Saturday, July 30, 2011

Nashville, Tennessee: Local Music and the Grand Ole Opry (Charlie Daniels Band)

I was in Nashville, TN a couple of weeks ago and made sure to check out the local music as much as possible. Trust me, there is a lot of music happening in this town! I flew into the city and landed at 9:30pm. I took a taxi straight to Broadway Street and met up with some friends at Rippys. It was one of the hottest days of the year and we were sitting in this open air restaurant melting, even at 10pm! The food was OK but the entertainment was great. We were sitting right by the small stage and decided to shoot images of the band that was playing, because...hey...that is what we do right?

This is an image of Anna LaPrad, who was singing that evening. She is a really pretty girl with a great voice. I purchased her CD from her and it is very good.

What is better than a full rack of ribs, a couple of beers, great music and a chance to shoot images? Other than the sweltering heat, this would have been darned near perfect. :)

I looked at the table next to us and saw Anna's mother (who was visiting from out of town) and shot this image of a proud mother watching her daughter performing. I know this because I went over to her and offered to send images to them. (Photographer's note: Whenever you happen to capture nice images of people, you should offer to send the images to them. It is a really nice gesture and always appreciated by the individuals.)

Her guitar player taking the lead while Anna took a break.

You can get more information on Anna LaPrad here. Check it out.

And then the next evening, we bought tickets and visited the Grand Ole Opry House. This was nothing like I expected. I was expecting a full concert, but not knowing much about the Grand Ole Opry, soon learned that this was a live radio show and featured numerous bands who played a couple of songs each. (Photographer's note: For those of you out there who want a chance to photograph live entertainers, this place is perfect! Not only do they let you bring in cameras, they also let you come right up to the front of the stage to shoot. Yep, it's true! The only restriction is that you have to return to your seats in between acts.)

We got lucky and happened to be in town for one of the better line ups. There were a total of 10 bands playing on that Tuesday night, with The Charlie Daniels Band as the headliner. Here is a shot of Karen Fairchild, performing with the band "Little Big Town".

Jimi Westbrook, also from the band Little Big Town, doin' his stuff.

The next performer was long time artist (so they tell me) George Hamilton IV. It is really strange that in between each act, there is an announcer who is pitching products. "This part of the show is sponsored by Cracker Barrel...blah blah blah."

Next up was the band "Gloriana". This is a shot of Rachel Reinert belting out a tune.

 And another member of Gloriana performing.

Here is a shot of Craig Morgan working the crowd. You can see the crowd of people up at the front of the stage, mainly taking pictures with their cell phones.

Here is Little Jimmy Dickens who, at the ripe old age of 91, happens to be the oldest living member of the Grand Ole Opry. He performed a couple of songs and told some darned funny jokes along the way.

And then it was time for the headliner, The Charlie Daniels Band. I made sure to get to the front of the stage as soon as he came out.

And Charlie Daniels did not disappoint. At 75 years old, he still has it. He played for at least 30 minutes and still can work that fiddle like nobody else.

He finished his set with "The Devil Went Down to Georgia", which was awesome! This is a picture of him performing that number.

Overall it was a great night. Even though I am not the biggest country western fan, it was fun to be at the famed Grand Ole Opry and to see some really great musicians. Being able to photograph them up close was a real bonus!

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