stumbling upon another music venue playing some variety of the blues. Both towns are really cool but Nashville is a lot larger and our favorite. The bad news was that we showed up in Nashville on Memorial Day weekend and every campsite for 60 miles was full. We ended up finding a spot at the Nashville Fairgrounds where a giant tag sale was in progress. The tag sale attracted approximately 500,000 visitors and our campsite was smack in the middle of the chaos. Not the most scenic place, but certainly interesting.
|Our lovely spot at the Nashville Fairgrounds.|
The good news-it was only 2 miles away from the action downtown.
|Nancy sporting some dance moves at The Wild Horse.|
|2 suspicious visitors at The Grand Ole Opry.|
|The stage at The Grand Ole Opry.|
Lorrie Morgan was the host.
|Elvis' living room.|
|Elvis' pool room.|
|Elvis and his family's grave sites.|
|The balcony where Martin Luther King was assassinated.|
Behind the wreath is his room.
Memphis turned out to be far more interesting than we imagined. From its non-stop music, to great museums, and interesting things to do, it was well worth the visit.
|The Memphis Bass Pro Shop.|
This 30 story pyramid houses a massive
fishing store and hotel.
It seems that somebody in Memphis is very
serious about fishing!