Vince Gill

Note: NPR's First Listen audio comes down after the album is released. However, you can still listen with the Spotify playlist at the bottom of the page.

Courtesy of the artist

These days, for many people in country music's mainstream - and beyond it - the genre's version of "sexy" is corny. Rump-shaking dudes in man buns beckoning women who frankly feel a little harassed into their flatbed Fords... At their worst, country's 21st-century dreamboats operate on the principles of hair metal, mixed with CrossFit. That's the stereotype and the perception, anyway.

The Hollywood Bowl. Red Rocks Amphitheatre. Madison Square Garden. They're the iconic venues that round out top-10 lists of the country's best places to see live music. But this summer, Morning Edition is visiting America's side stages, places the locals know and where players love to play. We begin, appropriately, in Music City at 3rd and Lindsley, an intersection that's the home and namesake of an unassuming Nashville venue.