I watched episode 1 last night, and have the DVR set to record all the episodes. Anyone else catch it?
Actually I missed the first 10 minutes but I can’t believe they were significant. The episode was devoted to the “first family” and “grandfather” of CM, with a healthy dollop on the “big bang” of country music, i.e. Ralph Peer’s 1927 sessions in Bristol Tennessee.
It was out of these session that the first releases of The Carter Family and Jimmie (Jimmy? I’ve seen it both ways and am too lazy right now to check out which way KB has it) Rodgers. It was “right and meet” as the good ol’ book of common prayer has it, to devote an entire episode to these artists. As affirmed by tons of talking head citations by everyone from Merle Haggard to Marty Stuart, “no Carter Family, no country music. No Jimmie Rodgers, no country music.”
Might be extreme, slightly, and I suspect there would have been SOMETHING from which CM would evolve, but for sure it wouldn’t be what we’ve got (for good and ill).
I recommend the film (so far) – be on the lookout in the remaining episodes for KB’s characteristic dwelling, repetitively, on the artists he thinks were seminal and structural (in this case TCF and JR) as he did with Armstrong in “Jazz” and DiMaggio in “Baseball.” But it’s good to know where he stands.