An old fashioned style of country music dating from the late 1930s pioneered by Bill Monroe (who invented the name) and Roy Acuff. While some people believe it to be the traditional music of the Appalachian mountains, it's basically what country music was like before influences from jazz, blues, and pop came in. Most popular in Kentucky, West Virginia, Tennessee and Virginia. In bluegrass the guitar fiddle and banjo are the most important instruments and there is no drumming nor percussion. It has had a small but devoted following outside of the South for years, and despite being associated with toothless inbred hicks to some is a genre very highly respected by musicians - not just country musicians but rock and even jazz musicians. Often used in films and TV set in the South, in the last few years it has undergone a massive revival in popularity worldwide because of the film "O Brother Where Art Thou".
Bluegrass isn't just played by Southerners any more - although it's still rare to find an African-American bluegrass musician.
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