I hung around long enough for an afternoon breakfast then headed home
without even stepping inside one honky tonk although I did think about it.
This trip was about as unlike what I'd planned as any I've taken. I
attended only one of the three musical events on the agenda. One happened
but I couldn't get there and another, that I could get to, didn't happen.
In 2009 I encountered unusually heavy
snow on the Oklahoma-Texas border and the very next year I was in
Chattanooga for the first serious Christmas
Day snowfall in forty-one years. That streak ended at two and I hope
another isn't starting. This weekend's snowfall was the most in Nashville
in thirteen years. I've only been to the Grand Ole Opry twice but was
surprised to see that the
most recent was in 2007. My
most recent Road Crew
experience wasn't nearly that long ago. That took place at the
Edwardsville Route 66 Conference in October.
But, even though things didn't go quite as planned, it was fun. A good
time was had by me and, as my buddy John said, that's how you get stories.
Snow closed an intended breakfast spot and made the thing for which the
trip is named not happen. So I substituted the concert venue for the
breakfast stop then found a replacement concert.
The snow that everybody but me was expecting showed up and buried my plans
for the day. Fortunately I'm in what amounts to a resort at a fine motel
with a classy dining establishment almost attached.
I took a chance on two-lane and was rewarded with a nice drive. Then I
stopped at a couple museums I hadn't visited in a while and ended the day
listening to totally-new-to-me performers in a familiar venue.
Snow delayed my start but I was in no hurry. Even took a half hour break
in the middle of I-71 on the way to Louisville.
"When you come to a Road Crew in the Fork, take it" is a mutilated version
of a nonsense line attributed to Yogi Berra. I've long wanted to do what
it advocates but until now it never quite worked out.
The Road Crew may be
"America's Route 66 Band" but their home is nowhere near the
historic highway. The rockabilly group has written and recorded a bunch of
Route 66 themed songs and performed at numerous Route 66 related events
but resides in Nashville, Tennessee, more than 250 miles from the nearest
stretch of the Mother Road. In addition to concerts at far away festivals,
the boys occasionally get together for gigs nearer their homes. A favorite
spot is Puckett's Grocery and Restaurant in Leiper's Fork.
I've known of previous Crew appearances at Puckett's but there was always
a conflict. Not so for a scheduled January 23 show which quickly became an
anchor for a road trip.
Reservations won't be accepted for another week but I have faith. A
similar situation exists for a Bluebird Cafe show that I hope to see on the preceding
Thursday. In between the two not-quite-nailed-down events -- the Road Crew
performance is on Saturday -- is a totally nailed down night at the Opry.
The Grand Ole Opry
spends each January back at its former home at the Ryman Theater and I
have my ticket to see Marty Stuart, Vince Gill, and others there on
Friday, January 22.