‘Nashville’ brings country music with a fun twist

Nov 8 • News • 941

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Amid begrudging sighs and slight cursing, twang has made its way to ABC.

Though the Country Music Awards did air on the network last week, this is something far more regular: the new hit TV show “Nashville,” which airs at 10 p.m. Wednesdays.

The show is sort of like “Glee” for adults, except the songs are all country, the teenagers are all adults, most of the artists have already made it big and the music is completely original. And good.

Unlike “Glee,” the stars on “Nashville” are not competing based on ability or talent; they’re already stars. These ladies are competing purely for popularity. They want to win the hearts of country music lovers across the country.

“Nashville” is about the life of Rayna James, a figure similar to Faith Hill or Shania Twain – once queen of country music, now mom who still wants a career. Now, though, she’s competing with Juliette Barnes, who is a young hot crossover to country music, and exactly what the industry is looking for. Naturally, Juliette finds Rayna’s music old and boring, while Rayna finds no substance in the shallow themes of Juliette’s songs.

Caught in between the two is another music legend, Deacon Claybourne. Though he has been Rayna’s band leader throughout her career, and her unrequited love, Juliette seems to be slowly convincing him that he should go on tour with her instead of Rayna.

“Nashville” combines country music, love, politics and normal family life for a whirlwind of an experience in every episode. It also contains many different subplots, all of which couldn’t possibly be mentioned here. But if you like country music and drama, “Nashville” is definitely worth your time.

When ABC calls a show a hit, it generally means it. “Nashville” isn’t just topping the TV charts. The music from the show ranks among the top-selling country songs.

“Fade Into You” was No. 23 in country music on iTunes as of Monday. On the show, this song is sung by two emerging writers, Scarlett O’Connor and Gunnar Scott.

People who don’t even watch the show could be humming along to its songs thanks to their instant popularity. And it looks like there’s plenty more where that came from.

Another perfect aspect of “Nashville” is its cast. The flawless Connie Britton (“Friday Night Lights”) plays Rayna, while Hayden Panettiere (“Heroes”) takes the reigns as Juliette. The dynamic these actresses create for their characters is one of the best on TV this season.

Meanwhile, the crown for the show goes to Charles Esten for his portrayal of Deacon. He plays the quintessential role of the guy caught in the middle, and he does so flawlessly and seemingly effortlessly. He pulls off that smoky cowboy look pretty well, too.

However, the best part about Esten is that he has proven himself as a serious actor by taking this role. Yep – “Chip” Esten from “Whose Line is it Anyway?”

If you haven’t done so yet, find a clip of his improv to watch right before an episode of “Nashville.” He’s just as serious now as he was funny then. Clearly, age has done this man well.

All hormonal girly feelings aside, though, this show is definitely worth watching. Even those who don’t particularly love country music will find something to like in “Nashville.”

 

KELLY MORELAND

moreland002@knights.gannon.edu

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