"Country music is the poetry of the American Spirit" Steve Maraboli
My introduction to country music started when I was little with my grandparents. My grandmother grew up in Louisiana, Georgia, and Florida. She ended up in the Smoky Mountains and I was little she would play the banjo for me. My Grandfather played the piano, violin, and mandolin. He appreciated good music and whenever we would go to the store or go on an outing he would always put on 'On the Road Again' by Willie Nelson.
'On the Road Again' was the first country music song I ever liked although at the time I didn't realize it since I only knew good music not musical genres. My interest and being a fan of country music came when I lived in Nashville. When I returned to Nashville years in the Summer of 2015 I was a true lover of country music and had discovered my passion for live music.
My passion for live music came when I first heard Noah Guthrie in concert. It was Noah Guthrie who brought me back to Nashville. He was scheduled to play at the City Winery in Nashville and I decided to go to Nashville and catch up with old friends during my visit.
"Country music is always changing but the Opry is always there to serve as a lighthouse for what country music really is. The past, present, and future is all encompassed by not only the physical structure of the building but also the radio show" Dierks Bentley
The Ryman Auditorium formerly Grand Ole Opry House and Union Gospel Tabernacle, was the only place I hadn't visited when I lived in Nashville. One particular friend from high school told me he would come along with me. When we walked into the room before the movie that provided background on the Ryman Auditorium saw these beautiful posters around room. My friend told me about the Hatch Show Print company and the importance of the poster to a music artist. I fell in love with the artwork and began to imagine how the Hatch Show Print would look for Noah Guthrie. When I could connect with the artwork of past legends who performed at the Ryman, with the potential artwork of a future legend, a connection to the Ryman Auditorium began to take shape.
During the presentation I was amazed to discover that the person who saved the Ryman Auditorium, who brought all types of music to the Ryman Auditorium was a woman. I immediately became inspired. For 50 years Lula C. Naff kept the Ryman Auditorium financially successful. She was the person who allowed The Grand Ole Opry Radio Show and the artists that became legends today perform. She was the person who transformed a previous chapel of worship to what is now known as the “Mother Church of Country Music”
As I learned about Lula C. Naff I began to wonder how many people knew that it was a woman who kept The RymanAuditorium alive? How many people knew that it was a woman music manager in 1920 that kept the Ryman Auditorium successful for 50 years? As an author of a female empowerment blog, my connection to the Ryman Auditorium deepened.
Then as my friend and I walked around the Ryman Auditorium the pews, the stained glass windows, and the stage took on more of a meaning then just a place for artists to perform. It was a place that was sacred. Knowing I was to see Noah Guthrie the next day, someone I believed would be a legend someday, and it added to my understanding on how important the Ryman Auditorium was and still is to the career of a musician. The history, the music that was performed there, and the legends that started there touched my heart.
The history of the Ryman Auditorium was built on the values and ideals of what I believed Sophistication in the 21st Century meant. 21st Century Sophistication being female empowerment, equality of individuals, diversity of culture, and love of music and music artists because of the authenticity they represent with the music they create.
In the end, a Sophisticate at the Ryman Auditorium is inspired personally and professionally. Regardless of whether she is a singer or a music artist or not, within the walls of the Ryman Auditorium, she is inspired with the spirit of hope and promise of happiness for the future.
The values of 21st Century Sophistication heart, authenticity, hard work, passion, and diversity can be found with the walls of the Ryman Auditorium The Ryman Auditorium holds the spirit of God as it used to when it began. The spirit of God is found in the tradition of established talent and the music played within the red bricks of the Ryman Auditorium now known or referred to as the “Mother Church of Country Music”. ;D