Walking in Memphis

Last month, my camp friend Sami and I went to Memphis to see the Stevie Nicks concert and had the most amazing time there. Stevie’s show was fantastic, and it’s hard not to fall in love with the birthplace of the blues, rock n roll, and the civil rights movement. And I got to spend some QT with a dear pal I’ve known forever. Spoiler alert: Sami turned me on to Fiorucci, probably the most fantastic boutique ever, and uber iridescent Stagelight makeup when I was 13, the same way Irma Levine introduced Sarah to those very same things.

We also got to see my buddy, David, who’s lived in Memphis all his life and was the perfect, generous, thoughtful host and tour guide. We hadn’t seen each other in decades, so reconnecting was extra wonderful.

What impressed me the most about the city was how warm and friendly the people are there and how diverse its inhabitants are regarding race, culture, religion, and politics. I also loved that music is everywhere. Every club, bar, and pool hall has live music, and the bands are mostly awesome.

The most famous place to hear live music is on Beale Street, its legendary downtown stretch where musicians flocked during the 1920s-1940s jazz age. B.B. King, Louis Armstrong, Memphis Minnie, and Muddy Waters were just a few of the jazz and blues luminaries who helped create the “Memphis Blues” style in bars on Beale Street. The Museum of Rock and Soul gives the complete low-down on these and many other musicians who started their careers in Memphis.

Of course, you can’t go to Memphis without visiting Graceland, the home of Elvis Presley; it’s so much fun to learn all about the King and see his “castle.” For example, I didn’t know he was born blonde and colored his hair black.

On a more sobering note, I can’t say enough about the importance of visiting the Civil Rights Museum, which is housed in the Lorraine Motel where civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated in 1968. Established in 1991, the museum lets you walk through one of the most tragic and tumultuous yet inspiring periods of change in our country’s history.

Not surprisingly, this fantastic Marc Cohn song played over and over in my head the entire time I was there.

 

 

One response to “Walking in Memphis”

  1. Sami says:

    Love this and you forever, Cara Mia!❤️

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