One year ago yesterday I left New York late in the morning not knowing what was ahead of me. I didn't know where I was going to live, I didn't know what I was going to do for money, I didn't know who I was going to meet, I didn't know what music I was going to make. I only knew where I was going and that I had to go. I spent that night in a shady, rundown Motel 6 in Wytheville, VA, following a mediocre meal at Applebee's (redundant?), and an emotionally and physically draining trip.
The next day - September 24th - I woke up, loaded back into the Manilow Van, and drove the final five hours west. My first stop in town was Panera Bread on 21st Ave. South, right by Vanderbilt University. It was a beautiful fall day, and after lunch I had an appointment to meet the owner of a house in Germantown and look at a potential room for rent. We ended up hanging out for two hours, talking about our common New York roots and influences, and listening to some music, and it became clear that this place immediately felt like the right place. I left there feeling excited and hopeful, and headed to the Airbnb that would be my home for a week. This was my first day living in Nashville, TN.
Recently, the changing weather and the smell of the fall air has been eliciting all sorts of memories of my first few weeks here. Hanging out in my Airbnb room with nothing to do, catching up on The Walking Dead. Going to my first Nashville open mic. Eating three meals at Applebee's thanks to a gift card. Seeing my first show at The Listening Room. Getting food for the first time at Martin's BBQ Joint. Joining the Nashville Songwriters Association. Eating four meals at Panera thanks to a gift card. Walking around Centennial Park. Discovering new supermarkets. Sleeping on the floor of my new room before my POD was delivered.
It's hard to believe that I've already been here a year, but today I have a much better understanding of the things I didn't know when I first arrived. The people that I've met, the experiences that I've had, and the music that I've been lucky enough to be a part of has all made it obviously clear how correct my move to Nashville was, and continues to be. I'm a better musician, I'm a better songwriter, I'm a better person.
Let's start year 2.