Birthplace of Country Music Museum

Birthplace of Country Music Museum Museum Hours: 10am - 6pm: Tuesday - Saturday 1pm - 5pm: Sunday Closed Mondays The Museum will the closed on Sunday, March 24, 2019.
Our mission is to enhance Bristol's role in the birth and development of country music through Birthplace of Country Music Museum, Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion, educational outreach and programming.
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The Birthplace of Country Music® Museum, in affiliation with the Smithsonian Institute, tells the story of our music heritage. From the Bristol Sessions and beyond, our region continues to influence music around the world. The museum embodies this accomplishment and promotes Bristol as the Birthplace of Country Music.

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11/12/2019

You're invited to a Holiday Open House at The Museum Store December 1st, where you'll enjoy tastings from recipes found in cookbooks we carry in the store, meeting up with some of our local artisans, and a 20% discount on any 1 (one) item in the store, including Ken Burns' documentary Country Music! We hope to see you there!!!

Today we honor and thank our veterans for their service and sacrifices. Some of the 1927 Bristol Sessions artists served...
11/11/2019

Today we honor and thank our veterans for their service and sacrifices. Some of the 1927 Bristol Sessions artists served our country, including Alfred G. Karnes, a Navy gunner's mate during World War I, and Ernest Phipps, who worked in a hospital after being drafted at 43 during World War II.

Karnes image courtesy of Debbie O'Shea; Phipps dog tags donated to the Birthplace of Country Music Museum by Teresa Phipps Patiemo in memory of her grandfather, Ernest Phipps, a coal miner and Holiness preacher from Kentucky, a simple man who loved his Lord

Just one week away from our Monthly Community Jams where musicians of all ages and skill levels gather for an afternoon ...
11/09/2019

Just one week away from our Monthly Community Jams where musicians of all ages and skill levels gather for an afternoon of collaboration! Stop by the museum from 2-5pm and join the fun!

https://bit.ly/2WUJrZv

Today we celebrate Georgia Warren, who was born on November 8, 1915 and passed away in 2016. Georgia holds a particularl...
11/08/2019

Today we celebrate Georgia Warren, who was born on November 8, 1915 and passed away in 2016. Georgia holds a particularly special place in our story as she was here with us at the museum’s Grand Opening in August 2014, the last surviving musician from the historic Bristol Sessions recordings. When she came to Bristol in 1927, she was only 12 years old, the daughter of George Massengill, who was the leader of a congregational choir from Bluff City, Tennessee. Known as the Tennessee Mountaineers, they recorded two songs at the Bristol Sessions: “Shall We Gather at the River” and “Standing on the Promises.”

Georgia with her family at the museum’s Grand Opening on August 1, 2014.

Just a flying visit(or)!
11/08/2019

Just a flying visit(or)!

11/07/2019
The Original Carter Family - Keep On The Sunny Side (1928).

Today we honor the legacy of A. P. Carter, who died on November 7, 1960. Along with his wife Sara and her cousin Maybelle, he recorded six songs at the 1927 Bristol Sessions; their success from these recordings set The Carter Family on the road to be the most important singing group in country music history. Before he passed away, he asked his daughter Janette to continue preserving and celebrating old-time and traditional music, as he had done all those years ago. Though it took her fourteen years, Janette found a wonderful way to honor the musical legacy of her family: the establishment in 1974 of the Carter Family Fold in Hiltons, Virginia. You can still enjoy good tunes and fellowship there today.

(1899 Gospel Song by Ada Blenkhorn & J.Howard Entwistle...AP learned the Song from his Uncle,Flanders Bayes) Recorded 9 May 1928 - Victor Studio, Trinity Bap...

Kick off the season with our Holiday Open House at The Museum Store Dec. 1 where you can enjoy tastings, discounts, and ...
11/06/2019

Kick off the season with our Holiday Open House at The Museum Store Dec. 1 where you can enjoy tastings, discounts, and more!

https://bit.ly/2JVtJrI

This Saturday, November 9, East Tennessee PBS, Bristol Public Library, and @Black in Appalachia are hosting a Bristol Co...
11/05/2019

This Saturday, November 9, East Tennessee PBS, Bristol Public Library, and @Black in Appalachia are hosting a Bristol Community History Day 9am--5pm at the Slater Center on McDowell Street. This is a chance for you and your family to share documents, photos, films, oral histories, and recollections of Bristol and Sullivan County's African-American community. Here at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, we hope there will be some stories and materials related to music-making in the community!

Documents and photos will be digitized and returned to participants the same day, along with a digital copy of any items.

November is here, and that means we have another WBCM - Radio Bristol Book Club pick! Check out today's blog post to lea...
11/04/2019
Radio Bristol Book Club: Ralph Peer and the Making of Popular Roots Music - Birthplace of Country Music

November is here, and that means we have another WBCM - Radio Bristol Book Club pick! Check out today's blog post to learn more about the book -- Ralph Peer and the Making of Popular Roots Music by Barry Mazor -- and then start reading so you can be ready for our live discussion on November 21 at 11am.

Welcome to Radio Bristol Book Club! Readers from BCM and the Bristol Public Library are coming together each month to celebrate and explore one book inspired by our region’s rich Appalachian cultural and musical heritage. We invite you to read along …

Happy Halloween, everyone! We hope you'll enjoy this fun Bristol Rhythm and Roots Reunion playlist of festival artists!h...
10/31/2019

Happy Halloween, everyone! We hope you'll enjoy this fun Bristol Rhythm and Roots Reunion playlist of festival artists!

https://spoti.fi/2Now1k4

Stay spooky with our fun Halloween playlist filled with #bristolrhythm artists! More than four hours of awesome tunes that'll set your night off right!

https://spoti.fi/2Now1k4

"Minimal production, poetic lyrics, sparse guitar, all of it hit me in the right way. I immediately understood what all ...
10/30/2019
Off the Record: Townes Van Zandt’s Live at The Old Quarter, Houston, Texas - Birthplace of Country Music

"Minimal production, poetic lyrics, sparse guitar, all of it hit me in the right way. I immediately understood what all these great songwriters were talking about. Townes was the real deal." ~
JP Parsons, Singer-songwriter and host of WBCM - Radio Bristol's Appalachian Travels, on the late, great Townes Van Zandt in this edition of the #BCMBlog.

https://bit.ly/36hCNR7

“Townes Van Zandt is the best songwriter in the whole world, and I’ll stand on Bob Dylan’s coffee table in my cowboy boots and say that.” ~ Steve Earle I moved to Bristol, Tennessee, in early January 2010. Moving might …

Today JP Parsons Music, one of WBCM - Radio Bristol's DJs, explores the impact of Towne Van Zandt's music on his own in ...
10/30/2019
Off the Record: Townes Van Zandt’s Live at The Old Quarter, Houston, Texas - Birthplace of Country Music

Today JP Parsons Music, one of WBCM - Radio Bristol's DJs, explores the impact of Towne Van Zandt's music on his own in our "Off the Record" blog post.

“Townes Van Zandt is the best songwriter in the whole world, and I’ll stand on Bob Dylan’s coffee table in my cowboy boots and say that.” ~ Steve Earle I moved to Bristol, Tennessee, in early January 2010. Moving might …

Ralph Peer and the Making of Popular Roots Music by Barry Mazor is the subject of the next Radio Bristol Book Club Nov. ...
10/29/2019

Ralph Peer and the Making of Popular Roots Music by Barry Mazor is the subject of the next Radio Bristol Book Club Nov. 21st! Pick up this fascinating read at The Museum Store and tune in to the program! The book club airs at 11am on the 4th Thursday of every month.

https://bit.ly/36fSmZS

10/27/2019
Stoneman Family The Spanish Merchant’s Daughter VICTOR V - 40206 A

Looking for more recordings that would capture the listening public's attention, Ralph Peer and Victor came back to Bristol to capture new recordings on October 27, 1928. Revisiting some favorites like The Stoneman Family and Alfred Karnes, and finding some new talent such as The Smyth County Ramblers and Tarter & Gay, Peer made several important recordings that influenced the urban folk revival of the 1950s and 1960s, three of which were featured on the well-known Anthology of American Folk Music from Smithsonian Folkways Recordings.

One of these featured songs was Ernest and Hattie Stoneman's "The Spanish Merchant's Daughter":

Ernest Stoneman,h/g/v Bolan Frost, bj; Hattie Stoneman, v. Bristol, TN Wednesday, October 31, 1928

October's Farm & Fun Time show with Chatham County Line and Jeff Scroggins & Colorado was a hoot! WBCM - Radio Bristol's...
10/26/2019
Fall, Fish, and Farm and Fun Time! - Birthplace of Country Music

October's Farm & Fun Time show with Chatham County Line and Jeff Scroggins & Colorado was a hoot! WBCM - Radio Bristol's Nathan Sykes gives us a re-cap in this edition of the #BCMBlog. Enjoy!

https://bit.ly/2WcbWBs

Farm and Fun Time got back to its bluegrass roots at October’s show! Thanks to our sponsor Eastman Credit Union, Radio Bristol was able to bring Farm and Fun Time to not only those in the audience or tuned in …

Love seeing all the kids dressed up in their costumes for Family Fun at the museum today where they enjoyed coloring, ou...
10/26/2019

Love seeing all the kids dressed up in their costumes for Family Fun at the museum today where they enjoyed coloring, our instrument petting zoo, making teeny banjos, and storytelling by Ms. Michelle from the Bristol Public Library!
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#communityday
#familyfun
#bcmbristol
#museum

TODAY! Join us for Community Day - Family Fun Activities & Free Museum Admission at the museum! https://bit.ly/2PpRwn0
10/26/2019

TODAY! Join us for Community Day - Family Fun Activities & Free Museum Admission at the museum! https://bit.ly/2PpRwn0

Tomorrow! Enjoy lots of activities the family can enjoy together at Community Day - Family Fun Activities & Free Museum ...
10/25/2019

Tomorrow! Enjoy lots of activities the family can enjoy together at Community Day - Family Fun Activities & Free Museum Admission from noon to 2pm like the instrument petting zoo, storytelling, and more! The only cost to you is time well-spent! https://bit.ly/2PpRwn0

"Jayne, my builder, found the board I am made from at a local lumber yard...The thinly sliced back and side pieces rang ...
10/24/2019
Instrument Interview: A Guitar Built for Doc Watson - Birthplace of Country Music

"Jayne, my builder, found the board I am made from at a local lumber yard...The thinly sliced back and side pieces rang out loud and bright when Jayne and her dad tapped on them so they knew the pieces would make a great guitar." ~ an excerpt from this edition of the BCM Blog, an Instrument Interview with a guitar built for the legendary Doc Watson.

https://bit.ly/2oYyMAx

“Instrument Interview” posts are a chance to sit down with the instruments of traditional, country, bluegrass, and roots music – from different types of instruments to specific ones related to artists, luthiers, and songwriters – and learn more about them. …

10/23/2019
Maybelle Carter - It Takes A Worried Man (Worried Man Blues)

Today we honor the legacy of Maybelle Carter, who passed away on October 23, 1978. She was a member of the original Carter Family, playing guitar and singing with A. P. and Sara. Their split in the early 1940s was not the end of Maybelle’s musical career -- her talent was further realized and revered when she performed with her daughters Helen, Anita, and June as Mother Maybelle and the Carter Sisters, and later as a solo act. She released several solo albums in the 1960s, along with a reunion album with Sara Carter in 1966.

Check out Mother Maybelle at the Newport Folk Festival in the 1960s:

Maybelle Carter performs "Worried Man Blues" at the Newport Folk Festival in 1963. Songwriter was A.P. Carter. Lyric: It takes a worried man to sing a worrie...

Calling all musicians! Join us at the museum TODAY 2-5pm for our Monthly Community Jams led by WBCM - Radio Bristol prog...
10/19/2019

Calling all musicians! Join us at the museum TODAY 2-5pm for our Monthly Community Jams led by WBCM - Radio Bristol program host and singer-songwriter Ella Patrick - a.k.a. Momma Molasses! All ages and skill levels are invited to take part in the fun!

"Tell It To Me," a celebration the 90th Anniversary of the 1928 Johnson City Sessions, is happening tomorrow on the city...
10/18/2019

"Tell It To Me," a celebration the 90th Anniversary of the 1928 Johnson City Sessions, is happening tomorrow on the city's Main Street! It's also the subject of this BCM Blog post by our very own Kris Truelsen:
https://bit.ly/2MNHsBy

Earlier this year we marked the centennial of Tennessee Ernie Ford's birth. Today marks the anniversary of two other imp...
10/17/2019
“Sixteen Tons”: Merle Travis, Tennessee Ernie Ford, and Beyond - Birthplace of Country Music

Earlier this year we marked the centennial of Tennessee Ernie Ford's birth. Today marks the anniversary of two other important Ford-related dates in music history. It was on October 17, 1955, that one of Ford’s most important and well-known songs was released: “Sixteen Tons,” originally written and performed by Merle Travis. And on October 17, 1991, Ford passed away, leaving behind a wide-ranging and hugely significant musical legacy. You can read more about this in our blog post from 2017:

By Summer Apostol, October 17, 2017 Today marks the anniversary of two important dates in music history. On October 17, 1991, Tennessee Ernie Ford passed away, leaving behind a wide-ranging and hugely significant musical legacy. It was also on October …

The 90th Anniversary - Johnson City Sessions is being celebrated in downtown Johnson City this Saturday -- check out tod...
10/16/2019
“Tell It to Me”: The Johnson City Sessions 90th Anniversary - Birthplace of Country Music

The 90th Anniversary - Johnson City Sessions is being celebrated in downtown Johnson City this Saturday -- check out today's blog post to learn more about the history and significance of those recording sessions!

“Can you sing or play old-time music?” This question was asked by Columbia Records in an advertisement in the Johnson City Chronicle on Wednesday October 3, 1928. That advertisement, seeking musicians specializing in regional old-time music, ran in various papers …

If you haven't seen it yet, be sure and make time to come see our current special exhibit, American Ballads: The Photogr...
10/14/2019

If you haven't seen it yet, be sure and make time to come see our current special exhibit, American Ballads: The Photographs of Marty Stuart, on loan from the Frist Art Museum. Featuring stunning photographs of the Lakota people of South Dakota, country music icons, and characters from the highways and byways, this exhibit is a not-to-be-missed treat.

On October 12, 1998, the 105th U.S. Congress agreed the resolution to designate Bristol, TN/VA as the Birthplace of Coun...
10/12/2019

On October 12, 1998, the 105th U.S. Congress agreed the resolution to designate Bristol, TN/VA as the Birthplace of Country Music, recognizing and celebrating our cities' place in early commercial country music history and the impact the 1927 Bristol Sessions had on later artists and music. We are still celebrating that heritage today through the museum, WBCM - Radio Bristol, and Bristol Rhythm and Roots Reunion. Come visit us to learn more!

Bristol postcard showing the Taylor-Christian Hat Company building, site of the 1927 Bristol Sessions recordings; image courtesy of the Bristol Historical Association.

The museum is hosting the 5th annual PUSH Film Festival today -- Saturday, October 12! You can get your ticket at the mu...
10/12/2019

The museum is hosting the 5th annual PUSH Film Festival today -- Saturday, October 12! You can get your ticket at the museum, a great opportunity to experience a wonderful variety of TN/VA shorts and two curated films -- including Blaze, a film about musician and songwriter Blaze Foley. The festival also offers an Instafilm workshop, awards ceremony, and reception!

https://www.pushfilmfest.com/

10/11/2019

Join us for Community Day Oct. 26 and tour the museum for free!

Is your digital camera still on auto mode, just like the day you took it out of the box? ⁠⁠Whether you are brand new...
10/10/2019

Is your digital camera still on auto mode, just like the day you took it out of the box? ⁠

Whether you are brand new to photography or you have dabbled in photography for years, this 3-hour course covers topics that can help you transform your images.⁠

Saturday, November 2⁠
11:00 AM - 2:00 PM⁠
at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum⁠
hosted by Briana Fillers⁠

Register here today: https://www.birthplaceofcountrymusic.org/event/digital-photography-class-for-beginners/

Amazing singer-songwriter and WBCM - Radio Bristol program host Ella Patrick, a.k.a. Momma Molasses, will lead our next ...
10/08/2019

Amazing singer-songwriter and WBCM - Radio Bristol program host Ella Patrick, a.k.a. Momma Molasses, will lead our next Monthly Community Jams at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum! Free for all ages and skill levels! Join us! https://bit.ly/2OrMVAv

"I love standing in the middle of the crowd at the festival and catching a stranger’s eye when a set is really startin...
10/07/2019
That's a Wrap, Bristol Rhythm '19 - Birthplace of Country Music

"I love standing in the middle of the crowd at the festival and catching a stranger’s eye when a set is really starting to heat up. In that moment, whatever may separate you from that person in real life, everything but the music and your oneness with that energy completely disappears."

That's a Wrap, #bristolrhythm19 in this installment of the BCM Blog: https://bit.ly/2IvMQbk

Blog post and re-cap of the 19th annual Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival in Historic Downtown Bristol, VA-TN.

The museum is hosting the 5th annual PUSH Film Festival on Saturday, October 12. Be sure to get your ticket now to exper...
10/06/2019
PUSH! Film Festival

The museum is hosting the 5th annual PUSH Film Festival on Saturday, October 12. Be sure to get your ticket now to experience a wonderful variety of TN/VA shorts and two curated films -- including Blaze, a film about musician and songwriter Blaze Foley. The festival also offers an Instafilm workshop, awards ceremony, and reception!

https://www.pushfilmfest.com/

10/05/2019
Birthplace of Country Music Museum

Our free Monthly Community Jams return October 19! This session will be led by singer-songwriter and WBCM - Radio Bristol show host Ella Patrick, a.k.a. Momma Molasses! Join us!

Museum Hours:
10am - 6pm: Tuesday - Saturday
1pm - 5pm: Sunday
Closed Mondays

The Museum will the closed on Sunday, March 24, 2019.

Our friends and neighbors are celebrating the 90th Anniversary of the Johnson City Sessions October 19th! Be part of tha...
10/04/2019

Our friends and neighbors are celebrating the 90th Anniversary of the Johnson City Sessions October 19th! Be part of that free celebration!

https://bit.ly/2V9tHAZ

Ken Burns documentary film series Country Music, which features prominently the legendary 1927 Bristol Sessions, The Car...
10/03/2019

Ken Burns documentary film series Country Music, which features prominently the legendary 1927 Bristol Sessions, The Carter Family, and Jimmie Rodgers, is now available at The Museum Store! Pick up your copy today!

https://www.birthplaceofcountrymusic.org/

"Bill Bryson’s A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail documents just such a walk when Bry...
10/02/2019
Radio Bristol Book Club: A Walk in the Woods - Birthplace of Country Music

"Bill Bryson’s A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail documents just such a walk when Bryson decides to trek the entire length of the Appalachian Trail ... Every year, thousands attempt to “thru-hike” the trail from Georgia to Maine in one trip, and only about 25% will actually finish." ~ Read more about our latest Radio Bristol Book Club selection in this edition of the BCM Blog!

Welcome to Radio Bristol Book Club! Readers from BCM and the Bristol Public Library are coming together each month to celebrate and explore one book inspired by our region’s rich Appalachian cultural and musical heritage. We invite you to read …

The Birthplace of Country Music Museum needs YOU to become a volunteer! Volunteers provide the backbone for all the work...
10/01/2019

The Birthplace of Country Music Museum needs YOU to become a volunteer! Volunteers provide the backbone for all the work we do, that's why on Tuesday, October 8 from 2-5pm we'll host a Volunteer Training Session for anyone interested in helping us spread our message of music with the world! Click on the link for more info:

https://bit.ly/2ogTYAI

Address

101 Country Music Way
Bristol, VA
24201

Opening Hours

Tuesday 10:00 - 18:00
Wednesday 10:00 - 18:00
Thursday 10:00 - 18:00
Friday 10:00 - 18:00
Saturday 10:00 - 18:00
Sunday 13:00 - 17:00

Telephone

(423) 573-1927

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