Before the Big Bang

From the blog

Back to the beginning: Before the Big Bang

Conventional wisdom on recorded country music traces its origins to the famous Bristol sessions held in July and August 1927, famously dubbed “The Big Bang of Country Music” by author Nolan Porterfield. Bristol gave us the first records by the Carter Family and Jimmie Rodgers, and while there’s no disputing that Bristol put country on the map in the public mind, this narrative overlooks the four decades of recording that happened before Bristol—and any impact that material had on the evolution of country music.

Our forthcoming box set Before the Big Bang: Country Music Origins in the Acoustic Era, 1890-1926 corrects that omission, and shines a spotlight squarely on the early recordings, repertoire, and artists that lay forgotten at the foundation of country music. Over the course of five CDs—four dedicated to sources and influences, and one featuring six years of acoustic-era hillbilly pioneers overlooked by Big Bang boosters—we’ll tell for the first time the story of the recordings that blazed a trail to Bristol.