Country Music By Ken Burns – BBC4

New BBC4 documentary series Country Music By Ken Burns is a fascinating look at the origins of the genre by the award-winning film-maker

It’s been said that country music can be summed up by the phrase ‘three chords and the truth’ but if you want a longer description, look no further than BBC4’s Country Music By Ken Burns, a new series from the feted documentary-maker.  

Like his award-winning Jazz series, it’s a fascinating watch for any music fan – he uses archive film and photographs, plus contributions from the likes of Merle Haggard, Dolly Parton, Garth Brooks and Carlene Carter.

Tonight’s opening double bill begins in the 1920s with the introduction of radio broadcasting in the US and the rise (and ongoing influence) of The Carter Family (pictured top) and Jimmie Rodgers and his ‘blue yodel’. 

For full listings, see our TV Guide.

Main picture: Getty Images

TV Times rating: *****