The Democrats "Debate"

I rushed home from the airport tonight in hopes of catching some of the first democratic presidential debate. Unfortunately, when I popped on the TV there were only about thirty minutes left in the debate. However, this debate left me with a few impressions:

1. John Edwards was disappointing. Going into this debate, he was my guy, but after seeing him ignore a few direct and tough questions, I'm not so sure about him.

2. Barak Obama still hasn't captured anything in me. Like Edwards, he diverted questions and came off as a WAY too rehearsed politician.

3. Hillary Clinton was quite impressive. She was not only decisive, but she answered the questions posed to her.

All in all, this "debate" was a big disappointment. With the worst president in the United States still manning the Oval Office, you would hope that these debates would be firey, passionate and direct. This one was not. The only candidates who revealed some spirit were Dennis Kucinich and the former Senator from Alaska (though he's clearly a hothead).

Where do I stand after Round 1? Still longing for Al Gore.

The Station Inn

Once in a while you're treated to a very unexpected night of incredible music. I've been in Nashville the past few nights for work and given that tonight was my last night, I figured I should try and understand a little bit about what "Music City" is all about. Well, contrary to my pre-conceived notions, it's not all cookie cutter crap.

Knowing nothing about where to go in Nashville, I reached out to a music list and one trusty poster STRONGLY suggested that I head to The Station Inn. In his words, "Don't worry about who's playing, just go there." A little mapquest check revealed that the venue is a mere 1/2 mile from my hotel. After a nice dinner with some music colleagues, I walked over.

I stepped into the dingy bar and saw only about five people sitting scattered throughout the joint. I looked to the stage and there were five artists simply holding acoustic guitars. I grabbed a bud bottle and found a seat in the corner. The artists proceeded to go one-by-one belting out absolutly beautifuly country/blues/bluegrass songs that left me sitting mesmerized. There were songs about fathers, songs about prison, songs about farming, and songs about hope. They were all sung with incredible passion and beauty.

In all likelihood, these were relatively unknown acts in Nashville. Given Nashville's focus on utter crap, this shouldn't come as a surprise.

Tonight I saw real talent, talent that gives some credence to Nashville's label as "Music City".