Only in Nashville

Friday night was a musically INCREDIBLE night at 3rd.

First in the line-up was Stacie Collins. We had not seen her perform before, but had heard great things. Well, she lived up to the word.

Not only is she a great blues singer but she can wail on the harp. And, her newest album was produced by none other than Dan Baird (of Georgia Satellites fame). He performed with her on Friday as well, so it was a real treat.

Next up: Ray Herndon and band. He's toured with the likes of Lyle Lovett and has a huge following of fans in his own right as well. The music was country, jump, swing, big band with horns and everything. Plus, Viktor Krauss (yes... he's Alison's brother) was slappin' the bass. He's incredible, too. It was Yummy.

And, last but not least, my songwriting hero, Jeffrey Steele and the band (Tom Hambridge, Tom MacDonald, Rusty Golden and Steve C) took the stage.

Every time I go to a Jeffrey show, I learn so much about performing, writing and what songwriting / music is all about. He LOVES music and entertaining people. It isn't about fame, or fortune or power. For him, it is simply about being true to himself, making the audience smile and helping everyone forget about their troubles for a while.

They played for 3 1/2 hours straight, as usual. No breaks. It was so fun, you didn't even notice that so much time had passed.

The band was on fire. Tom H. and Tom M. were soooo in the pocket.

Rusty was in rare form, too. He put on his John Deere hat and sunglasses during "Our Town" AND he even flipped his mic around so I could harmonize w/Jeffrey during the chorus. What a TRIP!

When I finished hoggin' Rusty's mic, Jeffrey said, "Yeah baby." (I swear, someday I'm going to sing back-up with the man for real!)

We all (JTC, me, Deb, LaLa, Jonn, Eric, Stacey, Gwen, Melvin, Carolyn, Tim and Michelle) had a GREAT time. In the audience: Gary Nicholson, Big Kenny and his MM entourage, Tom Bukovac and Jimbeau Hinson. I'm sure there were more notables, but there just wasn't time to notice everyone! I had a show to watch.

Gary Nicholson sat in on guitar / vocals early on in the night. (He's another one of my songwriting heros.) He's got cuts with some amazing artists across many genres. Plus, he produces several people you might know and has toured with some of the best. Love his stuff.

Gary, Tom Hambridge and Jeffrey co-wrote a song this past year called "Nineteen" that puts a lump in your throat. Hopefully, someone will cut it soon so the world can hear it.

Gwen is always trying to get JS to do his Elvis impersonation. Well, as you can see by these pics, much to the delight of Gwen and dozens of other women at 3rd, he decided to accomodate her request on Friday. I thought Gwen was going to need some heart medi-

The whole scene was a hoot!

I'm tellin' you, you gotta see a Jeffrey show, SOON. For the next few weeks he's touring with Lynyrd Skynyrd and I think his next gig in Nashville is sometime in July. Don't miss it. It won't be long before he'll be a big artist and we won't be able to see him at 3rd anymore!

After the gig, Steve C, LaLa, Deb, Tim, Ken, Barry and I went to the Hermitage Cafe at Hermitage & 1st Avenue for breakfast. That was an adventure in itself. If you haven't been there, I recommend that you only go if you're drunk. It's really the only way the food will taste semi-good. (For the record: I hadn't had a drop to drink.) HA.

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