Last week, the historic Ernest Tubb Record Shop, located at 417 Broadway in downtown Nashville, announced it would be closing its doors after 71 years.
The announcement caused quite the uproar among people upset at the loss of another piece of Nashville history, especially as the section of lower Broadway that plays home to Ernest Tubb’s has in recent years become a tourist destination full of 6-story bars named after country artists and run by large hospitality corporations.
And now Ernest Tubb’s family is hoping to draw attention to the store – and hopefully save it from meeting the same fate as so many other historic properties in Nashville over the past few years.
14-year old Colton Gibson is the great-great nephew of Ernest Tubb, and he’s launched a petition in hopes of preserving the country star’s historic record store.
“We are now met with the tragic news that this institution, which is extremely important to the history of country music, is permanently closing its doors. WE CANNOT LET THIS HAPPEN.
The Ernest Tubb Record Shop is one of our only remaining direct connections to the golden age of country music. If it closes, ask yourself what we will have left. Not very much. If you love country music and want to preserve its history, please sign this petition to preserve the historic Ernest Tubb Record Shop as it is.”
Since being launched the petition has already racked up almost 7,500 signatures from people around Nashville and across the world who are concerned about losing yet another piece of country music’s history in the name of “progress.”
The store, opened by country star in 1947 Ernest Tubb has been in its current location on Broadway since 1951, after moving from its original location on Commerce Street just a few blocks away. After Tubb passed away in 1984, the record store was taken over by longtime employee David McCormick. And in 2020, it was sold to the owners of Robert’s Western World, one of the last true honky tonks on a rapidly growing strip of tourist trap bars.
The record store was also home to the Midnite Jamboree, a radio show launched by Tubb in 1947. The Jamboree would feature artists from the Grand Ole Opry, who could walk across the street to Ernest Tubb’s after their performance at the Ryman.
It’s hosted performances from artists like Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn, Hank Williams and even Elvis. And in more recent years, the record store has played host to a number of newer artists, names like Eric Church, Garth Brooks and Vince Gill.
And like many others (myself included), Tubb’s nephew thinks it would be a real shame to see it close and be taken over by some multi-million dollar hospitality company:
“So much has happened in that record shop. We would hate to see it become another bar. People all over Nashville feel this way…
Just like everybody that’s lived here a long time, I’ve been seeing Nashville slowly change a lot over the recent years. The record shop is just about the last piece of old Broadway and old Nashville that’s left down here, and it would just be a real shame to let it go.”