Friday, April 20, 2012
I’ve been a fan of old school country music ever since I was introduced to it in college by Mike Soden, fellow alumni of KU's campus station KJHK 90.7 FM and host of the fondly remembered Jayhawk Hayride.
The band that really did it for me was BR5-49, whose self-titled full-length debut had just come out right around then. At the time they were recording it, BR5-49 was also playing four-hour sets three times a week as the house band at Robert’s Western World. And as that record remains one of my favorites to this day, I wanted to stop at Robert’s to have a beer and check out BR5-49’s old stomping grounds while I was in Nashville.
Like so many of the places on Lower Broadway, Robert’s has live music from open to close, and a handful of people were enjoying afternoon beers and listening to Dave Cox finish up a lunchtime set when we walked in. The two of us took a seat at a high top, and Nicole started eyeing the shelves full of boots lining the nearby wall. Even though a little bit of daylight was coming in through the front window, there’s something about Robert’s that makes it feel like it's always almost last call inside those walls.
When our waitress came by, we did better than just get those aforementioned beers -- we also got fried pickles from Robert’s Honky Tonk Grill. With a perfect fried-to-pickle ratio, they have a nice, solid crunch before you get to the pickle’s sourness.
Eileen Rose & The Silver Threads were taking the stage and awesome things were about to happen on a pedal steel, my Recession Special arrived. The stack of bologna wasn’t as fat as I’d expected, although the lettuce, tomatoes and thick white bread might’ve made it seem smaller. While tasty, another two or three slices of bologna would’ve made my sandwich fantastic.
I’m not sure how I feel about the bag of Lay’s potato chips, either. Seems like Robert’s could save a few cents by going with chips more on the level of Utz, Guys or Wise. When it comes to a recession and thus to a Recession Special, top tier name brand chips are a luxury. Let’s put that money toward increased bologna.
If we’d been able to stay for another beer, I would’ve absolutely finished everything off with a Moon Pie for dessert, but alas we had to scoot. The rest of the trip was mostly hotel and convention center food -- although there was a late-night stop at White Castle after an evening at the Grand Ole Opry, and that ruled.
At the airport as we waited to board our flight back to KC, I finally did get that Moon Pie, too. Surely there are worse things you can have for breakfast.
416B Broadway | Nashville, TN 37203