As 2 Day continues, Simon Mayo explores the country genre and builds his own Nashville-based supergroup with six session musicians of the highest calibre.
With the help of country aficionado and fellow presenter, Alex Lester, Simon delves into a genre, which is not widely explored on our daytime schedule, to find out more about its roots and influences.
The six musicians helping Simon, live from "Music City", are John Wheeler (fiddle/band leader), Mike Daly (pedal steel/dobro), Dave Pomeroy (upright/electric bass), Don Wayne Reno (banjo), and Cathryn Craig (vocals); with each showcasing their instrument, picking an inspirational tune and talking to Simon about their careers.
John Wheeler is the founding member of Hayseed Dixie who has played with many great names in Nashville sessions. With Hayseed, he has toured all over the world playing bluegrass and country, and is currently working on his own album.
Mike Daly is a stalwart of the country music scene, having spent a lot of his career playing for Hank Williams Jnr. He is also the steel player for Travis Tritt, and will be leaving to tour with him straight after our show.
Dave Pomeroy is not only the current President of the Nashville Musicians Union, but has a list of credits as long as his arm. Over the last 30 years he has recorded with hundreds of great country artists, featuring on over 400 albums, including Willie Nelson, Elton John, Alison Krauss and Guy Clark. He has performed with many stars, including Mose Allison, Dr John and has toured on many occasions with the great Don Williams.
Don Wayne Reno is also a member of Haysee Dixie and has played with John for many years. Don's love for bluegrass is evident, and there are no finer banjo players around. His father also co-wrote Duelling Banjos.
Cathryn is no stranger to Nashville, having lived there most of her life. She spends half of her time here in the UK, half in Music City, and has worked with and sung for artists such as Emmylou Harris, Mickey Newbury, Shel Silverstein and Tommy Boyce. The partner of Brian Willoughby, from the Strawbs, she has also put out several records with him under the name Craig & Willoughby.
At the end of the programme, the supergroup will perform a couple of country classics exclusively for Radio 2.