The Artist Willie Nelson Thinks Did the Most for Country Music

Many artists shaped country music, including Waylon Jennings, Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton, and Willie Nelson. Nelson believes one musician has done more for the genre.

According to Willie Nelson, the artist who greatly influenced country music isn't a traditional country artist but Ray Charles, known for soul and blues.

Nelson wrote in his book that Ray Charles, through his album "Modern Sounds in Country and Western Music," introduced millions of fans to country music.

Released in 1962, "Modern Sounds in Country and Western Music" was a best-selling album by a black musician, defying expectations in a predominantly white genre.

Nelson and Charles collaborated on many duets, with notable performances including "Seven Spanish Angels," "Georgia on My Mind," and "A Song For You" with Leon Russell.