Thursday, July 12, 2007

Nashville's got more than a country twang

Diverse music scene the mecca of dreams

Even as I stood on the dated linoleum floor and gazed at the tired walls, I knew that in this small room I was in the presence of greatness.

That's a common feeling for visitors to RCA's Studio B on this city's historic Music Row, where many of the greats of popular music recorded some of the world's biggest sellers. Coined the "Home of 1,000 hits," this venerated recording icon is celebrating its 50th birthday this year.
If you're a baby boomer like me, you don't leave here without a sharp stab of nostalgia.

Built in 1957, Studio B is in a non-descript single-storey building. However, its sound stage has heard the likes of Jim Reeves, Roy Orbison, Charley Pride, Dolly Parton and Willie Nelson as they laid down their chart-toppers.

Now operated by Nashville's Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, Studio B is open for tours that provide a perspective on how this city became the dream catcher for singers, musicians and songwriters. It was designated a historic site in 1977, and in 1996 was restored to its original character.

My own visit to this place where global mega-hits were made was almost a spiritual experience. No wonder. Hits came to life here: the sweet sounds of Roy Orbison's Only the Lonely, the Everly Brothers' Dream, Dolly Parton's Jolene and dozens of hits by Elvis Presley including Are You Lonesome Tonight?

Read Peter Wilson's full article at

No comments: