The Most Iconic Music Venues in Nashville

We've put together a list of the most iconic music venues in Nashville and what makes them so special. Learn about each venue's history and atmosphere, as well as which musicians have performed there over the years.
The Most Iconic Music Venues in Nashville
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Whether you are a country music lover or simply a fan of music, you may be interested in finding out about some of the most iconic music venues in Nashville. Thankfully, you don’t have to go far! The Grand Ole Opry House and Acme Feed & Seed are just two of the places that will have you singing along.

GRAND OLE OPRY HOUSE

Located near the Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center in Nashville, the Grand Ole Opry House is a live entertainment venue. The venue’s history spans almost 100 years and it is the largest stage for country music.

The Grand Ole Opry has been around for almost 100 years, making it one of the most recognizable and beloved attractions in Nashville. Today, the Opry is owned by Gaylord Entertainment.

Originally a radio show, the Grand Ole Opry became a Saturday night musical tradition in nearly 30 states in 1939. It was broadcast on a clear channel AM radio station called WSM. In 1925, the WSM station was launched by National Life and Accident Insurance Company. The company’s founder, C.A. Craig, had an interest in radio and wanted to create a local radio station. He convinced his company to launch its own radio station.

Over the years, the Grand Ole Opry has been housed at six different locations in Nashville. The first of these was the Dixie Tabernacle, which was a rustic venue.

In 1943, the Grand Ole Opry moved to the Ryman Auditorium. Known as “The Mother Church of Country Music,” the Auditorium has impeccable acoustics. In fact, the auditorium is so famous, it is referred to as a “music city”.

After thirty years at the Ryman, the Opry moved to a smaller community playhouse nearby Vanderbilt University. It was at this location that the Opry hosted some of the most famous country music stars of all time, including Roy Acuff, Johnny Cash, and Willie Nelson.

RYMAN AUDITORIUM

Often called “The Mother Church of Country Music”, Ryman Auditorium is one of the most famous and iconic live music venues in Nashville. With a rich history and a long list of notable performances, the Ryman is an important part of Music City’s history.

The building was originally constructed in 1892 as the Union Gospel Tabernacle, a Victorian Gothic Revival structure for evangelist Reverend Sam Jones. It was built as a place to host church services and speakers. The first concert at the Ryman was a performance by the Theodore Thomas Orchestra.

After the death of Thomas Ryman, the building became the Ryman Auditorium, and it became the premier place to see concerts. Many early country musicians, such as Patsy Cline and Roy Acuff, performed at the Ryman.

In 1943, the Grand Ole Opry arrived at the Ryman, and it began to become a world-renowned radio show. The Opry became known internationally, attracting crowds that were too large for other venues. Its popularity grew until it was so popular, that the Opry began to broadcast portions of its shows on network television.

Today, the Ryman is a popular tourist attraction, as well as a musical theater. The Opry is scheduled to return to the Ryman in January 2023. In addition to Opry shows, the Ryman also hosts comedians, artists, and musicians. Its musical programs have included such legends as Elvis Presley, Aretha Franklin, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, and Patty Griffin.

ACME FEED AND SEED

Located on lower Broadway, Acme Feed and Seed is a reimagined live music venue that brings a unique atmosphere to the city. Whether you are looking for a place to enjoy a quick drink or want to plan a private event, you can find it at this iconic spot.

The historic building was built in the late 19th century. It originally served as a wholesale store. Small farmers required the services of plow salesmen, shippers and insurance companies. The building later housed Nashville’s first reinforced concrete structure. The Acme Farm Store now offers Nashville-based artisan goods.

The Hatchery at Acme is the largest one-level private event space on lower Broadway. It has hosted weddings, video shoots and in-house concerts. It can accommodate up to 240 guests buffet style. It is available year-round for event rentals. It has a large open floor plan and can be transformed to suit a variety of events.

The Acme Rooftop bar offers sweeping views of downtown and the Cumberland River. The bar also features a sushi bar and seasonal handcrafted cocktails. It is a popular place for locals and tourists to hang out. It also serves a variety of American classics. It is a great place to enjoy the view and listen to live music.

In addition to the food and drinks, Acme is a lively, local’s bar. It has a selection of local products to choose from and is a popular place to hear national touring acts.

HONKY TONK HIGHWAY

Whether you are traveling to Nashville, TN or just passing through, you should check out the legendary Honky Tonk Highway. This four-block-long stretch of bar streets features restaurants, shops, and live music venues.

The Honky Tonk Highway is located on Lower Broadway in downtown Nashville, Tennessee. It features more than two dozen live music venues. The bars are packed with fans who are eager to hear the latest country music stars. The street is lined with hundreds of bars and restaurants.

Many of these bars are owned by celebrity entertainers like Justin Timberlake, Dierks Bentley, and Miranda Lambert. These famous bar owners often provide their guests with great experiences. Their bars are also cleaner and brighter than typical honky tonks. Typically, they offer better food and drinks, and showcase the personality of their artists.

Another of Nashville’s most iconic bars is the Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge. This popular honky tonk in Nashville is a favorite among locals and visitors. Tootsie’s offers live music seven days a week. This Nashville bar has a main stage, a sports bar, and a rooftop patio.

Other honky tonks on the street include Ole Red and Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse. Ole Red is owned by country superstar Blake Shelton, and offers top-notch food and drinks. The rooftop bar has some of the best views of downtown Nashville. The restaurant is also known for its prime steak and seafood.

LISTENING ROOM CAFE

Located in the Gulch and just off Broadway, the Listening Room Cafe is one of the best places to hear live music in Nashville. It’s a great place to go for a date, a bachelorette party, or a family gathering. The Listening Room is one of the most popular locations in town for birthday parties. The cafe also has a swag shop with a variety of shirts, hats, and other knickknacks to purchase.

The Listening Room has been around since 2006. Originally opened in historic Franklin, Tennessee, it moved to Cummins Station in 2008. In 2011, the cafe relocated to a brand new location in the SoBro area of downtown.

The Listening Room is home to one of the best sounding stages in town. It also features a chef-inspired menu. The restaurant is open from 11am to 11pm on weekdays and 10am to 3pm on weekends.

The Listening Room has become a fixture in Nashville’s music scene, hosting singers and songwriters from around the country. They typically play Americana or country music. Their stage can accommodate four writers at a time.

The Listening Room also has an extensive drink menu. They have beer, wine, and other drinks to choose from. They also offer an extra-large section of servers, which is great when you have a large group. The food is also delicious. They serve BBQ BACON BURGER and EMMY’S CHICKEN TENDERS. They have a full service kitchen, as well.

STATION INN

Located in the Gulch area of Nashville, the Station Inn is one of the best bluegrass venues in Music City. The club is a musical mecca for locals and tourists alike. The venue has hosted country music events for over four decades.

The venue is also known for its Americana music. Legendary artists have performed at the venue. The New Monday Band, for example, is made up of singer Larry Cordle, guitarist Val Storey, and Grammy-award winning producer Carl Jackson.

The venue also hosts an open Sunday night bluegrass jam, which brings together seasoned pros and aspiring amateurs. The New Monday band is the closest thing to the house band at the Station Inn.

The Station Inn is also known for hosting a number of concerts each year. Ricky Skaggs played there in late November to promote his duets album. The Doyle and Debbie Show still calls the venue home.

The station Inn has been a staple in the Nashville bluegrass community since 1974. The establishment was started by a group of bluegrass musicians, including Earl “J.T.” Gray. In 1981, Gray took over ownership of the venue.

The club has been at its current location for all but four years. The building is worth nearly half a million dollars. Its facade is made of limestone and the building features a Wild West jailhouse vibe.

The Station Inn is considered a sacred place by its musicians and fans. A new exhibition of the history of the Station Inn will open on January 15. The exhibition will be displayed at the Country Music Hall of Fame from 2021 to 2022.

CLOSING THOUGHTS

Nashville is known for its world-renowned music venues. From the Grand Ole Opry to the Ryman Auditorium, there are iconic music venues around every corner. If you’re planning a trip to Nashville, be sure to add these iconic music venues to your itinerary. Which of these Nashville music venues are you most excited to visit?

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