Is a song the best way to deliver bad news?

Hank Williams had a tear in his voice and was known as the "Love Sick Boy" of country music.
Hank Williams had a tear in his voice and was known as the “Lovesick Blues Boy” of country music.

WHOM DO YOU WANT to deliver the bad news?

Take your pick of twelve artists. Many are considered to be “super stars.” All are big names or at least significant when it comes to Hank Williams. Among others, there are Bob and Jakob Dylan, Alan Jackson, Norah Jones, Vince Gill, Patty Loveless and Lucinda Williams. Granddaughter Holly Williams (child of Bocephus himself) also is on hand. On hand for what?

Egyptian/Columbia records (in conjunction with the Country Music Hall of Fame) has released a CD containing twelve previously unrecorded compositions of Hank Williams. The back story of The Lost Notebooks of Hank Williams is as interesting and intriguing as the lyrics are emotional and heartbreaking.

Sometimes referred to as the “lovesick blues boy” of country music, Williams’ reputation as such is cemented with this collection. Any one of the twelve could easily stand alongside the classics we’ve come to know over the years. Every one of the twelve tears at the hearts of listeners with lamentations of loneliness, betrayal and lost love. If you aren’t careful, you could get depressed with all the pain and agony therein.

There are a couple of smiles if you have the right sense of humor. My favorite track on the CD is “You Know That I Know” by Jack White. His unusual voice, and well-timed delivery bring a smile with lyrics such as, “You know that I know that you ain’t no good. You wouldn’t tell the truth if you could.” Sheryl Crow and Merle Haggard finish up the album with a thanks-for-your love song “Angel Mine” and the religious themed “The Sermon on the Mount,” respectively.

I used to think that the way to clue a significant other in on the pending breakup would be to put on a loop tape of Roy Orbison singing, “It’s Over.” This is even better suited to the task. Brilliant performances by some of today’s best singer/song writers make this CD a keeper and an instant classic. Don’t expect much happiness though. Son-of-gun, there’ll be no fun on the bayou!

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  • Caleb Pirtle

    Chip, thanks for including the youtube video. Personally I believe that country songs deliver bad news even badder than it is and, in some cases, that’s as bad as it can get.

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