NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Tourism is one of Tennessee's largest industries. We know Nashville is a huge part of that and we're proud of it! It's why the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corp is highlighting the hard work of hospitality workers who make a visit to Music City extra special.
The most recent Music City "Hitmakers" award winner is earning fans for his music and magnetism.
Cornelius Drake moved to Nashville for music. However, he currently works at the Holiday Inn Express Airport by the Nashville International Airport. Drake didn't plan on this being his path. "I’ve never thought about working at a hotel in my life," he said.
But fate stepped in. An impromptu meeting with the then-general manager at a gas station, of all places. "He said man I think you’re a perfect fit, you’re a people person, I love your smile, you have the style," Drake recalled.
The smile, personality, and spontaneous singing...became an instant hit for hotel guests.
"Even when I’m having a bad day I try to keep a smile on, I try to go above and beyond to help people," Drake said.
It’s who Drake's mother raised him to be. It's perhaps why this current role was meant to be. "It’s sorta who I am... it’s in my nature... so maybe it was meant for me," he said.
His mother can no longer do things for herself so Drake takes it upon himself to do for others. "When I see people come in and I’ve seen the days that they’ve had I see that they’ve been delayed on flights, I see that they’re having family issues... while you’re here... why not take a little bit of that load off?" Drake said.
That's why he's been named a Music City Hitmakers winner! Drake was commended for his singing, and taking special care of a hotel guest with a disability.
"Every day is a learning experience, and as long as I can get that up under my belt, as long as I can learn every single day, I think it makes it worthwhile. So, that’s why I enjoy what I do here," he said.
Drake's mother is incredibly proud. "She tells me every day. All day, every day. Any chance she gets," he said.
For someone as humble as Drake, being highlighted as a Hitmaker hits home for him. "It means a lot to me because it means in my every day at least I can say that I’ve made a difference in somebody’s life... and I think that’s what life is all about," Drake said. "No matter what you do, what your career path is, if you can make a difference in one person’s life, I think you have a job well done."
You can nominate a Music City Hitmakers on the Nashville CVC's website.