By Butch Worrell
Franklin, TN’s downtown is arguably the best preserved and coolest of the old town squares in Tennessee. And when the old Franklin Theatre built in 1937 and described as the “Heart” of Main Street faced possible demolition, the Heritage Foundation of Franklin and Williamson County stepped in and spent Millions not just to save it but to make it a first class venue.
Outside on the street it was a colorful spring Saturday night. Passing into the theatre though was like entering an elegant black and white night from a bygone era. It was back to back songwriter night hosted by the legendary country radio WSM 650. The Iconic Guy Clark was there representing the “old breed” of songwriters, evoking memories of departed hero’s like Johnny and Waylon. Matraca Berg, fresh from her accolades for “You and Me and Tequila” represented the new face of Nashville tunesmiths. A special treat was her husband Jeff Hanna of “Nitty Gritty Dirt Band” fame who joined her onstage.
A beautiful evening of songs and stories ended all too soon. Akin to waking from an intense dream we passed back to the real world where the crimson marquee of the theatre still lit Main Street, proclaiming to the world that the Heart of Franklin still beats out loud.