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Last updated: November 4, 2019 • Spotlight

The City of Nashville: Country Music and Tennessee Whiskey

When you think of Nashville Tennessee, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Is it country musicians with cowboy hats and bolo ties, strumming their guitars and singing about love and life? Is it a bottle of simple but savory Tennessee whiskey with a black label that says Jack Daniels? Maybe it’s one of the famous attractions like the replica of the ancient Athenian Parthenon.

Whatever springs to mind, one thing is for sure: the city of Nashville is without question a fun, unique city with a robust, vibrant atmosphere to rival that of many other cities in the U.S. Everything, from the down-home country music and culture to the warmhearted, down-to-earth residents is as if it were designed by hand to make the city a magical, unforgettable place. Let’s go back and explore a bit of the history behind this amazing town!

The history of Nashville, Tennessee

word history on a wall

From the very beginning, Nashville has had a great deal of significance as both a center of commerce and the cultural capital of Tennessee. The town was established in 1779, by a group of settlers led by James Robertson. Originally named Nashborough after a general from the Colonial army, the new town grew quickly because of its strategic position as a hub of both river and rail transportation and shipping. 

Over the years, the town quickly grew into a thriving, metropolitan city. However, dark clouds were on the horizon. Unfortunately, Nashville lays south of the Mason-Dixon line, putting it firmly in the southern pro-slavery camp. When the south declared independence from the United States of America, Tennessee seceded along with them. While the south managed to keep the fight up for several years, Nashville was one of the first cities to fall to the advance of the northern armies. 

However, the dark stain that the civil war left on the history of Nashville did not color the whole cloth. The city quickly bounced back to its former vivacity and before long it was once again a thriving metropolis. The city soon came to be known for its grand colonial-style buildings, exceptionally distilled bourbon and unique, quickly developing musical culture.  

The 19th century saw Nashville develop its identity and culture even further. The establishment of the Grand Ole Opry, a live concert held onstage in Nashville and broadcast live over the radio firmly cemented in place Nashville’s status as the preeminent home of country music. To date, the Grand Ole Opry is the longest-running radio broadcast in US history! 

Today, the city of Nashville is a thriving metropolis. Country musicians from around the world clamor for record deals from some of the largest record labels in the music industry. NHL hockey teams vie for supremacy at the Sommet center, while the Tennessee Titans battle it out with teams from across the US in the Nissan Center. From shopping centers to theme parks to history museums, this town really does have it all!

What is Nashville Tennessee Known For?

red pin pointing on the map to Nashville TN

What is Nashville Tennessee known for? Lots of things! Nashville is home to dozens of unique and fascinating things to do and see. From NHL hockey games and NFL football games to country music shows to whiskey distilling and tasting, this city has something for everyone!

Tennessee whiskey

Perhaps the thing Nashville is most well known for internationally is its whiskey! Tennessee whiskey is a type of Bourbon whiskey made from corn and other cereals. Unlike other whiskeys that are made primarily with barley, wheat or rye, Tennessee whiskey is made with at least 51% corn and a mixture of other cereals. 

Tennessee whiskey is made with the Lincoln County Process, which is a strictly regulated step-by-step distilling process that ensures that any drink carrying the moniker of “Tennessee Whiskey” is up to snuff. This process includes “mellowing” the whiskey by steeping it in maple charcoal before aging the whiskey in charred oak barrels. This gives the finished product a smoother, richer taste and golden-amber color.

Now, you’ve probably heard of the most famous Tennessee whiskey, Jack Daniels Old No. 7. This whiskey is by far the most famous American whiskey, as well as the best selling. But this is far from the only Tennessee whiskey available today! 

Two of the best breweries in Tennessee, Fugitive Spirits and Nelson Green Brier Distillery, are located right in Nashville! These distilleries produce a variety of the finest Tennessee whiskeys in the state. From smooth honeyed blends to strong smokey single cask brews, these distilleries will keep even the most fastidious whiskey aficionados happy!

Country music

people having fun during a live music concert

Country music is perhaps one of the most quintessential genres of music in the United States today. Although most of today’s country bears little resemblance to the Kentucky bluegrass, rock, and blues genres that it was born from, many artists and performers still draw inspiration from these genres.

To this day, country music remains a distinctly unique genre that speaks to people in a way that many other genres simply don’t. At its core, country music is about the everyday struggles of everyday people. Instead of the glitz and glamor of mainstream pop, or the often hedonistic themes of rock or hip hop, country focuses on universal experiences that we all can relate to, no matter our status or station. 

Another area where country music excels is its unique instrumentation and sound. Country music traditionally uses a variety of instruments that include banjos, guitars, mandolins, upright and electric bass, and pedal steel guitars. On occasion, more unusual instruments such as accordions are used! To newcomers to the genre, this sound can be off-putting or strange, but in time most come to deeply enjoy the melodic and minimalistic rhythms and sounds of country music. 

If you enjoy country music or are interested in learning more about it, Nashville is the place to go to do just that! As the country music capital of the world and one of the most historically significant places in the evolution of the country sound and culture. If you want to check out live performances, you can attend concerts from country superstars or barroom shows from talented but unknown artists. The best place to catch these types of live performances, you have to try the Honky Tonk Highway! With dozens of venues to choose from, you won’t have any trouble finding a show that suits your tastes. 

If you want to explore the history of country music, Nashville has what you’re looking for. The Country Music Hall of Fame is obviously the place to start here. With entries for every notable country music legend going back decades, the Hall of Fame is a fascinating attraction that will no doubt keep you busy for hours or even days! 

The Country Music Hall of fame isn’t the only historical attraction to visit though; the Ryman auditorium dates back over a century and still hosts events to this day. With a long history of hosting live performances and shows, to this day. Perhaps it’s most notable claim to fame is the fact that until 1974 it was the host venue to the famed Grand Ole Opry! In addition to live shows, the auditorium also houses exhibits from famous musicians that have played there. 

For those interested in the production of country music, Nashville is home to the biggest country production studios and record labels in the country music industry. Universal Music Group, Sony Music, RCA records and many other triple-A music studios have country labels in Nashville. Because of Nashville’s status as the home of country music, there are plenty of recording studios that offer aspiring artists an opportunity to dip their toes into the music production scene. 

If any of this sounds interesting, you should visit Nashville. Whatever caught your eye, it certainly won’t disappoint!

Sports

Bridgestone Arena view from Nashville TN

Nashville has a very active sports scene, with an NFL football team and an NHL hockey team! Based in the Bridgestone Arena, Nashville’s NHL hockey team, the Nashville Predators, have established a reputation as being one of the better teams in the NHL. They’re not just a great hockey team, however; they are also known for their sportsmanship and warm attitude towards their fans! 

Speaking of whom, there is an outlandish tradition among Predators fans: occasionally, during a game, a fan will throw a catfish on the ice! This first happened in 2005, and since then it has been incorporated into the team’s iconography and lore in a variety of different ways. You can see the Predators play in their home arena in Nashville, or at one of their away games across the country.

Nashville also has an NFL Football team, the Tennessee Titans. While they’re never won a Superbowl, the Titans are a good team nonetheless, and in 1999 they made it all the way to the NFL championship game before being defeated. Over the years, their roster has included an impressive lineup of hall of fame players including Bruce Matthews, Mike Munchak and Randy Moss. The Tennessee Titans can be seen playing in their home arena, the Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium.

Moving to Nashville

beautifull night view of Nashville TN

For those of you who are looking for a change of pace, consider moving to Nashville! Anyone seeking a place with a warm, welcoming atmosphere will feel right at home here. Whether you’d like to live in a cozy suburban villa, a sprawling country manor or a swanky downtown loft, Nashville has exactly what you’re looking for! If you’re looking to buy property in the area, you’ll need to find real estate agents in Nashville that can help you find exactly what you’re looking for. 

But is Nashville actually a good place to live? Good music and tasty whiskey aren’t exactly the only factors to be considered when starting a new life in a new city, after all. As it turns out, Nashville is actually a great city to move to, for more reasons than just its culture! 

Nashville has very low unemployment, and is a great place to find a job! Employers are competitive and are eager to offer attractive salaries and ample benefits to those with marketable skills. For those with school-age children, the city of Nashville is attractive for its excellent school system, with well-paid teachers and attractive facilities. 

Nashville Real Estate Market

So what should you expect when trying to find a house in Nashville? What kind of houses are available? Is Nashville a safe place to live? Let’s find out!

What is the average home price in Nashville?

Like any other major city in the US, real estate values are significantly higher than more rural or lightly populated areas. If you’re looking for a house here, you’re going to have to have to shell out some serious cash. The average home in Nashville Tennessee will run you around $260,000. Compared to cities like Chicago, where the median home price is $339,000, or New York, where the average house costs around $671,000, this isn’t unreasonably high. 

But is Nashville a good pace to invest in real estate? The answer is yes! Country music has experienced a resurgence in recent years, with many collaborations between mainstream pop artists creating popular new music. While some have criticized the homogenization between pop and country, this country music renaissance has driven property values up and made real estate more of a commodity, as aspiring stars flock to the city by the dozen.  

Nashville Tennessee is, without question, one of America’s most fascinating cities. Vibrant music, down-to-earth culture and soul-warming music all make this town an unforgettable experience. Whether you’re coming for the sports scene, the musical talent or the higher-proof delights that Nashville has to offer, if you decide to make this your travel destination, rest assured: you will not be disappointed!





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