From the Civil War to the Dust Bowl and from baseball to jazz, Ken Burns documentaries have covered a range of critical events in American history and culture. Now, country music is getting the Ken Burns treatment. 

He and long-time collaborators and producers Dayton Duncan and Julie Dunfey spent eight years researching and making an eight-part, 16-hour documentary called Country Music, which will air in six parts beginning Sunday, Sept. 15 on GPB.

On Second Thought host Virginia Prescott speaks with Dayton Duncan.

PHOTOS: Watch The Trailer, Videos And See Photos

On Second Thought spoke with producer and writer of the documentary Dayton Duncan to explore the origins and evolution of a genre that rose from the ground up, mixing traditions of European immigrants, African American blues, and the hard-won stories of the "common man." We hear the tales behind the songs, recounting the rebels, the ramblers and the innovators who impacted the genre throughout the 20th century.

 

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Johnny Cash at his home in California, 1960
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Johnny Cash at his home in California, 1960
The Grand Ole Opry at the Ryman Auditorium, Nashville, c. 1960
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The Grand Ole Opry at the Ryman Auditorium, Nashville, c. 1960
Bill Monroe on the Grand Ole Opry, Nashville, c. 1958
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Bill Monroe on the Grand Ole Opry, Nashville, c. 1958
The Original Carter Family, from left: AP, Maybelle and Sara Carter c. 1930
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The Original Carter Family, from left: AP, Maybelle and Sara Carter c. 1930