Nashville is one of televisions hottest dramas. It was the buzz among the bloggers. Last week I joined the 24 other bloggers for a Mix and Mingle with Nashville producers Callie Khouri & Dee Johnson.
I was invited to this event by Disney and ABC as part of a media event. Accommodations and other expenses were paid for in exchange for my coverage of the event, but all opinions are my own and were not influenced in any way.
It was a great Cinco de Mayo celebration with a preview of the May 7th episode All Or Nothing With Me as well as a sneak peek at the finale that airs Wednesday, May 14th.
If you’re not familiar with Nashville here is a very brief synopsis:
The series’ main character, Ryana James (Connie Britton), was once the chart-topping sensation who now faces the reality that her popularity is on decline. Her record label arranges a concert tour, this time, she’s not the featured artist, but the opening act for up-and-coming Juliette Barnes (Hayden Panettiere). It get complicated as Juliette schemes to take Rayna’s spotlight and Rayna struggles to find renewed popularity. The story line dives deeper into the lives of these two Nashville Stars.
While the storyline is set against the backdrop of Nashville, it’s far more than country music. Watching these two episodes gave me a taste of just how versed the music is in the show. As Executive Producer, Callie Khouri, whom you probably know as the writer of Thelma & Louise, summarized for us, “So much of the music isn’t necessarily Country music, we wanted to show the great music that is part of Nashville.”
I love this quote. I work with a fellow whose brother lives in Nashville. I kid him always that I have never heard of him, and he reminds me his brother has been to Ireland and “someplace called the U.K.” on tour. This band, his brothers, is bluegrass and I’ve seen pictures of him on stage with Hall and Oats and other musicians that seem to not fit into the classification of “country”. ABC’s Nashville, is just like this. It’s a hub for “brilliant music and the show is a platform to get these song writers’ music out into the public” says Khouri.
In one of the episodes we watched, Kelli Pickler perform her song “Closer to No Where” .
Khouri is joined by Dee Johnson (The Good Wife). When these two put their pens to paper the result is not just world of country music, but one of twists and turns, family, politics, tours and some romantic snarls. Khouri actually grew up in Nashville which is one of the reason this show appeals to her.
Deacon Claybourne is one of the shows best characters and what happens in the finale with him might just blow your socks off. I know it was a moment when the room was silent and then there were some gasps among the long-time-Nashville-show-watching-bloggers. Even for those who were viewing it for the first time, it was “a moment”.
During our Mix and Mingle the hot topic was whether or not Nashville would be renewed for a third season. Shortly after returning home, it was announced that Nashville has been renewed. Khouri and Johnson mentioned that they plan to have more “cross-over” between the characters.
Just as our interview was winding down with Johnson and Khouri, it was given an exciting lift when this happened:
I’ve seen it and can tell you that it’s pretty awesome!
Rayna finds herself at an emotional crossroads. Juliette and Luke Play LP Field in a concert that’s a must see. Rayna enlists Teddy’s help. There’s a benefit for Deacon’s favorite charity and Scarlett makes a decision about her future in Nashville.
For more information about “Nashville” visit ABC.com/Nashville Follow Nashville on Facebook, Follow@Nashville_ABC, #Nashville, @ABC_Publicity on Twitter.