Bank of America, long-time sponsor of notable documentary filmmaker Ken Burns, is proud to support his latest work: Country Music. The new 8-part series will premiere Sunday, September 15 on WEDU PBS, West Central Florida’s public broadcast station.
But before it does, Bank of America, WEDU PBS, and Tampa Theatre will host a FREE street party, preview screening and post-show panel discussion in celebration of the new documentary series.
Before the show, The Easy Posse Band will perform LIVE classic country hits from greats like Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson, and Hank Williams Sr. from 5:00-7:00pm under Tampa Theatre’s historic marquee. US 103.5 FM on-air personality Sarah Jacobs and the iHeartRadio street team will welcome the crowd, and Leslie Henry from Universal Line Dancing will get everyone’s boots scootin’ with line dancing lessons on Franklin Street.
At 7:30pm, Country Music: A film by Ken Burns explores the history of this most American of art forms. From its deep and tangled roots in ballads, blues and hymns performed in small settings, to its worldwide popularity, learn how country music evolved over the course of the 20th century, as it eventually emerged to become America’s music. Country Music features never-before-seen footage and photographs, plus interviews with more than 80 country music artists such as Patsy Cline, Johnny Cash, Merle Haggard, Loretta Lynn, Charley Pride, Willie Nelson, Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris, and Garth Brooks. This special preview of the eight-part series will include excerpts from several episodes and special bonus footage from the Country Music Association’s Fan Fair event.
Following the screening US 103.5 FM’s Sarah Jacobs will moderate an expert panel presented by iHeartRadio with iHeartMedia programming executive Meg Stevens and legendary songwriters and Tampa natives The Warren Brothers, who have written country hits for the likes of Tim McGraw (“If You’re Reading This”), Toby Keith (“Red Solo Cup”), Faith Hill (“The Lucky One”), Keith Urban (“Little Bit of Everything”), Blake Shelton (“Every Time I Hear That Song”), and Martina McBride (“Anyway”), as well as songs for rock artists like Lynyrd Skynyrd, Nickelback, and Boys Like Girls.