Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Hank Williams Charts for the First Time: August 9, 1947

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Hank Williams isn’t just one of country music’s most celebrated performers, but one of the most important music makers of any genre of music. He can boast to induction in the Country Music Hall of Fame, the Rock and Roll Music Hall of Fame, and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. He is also a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. Dave’s Music Database ranks him as one of the Top 100 Acts of All Time and one of the top 10 country acts of all time.

His first chart hit came in 1947 with “Move It on Over”. Some of the significant hits which followed include five songs in the Grammy Hall of Fame. Those five songs – “Lovesick Blues” (1949), “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” (1949), “Hey, Good Lookin’” (1951), “Jambalaya (On the Bayou)” (1952), and “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953) – also rank in the top 1000 songs of the 20th century, as does 1951’s “Cold, Cold Heart”. All six of those songs, as well as 1953’s “Kaw-Liga”, also make the DMDB’s list of the top 100 country songs of all time.

“Move It on Over” – audio only

Williams’ short life makes his accomplishments even more extraordinary. He was only 29 when alcohol and drug abuse did him in, but he had already charted 33 hits on the country charts. Eerily, the song on the charts when he died was “I’ll Never Get Out of This World Alive”. It would be his eighth #1 country song, topping the chart just a few weeks after his death. His next three posthumous releases also hit the pinnacle.

As proof of his long-lasting impact, Williams hit the top ten four more times after his death – the last was in 1989 (“There’s a Tear in My Beer”) in a duet with his son Hank Williams, Jr. It won the Academy of Country Music award for Video of the Year.

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