Country Music Hall of Fame to Host ‘Conversation with Chris Hillman and Bernie Leadon’

photo from Country Music Hall of Fame

The Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum will host an interview with Chris Hillman and Bernie Leadon on Saturday, Oct. 14, in support of the exhibition Western Edge: The Roots and Reverberations of Los Angeles Country-Rock, presented by City National Bank.

Hillman and Leadon will discuss their time as bandmates in the influential country-rock band the Flying Burrito Brothers and their pivotal roles in the rise of Los Angeles country-rock. The two Rock & Roll Hall of Fame members will also discuss their starts as teenage bluegrass musicians and the important bands in which they played. Hillman was a member of the Byrds, the Desert Rose Band, Golden State Boys, the Hillmen, Manassas, the Scottsville Squirrel Barkers and Souther-Hillman-Furay, and Leadon was a member of Dillard & Clark, Eagles, Hearts & Flowers, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Run C&W, the Scottsville Squirrel Barkers and others.

The program will take place at 2:30 p.m. in the museum’s Ford Theater. The museum’s Senior Writer-Editor Michael McCall will lead the discussion. This interview will be illustrated with archival photos, audio recordings and video clips. The program is included with museum admission and free to museum members. Visit the museum’s website to reserve tickets.

The Western Edge exhibit traces the L.A.-based communities of visionary singers, songwriters and musicians who, between the 1960s and 1980s, frequented local nightclubs, embraced country music, created and shaped the musical fusion, “country-rock,” and, ultimately, made a lasting impact on popular music. The exhibit, which runs through May 2025, surveys the rise of the Byrds, Buffalo Springfield, Eagles, Emmylou Harris, Linda Ronstadt and others who found commercial success with a hybrid of rock sensibilities and country instrumentation and harmonies. These trailblazers’ musical contributions were expanded upon by the next generation of Los Angeles roots music performers — the Blasters, Los Lobos, Lone Justice, Dwight Yoakam and others — who once again looked to traditional American music for inspiration. By blending hard-edged honky-tonk, Mexican folk music, rockabilly and punk rock, they provided inspiration to future generations of country and Americana artists.

The program is made possible in part by the Academy of Country Music.

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