The rich and colorful story of America's most popular music and the singers and songwriters who have captivated, entertained, and consoled listeners from the 1920s to the 1990s This gorgeously illustrated, hugely entertaining history of country music is based on the Ken Burns film for PBS. It begins with the music's roots in the rural South where the music emerged from America itself--the songs people sang to themselves and their families, the hymns they sang in church, the fiddle music they danced to on Saturday nights. With the birth of radio in the 1920s, these songs from small towns, mountain hollers, and the wide-open West became the music of the entire nation: a diverse range of sounds and styles from honkytonk to spirituals to bluegrass to rockabilly, leading down through the decades to the music's massive commercial success today. But above all, this is the story of the musicians. Here is Hank Williams' honkytonk life, Dolly Parton's rise to fame from a dirt-poor childhood, Loretta Lynn hand-selling her records while raising a family. Here too are interviews with everyone from Merle Haggard to Garth Brooks to Roseanne Cash. These stories will captivate longtime country fans, and introduce new listeners to this extraordinary body of music that lies at the very center of the American experience.