What Exactly Is “Indie Nashville,” CNN?

CNN Money has just graced us with an interesting piece entitled “Indie Nashville,” wherein they tout the virtues of our wonderful city/America’s country music capitol/American’s big-city-small-town/yada yada yada. It appears to be The-Tourist-Who-Doesn’t-Want-To-Be-All-Touristy’s Guide to Nashville. Or at least, that’s what we think they’re trying to do. Let’s start at the beginning.

The capital of country music is a city that still feels like a small town, combining old-fashioned Southern hospitality with a vibrant music and arts scene.

Well, that’s fair enough. There are also 8 additional nods that CNN Money gives us. Let’s review them all.

  1. Where music stars get their start: CNN’s recommendation is to stay out of “tourist places” like B.B. Kings and hit up the local favorites, like The Bluebird Cafe, Tootsies, and of course, OUR favorite place to hang out on Friday night, the Wildhorse Saloon. But better yet! Hang out on the street, where “you can watch the street musicians, often top session players…”
  2. Musical landmarks: Their one suggestion here is a NashTrash tour. We’re sure that’s fun and all, but can’t actually claim to have been on one. We particularly enjoy this photo (which we’ve kindly swiped and hosted on our own server for your continued viewing pleasure) that they use to illustrate what fun you can have when you do “indie” and “underground” things in Nashville!
  3. Opryland’s tropical escape: Oh, wait, they’ve changed their minds. Skip the NashTrash tour and just go straight to the Grand Ole Opry and Opryland Hotel!
  4. Sleep where the trains used to: Union Station Hotel is the place to stay if you’re visiting “Indie Nashville,” but that’s totally irrelevant since the economy sucks and no one can afford to stay there anyway.
  5. Get your grit on: CNN’s recommendation is practically a firm command that no trip to Nashville (er, sorry, INDIE Nashville) is complete until you eat at Cock of the Walk. This may very well be true.
  6. Where the locals go: All the locals eat at Rotiers and Cafe Coco (the hippest INDIE NASHVILLE joint EVAR!) and you should too. Also, we’re now aware that the block of Elliston that houses the Exit/In is apparently known as “Rock Block.” Who knew.
  7. A sweet treat: Eat biscuits at Loveless Cafe, or if you’re too poor to afford the Union Station Hotel and had to grab a crappy economy room out in Donelson, Ellensdales is okay. Then, drive your rental car alllll the way to East Nashville to pick up dessert at Sweet 16th Bakery, but we hope you purchased rental insurance with that! The 37206 is so INDIE NASHVILLE that it’s scary, wink wink.
  8. Antebellum history: Visit The Hermitage on your trip to INDIE NASHVILLE, because it’s so far out of the way that no other tourists want to bother. Oh, and if you’re from out of state, you can forget about those half price tickets – only the locals get those! Because we go there so often.

So there you have it, Nashvillest’s translation of CNN Money’s “Indie Nashville.” We hope you enjoyed it, and more importantly, we hope you know that we’re really NOT scared of East Nashville at all. Thanks to Jim Reams for the link.

Photo taken without asking from CNN Money.

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