Cocaine & Rhinestones: The History of Country Music-logo

Cocaine & Rhinestones: The History of Country Music

Music Podcasts

Step right up. Come on in.

Step right up. Come on in.

Location:

United States

Description:

Step right up. Come on in.

Language:

English


Episodes

CR032/PH18 - Glenn

2/15/2022
The end of one story is just the beginning of another.

Duration:01:38:03

CR031/PH17 - Choices: George Jones' Last Run

2/1/2022
At least this whole story has a happy ending, right? Of course, whether or not that's true depends a lot on your personal definitions of both "happy ending" and "whole story" but, either way, today we reach the final chapter of George Jones' life. Don't worry, it'll all be over soon.

Duration:02:45:55

CR030/PH16 - Another Lonely Song: The Tammy Wynette & George Richey Story

1/18/2022
Oh, you thought Jones had a hard time dealing with George Richey? Imagine being married to the guy. Today we say one of the saddest and most infuriating goodbyes we'll ever have to say, the one we say to Tammy Wynette.

Duration:02:21:46

CR029/PH15 - Hell Stays Open All Night Long: George Jones, Phase III

1/4/2022
Oh, you're back to hear more things that will chill you to the bone? Then we can talk about what George Jones' life was like in the period leading up to and through the biggest hit of his career. If you've ever wondered what it's like to be afraid of a demonic duck or try murdering your best friend to test the existence of God, well, these are questions only George Jones can answer but just asking them makes for one jaw-dropping and heartbreaking story.

Duration:01:48:14

CR028/PH14 - Divorce/Death: He Stopped Loving Her Today, The Grand Tour & A Good Year for the Roses

12/21/2021
It's a known fact that "He Stopped Loving Her Today" is the best and saddest country song of all time. But... is it?

Duration:02:15:55

CR027/PH13 - Billy Sherrill's Nashville Sound

12/7/2021
What if the first serious opinions that millions of rock music fans formed about country music were based on a few massive errors which then got passed down to future generations? How long do you think it would take for society to build a fundamentally flawed history of an entire genre on top of such a foundation? Fifty years? Well, that's exactly what happened. Billy Sherrill's name means nothing to many country music fans. Some recognize it from the album credits of a few of their...

Duration:02:49:16

CR026/PH12 - Loved It Away: Tammy Wynette, On Her Own

11/23/2021
Following her breakup with George Jones, many people had many questions for Tammy Wynette. Well, they had questions for George, too, but he was a little harder to get in touch with, trying to drink himself onto a separate plane of reality from his conscious mind and all. So the questions went to Tammy. And she had answers. Then more answers. And more... And more. It's never been easy for ladies in country music. Here's how it became for The First Lady.

Duration:01:36:36

CR025/PH11 - Being Together: The George Jones & Tammy Wynette Story

11/9/2021
Though they were married to each other for little more than five years, the legacies of George Jones and Tammy Wynette are forever inseparable. This is partly due to their unprecedented success with creating music "based on the true story" of a romance between two artists, to such a degree that decades later there are still millions of fans who believe George and Tammy never stopped being in love with each other. If it's difficult to say where the line is between art and artist, public and...

Duration:01:50:41

CR024/PH10 - Stand by Your Man: The Anti-Feminist Manifesto

10/26/2021
Tammy Wynette's "Stand by Your Man" is one of the most well-known recordings in the English language. It was also a plastic explosive detonated at a sea change moment in United States politics and culture. Look around. We're still picking up the pieces.

Duration:01:54:35

CR023/PH09 - Loneliness Surrounds: Virginia Wynette Pugh

8/10/2021
Country music is full of rags-to-riches stories, like the one about how Virginia Wynette Pugh became Tammy Wynette. In a way, it's true. Even after becoming the most successful woman country singer at that point in history, the life she lived was hard and painful. But if you want to know what actually happened in that life then she's the last person you should ask.

Duration:01:44:27

CR022/PH08 - Dallas Frazier: Can't Get There From Here

7/27/2021
Some of the best songs you've ever heard were written by Dallas Frazier. Don't recognize the name? Don't worry. You'll remember it forever after this episode, especially those of you who love Charley Pride, Elvis Presley, Merle Haggard, Connie Smith, Charlie Rich, George Jones, The Oak Ridge Boys, Emmylou Harris, Gene Watson, Tanya Tucker, Bobby Bare, Stoney Edwards, The Beach Boys, Tom Jones, Kenny Rogers, Willie Nelson... You get the point. Here's the story.

Duration:02:01:59

CR021/PH07 - Pappy Daily, Gene Pitney and How George Jones Came to Be on Musicor

7/13/2021
This whole story began with a pinball machine and jukebox mogul in Texas jumping over to the independent record business of the 1950s. When he hitched his wagon to a Singing Marine who became the Greatest Country Singer Ever, it served Pappy Daily well through the following decade. Then, out of nowhere, the ride suddenly ended. "What went wrong?" is the obvious question to ask, here, but it's not the right one. We need to talk about who went wrong. The answer nearly everyone's accepted for...

Duration:02:17:27

CR020/PH06 - All to Pieces: George Jones, Phase II

6/29/2021
In the early 1960s, George Jones had a huge hit record featuring such a phenomenal vocal performance it instantly turned him into a living legend. He didn't handle it well.

Duration:01:41:33

CR019/PH05 - Wandering Soul: George Jones, Starday Recording Artist

6/15/2021
There are some personalities who would embrace being called The Greatest Country Singer Ever or, at least, settle into the role once it became clear the brand was eternal. George Jones did not have one of those personalities. The fame and fortune generated by his talent made him want to run away, so he spent decades running... toward something even worse than what he was trying to escape. Was there ever a chance of this story playing out any differently? Probably not, no. But what in the...

Duration:01:31:51

CR018/PH04 - White Lightning

6/1/2021
In North Carolina, way back in the hills, there's a centuries-old tradition of cooking illegal liquor. Whether you feel that's right or wrong, good or bad, may be determined by any number of factors but the objective truth is moonshine whiskey greatly impacted the course of United States culture on several occasions. Ever wonder why so many people will never trust the government or politicians? Press play. Ever wonder if the "moonshine" you can now buy in liquor stores is really moonshine?...

Duration:01:40:37

CR017/PH03 - The Nashville A Team

5/18/2021
Now that we've established Owen Bradley as the single most important producer in the history of Nashville, let's take it further and acknowledge he's one of the most important figures in the history of all recorded music, even if for no other reason than assembling the first group of musicians to become known as the Nashville A-Team. Were we to erase their work from existence, every book about pop, rock or country music in the second half of the 20th century would need to be entirely...

Duration:02:18:05

CR016/PH02 – Owen Bradley's Nashville Sound

5/4/2021
What if the first serious books about country music contained a few massive errors which were then repeated by nearly everyone who's since used those books as a source? How long do you think it would take for society to build a fundamentally flawed history of an entire genre on top of such a foundation? Fifty years? Well, that's exactly what happened... Owen Bradley's name means nothing to many country music fans. Some recognize it from the album credits of a few of their favorite country...

Duration:02:18:43

CR015/PH01 - Starday Records: The Anti-Nashville Sound

4/20/2021
The story of a little independent record label in Texas becoming "a force" in the Nashville country music industry brings an outsider's perspective to the anatomy of a machine. Going from backwoods honky tonks and roadhouse jukeboxes to stretch limos and private planes takes a lot of crooked deals and shameless hustle. When confronted by a powerful enemy, you'll do whatever it takes to survive the rock and roll. When the whole world acquires a taste for your strain of Kentucky bluegrass,...

Duration:02:13:15

Season 2 Announcement

4/7/2021
Cocaine & Rhinestones Season 2 begins on April 20th.

Duration:00:02:04

BONUS: Cocaine & Rhinestones Season 1 Q&A

2/6/2018
You might think, "How could anyone finish a season of a podcast like Cocaine & Rhinestones and have questions? That guy saturates every episode with details like he's getting paid by the fact." There's always more to know. Like, how does one even go about making a podcast on such a huge subject as the history of country music? Whose "fault" is pop country, really? Is this Merle Haggard song communist? Is that Merle Haggard song racist? There had to be more men banned from country radio,...

Duration:01:22:16