There’s no shortage of grown-up-oriented things to do in Nashville on Halloween this year, owing at least in part to the fact that it falls on a Saturday. If you’re still on the fence about what to choose, here’s a suggestion: Consider some nostalgia.
Whether you’re an ’80s kid or a ’90s kid (or someone who just appreciates the decades that emphasized fluorescents and flannel), the venues at Cannery Row have a night of heady memories in store, made for Halloween celebrating that’s a little more silly than scary.
Up in the Mercy Lounge:
These long-running ’80s pop providers pull us back into the excess with a broad cross-section of radio favorites, from emotive (“Don’t Stop Believin’”) to fist-pumping (say, the Ghostbusters theme song). The band name aside, Guilty Pleasures’ set lists are a good reminder of how heavy ’80s radio was on the pleasures, and how little guilt is in the mix.
Over in The Cannery Ballroom:
My So-Called Band
Nashville’s all-star ‘90s tribute band shares pitch-perfect renditions of the songs that capture the weirdness that was that decade, from Alanis Morissette’s “You Oughta Know” to The Verve’s “Bittersweet Symphony” to Haddaway’s “What Is Love” to House Of Pain’s “Jump Around.” Some folks might remember the ‘90s as the grunge era, but MSCB brings a loud reminder that the charts reflected kind of an impossibly broad aesthetic, from angst to fantastically corny anthems.
Folks in these two bands have played with/for the likes of Bare Jr., The Dixie Chicks, James Taylor, Michael McDonald, Marty Stuart, Ben Folds, The Pink Spiders and loads of others — all serious pros, hence the serious quality, decade to decade.
While you might want to pick one floor and stick with it, you could grab tickets and hit both decades if you really wanted to. Guilty Pleasures kicks off at 8 p.m., My So-Called Band starting up at 9:30 p.m.
If past celebrations from these tribute titans are any indication, expect the costume bar to be raised high, too, so you might wanna bring your Halloween best.
The details at a glance:
Guilty Pleasures at the Mercy Lounge (One Cannery Row, Nashville)
Saturday, October 31
Doors 7 p.m., show 8 p.m.
Tickets: $15 general admission
My So-Called Band at The Cannery Ballroom (One Cannery Row, Nashville)
Saturday, October 31
Doors 8 p.m., show 9:30 p.m.
Tickets: $20 advance, $25 day-of; VIP: $40 early-bird, $60 advance, $75 day-of
Either/both of these shows on your Halloween to-do list? Other Nashville Halloween night events you’re more focused on? Let’s hear your picks!