Hank Williams Jr. – tiny curations
This episode has been published and can be heard everywhere your podcast is available.
DEEP DIVES & tiny curations Podcast Episodes Available Today:
Hear the playlist on Spotify:
- Family Tradition
- Whiskey Bent And Hell Bound
- If the South Woulda Won
- A Country Boy Can Survive
- My Name Is Bocephus (Live)
- The Blues Man
- Red White and Pink Slip Blues
Rockin’ Randall Hank Williams Jr., the son of legendary Hank Williams, he had a lot to live up to, and he did it, and then some. He has sold over 70 million albums and won CMA Entertainer of the Year 5 times, that and a whole lot of other accolades. Hank Williams has come to be known as a person who speaks his mind. Better or worse.
You might know him from the theme song for the NFL’s Monday Night Football. It was based on his 1984 hit “All My Rowdy Friends Are Coming Over Tonight”, it ran for decades!
His daddy before him had a hard drinkin’ hard livin’ life and so did Hank Jr., as well as his son Hank III, let’s start things off with “Family Tradition”:
That was my personal favorite, “Whiskey Bent And Hell Bound”. And more about the “Family Tradition” that preceded that song. Shelton Hank Williams, known as Hank III, his son is now performing as the next generation Hank, Coleman Williams as simply IV. He just released his debut music this past April. And there is also Jett Williams, Hank Jr’s step-sister. And Holly Williams, Hank III’s half-sister, I love her 2014 song, “Waiting on June”.
Here is more Hank Jr with “If the South Woulda Won” off of 1988’s Wild Streak:
That was “A Country Boy Can Survive”, one of Hank Jr’s most enduring hits and a fan favorite.
Bocephus as known by many and the name given to him by his daddy. Named Bocephus after Grand Ole Opry comedian Rod Brasfield’s ventriloquist dummy. Hank Sr. died at a young age and when Hank Jr was only 3 years old and raised by his mother Audrey. Here is “My Name Is Bocephus”:
Audrey, Hank Jr’s mother had him performing his daddy’s hits all over the country and Hank Jr. resented being known as an impersonator of his father. He tried putting his own songs into his live sets of his daddy’s songs, but the crowds were not pleased as they had come to hear Hank Williams songs. He would start changing his style and coming into his own despite the crowd reaction.
Hank was almost killed in 1975, during a mountain-climbing accident in Montana, where he fell 500 feet. After taking years off and many surgeries, he returned more focused and what would become his career defining period. When he reemerged he had grown a beard and started wearing sunglasses and a Cowboy hat, this would become his signature look. Here is a song made popular again by Alan Jackson on his 1999 covers album, “Under The Influence”, here is Hank doing “The Blues Man”:
Times are good around Austin and the Country… interest is down and the Stock Market’s up; and let’s pray that it stays that way. But it was during what is now known as the Great Recession that Bocephus released his last big single and I love it. I doubt I’ll hear it tonight, so we will play it now, this is “Red, White & Pink-Slip Blues”.
I’ll be able to see him tonight at the Nutty Brown Cafe and Amphitheater about a mile from my house. Normally, or on a good day when the breeze is blowing my direction, I can hear the concerts well. But tonight myself and some friends will go and see it live for ourselves. As the Nutty Brown, the “Nut”, is in it’s final final season at it’s current location, is really going to finally close. As the local H.E.B. grocery store had purchased the land several years back. And as they continue to expand in the Austin area along with the growth and population in Austin. Another H.E.B. will open later this month on the corner of Hwy 290 West and what used to be known as Camp Ben McCulloch Road. Looking forward to all of what Hank will bring tonight is such a small venue. I once had a $12 ticket to see him in the mid-90’s along with The Marshall Tucker Band to play the former South Park Meadows in South Austin. Back in the day this was Austin’s largest outdoor music venue, hosting Willie Nelson picnics and what-not. Now this is home to a shopping center, Walmart and such. Not an H.E.B., they only recently built their own grocery store on the opposite intersection.
Although, I did end up seeing Hank Jr. in the Summer of 1997 at CountryFest for the grand opening of Texas Motor Speedway near Forth Worth. Along with Travis Tritt and other country stars of the era. Tickets were either free or dirt cheap. Droves of people came from all over and we made the pilgrimage from Austin, where an estimated 185,000 people were in attendance. And it was BYOB, just like the future NASCAR races held there, you could bring in a case of beer!
The following weekend, I went back for more, for the rock version, Blockbuster Rock Fest. Isn’t that a sign of the times, Blockbuster. This time, almost 400,000 people gathered, this is by far the largest event that I have ever been to.
And the last time that I saw Hank Jr. was in a hot Texas Summer 5 years ago at the Circuit of the Americas, another racetrack, this one for Austin’s new Grade 1 FIA-specification 3.426-mile for Formula 1 races. They race in Dubai, then they following weekend in cow pastures 15 minutes east of the Austin.
For this show, rising star and fresh off of his 2015 CMA award sweep and hit rendition of David Allan Coe’s Tennessee Whiskey, Chris Stapleton.
And I’ve never seen anything like this before, after Chris Stapleton’s set, what seemed like half the crowd left the show before headlining Hank ever started, thanks Austin.
But tonight, true Bocephus fans will show their support for this legendary Country performer.
Thanks for listening.