As part of a summer series, T+L is highlighting amazing lesser-known attractions found in the United States. Next up: one of the world’s largest and most popular music research centers.
Next time you're in Music City, consider hitting up country music’s version of the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Established in the 1960s, the museum's most noticeable characteristic is its form. The structure itself is shaped like a bass clef, its windows look like piano keys, and the rotunda harkens to Nashville's historic, diamond-shaped radio tower.
Inside sits the biggest repository of country music artifacts in the world. Built originally as a way to publicize country music for city visitors, the museum has doubled in size after a massive expansion in 2014 to house the ever-growing collection of historic music recordings, books and periodicals, sheet music, songbooks, and photographs. Visitors can peruse an extensive costumes collection, plus film artifacts, historic cars, and musical instruments.
Museum experts recommend beginning with the core exhibition, Sing Me Back Home: A Journey Through Country Music. This section gives museumgoers a primer on country music’s rich sound, origins, and most fascinating histories. Other must-sees: the Historic RCA Studio B, which has boasted such recording artists as Elvis Presley, Chet Atkins, and houses the famous Hatch Show Print shop. Both tours offer bus rides to their offsite locations.
The museum also hosts a number of temporary exhibits highlighting country artists past and present. Click here for more information on who’s being featured.