Speaking of down-home sounds, just an hour and a half north of Asheville, an Appalachian-region town called Bristol - where the Virginia-Tennessee state line runs right down the main street - bills itself as "the birthplace of country music" thanks to the recording sessions which took place here in the summer of 1927 - hailed as the "Big Bang" of country. The Birthplace of Country Music Museum lays it all out for you, with exhibits, displays, and live performances. In addition to that, there are several great live-music venues, and the Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion is a three-day festival held in September (in fact, this year's edition starts tomorrow!)

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