ABC has pulled out all the stops for Nashville, which airs this Wednesday, in believing that a Dallas style soap, with none of the quirky comedy of Desperate Housewives and with the basic plot of Country Strong that starred Gwyneth Paltrow, is ready for prime time.
Nashville’s writer and creative executive producer Callie Kouri says that beyond the familiar landmarks, she wants to capture with absolute authenticity, Music City’s modern identity.
T-Bone Burnett, modern heavyweight of
Americana Music production, with credits that range from the movie Crazy Heart to the Robert Plant / Allison Krauss collaboration is the music director of the show. This leads to possibilities like appearances by Elizabeth Cook, Jim Lauderdale or maybe a Todd Snider scene.
Where television fantasy and reality meet will be an interesting thought.
In the second episode, indie – rocker, Avery Barkley, played by General Hospital’s Jonathan Jackson, is playing on the small stage of beer soaked, The 5 Spot in East Nashville, known for hosting East Nashville local rockers as well as annual Jonathan Richman three night stands.
This is a TV drama about the Country music machine, so there probably won’t be an invite to a secret show at Third Man Records or the latest Belmont crowd band playing a gig at John Danzig’s House.
It would be safe to say that the show is not after my demographic, but, I will probably watch it to see what venue or artist pops up in the show.
Each episode brings a $4 million budget to the city. A successful series could mean a lot of business for Nashville. I guess that could be good and bad if a hit TV show starts to become the tastemaker of what outsiders believe about Nashville and what we do with our time.
One thing is for sure, Hayden Panettiere needs to get fitted for a pair of jeans at Imogene + Willie and stop in for some Hot Chicken at Prince’s while she is in town.
– Brad Hardisty, Nashville, TN firstname.lastname@example.org