Living Proof (another re-run)

Usually when we revisit posts from the past, we dig deep into the archives. Today’s re-run is a song which we first posted only a year and a half ago, around the time we bought a collection that was entirely albums by Hank Williams Jr. The owner did not have any records by his father, nor a single record by another country artist at all. She liked them and loved their music, but only collected Hank Jr.’s albums. This episode reminded us that everyone collects records in their own way. Here’s what we wrote about a record she recommended we play…

hank jr and friendsThe song in yesterday’s post, “You Don’t Know How it Feels,” must be one of Tom Petty’s most popular singles. He even shot a typically goofy video for the song at the time, although in it efforts were made to mask the drug reference in its chorus with an overdub.

If anyone else could say we don’t know how it feels to be them, it might be Hank Williams Jr. For so much of his life, he lived in his father’s shadow, even though he was a highly talented multi-instrumentalist.

Hank Jr. took lessons from famous musicians as varied as Fats Domino and Earl Scruggs, and has played on his many albums at least a half dozen different instruments: guitar, banjo, dobro, piano, drums, etc.

Last week we bought a¬†monstrous collection of country records which leaned heavily on the seventies ‘outlaw’ scene. Naturally, there were a lot of albums by Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, and those great Bakersfield bands of Buck Owens and Merle Haggard. There were also more of Hank Jr.’s albums than we’ve ever seen at once. Whole boxes of them. Who knew there were so many?!

His 1975 album Hank Williams Jr. and¬†Friends is a country-rock classic. It’s last song, “Living Proof,” is one of the most heartbreaking country tunes we’ve ever heard.



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