Belmont University Hosts International Country Music Conference

Authors and journalists at the conference,  pictured above are, left to right, Don Cusic, Barry Mazor, Holly George-Warren, Robert K. Oermann, Beverly Keel and Ed Morris.

Authors and journalists at the conference included (L-R): Don Cusic, Barry Mazor, Holly George-Warren, Robert K. Oermann, Beverly Keel and Ed Morris.

The 31st annual International Country Music Conference was held at Belmont University over the weekend, May 22-24. Co-hosted by Don Cusic and James Akenson, the conference featured sessions by country music scholars on topics including the Bluebird Café, Tennessee Ernie Ford, Gram Parsons, Barbara Mandrell and Marty Robbins.

One highlight was the Charles K. Wolfe Memorial panel entitled “Chet Flippo: An Assessment of a Life in Country Music Journalism,” featuring panelists Dr. David Anderson, Louisiana Tech; Dr. Beverly Keel, MTSU; Barry Mazor, Nashville; Edward Morris, Nashville; and moderator Dr. Patrick Huber, Missouri University of Science and Technology.

Additionally, Cusic spoke about The Beatles and Country music, and Nashvillian Jewly Hight presented “Country Boys’ Club: Reading Between the Beats of Mainstream Country’s Gendered Forays Into the Dance Club.” Marian Leighton Levy discussed “Radical Politics, The Counter Culture, and the Beginning of Rounder Records.”

Sue Masset presented the one woman show, “Precious Memories,” based on the life of folk singer and activist Sarah Ogan Gunning. The show was written by Si Kahn, a singer-songwriter and social justice activist, who also delivered the keynote.

In attendance were scholars from Norway, Japan, Canada and all over the United States.

 Pictured above, left to right, are conference co-host James Akenson, Si Kahn, Sue Massek and conference co-host Don Cusic.

Pictured (L-R): conference co-host James Akenson, Si Kahn, Sue Massek and conference co-host Don Cusic.

 

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Sarah Skates has worked in the music business for more than a decade and is a longtime contributor to MusicRow.

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