WILL-TV Presents: Illinois Country

Illinois Country logo
A documentary exploring Illinois’ role in the history of country music, from early gathering halls and small-town hoedowns, the National Barn Dance in Chicago, and Farm Aid in Champaign, to today’s Illinois-bred Grammy winners. Get the air dates on WILL-TV and stations across Illinois. Or watch via Passport, a benefit of WILL membership for donations of $5/month or more.


Learn more about Illinois natives such as Gene Autry's sidekick Smiley Burnette and singer Jenny Lou Carson who were both instrumental in making Illinois the first "capital of country music." We travel to southern Illinois to hear the stories of John Hartford and Uncle Tupelo; and right here in central Illinois, we learn more about the recording pioneer Jerry Milam of Golden Voice Studios and the founders of Bloodshot Records - all of whom made remarkable contributions to the genre, sometimes changing it in controversial ways. Here are the air dates on WILL-TV and public TV stations across Illinois.

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Margo Price being interviewed by Sarah Edwards

Voices of Illinois Country logo

Filmmaker Sarah Edwards, Producer DJ Roach, and videographer Isaac Musgrave filmed nearly 25 interviews over the course of the year bringing Illinois Country to life. In this special series, we've culled great performances, fascinating (and sometimes funny!) stories, great interviews, behind the scenes content and cool tidbits you won't see in the one hour film.

Voices of Illinois Country Andrea Zonn musician and vocalist

Voices of Illinois Country title screen for Mark Rubel

Illinois Country Live

Voices of Illinois Country title screen for Deep Hollow

Voices of Illinois Country title screen for Tasji Bachman

Voices of Illinois Country title screen for Paul Tyler

Voices of Illinois Country title screen for Chris Vallillo

Voices of Illinois Country title screen for Dennis Stroughmatt

Illinois Country tee shirts

Support Illinois Country with an ongoing donation of $10 (or a one-time gift of $120) and we'll send you one of our exclusive Illinois Country shirts. Go here to make your gift.

Illinois Country is supported in part by:


Rose Bowl Urbana Illinois
Thomas Mamer Attorneys at Law
Pell windows and doors of champaign