In the early- and mid-1960s, as mainstream popular music began to reach and exploit the growing youth market, the country music genre was going through a number of important transformations (see Malone 1985; Hemphill 1970). During this period the country music industry, including record companies, recording studios, managing and booking agents, music publishers and musicians, was becoming more fully consolidated in Nashville. In addition, a different kind of dominant sound was beginning to coalesce, based on a more ‘uptown’ feel and intended for a more cosmopolitan audience accustomed to mainstream, adult pop music. The beat and whine of the honky-tonk song, as epitomised by the rural twang in the music of Hank Williams, Lefty Frizzell and Webb Pierce, was being replaced as the dominant country music sound by the smooth and urbane ballad styles of Eddy Arnold, Jim Reeves and Patsy Cline. This shift was both caused by and helped to foster the development of a steady set of studio musicians who would appear on thousands of country recordings per year. The musical style that coalesced in Nashville studios through the regular collaboration of these musicians and the record label producers who loosely arranged them became known as the ‘Nashville Sound’, a marketable and identifiable name for a particular set of musical conventions. This sound, nearly as similar to Rosemary Clooney as it was to Hank Williams, called into question the generic boundaries between ‘country’ music and mainstream ‘pop’ music.