Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Walking in Memphis (is not safe)

Memphis was a real shock, it was great and it had tons of potential but it was also sketchy as hell. The first day we arrived at our hotel, turned on the TV and the news report notifying us that Memphis was officially the 2nd most dangerous city in America! Great start.

We basically had to get cabs everywhere because its certainly not safe to walk any time of day or night!

Thats not to say that the place wasn't cool, there is plenty of music history here, its pretty much the birthplace of rock and roll. Beale St is where its at downtown, 3 blocks of bars all featuring live blues, soul and country, and same as Nashville the bands were all really good.
The street is pretty cool, you can drink anywhere and take beers in anywhere you want to. They are famous for their Big ass beers!
Its also home to BB Kings first blues club. BB is a memphis legend and he still plays in his club every now and then.
We visited the famous Sun Studios, this is one of the most famous recording studios ever, if not the most famous. Elvis and Johnny Cash recorded their first songs here, Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis and BB king recorded here early on. U2 even recorded Rattle and Hum here, the place is rock n roll heaven.
The studio is pretty much unchanged, including the foyer, which you might recognise if you have seen Walk the Line, the movie about Johnny Cash.

This Microphone is an original one, used by everyone mentioned previously in the post, and now by Sarah and I.
You can now rent the studio for $100 per hour and record your own record, pretty sweet deal. Especially with all the sweet equipment you get to use!
This was U2's drumkit.
After Sun we went and visited the Stax museum of soul. Stax was a soul record Label based in memphis, with acts like Otis Redding, Isaac Hayes, Booker T and the MGs and Rufus Thomas. The Museum is a replica of the original Building, which was an old cinema.

They had a bunch of cool stuff in there, but nothing comes close to this Bad boy. Isaac hayes' Cadillac. Totally Pimping!
No Chrome for Isaac, Just solid gold rollin'.
Memphis is famous for one other thing apart from Music and thats BBQ, they got the best Ribs here in the world. And the best place to eat em is Rendevous, this place is unchanged in 60 or so years,
They serve the ribs dry on a paper plate and they are awesome. Slow cooked in a BBQ pit all day, and easily the best I have ever had!
I'll catch ya'll up with Gracelands tommorrow. Cheers

Friday, May 15, 2009

Catchin' up for y'all

Ok, so we have had a few minor technical difficulties on the road that stopped us from updating, but now we are back in Christchurch and back on track.

The south was awesome! great towns, great music, great people and great food! I'll try do this in order so first up was Nashville, aka music city USA.

We were couchsurfing again here and we lucked out bigtime, staying with our new buds Christian and Jessica.
In there sweet pad, a stones throw from the city centre.
These guys laid out the red carpet in a big way, showing us all around town and making us feel so welcome!

Nashville is a great town and we spent the first day just checking out the city.
The main drag is called broadway and is filled with country bars! There is honestly music playing here all the time. Everyday of the week from 10am until the bars close at 3AM there is music playing for free, and always good too.
Its also got a few cool western wear shops.
I love cowboy shirts.
We also went up to the Tennessee state capital building, complete with state troopers as gaurds.
We addressed a busy press conference.
I liked this staircase but you weren't allowed to go up it.
that was until we met this state trooper who was the friendliest dude in the world.
Its very true what they say about southern hospitality. He let me shimmy right up the staircase.
We also visited the Tennessee history museum, to hear all about the ol south during the civil war.
This is Davy Crockett's bench, he made it himself.
The first night we went out for dinner with Christian and Jessica and some other friends for some southern cookin'. I ate grits, which is like corn porriage, was a bit strange.
Then onto the dive bar for some drinks with our new friends.
The next night we hit broadway for a ol time hoedown at the country Bars.

We saw this ridiculous car.
This sign was a relief.
The bars were cool
And the bands were awesome, this rockabilly guy was first.
then these guys, who may have been the best band I ever saw. The all were awesome players and they could all sing, Nashville really is Music city.
The guitarist tore it up on the lap steel.
Nashville was a ripper of a town, and I will definately go back one day!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Hey everyone, things been a little slow on here lately cause we have been way busy. We have now left toronto and are on our way back home! I am writing from Memphis, Tennessee, the south! But we will get to that later.

Before we left T.O we had a visit from some old friends, first of all Emma and Sean, and then a surprise appearance by poodle and mick!

We showed them all around Toronto, we went to high park.

And to our favourite bar, Sweaty Betty's.

That was a messy night alright! in fact they all were, we didn't actually see mick and poodle during daylight hours the whole time they were there.

We also went to see a band play at the famous horseshoe tavern! The band was Lucero and they were awesome!
The front man was a cool dude
So after a busy few days in Toronto we all packed up and headed to New York for a few days.

It was great weather when we were there so we hit central park.

Then we did as we knew best and hit some bars! The bars in America are fantastic and will be what I miss most of all.
This is my favourite place, in front of the jukebox. They have the best Jukeboxes here in the states.We also met up with another old friend and New York Local, Sarah T.
We had a good catch up before Pete whisked her away to Philly for the weekend. The drinks here are free poured, Sarahs drink is actually a bourbon and coke, but its pretty much just bourbon.
Needless to say the got the party started.

New York is the greatest and I can't wait to come back again! I'll catch up with the our journey to Tennessee soon.