Milestones Jun. 25, 2007

DIED

REBEL COUNTRY musicians have not had an easy time of it (see the Dixie Chicks), but their path to acceptance was eased immeasurably by radio pioneer Laura Ellen Hopper. In 1975 Hopper co-founded the cultish, eclectic, now defunct California station KFAT, still widely revered for its rejection of the conservative country establishment and its support of quirky artists from John Prine to Jerry Jeff Walker. Those and newer stars like Iris DeMent got a bigger push at her more successful second home, KPIG, where as founder and program director she promoted and popularized the alternative country sound of Americana. She...

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