I just finished reading Peter Doggett's Are You Ready for the Country, which chronicles the roots of country rock and Americana music. Much of the book is spent on Hank Williams, Elvis, Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, Gram Parsons, The Band, etc., though Doggett includes contemporaries such as Neil Young, Uncle Tupelo, Beck, and Steve Earle as well. He also includes a recommended list of 100 essential albums, which is cool for a list maker like myself. Related to this, I finally saw Walk the Line recently, and since seeing it I've been listening to more Johnny Cash tunes. I have always been a fan of Cash's music (especially his later stuff with Rick Rubin), but thanks to geting hold of my mom's record collection I am starting to appreciate more of his earlier songwriting. Check out this clip from the short lived The Johnny Cash Show, featuring Bob Dylan and the Man in Black performing Dylan's "Girl of the North Country". They don't make TV like this anymore, if they did I might tune in more.
Listening to: Built to Spill- You in Reverse