It can be explained in just one word: sincerity. When a hillbilly sings a crazy song, he feels crazy. When he sings, ‘I Laid My Mother Away,’ he sees her a-laying right there in the coffin. He sings more sincere than most entertainers because the hillbilly was raised rougher than most entertainers. You got to know a lot about hard work. You got to have smelt a lot of mule manure before you can sing like a hillbilly. The people that have been raised something like the way the hillbilly has…. knows what he sings about and appreciates it
~Hank Williams (on the success of Country Music)
Nobody had a talent for making suffering enjoyable like Hank Williams
Hank Williams was the first influence I would think.
~Bob Dylan (to Billy James, Oct 1961)
I started writing songs after I heard Hank Williams.
~Bob Dylan (The Les Crane Show, 17 Feb 1965)
Cold Cold Heart:
|Birth name||Hiram King Williams|
|Also known as||The Lovesick Blues Boy
Luke the Drifter
Hank Williams, Sr.
The Hillbilly Shakespeare
|Born||September 17, 1923
Mount Olive, Butler County, Alabama
|Died||January 1, 1953 (aged 29)
Oak Hill, West Virginia
|Genres||Country, Western, gospel,blues, honky-tonk, folk|
|Associated acts||Drifting Cowboys
Hank Williams (September 17, 1923 – January 1, 1953), born Hiram King Williams, was an American singer-songwriter and musician regarded as one of the most important country music artists of all time. Williams recorded 35 singles (five released posthumously) that would place in the Top 10 of the Billboard Country & Western Best Sellers chart, including 11 that ranked number one.
From allmusic – Stephen Thomas Erlewine:
Hank Williams is the father of contemporary country music. He was a superstar by the age of 25; he was dead at the age of 29. In those four short years, he established the rules for all the country performers who followed him and, in the process, much of popular music. Hank wrote a body of songs that became popular classics, and his direct, emotional lyrics and vocals became the standard for most popular performers. He lived a life as troubled and reckless as that depicted in his songs. …. read more @ allmusic.com
- Alabama governor Gordon Persons officially proclaimed September 21 “Hank Williams Day”
- In 1961, Williams was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame
- he was inducted in the Alabama Music Hall of Fame in 1985
- In 1987, he was inducted in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame under the category Early Influence
- He was ranked second in CMT’s 40 Greatest Men of Country Music in 2003, behind only Johnny Cash
- His son, Hank Jr., was ranked on the same list
- In 2004 Rolling Stone ranked him number 74 on its list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time
- In 2011 Williams’s 1949 MGM number one hit, “Lovesick Blues,” was inducted into the Recording Academy Grammy Hall Of Fame.
- In 1999, Williams was inducted into the Native American Music Hall of Fame.
- On April 12, 2010, the Pulitzer Prize Board awarded Williams a posthumous special citation that paid tribute to his “craftsmanship as a songwriter who expressed universal feelings with poignant simplicity and played a pivotal role in transforming country music into a major musical and cultural force in American life.”
- Keeping his legacy, Williams’s son, Hank Williams, Jr., daughter Jett Williams, grandson Hank Williams III, and granddaughters Hilary Williams and Holly Williams are also country musicians.
Hey Good Lookin’:
Album of the day – 40 Greatest Hits (1979):
Other September 17: