Hank Williams

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Hank Williams in 1951

Hank Williams (September 17, 1923 – January 1, 1953) was an American singer, guitarist, and songwriter, who has become an icon of country music, Rock 'n' Roll and one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century.


  • A good song is a good song, and if I'm lucky enough to write it, well....! I get more kick out of writing than I do singing. I reckon I've written a thousand songs and had over 300 published.
    • Gleason, Ralph (06-28-1969). 1952 interview of Hank Williams. Rolling Stone.
  • [The country singer] sings more sincere than most entertainers, because the hillbilly was raised tougher than most entertainers. The people who has been raised something like the way the hillbilly has, knows what he is singing about and appreciates it. For what he is singing, is the hopes, and prayers, and dreams and experiences of what some call the "common people." I call them the "best people," because they are the ones that the world is made up most of. They're really the ones who make things tick, wherever they are in this country, or in other country.
    • Jarman, Rufus (February 1953). "Country Music Goes to Town". Nation's Business (Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America) 41 (2): p. 51. 


  • You wore out a brand new trunk,
    packin' and unpackin your junk.
    • "You're gonna change (or I'm gonna leave)" (1949)
  • No matter how I struggle and strive,
    I'll never get out of this world alive.
    • "I’ll Never Get Out Of This World Alive" (1952)
    • Used as "No matter how you struggle and strive, you never get out of this world alive" on the Babyshambles music-video for the single "The Blinding".
  • We'll put aside a little time to fix a flat or 2,
    my tires and tubes are doing fine but the air is showing through
    • "Settin' the Woods on Fire" (1952)


  • When I wrote about Hank Williams 'A hundred floors above me in the tower of song', it's not some kind of inverse modesty. I know where Hank Williams stands in the history of popular song. Your Cheatin' Heart, songs like that, are sublime, in his own tradition, and I feel myself a very minor writer.
  • I became aware that in Hank's recorded songs were the archetype rules of poetic songwriting. The architectural forms are like marble pillars and they had to be there. Even his words - all of the syllables are divided up so they make perfect mathematical sense. You can learn a lot about the structure of songwriting by listening to his records.

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