What is a home and where do we find it?
Some say it’s a place – a physical, tangible building with a door and rooms to fill. Others say it is in our hearts. And some say it is wherever they can spend time being themselves, where they can be with their loved ones and enjoy the sanity of knowing there is peace, because even if you’re out and about, you are “at home.”
Home has a way of embracing you. It’s that place we always say we want to go when the day is done or when we want to get away from the rest of the world. Though not everyone has someone waiting for them at their place of residence, most of us consider that “home” can also simply be a place of respite and comfort – a place we can go to finally shut out the day.
We’ve gathered some insight from a few Nashvillians – some new, some not – some celebrities, some not – describing what they feel “home” is to them, and what what living in Nashville means in the celebration of their lives. We hope you’ll enjoy their genuinely candid thoughts.
Sheryl Crow told the Wall Street Journal, “LA to me feels like music industry, and Nashville to me feels like music community.” Crow has also commented on her fondness for the lack of paparazzi in Nashville, living a much quieter, “pretty normal life” in Tennessee. Her two sons can go to school without being photographed for a tabloid, and she is now in a place where she can be herself without the rest of the world looking in. Perhaps some of the songs on her latest album “Feels Like Home,” which are sporting some serious country lyrics and melodies, are symbolic of her fondness for Nashville.
ESPN Sports Announcer Kirk Herbstreit has also commented about his move to Nashville. At his former home in Ohio, some disgruntled Buckeye fans would relentlessly taunt Herbstreit and his family. It got to the point where Herbstreit felt the need to move his family to an area where they could live a more “normal” life…and that move was to Nashville, Tennessee.
Kelly Clarkson is a recent resident of Nashville, and she originally moved into a Midtown condo in 2012. She fondly referred to it as the “The Pop Star Place,” because each time she walked down the hall, she’d sight a celebrity neighbor.
Clarkson, originally a Texas native, chose Nashville over New York and LA because she says Nashvillians have a similar “speed” to what she was used to, and that “everyone here is very nice.” We should be proud of our “brought up to have good manners” selves. But it could’ve been too, that she fell in love with and married her manager Brandon Blackstock (Reba McIntyre’s step son). But even before that, she had “quietly” purchased a home in Hendersonville, Tenn., according to WKRN, so it could be that she’ll be with us for quite a while.
Bill Ferrarri is an extremely talented pianist in this fine city of ours, having lived in Nashville for 30 years. According to Bill, “Nashville is a tremendous cultural center, and the city’s political leadership has done a fine job of attracting the sort of businesses that have kept our local economy thriving. It’s also a great place to raise a family.”
JP Dansereau, the general manager of the premiere entertainment venue Fontanel, hails from Waterford, Conn. JP relates, “True, I had a job opportunity I was looking at, but it was a combination of things that helped us make our final decision. There was the strong sense of community and education, a good social environment that’s proved to be great for our kids, and there’s such diversity here. We have music and art and sports – there’s professional football and hockey here – which is amazing. Sometimes we hear people make fun of the “Southern hospitality” thing, but there is really something to be said for the fact that everyone is nice and seems to show respect and support for each other. It’s especially nice to be around when you’re raising a family. Where else can you go and feel like you live in the country and the city at the same time?
NFL Hall of Fame member and current Titans coach Bruce Matthews brought his family to Nashville to join him after his “first miserable season without them.” Matthews was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2007 by his best friend Mike Munchak. Matthews continued his long career with the Titans after accepting an offer to coach from Munchak. At the time, Matthews’ son Kevin was playing for the Titans, and Matthews thought it to be an “opportunity of a lifetime. Returning to coach in Nashville was something he and his wife felt they just couldn’t pass up. What is Matthews’ favorite thing about living in Nashville? You probably wouldn’t guess it. It’s Christian Music. Matthews relates it as “one of the blessings of living in Nashville,” and while here in Nashville, he has gotten to know many contemporary Christian artists. Who knew?
So the next time you think about your home, we hope you will think as we do, of how grateful we are to live, work and play in Nashville. It is truly a fine and welcoming community of great people…in a great place.