Rock & Roll Odyssey Tour
HAS BEEN CANCELED UNTIL 2021
Rock & Roll Odyssey Tour 2020
8 Days & 7 Nights Hotels, Transportation, Admissions & 13 Meals
Come see what you have heard.
Join Americana Travel along with Al Neff From 540am The Goat, Minnesota’s Album Rock Station for the Rock & Roll Odyssey Tour April 20th thru the 27th 2020. Come travel with us as we visit some of the most historic Rock & Roll Studios and Landmarks in the world. It’s the ultimate Rock & Roll Odyssey road trip.
We depart on Monday the 20th on Holt motor coach service’s with pick-ups at Cokato, St. Cloud, Elk River and Maple Grove. We will travel thru Wisconsin having fun and entertainment while making comfort stops along the way. Lunch on your own, but we have included a buffet dinner this evening. We continue our way to Tinley Park IL. Our overnight stay is at the Country Inn & Suites.
We get up early and enjoy a deluxe hot breakfast and continue our odyssey toward Detroit Michigan where we will tour Motown Studio’s. Welcome to Hitsville U.S.A.
THE SOUND THAT CHANGED AMERICA
As an irresistible force of social and cultural change, Berry Gordy’s legendary Motown made its mark not just on the music industry, but society at large, with a sound that has become one of the most significant musical accomplishments and stunning success stories of the 20th century. Diana Ross & the Supremes, Smokey Robinson & the Miracles, Stevie Wonder, the Temptations, the Four Tops, Marvin Gaye, Michael Jackson & the Jackson 5, the Marvelettes, Martha Reeves and the Vandellas, Gladys Knight & the Pips, Lionel Richie & the Commodores, Teena Marie, their music communicated and brought together a racially divided country and segregated society, around the world, touching all people of all ages and races.
No other record company in history has exerted such an enormous influence on both the style and substance of popular music and culture. With more than 180 No. 1 hit songs worldwide and counting, that influence is still being felt today, from pop to hip-hop. Motown recently celebrated the 50th anniversary of the company’s founding.
We continue on to Toledo OH. Our overnight stay is at the Holiday Inn. We again have included dinner this evening at the Golden Corral.
Up bright and early and have a hot deluxe breakfast as we head to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland OH. A greeter will come on our coach to welcome us to the Hall.
In 1985, when the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Foundation was deciding where to open its physical museum, Cleveland threw its hat into the ring for consideration. Thanks to a groundswell of public support and a $65 million commitment from city officials, the Foundation chose Cleveland as the winning site, over locales such as New York, San Francisco, Memphis and Chicago. Needless to say, the Rock Hall's construction was cooler than most. On June 7, 1993, the Who's Pete Townshend, Chuck Berry, Billy Joel, Sam Phillips, and Ruth Brown (to name a few) attended the Cleveland groundbreaking ceremony, while Jerry Lee Lewis performed a year later when the building was finished off with the placement of one last steel beam.
The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame threw open its doors on September 2, 1995, and celebrated with a blockbuster benefit concert at nearby Cleveland Municipal Stadium. This marathon show featured once-in-a-lifetime pairings (for example, Chuck Berry's mischievous onstage collaboration with Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band) and performances by greats such as James Brown, Bob Dylan, Jerry Lee Lewis, Aretha Franklin, Johnny Cash and Booker T. and the M.G.s. Besides the Municipal Stadium concert, the Rock Hall's festive opening weekend featured a downtown Cleveland parade and a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by Little Richard and Yoko Ono.
After our visit to the Hall we continue our journey to Cincinnati OH. We stay tonight at the Drury Inn. Dinner is included this evening. If you have never stayed at a Drury Inn you are in for a real treat. The 5:30 kickback with rotating menu of hot food and cold drinks will be waiting for us when we arrive. They also have free popcorn and sodas in the lobby for your enjoyment as well. Don’t forget FREE long distance phone calls this evening, so you can call all of your friends and tell them how much fun you are having with us.
This morning we start off with a hot breakfast buffet. You have many breakfast options here including, scrambled eggs, biscuits & gravy, waffles, fruit salad, cereals, yogurt, muffins, juice, milk, coffee and more. We head south west towards Music City U.S.A. Nashville Tennessee. Our first stop is the Musician’s Hall of Fame. Even though it’s located in Nashville, It’s for all musicians from all genres of music.
The Musicians Hall of Fame is a premiere Nashville attraction and the one and only museum in the world that honors the talented musicians who actually played on the greatest recordings of all time. Some like Jimi Hendrix are well known, while others like L.A session drummer Hal Blaine are not as well known to the public, but have played on hundreds of hit records from Elvis, Frank and Nancy Sinatra, The Byrds, The Mamas and The Papas and The Beach Boys, just to name a very few. The Musicians Hall Of Fame and Museum has on exhibit the very instruments that these musicians used to record many of these classic hits. Then we are off to the Johnny Cash Museum. The museum holds the largest collection of John Cash memorabilia in the world. He started off as a long haired Rock- a- Billy artist at Sun Records and became one of the most important music figures in the 20th Century. Uncover the enigma behind The Man in Black with a visit to The Johnny Cash Museum. The museum, which opened in April 2013, boasts the world's largest collection of Johnny Cash artifacts and memorabilia, including films, handwritten notes and letters penned by Cash himself along with more than 25 costumes made famous during the music legend's career. Exhibits spotlight different periods in Cash's life, including his years in the Air Force, his marriage to June Carter and his famous prison concert tour. And because the museum is officially endorsed by the Cash family, you can bet you'll stumble across other personal mementos not available to the public anywhere else, like a stone wall excavated from Johnny and June's Hendersonville Lake House that's been repurposed into one of the exhibits. Johnny Cash fans loved the wealth of information on display at this museum.
You will have free time to explore downtown Nashville today with many music venues restaurants and attractions so Lunch and Dinner are on your own. We leave Nashville this evening and head to Muscle Shoals AL. Sweet Home Alabama! We spend this evening at the Holiday Inn.
We have and hot deluxe breakfast buffet this morning. We have scheduled 2 very historic Studio tours. Our first stop Fame Studios. FAME Music was established in 1959 in Florence, Alabama and has gone on to be the heartbeat of the Muscle Shoals Sound with entities including FAME Publishing, FAME Recording Studios, FAME Records and Muscle Shoals Records. FAME moved to Muscle Shoals in 1961. FAME has worked in the studio with some of the greatest artists in Rock music history. Artists such as Aretha Franklin, Little Richard, Wilson Pickett, Etta James, Otis Redding, the Osmonds, Jerry Reed, Alabama, Mac Davis, the Gatlin Brothers, Bobbie Gentry and many others.
More recently FAME has recorded projects for The Gregg Allman Band, Third Day, Michael McDonald, Vince Gill, Alison Krauss, Aloe Blacc, Chord Overstreet, Keb Mo, John Paul White, St. Paul & the Broken Bones, Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, Matisyahu, Band of Horses, Drive by Truckers, Bettye Lavette, Cyril Neville, the Civil Wars, Anderson East and Jamey Johnson to name a few.
In the last 50 plus years, FAME has been involved in recording or publishing records that have sold over 350 million copies world wide.
FAME Publishing has had songs cut by Tina Turner, Gary Allan, the Beatles, Jet, Elton John, Sara Evans, Ronnie Milsap, BB King, Tim McGraw, Janis Joplin, the Dixie Chicks, All 4 One, Earl Thomas Conley, Leann Rimes, Huey Lewis, Martina McBride, Travis Tritt, Zac Brown Band and many more.
From there we travel to the Muscle Shoal Sound Studio.
The four founders of the studio, Barry Beckett (keyboards), Roger Hawkins (drums), Jimmy Johnson (guitar) and David Hood (bass), affectionately called The Swampers, but usually known as the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section, were one of the best-known "house bands" or session musicians. (The nickname "The Swampers" was given to the group by the music producer Denny Cordell during recording sessions for Leon Russell because of their "funky, soulful Southern "swamp" sound".) They are referred to as "The Swampers" in the lyrics of "Sweet Home Alabama" (1974) by Lynyrd Skynyrd and appear on the cover of Cher's 1969 album 3614 Jackson Highway.
Initially they worked for Rick Hall, the founder of FAME Studios and they are recognized as having crafted the "Muscle Shoals sound" in conjunction with Hall. After leaving Rick Hall's FAME Studios, the four musicians partnered with Jerry Wexler who provided start-up funding to found Muscle Shoals Sound Studio at 3614 Jackson Highway in Sheffield. The first hit to the studio's credit was R. B. Greaves' "Take a Letter Maria". By December 1969, the Rolling Stones were recording at this new location for three days.
The Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section was the first group of musicians to own a studio and to eventually run their own publishing and production companies. They provided musical backing and arrangements for many recordings, including major hits by Wilson Pickett, Aretha Franklin, and the Staple Singers; a wide range of artists in popular music also recorded hit songs and complete albums at the studio. They had first worked together in 1967 and initially played sessions in New York and Nashville before doing so at FAME. Their initial successes in soul and R&B led to more mainstream rock and pop performers who began coming to record at Muscle Shoals Sound Studios, including the Rolling Stones, Traffic, Bob Seger, Elton John, Boz Scaggs, Willie Nelson, Paul Simon, Bob Dylan, Dr. Hook, Elkie Brooks, Millie Jackson, Julian Lennon, and Glenn Frey.
From Muscle Shoals we head west to Memphis Tennessee. Home to Elvis’s Graceland, Sun Studio’s and the Blues music on Beale Street. Our first stop in Memphis is the Rock & Soul museum.
The Memphis Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum’s exhibition about the birth of rock and soul music involves much more than guitars and drumsticks. It tells the complete Memphis music story, showcasing the story of musical pioneers who, for the love of music, overcame racial and socio-economic barriers to create the music that shook and shaped the entire world. The museum’s exhibit was researched and developed by the world-famous Smithsonian Institution, tracing the origins of America’s musical genres of rock ‘n’ roll and soul music. Performing Songwriter Magazine wrote that it “may be the single best exhibition of American musical history in the country.” The museum has also been recognized as one of Globus’ “American Icons,” joining such prestigious destinations as George Washington’s Mt. Vernon, Alaska’s Denali National park, and others. The Memphis Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum is located at 191 Beale Street, on the corner of legendary Highway 61, “The Blues Highway,” at the FedExForum sports and entertainment complex in downtown Memphis. The museum offers a comprehensive Memphis music experience from the rural field hollers and sharecroppers of the 1930s, through the explosion of Sun, Stax and Hi Records and Memphis’ musical heyday in the 70s, to its global musical influence. The museum also administers and houses the prestigious Memphis Music Hall of Fame, which pays tributes to many of the greatest musicians of all time, all of whom helped place Memphis, Tennessee on the world map. You’ll rock with the likes of Elvis Presley, B.B. King, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, Isaac Hayes, Otis Redding, Howlin’ Wolf, Johnny Cash, Sam & Dave, Al Green, The BarKays, Booker T. and the MGs, and others. The museum’s self-guided digital audio tour is packed with over 300 minutes of information researched by the Smithsonian Institution, including over 100 songs, and takes visitors at their own pace through the ultimate Memphis music pilgrimage, including seven galleries featuring 3 audio visual programs, more than 30 instruments, 40 costumes and other musical treasures, including original sound consoles from legendary Sun Records and Ardent Studios. The museum also offers unique walking tours of historic Beale Street, one of the most musically significant boulevards in the world.
After our visit you will get a chance to experience Beale Street this evening with many shops, music venues and cafes. Dinner is on your own as Beale Street has a lot to offer. If you love Memphis Style bar b que or good southern cooking we suggest The Blues City Café, right across the street from B. B. Kings place. This evening we will head south to Horn Lake MS. Just a few minutes south of Memphis where we will stay for the next 2 nights at the Drury Inn & Suites.
Again we enjoy a wonderful deluxe breakfast buffet and board our coach and head over to the most famous recording studio in the world. Sun Studio’s the Birthplace of Rock & Roll!
Our tour guide will be waiting to share with you the beginnings of Rock & Roll. You will see priceless artifacts and hear historic recording as our guide tell the history of Sun records and its founder Sam Phillips. Stand where Elvis, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, BB King, Howlin Wolf, Ike Turner and the person to first record Rock & Roll, Jackie Brenston with his hit Rocket 88. You will have a photo opportunity to hold the microphone that all of these legends sang into. Don’t forget to go in the gift shop and grab some Sun souvenirs. Back on the bus for a short drive to Stax Record & Museum.
Stax Museum is one of only a handful of museums in the world dedicated to soul music (the Motown Museum in Detroit is another), it not only celebrates the legacy of Stax Records and its artists such as Isaac Hayes, Otis Redding, Sam & Dave, the Staple Singers, Johnnie Taylor, Albert King, Booker T. & the MGs, Rufus and Carla Thomas and others, but also features other soul music labels such as Motown, Hi Records, Atlantic Records, and Muscle Shoals, and visitors are treated to vintage video footage of non-Stax artists such as Aretha Franklin, Al Green, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Ann Peebles, The Jackson Five, Patti LaBelle, Parliament-Funkadelic, Sam Cooke, James Brown, Ike & Tina Turner, and others.
From there we travel to the King’s Castle, Elvis’s Graceland Mansion. Lunch is on you own at the Graceland Complex. We did include Dinner this evening back at our Hotel. We have included the deluxe package here. The Mansion tour, Car museum and Airplanes.
Our first stop inside Graceland Mansion will be the foyer where you can view Elvis' living room, dining room, the stairways, and his mother's bedroom. Here in the foyer was often where special guests were received and shown to the living room, where they would await Elvis to greet them. Elements of decor you see in these rooms today span all of the Elvis eras at Graceland, but the look is primarily the late 1960s to early 1970s incarnation. Next, you will travel through Elvis' kitchen to his downstairs area which includes the TV room and pool room.
As you make your way back upstairs, you can explore the famous Jungle Room with its green shagged carpets, Polynesian feel and exotically carved wood. This room was once the exterior access to the basement. In the 1960s, during one of Elvis' home improvement projects, it was added to the back of the house - first as a screened in porch and then closed in as a room a few years later. In 1974, Elvis redecorated with the current furnishings he stumbled upon at a Memphis furniture store. This room became a family favorite and Elvis liked it in part because it was reminiscent of Hawaii, where he enjoyed vacationing, film-making and performing.
After touring the Graceland Mansion, check out the other great parts of the 14-acre estate as you enter Vernon Presley’s business office. While it was Colonel Tom Parker who managed Elvis' career, it was Elvis' father Vernon Presley who managed his personal business. This building served as his office. Mr. Presley oversaw all of the details of Elvis' personal finances and the management and staffing on the grounds of Graceland. Outside in front of the office is a swing set Elvis bought in the 1970s for Lisa Marie to enjoy along with her cousins and friends.
Next, visit Elvis’ trophy building, which has been newly updated to tell the personal story of Elvis, his family and Graceland mansion. See a family tree, Elvis and Priscilla's wedding attire, Lisa's childhood toys and mementos, Elvis' keys to Graceland and more. The building also houses a display of Elvis' police badge collection, as well as furniture from Graceland's "red period."
The final stop on the tour of Graceland Mansion is Meditation Garden, where Elvis and members of his family have been laid to rest. Millions of fans from around the world have come to Graceland to pay their respects to Elvis - the humanitarian, singing sensation, movie star and King of Rock 'n' Roll.
After our visit to Graceland we head back to our hotel for dinner this evening.
Up early and have a hot deluxe breakfast and board our coach as we head to St. Louis Mo. We stop for an included lunch at the Blueberry Hill bar & Grill. In 1985 they opened up the Elvis Room to bring live music into Blueberry Hill. Fast forward to 1997: the legendary live music room the Duck Room is born. “We cut a hole in what is now the Piano Room,” Joe says, “put a Bobcat in there and dug five feet out of the basement ground in order to lower the floor. I wanted the room to have high ceilings and a big stage.”
The Father of Rock & Roll and first person inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Chuck Berry, inaugurated the Duck Room and played over 200 consecutive monthly concerts in the intimate 340-capacity room. Joe tells the story of how that came to be: “Chuck and I have been good friends since the early ’80s. One night in 1996 he was reminiscing about the smaller clubs he used to play when he was just starting out and how much he would love to play an intimate club again in contrast to large stadiums. There was a split-second pause. We looked at each other and said ‘Let’s do it.’ That’s how Chuck Berry came to play once a month at Blueberry Hill in a legendary concert series.”Blueberry Hill mourns the passing of Chuck Berry. “He was the father of Rock & Roll, played 209 monthly concerts in our Duck Room, and was a dear friend above all,” Joe says. “Goodbye, my friend. Music history really does happen here.
After lunch we head across the street to check out the Chuck Berry Statue.
Hail Hail Rock & Roll!
We continue northward to Iowa City for our overnight Stay at the Drury Inn. Again dinner is included at the hotel.
After a good night’s sleep we enjoy another delicious hot breakfast buffet at the Drury Inn and board the coach. Our next stop is the historic Surf Ballroom in Clear lake Iowa. This venue is listed as a Rock & Roll Landmark by the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. It’s the last venue that Ritchie Valens, The Big Bopper and Buddy Holly Performed at in February 1959. They were killed in a plane crash just north of the Surf. We will step inside this venue that has been restored to its original splendor when it was built in 1949. A tour guide will share with us its story and its rich musical heritage and the evening of February 2nd 1959. The Day the Music Died. After our time at the surf we will travel to the plane crash site. Depending on the weather we can walk out to the memorial site and pay our respects. We then continue north and stop in Owatonna for lunch on you own at Cabela’s. From there we start dropping off our guest as we say goodbye and making memories of a Rock & Roll Road trip that we hope will last a life time. Rave on!