We’re On Tour! Our Lisbon Leg Sponsored By Dermal Fillers Glasgow

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We are nearing the end of our European tour and we hope you have enjoyed our blog on all the cities we have visited around Europe from sunny Scotland to ending our Tour in Lisbon, Portugal. In our final blog we will show you all our favourite things about Lisbon! We are lucky to have Dermal Fillers Glasgow specialists – The Berkeley Clinic Glasgow sponsor our final blog post…well not the final blog post but the final in our European Tour series.

Lisbon is world famous for its tiled walls, Portuguese food (nothing like Nandos by the way), glorious culture and rich history.

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Time Out Market

With over 40 stalls, the Time Out Market has a whole host of delicious Portuguese food to try. The indie food trucks/ pop up restaurants have all been chosen my The Times food editors – with no less than 4 stars you will definitely want to come to this food market for a decent bite to eat.

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MAAT Museum

This is one of Lisbon’s newest contemporary art museums which has been featured all over Instagram in recent months by social media influencers. This is a project by the EDP Foundation that has closed, opened, closed again and recently re opened.

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Feira da Ladra

This market rivals London’s Portobello Market. Feira da Ladra is a flea market that has been open for business since 1903 in its location Campo de Santa Clara.

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Ground Burger

The best burger you will ever taste – no exaggeration.

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Park

The Bairro Alto get packed every evening on a rooftop bar full of revellers, keen to sip on cocktails and watch the sun go down. The view over Lisbon is incredible and with entertainment of live DJ to liven things up this is an experience you will not want to miss.

The Origins Of Country Music

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Country, country western or as its sometimes called…Hillbilly music is a popular genre of music that originated in the southern states of the USA. Country music was first recognised in the 1920s, taking its roots from American blues and folk music.

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The first commercial recording of country music was by fiddlers Henry Gilliland and A.C. Robertson in 1923 for Victor records. Columbia Records started releasing music from the country genre from 1924.

The first country style song that was released with vocals was in 1923 by John Carson, called Little Log Cabin in the Lane.

The Great Depression in the 30s caused a huge decline in record sales however radio became a very popular source of entertainment in society. As well as this the now famous Grand Ole Opry opened in 1925 which showcased (and still does to this day) local and worldwide musical talent.

The 1940s introduced new genres of country music when the cowboys became popular in film. New country genres includes:

  • Singing cowboys and Western swing
  • Hillbilly Boogie
  • Bluegrass folk & gospel
  • Honky Tonk
  • Country Pop
  • Country Rock
  • Cowboy Ballads

However by the 1960s cowboy ballads declined in sales withe the popularity of Rock n Roll. But with the help of marketing agencies and film country became popular again in the 70s and has been successful ever since.

Famous country singers:

  • Shania Twain
  • Faith Hill
  • Carrie Underwood
  • Taylor Swift
  • The Dixie Chicks

We’re On Tour! The Amsterdam Leg Sponsored By Commercial Cleaning Glasgow

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We are still on tour travelling Europe bit by bit. Boy is it different from our hometown Nashville. Each country we’ve been to so far all has different cultures and languages – it has been truly amazing! This blog is going to be about our Amsterdam gig and the best parts of this incredible city! We were fortunate enough to have this blog sponsored by commercial cleaners Glasgow, SE Commercial Services who we met on our Scottish leg of the tour.

Ice Bar

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A bar where everything is made from ice. The seats, the glass, the bar – everything. Although you can only stay for 20 minutes this is still an excellent tourist attraction to visit.

Anne Frank House

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We didn’t learn much about the World Wars when we went to school however, we did decide to get educated at the Ann Frank House & Museum. Once you arrive you firstly getting a walking tour of the house and how the family managed to hide from the Nazi’s to avoid getting sent to concentration camps. Then after the house there is a thought provoking museum – if you have time to do this it is defiantly worth a visit.

Cycling

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Amsterdam has built itself to be a cycle-friendly city where there are actually more bikes than people. With some amazing cycle routes, there is no better way to explore the city than on your bike.

Jordann District

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This neighbourhood is artsy, trendy, cool, quirky and desirable. Filled with art galleries, boutiques, cafes and other quirky independent shops – this is a relaxed area of the city you will definitely want to explore!

Rijksmuseum

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Well…we didn’t actually go inside this museum but there’s a really cool ‘Iam Amsterdam’ sign outside which makes for a brilliant photo/instagram opportunity.

Heineken Experience

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So far we have enjoyed the Guinness & Tennants factory tours in Scotland & Ireland so we had to come and visit the birth place of Heineken.

We unfortunately only managed one day in Amsterdam before our next stop in Germany however the gig went brilliantly and the crowd were on great form! We can’t wait to come back one day

Everything You Need To Know About The ACM Awards 2019

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On Sunday April 7th, the 54th annual Academy Country Music Awards took place in Las Vegas, hosted by Reba McEntire. Here is everything that went down on the night.

How Is Reba McEntire?

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Reba McEntire has been hosting the ACM Awards for 16 years. The country music songstress. Before the night, McEntire spoke about staying away from politics on the night and instead honouring the music stars on the night. However she did give praise to the rising female stars within the country music industry who she believes hasn’t been given enough credit.

Performances

The MGM Garden Arena hosted some of the greatest country music stars where some of the biggest names in the industry took the stage to perform.

  • Carrie Underwood
  • Maren Morris
  • Little Big Town
  • Keith Urban
  • Blake Shelton
  • LANCO
  • Luke Bryan
  • George Strait
  • Chris Stapleton
  • Kelly Clarkson

The Winners

  • Keith Urban – Entertainer of the Year
  • Kacey Musgraves – Female Artist of the Year
  • Thomas Rhett – Male Artist of the Year
  • Dan & Shay – Duo of the Year
  • Old Dominion – Group of the Year
  • Kacey Musgraves: Golden Hour – Album of Year
  • Dan & Shay: Tequila – Single of the Year & Song of the Year

How The Pallet Jack Has Helped The Music Industry

pallet stacker

Within the music industry there are a variety of different tools and systems that are used to help aid production teams and artists. One of the most important and often overlooked tools is known as the pallet jack. Through this post we will explain to you how the Pallet Jack has made a real difference in the music industry. We will also explore its overall advantages and applications.

Challenges Production Crews Face

pallet stacker

Production crews at music concerts often face a number of different challenges. These can vary from logistical challenges to technical and physical. The Pallet Jack can to simplify these issues due to its unique attributes it can bring to its users. Event crews can often suffer from exhaustion or burnout as a direct result of having to repeatedly lift heavy weights long and short distances. This can result in injury and employees having a reduced ability to work. This can impact on overall effectiveness. In order to counter this effect pallet jacks can be used to ensure heavy loads are moved without risking injury.

Another major challenge that production crews may face is lack of training. Often production crews at large music events are likely to be temporary event staff. As a result they may not be as likely to have up to date training on certain areas of work. Lifting technique is one of these factors and lack of training in this area could lead to severe injury. Thankfully the pallet jack can be used with basically no training and is an excellent lifting and moving asset.

Other Common Forms Of Equipment Used In The Industry

pallet jack

In addition to the pallet jack there are a number of different forms of equipment that are regularly used in the industry. One such form of equipment is the forklift truck. The forklift is driven by one operator and can move goods weighing over one tonne from one area to another relatively quickly thanks to its mobility and power. Unlike Pallet jacks forklift trucks require training to use and can be hazardous if used incorrectly or driven recklessly. An advantage the pallet jack has over the forklift is that the pallet jack costs significantly less to maintain and use.

pallet jack

Advantages And Limitations Of The Pallet Jack

The Pallet stacker comes with a range of advantages as well as limitations but overall is good value for money and a versatile and flexible piece of equipment.

  • One of the major advantages of the pallet jack is that it can navigate in narrow spaces. This is useful as it can be used in more enviroments and is more flexible than the forklift for example
  • Another advantage is ease of use. The pallet jack is normally pretty easy to use and understand compared with other equipment and requires very little training.
  • A disadvantage of the pallet jack is their weight capacity is significantly lower than some other forms of equipment such as the forklift.
  • A further disadvantage is that it may take longer to move goods than some other methods.
pallet stacker

Scotland- A Musical And Cultural History

Last month we visited the beautiful country of Scotland and we were taken aback by its stunning architecture , friendly culture and buzzing music scene. Scotland has always had close ties with the USA as a result of immigration over many years. Many americans can indeed trace their ancestors back to Scotland. Through this article we will explore what makes Scotland unique in terms of its music , culture and people.

Scottish Music

In Scotland music plays an important role in everyday life and can be found all over the country from pubs and bars to main streets and community events. One type of event that is synonymous with parties and music is the traditional Scottish ceilidh. A ceilidh is large social gathering often accompanied with traditional Scottish music and dancing. Ceilidhs in Scotland are a very big deal and are considered a rite of passage for the younger generation. They are often incorporated into important events such as marriages , birthdays and community events.

Part of what makes Ceilidhs unique is that everyone is dancing. Its not uncommon to see an entire hall of people on their feet. The traditional Scottish music / live folk band normally does the trick and creates an electric atmosphere. Many Ceilidh songs often adopt a similar rhythm to country and western songs however they are played by very different instruments.

Scottish Culture

Closely related to Scottish music is Scottish culture. The Scots are well known throughout the world for being kind and friendly people. The “people make Glasgow” slogan ran true for us when we visited there. Wherever you went people were always happy to give directions , tell us a bit about local shops/things to see. Scotland although a small nation prides itself in being unique and has an interesting history.

Contrary to popular belief kilts are not worn by Scottish people going to the shops or on their way to work or often in public at all for that matter. Kilts are actually pretty expensive and are reserved normally for important social occasions such as weddings , graduations and birthdays.

The culture in Scotland varies depending on what area you visit. For example in the islands to the west coast of Scotland there is a large number of fishermen and farmers who have practiced their craft for many years whereas the further inland you go towards the highlands the population becomes more sparce. This is because many people chose to move towards the centre of Scotland where two of its largest cities (Edinburgh and Glasgow) are located. Lack of jobs and investment often resulted in many taking this big decision and moving down towards the cities to find more work.

We’re On Tour! How Event Crew Hire Helped Our London Gig

event crew hire

This was probably the most nerve wracking gig we have done so far in our career. The music scene in London is extremely eclectic so alternative country wasn’t something new but something exciting so some music bloggers and record company scouts were coming along to watch us perform. We decided we needed to up the anti and get some help from event crew hire in the production of our show.

event crew hire

Show Production

The event crew hire company we used gave us lighting and sound specialists as well as event specialists who would organise tickets and drinks. Our gig was held as the famous O2 Academy in London and it was a sell out – we were thrilled when we heard this! It took nearly all day to get the production correct – lighting had to be perfect! The sound check went to plan and the place looked unreal. Event crew checked tickets and handed out bottles of water to the crowd. If any small band is looking for extra help on tour we highly recommend

event crew hire

The Best Things We Did In London

  • London Eye
  • Pub Quiz in Peckham at The Nunshead
  • Clapham Common
  • Everything in
  • Hyde Park
  • Camden Market
  • Covent Garden
  • The Sky Garden
  • Have a curry in Brick Lane
  • Old Spitafields Market
  • Everything in Shoreditch
  • We took the underground everywhere

That brings us to the end of our UK tour sadly. We have had the best time ever in the UK and Ireland!! In the week we’ve been here we have seen and done so much- we will definitely be back! We are now currently on the ferry over to The Netherlands where will be playing one night in Amsterdam while exploring there for a few days – Speak soon!

We’re On Tour! Our Irish Leg – Why We Loved Dublin

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After a brilliant few days in Scotland, we got the ferry to Belfast and drove down to Dublin. Here is our blog!

Guinness

Believe it or not we have never tried Guinness. We decided that we just had to try it in the place it was created – The Guinness Distillery in Dublin city. After a tour around the distillery learning about the history of the distillery we ended the experience in the sky bar which looks across the whole city you can enjoy a pint of the beautiful stout. A great experience highly recommended…however we now haven’t stopped drinking it since we arrived in Ireland and now we are sitting here writing this blog will a sore head!

Temple Bar

Stag do? Hen weekend? You HAVE to go to temple bar! Fun, vibrant, wild…that’s all we’ll say about that.

The Market Bar & Fade Street

This was extremely stylish. A tiny street light up with draping bulbs and a row of really cool bars and restaurants. We ate at the Market Bar for Tapas which we highly recommend.

The Gig

The gig was insane. We managed to sell out the small venue in Dublin city centre and got a great response from the music fans. Dublin – we will be back!

How Upholsterers In Edinburgh Saved Our Tour Bus

upholsterers in edinburgh

As you may or may not know, we shipped most of our equipment from Nashville to Europe in our bid to help save the environment. So instead of flying around Europe we have made the decision to drive. We managed to ship over our beloved tour bus all the way from the states in a bid to make even more memories in it. However this van has toured America more than once and is nearly twenty years old…we like to think it looks ‘rugged’. On our Scottish leg of the tour we met some upholsterers in Edinburgh who offered to ‘spruce up’ our old and beloved tour bus. Here’s a blog on it in case any of you are interested?

The History Of Our Tour Bus

upholsterers in edinburgh

After we finished college we decided we wanted to take some time to travel as we’ve never really left Tennessee. Using our musical talents and strong friendship we decided to spend 3 months travelling the USA and funding it by gigging. We purchased the tour bus from a farmer who hadn’t used it in 15 years. Luckily it drove good as new so within a couple weeks we were headed to Florida! We travelled around every single state in America (except Hawaii and Alaska). As we are fairly eco-conscious when it came to our tour in Europe we decided to ship our equipment, including our beloved van and drive around Europe – avoiding planes completely in order to help save the planet.

Upholsterers In Edinburgh Changed Our Lives

This is a great story!

We were sitting in coffee shop in Edinburgh the morning of our opening night. Enjoying our coffees and big breakfasts (and curing a horrible hangover) we got chatting to a group of lads at the table next to us. They were very very interested in our tour, although they were probably more interested that we were American…

They were extremely interested that we shipped our beloved bus and decided to drive around Europe on tour rather than fly. After chatting away for a while they offered to take a look and see if they could repair some parts of the interiors. At first we were a bit apprehensive – this bus is like our child and do we trust them after all? After some convincing we handed over our keys – 98% certain we would never see the van again.

The next morning, Andy called and told us to come and collect it.

Wow!

The interior was totally amazing! They reupholstered all the chairs (there is only 6 in total) but still managed to keep the vans character and vintage look- it was perfect!

Nashville: The Story Of Music City

Nashville, Tennessee is known for it southern fried chicken, cowboy boots and whisky. However the city has also been nicknames Music City – one of the most popular music spots in the USA.

THE NICKNAME MUSIC CITY

In the 1800s, Nashville became fundamentally important in the music industry as they were the national centre for music publishing.The band Fisk Jubilee Singers used their music to promote the education of freed slaves after the Civil War at Fisk University (in Nashville). The nickname music city actually came from the Queen of England who, after their performance said

HISTORIC VENUES

One of the most famous music venues in Nashville is the Ryman Auditorium. It was built in 1892 and has attracted musicians from all over the world to this day. In fact, the Fisk Jubilee Singers were one of the first to perform when the theatre opened. Nat King Cole, Louis Armstrong, Johnny Cash, Dolly Parton and Elvis have all performed in this theatre.

The Ryman Auditorium is celebrating 125 years and is open for daily tours where tourists can explore the auditorium and watch films of its history.

Songwriting Capital Of The World

Songwriters from all genres of music travel to music city to visit the Bluebird Cafe to perform their own songs to a small crowd of other songwriters and music fans. Musician have the opportunity to share stories about their songs and answer any questions people have on their music.

Nashville also host an annual Tin pan South Songewriters Festival – a five day music festival where more than 300 songwriters can perform their songs to crowds all over the city.

Nashville In Popular Culture

In recent years, cable television have been really supportive of Nashville and it’s musical roots, filming many programmes and TV in the city.

There is now a TV drama series Nashville which is filmed in Music City and has global popularity. The show centres around the city’s country music roots and features many of Nashville’s best restaurants, landmarks and venues.

Nashville has been voted the ‘Best Music Scene’ by Rolling Stone with The Black Keys, Kings of Leon, Justin Timberlake, Sheryl Crow, Black Eyed Peas and Keith Urban all originating from Nashville.

Live Music

If you love live music then you absolutely have to come to Nashville. Musicians play live sets in pubs and venues all over the city every single night. The famous Honky Tonks offers free live music every single day of the year.