TDTD, Memphis CVB and Nashville CVC recently partnered with the Americana Music Association, Old Crow Medicine Show, Valerie June and Australia promoter Chugg Entertainment for the, “Taste of Americana Tour” and first-ever Australian Americana Honors Show Sept. 28-Oct. 3.
Nashville-based Old Crow Medicine Show and Memphis area native, Valerie June, headlined three historic theatres in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney, performed at a festival in Caloundra as well as the Honors event in Melbourne.
Leading up to the tour, the artists participated in media interviews and provided custom video content, talking about their favorite Tennessee destinations, that resulted in more than 30 articles in mainstream publications and websites as well as features in travel publications including Travel Daily, Australia’s leading travel trade magazine. These efforts resulted in approximately 25.5 million media impressions valued at $48,000, according to media tracking tool Trendkite.
Gate 7, a company that represents Tennessee through the Travel South USA Global Partner Program, worked with Tennessee partnership to coordinate a flyaway holiday package around the 2018 Americana Fest including three nights at the Doubletree by Hilton Nashville Downtown, three nights at the historic Peabody Hotel in Memphis, tickets to Americana Fest and major attractions and two round trip airfare tickets compliments of American Airlines. Thanks to the efforts of Gate 7, media partner News Corp was brought on board to promote the contest through its network of 142 newspapers distributed across Australia including major metropolitan cities Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth. News Corp also promoted the concerts regionally. Combined, these efforts resulted in a promotion package valued at $222,000.
At each stop on the tour, Brian Wagner, assistant commissioner of TDTD, along with Memphis in-market representativeChris Ingram, hosted receptions and artist meet-and-greets for nearly 60 key travel trade partners who then enjoyed a night of authentic Tennessee music. Fans in attendance also received Tennessee travel booklets and various “The Soundtrack of America. Made in Tennessee.”, Nashville and Memphis promotional items. The Americana Honors show in Melbourne included performances from popular Australian artists Bernard Fanning, Kacey Chambers, Busby Marou and others, many of whom made mention of the influence of Tennessee artists on their music and embraced the state brand. The Nashville-based Americana Music Association presented two Vanguard Awards to Chambers and Out on the Weekend promoter Brian “BT” Taranto, recognizing their valuable contributions to the genre and community of Americana.
Australia is Tennessee’s fourth international market for visitation behind Canada, UK and Germany with more than 27,000 who visited Tennessee in 2016, an increase of 31% over the past five years, according to Tourism Economics. That number is expected to grow significantly with the addition of flights from Sydney to Dallas announced earlier this year and another flight coming through Houston, making it easier and more affordable for Australians to travel to Tennessee than ever before. This effort comes on the heels of a Travel South USA led trade mission last June which included representatives from TDTD, Memphis, Nashville, Graceland, Opry Entertainment and Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.