Three Days of November Programs Highlight the Exhibition, Which Closes on Dec. 31

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum will present three days of special programming in November to honor its exhibition Night Train to Nashville: Music City Rhythm & Blues, 1945 – 1970, presented by SunTrust.  On Nov. 12, the Museum will offer an R&B dance workshop for children, an interview and book signing with author Peter Guralnick (Dream Boogie: The Triumph of Sam Cooke), and a concert tribute to Cooke, in partnership with B. B. King’s Blues Club.  On Friday, Nov. 18, the Jimmy Church Band and surprise special guests will rock the Museum’s Curb Conservatory in a concert celebration.  Finally, on Sunday, Nov. 27, two episodes of The!!!!Beat will be screened. 

Music Magic Family Program

            On Saturday, Nov. 12, at 1:00 p.m., children can learn the monkey, the pony, the swim, and other dances done to classic R&B tunes at an R&B dance workshop. Linda Everett, former Night Train performer and dance instructor, will teach families dance moves to ’60s R&B music. Reservations are required, as space is limited, and can be made by calling (615) 416-2001.  Cost is $5 per child, free for Museum members, with up to two accompanying adults admitted free. 

Interview Session and Book Signing with Peter Guralnick

           Noted author Peter Guralnick will discuss his new book, Dream Boogie: The Triumph of Sam Cooke, at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 12, in the Museum’s Ford Theater. Museum staff member Jay Orr will conduct a Q&A.  Following the presentation, Guralnick will sign books in the Museum store at 4:30 p.m.  Both events are free and open to the public.

Sam Cooke began his musical career with his siblings in the gospel group the Singing Children.  Beginning at age 15, Cooke led the teenage gospel group Highway QC’s for four years, until he was selected to replace R.H. Harris as lead signer of gospel favorites the Soul Stirrers. After a promising start in gospel music, Cooke signed with Keen Records to begin a long career in R&B.  He wrote and recorded numerous #1 hits, including “You Send Me,” “Win Your Love for Me,” “Everybody Loves to Cha Cha Cha,” “Only Sixteen,” and “(What a) Wonderful World.” 

Cooke’s success with “You Send Me” led to an appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show and a performance at the Copacabana in 1958.  Cooke was the first black artist to create a record company, forming SAR Records with Roy Crain and J.W. Alexander. Cooke died in 1964.

Other hit songs written and recorded by Cooke include “Chain Gang,” “Twisting the Night Away,” “Bring It on Home to Me,” “Having a Party” and “Cupid.” Cooke’s songwriting talents and musical style placed him as one of the first 10 inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986; other honors include the NARAS Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Pioneer Award from the Rhythm and Blues Foundation.  Numerous artists have recorded covers of Cooke’s songs, including Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, Paul McCartney, the Pointer Sisters, Otis Redding, the Supremes, the Rolling Stones and James Taylor.

Boston native Peter Guralnick is a well-respected author, screenwriter, music critic and historian of American popular music. Among his books are Feel Like Going Home; Lost Highway; Sweet Soul Music; Searching for Robert Johnson; and the critically acclaimed biographies of Elvis Presley Last Train to Memphis and Careless Love.

Performance at B.B. King’s Blues Club

Night Train to Nashville Salutes Sam Cooke,” a concert featuring Clifford Curry, the Earl Gaines Band, Bobby Hebb, Frank Howard, Dan Penn and Charles Walker, will take place on Saturday, Nov. 12, at 7:00 p.m. at B.B. King’s Blues Club, 152 Second Ave. N.  Artists will perform Cooke’s classic gospel and soul music during a tribute in celebration of Peter Guralnick’s new biography, Dream Boogie: The Triumph of Sam Cooke.  This will be the grand finale in the monthly series of Night Train showcases at B. B. King’s.  Tickets are $10 and are available by calling (615) 256-2727.

Concert, Dance and Celebration

            Join the Jimmy Church Band and other special performers for a celebration of the Night Train to Nashville exhibition on Friday, Nov. 18, from 5:00 p.m. until 8:30 p.m.  Activities include a concert with the Jimmy Church Band, a meet-and-greet session with many R&B legends featured in the exhibit and film screenings of the 1960s television show Night Train.  Museum galleries will be open during the event.  Light refreshments will be provided, and beverages will be available for purchase.  Admission is $20.

Film Screening

            The Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum will screen two episodes of The!!!!Beat on Sunday, Nov. 27, at 2:00 p.m. in the Museum’s Ford Theater.  The syndicated show, produced in Nashville but taped at WFAA in Dallas to make use of the latter’s color-television capabilities, was hosted by popular disc jockey Hoss Allen and featured numerous nationally known R&B artists, including Otis Redding, Patti LaBelle and Etta James.  Two 30-minute episodes will be shown.  Admission is free.

Museum admission is $16.95 for adults, $8.95 for children and $14.95 for seniors, military personnel and students. Admission is free for all Museum members.  Museum memberships, good for admission to the Museum and most programs for one year, are available for $25 for adults and $10 for children. For more information or to make reservations, please call the Museum at (615) 416-2001.


These programs are made possible, in part, by grants from the Tennessee Arts Commission, the Metropolitan Nashville Arts Commission, the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee and the Danner Foundation.

Night Train to Nashville: Music City Rhythm & Blues, 1945-1970 is presented by SunTrust.

Accredited by the American Association of Museums, the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum is operated by the Country Music Foundation, a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) educational organization chartered by the state of Tennessee in 1964.  The Foundation also operates CMF Records, the Museum’s Frist Library and Archive, the CMF Press, historic RCA Studio B and Hatch Show Print.

            The Ford Division of the Ford Motor Co. is a Founding Partner of the $37 million Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum, which opened on May 17, 2001.

 More information about the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum is available by calling (615) 416-2001.