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Hank Williams

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Hank Williams
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Hiram King "Hank" Williams, (/hæŋk wɪljəmz /; September 17, 1923 – January 1, 1953) was an American singer-songwriter and musician.

 Regarded as one of the most significant and influential American singers and songwriters of the 20th century,  Williams recorded 35 singles (five released posthumously) that reached the Top 10 of the Billboard Country & Western Best Sellers chart, including 11 that ranked number one (three posthumously).

Born in Mount Olive, Butler County, Alabama, Williams moved to Georgiana, where he met Rufus Payne, who gave him guitar lessons in exchange for meals or money. Payne had a major influence on Williams' later musical style, along with Roy Acuff and Ernest Tubb. During this time, Williams informally changed his name to Hank, believing it to be a better name for country music.

He moved to Montgomery, where he began his music career in 1937, when producers at radio station WSFA hired him to perform and host a 15-minute program. He formed as backup the Drifting Cowboys band, which was managed by his mother, and dropped out of school to devote his time to his career.

When several of his band members were conscripted into military service during World War II, Williams had trouble with their replacements, and WSFA terminated his contract because of his alcohol abuse. Williams eventually married Audrey Sheppard, who was his manager for nearly a decade. After recording "Never Again" and "Honky Tonkin'" with Sterling Records, he signed a contract with MGM Records. In 1948 he released "Move It on Over", which became a hit, and also joined the Louisiana Hayride radio program.

One year later, he released a cover of "Lovesick Blues", which carried him into the mainstream of music. After an initial rejection, Williams joined the Grand Ole Opry. He was unable to read or notate music to any significant degree. Among the hits he wrote were "Your Cheatin' Heart", "Hey, Good Lookin'", and "I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry".

Several years of back pain, alcoholism, and prescription drug abuse severely damaged Williams' health. He divorced Sheppard and was dismissed by the Grand Ole Opry because of his unreliability and alcohol abuse. Williams died in 1953 at the age of 29, from heart failure exacerbated by pills and alcohol. Despite his short life, Williams had a major influence on 20th-century popular music, especially country music.

The songs he wrote and recorded have been covered by numerous artists and have been hits in various genres. He has been inducted into multiple music halls of fame, such as the Country Music Hall of Fame (1961), the Songwriters Hall of Fame (1970), and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (1987).
#1 - March 01, 2017, 11:19:14 AM

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Hank Williams - Hey Good Lookin


The Hank Williams song is a variation of another song by the same title, which was written by Cole Porter in 1942.  The lyrics for the Williams version begin as a come on using double entendres related to food preparation ("How's about cookin' somethin' up with me?"). By the third and fourth verses, the singer is promising the object of his affection that they can become an exclusive couple ("How's about keepin' steady company?" and "I'm gonna throw my date book over the fence").

Williams was friendly with musician Jimmy Dickens. Having told Dickens that Dickens needed a hit record if he was going to become a star, Williams said he'd write it, and penned "Hey Good Lookin'" in only 20 minutes while on a plane with Dickens, Minnie Pearl, and Pearl's husband Henry Cannon.  A week later Williams recorded it himself, jokingly telling Dickens, "That song's too good for you!"

"Hey, Good Lookin'" was recorded on March 16, 1951 at Castle Studio in Nashville. The same session also produced the single's B-side "My Heart Would Know" as well as another pair of tunes that would be released as singles: "I Can't Help It (If I'm Still in Love with You)" and "Howlin' at the Moon," released on April 27, 1951. The "Hey, Good Lookin'" single would follow on June 22.

Williams was backed on the session by members of his Drifting Cowboys band, including Jerry Rivers (fiddle), Don Helms (steel guitar), Sammy Pruett (electric guitar), Jack Shook (rhythm guitar), Ernie Newton or "Cedric Rainwater," aka Howard Watts (bass), and either Owen Bradley or producer Fred Rose on piano.  As author Colin Escott observes, "On one level, it seemed to point toward rock 'n' roll (hot rods, dancing sprees, goin' steady, and soda pop), but the rhythm plodded along with a steppity-step piano, and Hank sounded almost dour."

Williams performed the song on the Kate Smith Evening Hour on March 26, 1952; the appearance remains one of the few existing film clips of the singer performing live. He is introduced by Roy Acuff and banters with a young June Carter. He is wearing his famous white cowboy suit adorned in musical notes. He performed "Hey, Good Lookin'" and joined in with the rest of the cast singing his own "I Saw The Light."

The rare clip displays the singer's exuberance on stage while performing an up-tempo number, and he appears at ease in the relatively new broadcast medium of television. The kinescope from this show would provide the footage for the Hank Williams, Jr. video "There's A Tear In My Beer" some 37 years later.
#2 - March 01, 2017, 11:34:12 AM
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Hank Williams - Jambalaya


"Jambalaya (On the Bayou)" is a song written and recorded by American country music singer Hank Williams that was first released in July 1952.

Named for a Creole and Cajun dish, jambalaya, it spawned numerous cover versions and has since achieved popularity in several different music genres.
#3 - March 01, 2017, 11:36:48 AM
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Hank Williams - Lonesome Me




#4 - March 01, 2017, 11:40:18 AM
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Hank Williams - Your Cheating Heart


"Your Cheatin' Heart" is a song written and recorded by country music singer-songwriter Hank Williams in 1952, regarded as one of country's most important standards. Country music historian Colin Escott writes that "the song - for all intents and purposes - defines country music."

 He was inspired to write the song while driving with his fianceé from Nashville, Tennessee to Shreveport, Louisiana. After describing his first wife Audrey Sheppard as a "Cheatin' Heart", he dictated in minutes the lyrics to Billie Jean Jones. Produced by Fred Rose, Williams recorded the song on his last session at Castle Records in Nashville, Tennessee, on September 23.

"Your Cheatin' Heart" was released in January 1953. Propelled by Williams' recent death during a trip to a New Year's concert in Canton, Ohio, the song became an instant success. It topped Billboard's Country & Western chart for six weeks, while over a million units were sold.

 The success of the song continued. Joni James' version reached number two on Billboard's Most Played in Jukeboxes the same year, while Ray Charles' 1962 version reached number 29 on the Billboard Hot 100 and 13 on the UK Singles Chart. The song ranked at 217 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time, and was ranked number 5 on Country Music Television's 100 Greatest Songs in Country Music.
#5 - March 01, 2017, 11:42:32 AM
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Hank Williams - Cold Cold Heart


"Cold, Cold Heart" is a country music and popular music song, written by Hank Williams. This blues ballad is both a classic of honky-tonk and an entry in the Great American Songbook.

Williams adapted the melody for the song from T. Texas Tyler's 1945 recording of "You'll Still Be in My Heart," written by Ted West in 1943.[1] The song achingly and artfully describes frustration that the singer's love and trust is unreciprocated due to a prior bad experience in the other's past. Stories of the song's origins vary. In the Williams episode of American Masters, country music historian Colin Escott states that Williams was moved to write the song after visiting his wife Audrey in the hospital, who was suffering from an infection brought on by an abortion she had carried out at their home unbeknownst to Hank. Escott also speculates that Audrey, who carried on extramarital affairs as Hank did on the road, may have suspected the baby was not her husband's.
#6 - July 16, 2017, 07:54:17 PM
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Hank Williams - Can't Help It If I'm Still In Love With You


"I Can't Help It (If I'm Still in Love with You)" is a song written and originally recorded by Hank Williams on MGM Records. It hit number two on the Billboard country singles chart in 1951.

According to Colin Escott's 2004 book Hank Williams: The Biography, fiddler Jerry Rivers always claimed that Hank wrote the song in the touring Sedan, and when he came up with the opening line, "Today I passed you on the street," and then asked for suggestions, steel guitarist Don Helms replied, "And I smelled your rotten feet."  The song was recorded at Castle Studio in Nashville, Tennessee, on March 16, 1951, the same session that yielded "Hey Good Lookin'", "My Heart Would Know", and "Howlin' at the Moon".[citation needed] Williams was backed on the session by members of his Drifting Cowboys band, including Rivers, Helms, Sammy Pruett (electric guitar), Jack Shook (rhythm guitar), Ernie Newton or "Cedric Rainwater", aka Howard Watts (bass), and either Owen Bradley or producer Fred Rose on piano. It was released as the B-side of "Howlin' at the Moon" but on the strength of its simple language and passionate singing, soared to number two on the Billboard country singles chart.[citation needed]

Williams sang the song with Anita Carter on the Kate Smith Evening Hour on April 23, 1952. The rare television appearance is one of the few film clips of Williams in performance.
#7 - October 06, 2017, 10:02:29 AM
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Hank Williams - South Of The Border




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#8 - October 06, 2017, 10:05:14 AM
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Hank Williams - Half As Much


"Half as Much" is an American pop standard written by Curley Williams in 1951. It was first recorded by country music singer Hank Williams in 1952 and reached number two on the Billboard Country Singles chart.  The same year, Rosemary Clooney recorded a hit version for Top 40 markets; Alma Cogan recorded another version in the United Kingdom.

 Since then the song has been recorded by a number of artists including Patsy Cline (1962), Ray Charles (1962), Eddy Arnold (1964), Sharon Redd (1967), Petula Clark (1974), Emmylou Harris (1992), Cake (1998), and Van Morrison (2006).

According to the 2004 book Hank Williams: The Biography, Williams was not too enamoured with "Half as Much" and only recorded it at producer Fred Rose's insistence.  Williams recorded it at a session at Castle Studio in Nashville on August 10, 1951.

He was backed by Jerry Rivers (fiddle), Don Helms (steel guitar), Sammy Pruett (lead guitar), Howard Watts (bass), probably Jack Shook (rhythm guitar), and either Owen Bradley or Fred Rose on piano.  "Half as Much" is notable for being the only Hank Williams recording to feature a solo barroom piano at its conclusion. Two months after Williams recorded "Half as Much," Curly Williams recorded it for Columbia Records, so Rose held back Hank's release until March 28, 1952 to clear the way for Curley's release on November 2, 1951.
#9 - December 29, 2017, 12:45:29 PM
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