Country Music is a genre that is loved by many. It was one of the first genres and had an “old time style”. According to eldonhunt, “Originally, country music was referred to as hillbilly music.” It originated in the Southeastern States of USA in the 1920’s. It had a mix of folk, church music, and African American blues. Generally, it was played on acoustic instruments such as guitars, mandolin, autoharp, fiddle, banjo, etc. Country music was first recorded in the 1920’s, which had recordings of the Carter Family.
The Carter Family were very popular and one of the first of old time country to be recorded. EnglishClub states that “Carter collected folk songs and also wrote new songs, and he sang them in harmony with his guitar-playing sister-in-law Maybelle and his wife Sarah, who also played autoharp.” Their songs were big hits and that made them one of the first stars of country music. A. P. Carter, born December 15, 1891, in Maces Spring, Virginia, and his wife Sara Dougherty Carter, born on July 2, 1898, in Flat Woods, Virginia, with Sara’s cousin Maybelle Addington Carter, born May 10, 1909, in Nickelsville, Virginia, were the members of the famous Carter Family. According to countrymusichalloffame, “The Carter Family became important country standards and served as a platform for the two most creative and talented women in the music, who produced an amazing number of hit records during their recording days, from 1927 to 1941.”
Another most earliest country stars, recording in the same sessions of the Carters, was Jimmie Rodgers. Born in 1897 in Mississippi, Jimmie Rodgers, father of Country Music, at a young age taught himself how to play guitar. Later, he ran away from home and found himself a job in the railroads, where he sang the blues and work chants by African Americans. Jimmie Rodgers was famous for his yodelling, in which he for the chorus of his song, Blue Yodel. Biography quotes the legendary Bob Dylan, "Jimmie Rodgers, of course, is one of the guiding lights of the Twentieth Century, whose way with song has always been an inspiration to those of us who have followed the path. He was a performer of force without precedent with a sound as lonesome and mystical as it was dynamic. He gives hope to the vanquished and humility to the mighty."
Before there was television, a way of entertainment was listening to the radio. Eldonhunt states that “Radio had become the way for promoting country music performers….” One very popular program was the live country-music variety show, Grand Ole Opry, from Nashville, Tennessee. Most of the songs that were heard on this radio was a style called Western music. According to EnglishClub, “The style often had horse-like clip-clop rhythms and songs about lovesick cowboys and gun-fighting outlaws.” This soon became very popular and was later on decided that western music was a better image than the “hillbilly” old time country.
There’s also several other types of country music that is popular today and was an evolution of country music. These types include Country pop, Outlaw country, Alternative country, Rockabilly, Western swing, etc.
Country music is a great genre and lots of people enjoy it, but I think that it’s not for me. I like listening to tons of different music genres and sometimes listen to country music. I don’t really enjoy country songs, but there are also those that I do enjoy, such as, In Case You Didn’t Know by Brett Young, Blue Ain’t Your Color by Keith Urban, and artists like Sam Hunt. Therefore, Country Music is a genre that is loved and spent with family and friends. Continue listening to the music you love.
by Cassidy Xiong