Painting of the mouth of a cave.

Down in the Hole: Outlaw Country and Outlaw Culture

Country music has often stood, as it were, with one foot in and one foot out of the cave.

Canon Fodder

Where's the country music on Pitchfork's Best Albums of the 1980s?
Woman playing a guitar, and the cover of the book 'Country Music USA.'

‘Country Music … Was Anything BUT Pure’

On the music’s African-American tributaries, its unpredictable politics, country radio’s woman problem, and working on Ken Burns’ forthcoming doc.

Agriculture Wars

On country music as a lens through which to trace the corporatization of American farming.
Charley Pride on stage.

Charley Pride’s Music Taught Listeners That Country Music Was Black Music, Too

The mythology of cowboy culture is aggressively white, but there was always a black West.

A Hardworking Man Named Bob McDill

The steady hand behind more than 30 No. 1 country hits.

How Country Music Went Conservative

Country music is assumed to be the soundtrack of the Republican Party. But it wasn't always that way.
Gram Parsons.

Nudie and the Cosmic American

The iconic fusion of country and rock in Gram Parsons' legacy.
Willie Nelson at the 1973 Fourth of July Picnic, in Dripping Springs.

That ’70s Show

Forty years ago, Willie, Waylon, Jerry Jeff, and a whole host of Texas misfits brought the hippies and rednecks together in outlaw country.
A bronze statue of Willie Nelson.

Willie Nelson at 70

"The Essential Willie Nelson" compilation demonstrates the continuity of Nelson's style across a variety of musical genres.
A group of Transappalachain migrant workers in Department 312 of the Anderson Delco-Remy plant pose for a photograph in February 1953.

On the New Book, "Hillbilly Highway"

Recovering the long-overlooked significance of the “hillbilly highway” in the US, with implications for labor history as well as US history broadly.
An illustration of Lucinda Williams in a storm with debris in the air behind her.

Lucinda Williams and the Idea of Louisiana

An exploration of the family stories, Southern territory, and distortions of memory that Lucinda Williams' songwriting evokes.
Four women looking away from the camera and smiling.


The Pointer Sisters, the Great Migration, and the soul of country.
Johnny Cash visiting his childhood home in Dyess, Arkansas.

Down in Dyess

Johnny Cash's life in a collectivist colony during the Great Depression.
Map of the Appalachian mountain range

The Making of Appalachian Mississippi

“Mississippi’s white Appalachians may have owned the earth, but they could never own the past.”
Photo of Dolly Parton smiling.

The United States of Dolly Parton

A voice for working-class women and an icon for all kinds of women, Parton has maintained her star power throughout life phases and political cycles.

A Short History of Country Music’s Multicultural Mishmash

Or everything that came before Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus walked down that “Old Town Road.”

When Pat Buchanan Brought Johnny Cash to the Nixon White House

It didn't go exactly as planned. But for TAC's founder, this is where his populist antiwar movement may have begun.

Punjabi Convoy

A history of trucking in America, told through the music that has kept truckers company on the lonely road.

Living with Dolly Parton

Asking difficult questions often comes at a cost.