Program Notes: Tennessee Walt’s ‘A Year in a Distant Country’

March 13, 2021 “Honky Tonking”  (Hank Williams, 1947) Williams actually recorded and released this song twice in consecutive years, once for the low-budget, no-royalties Sterling Records in 1947 and again for the far more professional MGM Records in January 1948. Sterling didn’t have much distribution, so the MGM recording is the version almost everybody knows … Continue reading Program Notes: Tennessee Walt’s ‘A Year in a Distant Country’

Ode to Billy Joe

One morning in 1968, a scruffy-looking 29-year-old toting a guitar made his way onto westbound Route 40 somewhere in Texas, looking to thumb a ride to Los Angeles.  Despite his best efforts, however, hundreds of drivers passed him by.  Tiring of getting nowhere, the impatient hitchhiker crossed the highway and took a shot at a … Continue reading Ode to Billy Joe