Country music's first star, Mississippi-born Jimmie Rodgers became known alternately as the Singing Brakeman, thanks to his early career as a railroad man, and the Blue Yodeler, because of his signature vocal style. Both his workingman background and his distinctive voice endeared him to a large rural audience who, in 1933, mourned his tragic death from tuberculosis at age 35. Rodgers was discovered by Victor A&R man Ralph Peer at the same Bristol sessions as The Carter Family. Rodgers' mix of blues, hillbilly and parlor songs, sometimes tinged with jazz, resulted in a repertoire that would set the standard in country music; he first popularized songs that would be covered time and again over the years: "In the Jailhouse Now," "Waiting for a Train," "Muleskinner Blues," "Peach Pickin' Time in Georgia" and his career song, "Blue Yodel #9," also known as "T for Texas."
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