A good friend of mine and I were sucking down a few pounds of crawfish at Hawk’s recently when he asked if I wanted to join him on a road trip up to Bonnaroo in Tennessee. “Sure, maybe,” I muttered in-between sighs and slurps.
While I’m always up for a road trip, spending hot and dusty hour upon hour topped with loud music has never really been my bag. I like comfort, but he did have VIP tickets so I had to at least check out the line-up and consider it.
After a few days of going back and forth, I decided I was in and began making my list of all the bands I wanted to see. Florence and the Machine. My Morning Jacket. The Dø. Mø. Tears for Fears. Ok, there were a lot. I was getting excited.
We took off at about 8am and headed northeast with the first stop in Natchez, pulling into a cute coffee spot in the heart of town, Steampunk Coffee Roasters, for a much-needed jolt. A little treat helped too.
Although it was a road trip to a music festival, neither of us had brought the right phone/iPod adapter for the car, and his array of music, while good, was not what I, as self-designated car DJ, deemed worthy road trip material. Yes, I’m a snob. But there is only so much Americana I can take before I begin to nod off. And, very unfortunately, what radio stations lack in variety, they make up for in uber-obnoxious hosts. Just gross. But we managed to find a handful of greats anyway, even if we did hear them several times over from station to station.
After Natchez, we took a slight detour along the Natchez Trail to Indianola, home of the B.B. King Museum. Watching the videos, reading the notes, looking at the photos of how he grew up, what it was like in Mississippi during that time, definitely put a lump in me throat. A lot to remember, think about, and wonder how far we’ve come and if we’re going backwards. Let’s hope not.
Memphis was next on our list, and where we’d stop for the night. The first thing on our mind was food. And we had it, dry-rub barbeque at Charles Vergo’s Rendezvous. It’s a busy spot, made even cozier with a hot-rod car group in town. I don’t think I’ve had that much attention, well maybe ever. Nice. Unfortunately, as we were walking in, Dave Annable was too busy taking pics of the building to join in on the flirting. Damn.
The following morning, we headed straight to the Stax Museum, only where some of the best of the best recorded back in the day.
Those cats were some seriously snappy dressers.
Afterwards, Pat had to pass by a fave spot, the Cozy Corner Restaurant …
For a barbeque bologna sandwich. Not my thang, but it’s just one of those you have to do. I’ll have my own super unhealthy snack soon enough.
I couldn’t wait to get to Graceland, and I’m not even a huge Elvis fan. But there’s just something about the cheesiness of it. And if you’ve never been, and you like the cheese factor, you won’t be disappointed. It’s a really well-organized trip. And I now have a much greater appreciation for the King of Rock and Roll.
Off to Bonnaroo!!!!
I don’t know what to say about Bonnaroo. But because of the vibe, the people I met, a few words that they said, the sunshine, the freedom, the beauty, the love, I feel as if I’m going through a transformation. The festival is over, and no matter what happens, I will always cherish what it brought to my life. It feels good.
Since Pat had a meeting in Leiper’s Fork, we didn’t end up making it to Nashville on this trip. But no worries. It’s a super cute little town, and the meeting was incredible. What they’re doing music-wise is a beautiful thing. Check out the Americana Music Triangle as well as The Pilgrimage Festival to get a glimpse.
As one week spread into another, our energy began to fade. Our next stop would be Muscle Shoals, but only briefly. It was time to head home.
Thank you. Thank you very much. Ladies and gentleman, Elvis has left the building …