It’s off the tourist-beaten track, and it’s a spot to check out for attentive listening, so the rules don’t allow blabbing during the live performances. If you’ve heard of the Bluebird Cafe but have not been there in the flesh, you will likely be surprised at how tiny it is.
Almost out of sight in a non-descript line of stores beside Hillsboro Road in Green Hills, with a hardly detectable sign, the Bluebird Cafe is a petite hole in the wall eating place and pub, where four singer-songwriters play from the middle of the cafe, in the round. It’s a really informal, up close and personal setting, in which to enjoy a few of Nashville’s wishful and accomplished artists.
In fact, the singer-songwriter in the round format was originated at the Bluebird. Writers Fred Knobloch (Used to Blue and Meanwhile), and Don Schlitz (The Gambler and Forever and Ever, Amen), purportedly after a night of drinking, decided to install four chairs facing each other in the heart of the room, kill the lights, and just behold whatever takes place. This arrangement proved to operate so well, that you’re likely to run into it at most singer-songwriter’s get-togethers close to Music City.
The Bluebird has not just come up to be acknowledged as Music City’s most well thought of spot to listen to artists, but it has been the beginning chance for lots of noted country singer-songwriters, starting back in 1983 when Kathy Mattea landed a record deal after singing at the Bluebird for only a short time. Once that came about, the Bluebird became one of the most popular rooms to play. And this process would prove to recur again and again, as several of the Bluebird’s artist fixtures proceeded to get record agreements, and songwriter after musician came to popularity in the identical way. (There have been overly many stars “born” at the Bluebird to name every one here, but do you remember Garth Brooks? – Yup, you guessed it, he got his start at the Bluebird, too.)
The Bluebird Cafe provides two presentations each night, and reservations are advised, which you can set up online (probably the best fashion) or by telephone. But if you have not got reservations and wish to scoot out there just before showtime, you certainly should attempt it – the Bluebird staff will do all they can to get you into the performance. The Bluebird definitely should be on any visitor’s list of Nashville attractions to visit.