Country music is a popular American musical style that began in the rural Southern United States in the 1920s. It takes its roots from Western cowboy and southeastern American folk music. Country music often consists of ballads and dance tunes with generally simple forms and harmonies accompanied by mostly string instruments such as banjoes, electric and acoustic guitars, fiddles such as violins, and harmonicas.
The term country music gained popularity in the 1940s in preference to the earlier term hillbilly music. The term country music is used today to describe many styles and subgenres. In 2009 Country music was the most listened to rush hour radio genre during the evening commute, and second most popular in the morning commute.