After living in Nashville for five months now, I’ve cemented my thoughts and feelings on two things: I love fried chicken and I love county music. Mind you, I knew this well before moving to Nashville, but the last five months have kicked my love for these two things into overdrive. If you’re planning a trip to visit me, you’re going to get a healthy dose of both.
In this Eats & Beats post, we’re talking about a Nashville "must" for food and an artist from Nashville, who has become one of my favorites.
As many of you know, I’m a dedicated and proud Spotify user. Spotify is actually where I first heard Russell Dickerson’s singles “Yours” or “Blue Tacoma”. Go give them a listen, they will be a great soundtrack as you read the rest of this post.
I liked the singles from first listen and was excited for his album to come out. Let’s just say, I haven’t really stopped listening to the album. If you’re not a country fan, you’re probably thinking this is just some country artist and all the songs sound the same. That statement does not apply to Russell Dickerson's album, Yours. His album has a diverse sound throughout—from upbeat pop country to some slowed down smooth stuff. Beyond his diverse sound, you can tell Russell Dickerson is an awesome dude in how his personality shines through the witty lyrics and catchy beats. I repeat this album is catchy, these songs get stuck in my head often. The album has become my go-to driving music lately because there are plenty of songs I can belt (not very well) while in traffic (You’re welcome other drivers!) and they’re really fun to sing.
One of my favorite aspects of going to concerts is being to witness an artist with their craft beyond what you hear on the radio or on Spotify. As listeners and fans, we get to experience a piece of their personality up-close. I was recently invited to Spotify’s Fans First concert for Russell Dickerson. There was little to no hesitation on my part for accepting that invitation (Always read your emails, folks!) I knew we were in for a good time if the personality that shines through his album was going to be any indicator of his concert. And Russell didn’t disappoint. He has so much energy, an incredible voice, fun songs, and sweet dance moves. It was hands down one of my most favorite concert experiences. I’m excited to continue to watch his journey and stream the heck out of his music. You should too, those are some feel-good jams, y’all.
Russell Dickerson is from Nashville, went to school in Nashville, and has some major home town pride. It’s only fitting that the "eats" part of this post is about a Nashville "must" in terms of eateries. So let’s talk about chicken. If you are planning to visit, you absolutely need to make a stop at Hattie B’s Hot Chicken. There will be a line because there pretty much always is, but it will be worth the wait. Every time I have visitors in town, Hattie B’s is on the to-do list. (I apologize--I don't have any pictures of my Hattie B's trips. Truth be told, I dig right in when my food comes.)
There’s a little bit of something for everyone on the menu. Like most chicken spots, you can get your meal in a variety of styles—wings, plates, tenders, sandwiches, etc.. They have a scale of hotness from Southern (no heat) to “Shut the Cluck Up” (Burn notice). If you want super-hot chicken, they’ve got you covered. Or you can kick it with the mild like me, no shame. They have a variety of delicious sides and don't forget to try to sweet tea. Regardless of your chicken preference, the pimento mac and cheese is a must. Even with cutting back on dairy and gluten (they do have gluten and dairy free options), Hattie B’s pimento mac and cheese is my exception. I have dreams about this mac and cheese. I’m convinced that Hattie B’s pimento mac & cheese is a cure for anything. Had a bad day? Pimento mac and cheese. Need to celebrate a good day? Pimento mac and cheese. Going through a break up? Pimento mac & cheese.
When you’re planning your visit, put Hattie B’s on your list. They know their chicken is good and the line is always bumping so they've opened a few locations around town. I never say no to Hattie B’s so let me know if/when you’re in town!
If you’re looking for a feel-good meal paired with some feel-good music, here’s what I would suggest: Head to Hattie B’s while listening to Russell Dickerson’s album Yours. Note: I have not done this combination just yet, but I think I just developed my plans for the weekend…