The first part aired last night. In episode one Tom takes in the massive influence of Mexico on cowboys (they used lassos and wore wide-brimmed hats long before Americans) and the contribution that Easterners Theodore Roosevelt, Buffalo Bill, novelist Owen Wister, and artist Frederic Remington had on creating today's image of the cowboy.
Tom also talks a little about how cowboy and western themes fit into his own songwriting. (If you're not familar with Russell I've posted a couple of MP3s below - one cowboy song, one State of the Union address).
The series continues next Thursday but you can listen to it all on the Radio 2 website.