Memphis, TN

Arriving pretty hungover into Memphis meant getting to the B&B and just chilling out was not a problem at all! Given that I arrived in the evening anyway, it didn’t seem too much of a waste anyway, so I just watched Bridget Jones on TV and had an English evening!

With my sight seeing beginning the next morning, Roy recommended the Nashville Civil Rights Museum, based at the Lorraine Motel, the place where Martin Luther King was assassinated. This was a very comprehensive museum, covering everything from slavery, the civil war and the 20th century. Whilst there was so much information, and was very powerful at some points, particularly the exhibit about King’s death, spending 3 hours solidly reading information was exhausting, and potentially a little too much for a museum, especially given that a lot of the information was experienced first hand in Atlanta, Selma and Montgomery.

Following the museum I took a stroll along the Mississippi river towards the pyramid, a really impressive structure built originally as an arena, but now holding a Bass Pro shop and entertainment complex. The shop was really fun, being decked out so impressively with indoor lakes, trees and even live alligators which was slightly weird! That evening was also fun, spent laughing at Roy being drunk and then going to a bar spontaneously at 1.30AM. Eventually I got to bed at about 5 which was a little late, but the night was so much fun, and I didn’t drink much so I was spared the hangover!


The pyramid

My final day was spent exploring the amazing Rock ‘n Soul museum, which was so interesting and was able to put a lot of the music I’ve seen into perspective, from country to blues to rock ‘n roll and soul. Following that up with a tour of the famous Sun Studio, the place where a lot of great records were recorded and where a lot of historic artists were discovered, from Jerry Lee Lewis to Elvis Presley to Johnny Cash! It was so interesting hearing about the spontaneous jam session that introduced Elvis to the world, and the random collaboration between friends Elvis, Jerry Lee, Cash and Perkins, sneakily recorded and released as the million dollar quartet!


The million dollar quartet of Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis and 'blue suede shoes' singer Carl Perkins

I think the only regret I have is not doing the music tour before going to New Orleans and Clarksdale because it would have helped understand the music more, but having said that, everything was so great anyway, it isn’t a big deal, and I’ll know it for next time!


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