Countless books, essays and American Studies dissertations have been written about what happened in Bristol; it’s been called “the Big Bang.” Jazz traditionalist Wynton Marsalis — no dirt-kicking honky-tonker — has stated that any serious study of American music has to include these sounds. In 1998, the U.S. Congress proclaimed Bristol the “birthplace of country music,” even though what was captured was a wider snapshot of rural traditions, including gospel.
The folks at Richmond Magazine have done a remarkable job with their online presentation of the piece -- you can peruse a special timeline on early country music and hear some of the legendary music featured by some of the performers discovered at the sessions (like the Carter Family, shown).
The article can be found in the July issue of the magazine, adorned with great photos and a snazzy layout. OR you can read "Standing on the Promises" here with all of those cool extras: http://richmaglabs.com/bristol/index.html
To find out more about the Birthplace of Country Music museum, which officially opens in August, go here: http://www.birthplaceofcountrymusic.org/