What Is the History of Country Music?


Quick Answer

Country music is believed to have officially begun in 1927, when Victor Records signed the Carter Family and Jimmie Rogers. The genre became very popular in the 1940s and 50s, and many aspects of country music have influenced other genres, as well as American culture.

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Full Answer

Prior to the signing of Rogers and the Carters, country music could best be traced to Appalachian fiddle players in the 1910s. Rogers became known as the "Father of Country Music," as his song "Blue Yodel #1" was the first record to sell one million copies. Rogers died from tuberculosis in 1933, but the Carter Family remained popular, with hits such as "Keep On the Sunny Side" and "Wildwood Flower."

June Carter, one of the daughters of the Carter Family, achieved country music fame in her own right as the wife of Johnny Cash, with whom she sang numerous successful duets. Known as "The Man in Black," Cash became a sensation in country music in the mid 1950s, with a combination of good looks and a gritty musical style. Cash was also one of the first country musicians to achieve crossover success, as he also appealed to fans of pop and rock music. Many other country musicians have achieved crossover success, such as Garth Brooks, Willie Nelson and Taylor Swift.

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