I recently had the good fortune to attend one of the most enlightening and entertaining shows I have ever seen, Grammy award winner Tim McGraw and Pulizter Prize author Jon Meacham's Songs Of America Book Tour at the Coca-Cola Roxy in Atlanta, Ga. Songs of America: Patriotism, Protest, and the Music that Made a Nation (the book) was released on June 11, 2019 and immediately shot toward the top of the Best Seller list. McGraw and Meacham set out on a 7 city "book" tour like no one has seen before to support it.
"We're basically inviting people to a fireside chat." Meacham told me a few weeks prior to their Atlanta stop and that was exactly what it felt like.
With the backdrop of a large American flag surrounded by other symbols of our nation, the two sat in what looked to be comfortable chairs and took us on a journey through history with music. Meacham, the historian telling the stories of our country, and McGraw performing the songs shaped those periods in time. The journey of America's history through music was fascinating!
McGraw not only sang many of the songs that are featured in the book, but also shared his personal connection with them. His stories ranged from his being a two year old growing up in Louisiana to a chilling tale about his daughter Gracie having run in with the ghost of Frank Sinatra in LA while the family was house hunting. (Yes! They leased Sinatra's home after that!)
The show wrapped with McGraw singing his hit "Humble and Kind." After hearing the struggles of our nation from her inception to now, and then listening to the words that song, it's clear how even that song is a cry of hope for our future.
The book tour is over, but there were many camera's rolling so I am hoping for a TV special! Until then, definitely take the time to read or listen to Songs of America: Patriotism, Protest, and the Music that Made a Nation. It will definitely give you a new look at some of the songs that shaped your life too.