Meet the country stars of post-war America, including the Hillbilly Shakespeare. Watch with NPT Passport.
Country music adapts to the cultural changes of post-war society. Bill Monroe, Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs transform traditional string band music into something more syncopated: bluegrass. Out of the bars and juke joints comes a new sound with electric guitars and songs about drinking, cheating and heartbreak: honky-tonk. Its biggest star is Hank Williams, a singer and songwriter of surprising emotional depth, derived from his troubled and tragically short life.