Nashville is one of the most musical cities in the world. But it’s not just live music that makes the city so great. There are also many museums that trace the history of music from its origins to the present day. Spanning several musical genres like country, blues and rock and roll, these museums are a must-see for anyone who has an interest in music.
Paying tribute to one of country music’s most acclaimed vocalists, this museum made its debut in 2017. It houses the world’s largest collection of Patsy Cline artifacts, including furnishings from her house in Nashville. There are also family photos and possessions that trace back to her life in Winchester, Virginia. Many of the costumes on display at the museum were designed and made by her mother. One exhibit, which allows visitors to step inside Patsy’s Rec Room, contains furnishings owned by Patsy and her husband, Charlie Dick. A bio film inside the museum is hosted by actress Beverly D’Angelo, who played Cline in the 1980 film, Coal Miner’s Daughter.
Originally curated by the country legend’s widow Nancy, this museum is part of a multi-story entertainment complex collectively known as The George Jones. In addition to the museum, it houses a BBQ restaurant, live music, and a rooftop bar. The museum is located on the second floor inside The George Jones. The late performer’s legacy can be found throughout the museum in the form of memorabilia, music recordings, and fun facts about his life. One such fact? He had more country singles on the Billboard Chart and more Top 50 songs than any country artist in history.
This museum was designed to pay tribute to rare and iconic guitars and other stringed instruments like mandolins. It started with the late Steven Kern Shaw, an avid guitar collector who wanted his instruments to be donated after his death to a Nashville institution responsible enough to care for his collection, which consists of nearly 500 stringed instruments. At the GIG, located on the Belmont University campus, visitors get an up-close-and-personal look at the instruments, along with historical information and technical facts about each one.
Inside the Historic Nashville Municipal Auditorium is a music museum like no other in the world. This attraction pays tribute to the musicians who played on some of the greatest song recordings of all time. Exhibits feature actual instruments used by musicians and cover several musical genres. The Motown Exhibit includes instruments used to record songs by musical groups like The Temptations and The Jackson 5. The American Studio Exhibit includes the actual vocal booth and instruments used to record some of the top tunes by artists like Elvis Presley, Dusty Springfield, and Neil Diamond. The popular GRAMMY Museum Gallery gives people information on the history of the GRAMMY Awards and offers an interactive experience where visitors can go behind the scenes and record a song in a recording booth.