The Shadow of Hank Williams

  For a man whose recording career lasted barely six years, Hank Williams casts an immense shadow.  I’m currently doing a show called Tennessee Walt’s Hanks a Lot!—and most of the audience members seem to come in assuming that it’s a show of Hank Williams songs.  When they learn that I’ll be doing songs not … Continue reading The Shadow of Hank Williams

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Love Is Blind, in 4/4 Time

It’s been nine years since I started listening to country music and, unwittingly, placed my feet on the path that led to the birth of Tennessee Walt.  (For further details of this story, check here.) The people who have known me longer than that are, for the most part, baffled by my new taste in … Continue reading Love Is Blind, in 4/4 Time

‘The Most Important Event in the History of Country Music’

On August 6, 1927, Ralph Peer left Bristol.  By Monday, August 8, there weren’t many people who even remembered that the Bristol Sessions had happened.  Most of the musicians who had auditioned for him were already back in their everyday lives, scrambling to get by.  Peer returned to New York, Bristol went about its business … Continue reading ‘The Most Important Event in the History of Country Music’

Hank Williams’ Apostrophe: A Quest for Authenticity

The title of the song is “Your Cheatin’ Heart.” That much is clear. It’s right there on the cover of the sheet music, as published by Williams’ own publisher, Acuff-Rose, in 1952. Of that there is no possible doubt whatever. Thereafter, though, things get murky. It seems obvious that, if you’re singing the song, the … Continue reading Hank Williams’ Apostrophe: A Quest for Authenticity