The 37th Annual International Country Music Conference, the leading academic conference devoted to country music, was held virtually on June 3-5. Co-hosts for the conference were James Akenson and Don Cusic.
The conference began with a pre-keynote session titled “Country Music Around the World,” with Sarah Trahern, CEO of the CMA, Milly Olykan, VP of International Relations and Development for the CMA, Anna-Sophie Mertens with Live Nation in the U.K. and Natalie Waller with ABC Music in Australia.
The keynote was followed by over 35 presentations and panel discussions with participants from Japan, Australia, Sweden, Hawaii and Canada as well as from universities and colleges throughout the United States. A wide range of topics were addressed, including race, gender, culture and politics in country music as well as studies on individual artists and songs.
On Friday, June 4, the Rolling Stone Chet Flippo Award for Excellence in Country Music Journalism was presented to Marcus K. Dowling, and the Belmont Book Award for the Best Book on or about country music was presented to Travis Stimeling for Nashville Cats: Record Production in Music City.
— International Country Music Conference (@icmc_country) June 4, 2021
The International Country Music Journal edited by Don Cusic is published annually to coincide with the International Country Music Conference. In this issue are articles about country music in Japan, the Stanley Brothers, Hank Williams, Irish country music, Milton Estes, the Sleepy Hollow Ranch and Eva Thompson Jones, who accompanied Uncle Jimmy Thompson on the first broadcast of what became the Grand Ole Opry and who was arrested for prostitution during World War II in a controversial case. This is the only academic journal dedicated to country music.