The ABC hit television series “Nashville” starring Connie Britton, Hayden Panettiere, Jonathan Jackson, J.D. Souther, Charles Esten, Clare Bowen, Powers Boothe, and Eric Close is based upon the city of Nashville’s country music industry and uses some real people and locations for inspiration. Nashville residents, music industry insiders, and show extras sometimes uncover interesting information, quotes and facts about the program, the people and the city.
Here are some fun facts about four of the people in the TV show “Nashville:”
1. What Rayna James & Faith Hill Have in Common
“Rayna is not ready to surrender the crown as the ‘Queen of Country.'” — ABC
Forty-year-old country-western superstar singer Rayna James is modeled after the No. 1 Adult Contemporary artist of the decade 2000-2009, 45-year-old country singer Faith Hill, who at age 19 quit school to move to Music City to pursue her dream of being a country singer. Hill was discovered in the early 1990s singing background vocals at Nashville’s Bluebird Cafe, a site featured prominently in “Nashville.” She is married to country superstar and actor Tim McGraw. (faithhill.com)
Connie Britton, who is the same age as Hill, recently told “The Nashville Scene” that in the hair and makeup trailer, numerous photos of Faith Hill were used to create Rayna’s look.
2. What Juliette Barnes & Taylor Swift Have in Common
“Just three years after she left Alabama for Nashville, she’s become the #1 crossover artist in the country.” — ABC
According to local lore, the character of Juliette Barnes, played by Hayden Panettiere, is partially based on Nashville resident Taylor Swift. Both are talented, rising young stars, both are blonde, both sing country and pop music, and both launched their country music careers as teens. At fourteen, Swift moved to Nashville to pursue a career in country music. At an industry showcase at the Bluebird Café in 2005, she came to the attention of an executive with Dreamworks Records who was getting ready to launch his own record label, Big Machine Records, and Swift signed a record deal.
However, Hayden Panettiere, who is also a singer, scoffs at the idea that Juliette Barnes is based upon Swift. Panettiere recently stated, “Taylor is known to be a very nice girl; she’s known to be very nice to meet and be around,” unlike Juliette. Panettiere says she has become good friends with Swift and laughs with her about the character comparisons. (Nashville Scene)
3. What Avery Barkley & Jonathan Jackson Have in Common
“Avery’s passionate and headstrong, and he writes alt-country songs that the critics will love-if they ever get a chance to hear them.” — ABC
Aspiring musician Avery Barkley may write alternative-country songs influenced by the Old 97s, Ryan Adams, and Elliot Smith, but his alter-ego Jonathan Jackson performs indie, alternative and pop rock with the band Enation which Jackson formed with his brother, Richard. Jackson plays guitar and sings in the band.
Enation has released several albums as well as scoring a Top 10 hit on the iTunes national Rock Charts. Their songs “Feel This” and “World In Flight” were featured on the television series “One Tree Hill,” “Eyes of Grace” was featured on “General Hospital,” and “Ride” was the theme song to “Riding the Bullet,” a Stephen King movie in which Jonathan Jackson starred. (Enation.com)
4. What Watty White & J.D. Souther Have in Common
The powerful Nashville hit-maker Watty White is played by a real-life music industry insider, singer-songwriter J. D. Souther who has written and co-written numerous country-rock hits for artists including Linda Ronstadt and Glenn Frey of the Eagles. A Nashville resident, Souther continues to write, record, and tour when he isn’t acting. (jdsouther.net)
Coming soon: “Fun Facts About ABC’s ‘Nashville’ Locations.”
- “Nashville Confidential”–The Nashville Scene, Oct. 4, 2012, p. 20
- Personal Experience on the “Nashville” set
- Local Lore
- ABC’s New Hit Show “Nashville” Premiere — an Extra’s Take (Episode 1 Recap)
- ‘Nashville’ Episode 2: More of Rayma, Deacon & Teddy’s Back Story Revealed (Recap)
- ‘Nashville’ Episode 3: A Mother of an Episode (Recap)
- ‘Nashville’ Episode 4: Crime Doesn’t Pay (Recap)