Skip to Main Content

Popular Music

Library resources on rock, jazz, hip hop, videogame music, and other popular genres

Country Music and Bluegrass

The Grove Dictionary of American Music describes country music as "a vibrant commercial genre that maintains allegiance to concepts of tradition and rusticity, even as the music continues to reflect the modernization and urbanization of its audience." First associated with rural lifestyles of Appalachia and denigrated as "hillbilly music," country quickly grew to include the music of other rural locales, such as Texas and the cowboy west as well as the French Cajun music of Louisiana. After wilder honky-tonk and rockabilly phases in the 1940s and 1950s, many of its rough edges were smoothed out through the pop-inflected Nashville Sound. Later the outlaw country of Willie Nelson and associates shifted the evolution of country music yet again. Find resources on country music in its different permutations below.

Recommended Books

The recommended books below include print reference sources and books on a wide sampling of topics related to country music and bluegrass. Reference sources on country are classified in ML 102.C7 (encyclopedias) and ML 156.4.C7 (discographies). Other books can be found in biographies (especially ML 420) and in types and styles of popular music (ML 3524). Books are sorted by their call numbers for ease of browsing. Hover over the info icon to see a description.

Interlibrary Loan

Users are encouraged to search for items beyond University Libraries' catalog via RILM Abstracts of Music Literature and WorldCat. Materials not available in print or online may be requested through Interlibrary Loan. Please allow up to seven days for electronic delivery and up to fourteen days for delivery of physical items.