Yodelling Boundary Riders: Country music in Australia since the 1920s

Toby Martin

Research output: Book/ReportBookpeer-review


This landmark book by Toby Martin tells the story of one of the most enduring forms of popular culture in Australia. Prior to the 1950s, country music was called hillbilly music. Hillbilly was the rock ’n’ roll of its day. The latest craze, straight from America, it was young, exciting and glamorous. This book traces the journey hillbilly took to become country: the rural, nationalistic form it is known as today.

Yodelling Boundary Riders is the first book to contextualise country music into a broader story about Australian history. Not just concerned with the development of the music itself, it is also a history of the ways in which Australians have responded to the rapid rate of change in the twentieth century and the global fascination with “authenticity”.

True to its subject matter, the writing is colourful and entertaining. Along the way Martin introduces some wonderful characters and events: yodelling stockmen, singing cowgirls, sentimental cowboys, coo-ees in Nashville, hobos on the mail train, the Sheik of Scrubby Creek and Australia’s craziest hillbillies.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationMelbourne
PublisherLyrebird Press (University of Melbourne)
Number of pages178
ISBN (Print)9780734037794, 9780734037787
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Publication series

NameAustralian Music Research
PublisherLyrebird Press
ISSN (Print)1325-5266


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