I felt this was important enough to have its own post, not to be buried in the Tom Russell post of yesterday. So this will be a repeat for some (as in word for word, cut and paste, etc.) -
So my evolving (har redux) musical tastes have lead me to Sirius Satellite Radio and, in particular, a station owned by Miami Steve Van Zandt called Outlaw Country. The thing about this station that makes me pretty much ecstatic every time I turn it on is that, first of all, they paint with the Outlaw Brush (IBL tm) very broadly (especially depending on the DJ), so I hear everything from Social Distortion to Lynyrd Skynyrd to polka music; Jimmie Rodgers to Loretta Lynn to the Bobby Fuller Four. Plus, of course, there's plenty of Waylon, Willie, Johnny, Merle, Kris, Shaver, Coe and all three Hanks; PLUS there's plenty of twang ta boot. And the DJs are often musicians (Steve Earle, Shooter Jennings, Elizabeth Cook) or producers (Don Was, Cowboy Jack Clement), so there is also insight as to the making of the music (both in and out of the studio), who was influencing whom, and just general Outlaw Country history.
Then, this - often I have heard country music dismissed as "hillbilly" or "hick", and likely there is a fair amount of music out there that fits this label. But very little of it is played on Outlaw Country (and, again, they are not playing strictly country music; I believe they think of it as a kind of "Americana"). But, nonetheless, there are endless intelligent, thoughtful songs by a variety of songwriters in a variety of genres, plus just some real fucking good country music, rock and roll, rock (yes, I think these are two different genres), folk, blue grass, Tejano, etc.